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Getting Into Covid Halloween Spirit

2020 is a fucked up year. Now we're going to have to start planning Halloween (and other holidays) "covid style". Since today (7/23) marks 100 Days Until Halloween, I thought I'd start turning my focus to fall and Halloween. Obviously, I'm a big fan of Halloween. Fall is my most favorite season - of course, Alaskan "fall" is more like PacNW "winter".

I'm one of those people who prefer to go somewhere else for Halloween events. The last time I tried to host my own party, 2 of 10 people showed up (one was late) and we sat around waiting for others to show up. It was a mess and no one RSVPs anymore. Now I just go to other people's parties. I tend to avoid bars and we have no nightclubs to venture to.

Horror Movie Nights

Once a week, you (and your friends/family) can have a horror movie night. Maybe there's a theme, maybe you have a "watch party" (now an option with streaming services), maybe it's just something random that you do. Enjoy it. Watch something outside of your normal choices. Have a discussion of the film after you watch it with friends.

U-Pick Farms & Farmer's Markets

Harvest is upon us! Check out the local farms and markets for fresh produce. You might even have a farm that has a pumpkin patch. This is a great time to try new fruits and vegetables, eat healthier, and spend time in the kitchen. Farmer's Markets also have the benefit of extra options such as local honey, locally made food items, and non-food items.

Kitchen Time

Explore those harvest food themes such as: pumpkin, winter squash, summer squash, tubers, berries, apples, stone fruit, and mushrooms. Get in the kitchen and start baking. Get a game hen (or two) and roast it with a homemade berry glaze. Scour pinterest for recipes for baked goods and share at your office. No one is going to turn down pumpkin spice snickerdoodles or chocolate zucchini muffins or maple-pecan scones that are sitting next to your office coffee pot.

Craft Projects

Since we're at home more often right now, it's worth it to fill your time with craft projects. Since we're trying to get into the spirit of Halloween, you can: sew Halloween clothing or costumes, build your own coffin shelving or containers, make your own Halloween decor, make some fall scented candles or soap or lotion, or paint a spooky still life (skull and flowers? pumpkins?) with a covid-free friend (also with wine?).

Controlled Contact

You can still have game nights, craft nights, and outtings with people. Just control the contact. Limit your gatherings and if anyone is feeling sick (regardless of reason), ask them to stay home. Be comfortable with who you hang out with. If you're inviting people for an outting, perhaps hit up a u-pick farm, walking/hiking trail, or venture out to your nearest national park or forest for exploration. Have masks ready to go if you're around strangers. It's a great time to spend time with nature. You're not going to get covid from the trees and the hiking trails. Bring a camera for an impromptu photoshoot or bring your art supplies for some quick nature-based art. If you have a game night, perhaps limit your gathering to a total of 4-5 people who you know and are comfortable maskless.

Deep Clean

It's a good time to throw on some spooky music and spend a week deep cleaning. Get rid of clothes you don't wear (donate them). Clean out all the corners you've been putting off. When was the last time you polished the wood surfaces in your house with Pledge? When was the last time you washed your windows or cleaned under your bed? When you're done you will feel as if a huge weight has been suddenly lifted from your shoulders, one you didn't even know you carried. I always suggest lighting a fragrant candle or using those fragrant wax melts when you're done. You might find, once you clean house, that you need another bookshelf or you should get around to making those curtains you wanted to make a year ago. There is something supremely satisfying about taking the time to create an extra clean space and by letting go of stuff you don't want, don't need, or haven't thought about since you last shoved it into the corner of your closet. It's also a nice preparation for the winter months - which will come quickly.

Halloween Playlist

Take some time and create a new Halloween playlist with your music or through online services (spotify or pandora).

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