Thanksgiving, CDC-Style

Let me preface this post by saying this: I am feeling a bit feisty right now. It’s raining cats and dogs outside, and so I haven’t been able to go running yet today. Therefore, I attribute tonight’s sassiness to my inability to let off some steam, due to the inclement weather. Please proceed with caution.

So. Here we are. We are exactly two weeks out from Thanksgiving, and like the ultimate party poopers they are, the CDC is ringing in some early holiday cheer by issuing their “COVID19 Holiday Guidelines.

Which, as a New Yorker under Dictator Governor Andrew Cuomo‘s regime administration, I should be used to oppressive infringements on my civil liberties. I mean, just this week, Cuomo mandated that – to slow the spread of COVID — all bars, restaurants and gyms must close at 10pm, AND all private gatherings at private residences may not exceed 10 people. Yeah — so there’s that.

But back to the CDC. Their guidelines….it’s as if they went and punctured each and every balloon in the non-existant Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade with a needle overnight, and we’re all waking up in the morning to a pathetic, droopy Snoopy and pals.

Allow me to just…share a few of these “helpful precautions.”

First – they encourage having a virtual dinner and “sharing recipes” rather than sharing quality time, in-person.

They flat out say that if you are at high risk of contracting COVID (i.e., if you’re older, or have a compromised immune system) that you should avoid in-person gatherings at all costs.

If you must get together, limit the number of households attending; have dinner outside if possible; no singing or shouting; wear a masks at all times; and stay two arms lengths apart.

And oh yeah — bring your own food, AND NO ALCOHOL. (This is because it will obviously impeded your ability to follow social distancing measures.)

OK, so let me get this straight: I can either go to a Thanksgiving recipe swap via Zoom, where I can get tipsy and sing Christmas carols solo, sans-mask until I’m blue in the face; or I can freeze to death at a small, outdoor gathering where I bring my own food, stay six feet away from my loved ones, and be stone cold sober with a mask on for the entire night…and then quarantine for 14 days.

I mean, does anyone else feel like they’re in a straight jacket?

Now look, I am in no way, shape or form diminishing the severity of COVID19, or making light of taking proper precautions, like wearing a mask or social distancing — things that we should all absolutely be doing.

But with your family on Thanksgiving? It just feels like we’re encroaching on hallowed ground. I mean, it was one thing to “cancel” Halloweenbut Thanksgiving? That just seems like cruel and unusual punishment!

And frankly, it just seems like such hypocrisy. Where was the outcry on Saturday when thousands poured onto the streets to celebrate the media’s calling Biden as President elect? Or the tens of thousands who took to the streets to protest this summer? — How come not an eyelash was batted? And yet, now, they’re telling me I can’t even eat my Aunt Trudy’s green bean casserole, or have a glass of wine with dinner because it poses too much of a COVID risk?

It just doesn’t seem to quite add up, if you ask me.

But I digress. That’s not the point of this post.

These guidelines, not only do they put an incredibly heavy damper on Thanksgiving, but they put us in a real predicament, too.

What are we to do? Seriously?

Are we to stay holed up and honest to God do a Virtual Thanksgiving Recipe Swap over Zoom? Must we seriously stay away from family and loved ones out of fear?

I’m truthfully asking. Because though I joke about the guidelines and strict precautions we’re taking, the truth of the matter is that they’re there for good reason.

And though, yes, I just purchased a plane ticket to go home for Thanksgiving, the fact is, I’m scared to death that I’m going to pick up COVID on the plane ride there, and God forbid transfer it to my parents! I mean, you’re talking to the girl who stayed holed up in NYC and didn’t see her family for nine months for fear of getting COVID on an airplane!

So believe me, I know the fear is real!

But again, it just makes me question, what is it that God is trying to teach us through all of this?

We’re restricted from attending in-person worship services. We’ve been isolated from family and loved ones since March, living in fear of this invisible predator that could “get us” if we come within six feet of another person, causing us to mistrust and be suspicious of our neighbors and fellow humans. And now, we’re being told we shouldn’t gather with family and loved ones during the holidays?

It honestly feels as though God has led us into the desert for the longest 40 days we’ve ever experienced.

So what are we to do? Truly, I’m asking. What are you going to do during Thanksgiving and Christmas? Are you going to go the virtual route? Are you going to safely gather, adhering to the masks and the no-communal-food rules? Or are you going to just go about Thanksgiving as usual and pray that all is well and good?

Because I do trust that God is in control. 100%. But I also have a healthy fear of a virus that could be potentially deadly for my parents, or even my auto-immuned self.

So let me know. I’d love to hear how you plan on celebrating!

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5

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168 thoughts on “Thanksgiving, CDC-Style

    1. Thanks friend. You’re right about that. Hopefully next year they’re the best yet! Hugs and love xox

    1. Thank you! Haha oh my gosh you’re too funny!! Yes! Just send me your P.O. Box! Hugs and love xox

  1. We are going to a son’s home. There will be less than 10 people there. We will wash our hands and use sanitizer. And weather permitting will spend most of our time outside. It will be a smaller group than we are used to but the best way to do it this year.

    1. Hi Colleen, thank you for sharing your plans! That sounds like it will be lovely. You’re right, we’ve all had to adapt. I hope it’s a beautiful time 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  2. California made those same announcements weeks ago for all of the upcoming holidays, and they’ve been saying no gatherings at all of any size since March. Be glad you at least are allowed a few people. Of course, these rules aren’t being enforced strictly, which is the real reason they aren’t working, which means that the only people being punished are the ones who follow the rules…

    For me personally, I don’t have a large gathering for Thanksgiving this year anyway. My brother is now working as a long haul truck driver, and he won’t be home for Thanksgiving. So if I do my usual thing for Thanksgiving, which I plan to, it’ll just be me and my parents. We’ll be taking food to my grandma at some point too, without getting too close to her.

    My grandma turns 100 in between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I want to go home again for that, even if I can’t give her a hug, just to be there, because it’s not every day you get to celebrate someone being 100. I’ve only once before even met someone 100 years old. I know her other grandchildren (my cousins) and great-grandchildren are visiting that weekend too… honestly, one of those cousins is exactly the type to flagrantly defy government orders, and I hope he doesn’t do anything unsafe to put Grandma at risk.

    I don’t know yet what I’m doing for Christmas, nor do I know how long I’m staying at any of those places. (My parents and grandma live about three hours away driving.)

    1. Hi Greg, thanks for sharing that. Gosh that’s so tough. I’m sorry your bro won’t be there for thanksgiving. That sounds like it will be a special and intimate gathering. Wow your grandmas is a rock star! I’m sure your presence will be such a blessing. Hugs and love xox

  3. I’ve been through many “seasons” of life and have thought of this COVID situation as yet another season that will pass as they always do. People everywhere on this Earth have got to follow the basic precautions! Otherwise, things may never get better. Stay safe!! ❤️🙏🏻

    1. You’re right, John. It’s a season and this too shall pass. And you’re right – were all in this together! Thanks! Hugs and love xox

  4. We are having family over and enjoying each other’s company. If someone feels ill, obviously we have to unplan it but so far everyone is well. And we will eat indoors despite dictator Cuomo!

    1. Oh that sounds like it will be so lovely, Karen! Thanks for sharing that! Haha Hope it’s a beautiful time! Hugs and love xox

  5. In Michigan, we also have a Governor who is a bit high on power. I went 3 months without seeing my boys who live with my ex while we were in lockdown. We have the same “recommendations” for the holiday, followed by the warning of “some people will survive, some won’t.” We are being cautious, but life’s too short to live in fear. I am cooking at home. My boys will be here, and sleep in the camper overnight.
    I hope Hod leads you to the right decision for you and your family as well. Sending love and prayers

    1. Thanks Kristie for sharing that. You’re right – life is too short to live in feed! Sounds like it will be a lovely time! Thank you for your prayers! Hugs and love xox

  6. F it. I’m staying home. The way my Mom and her husband act with the masks, it wouldn’t be any fun. Maybe ill come up with something fun to do outside if the weather cooperates. I’m pretty annoyed too. Must be the foul weather.

  7. Urgh! I understand your frustration.

    I think it’s about controlling the factors you can and accepting you can’t stop everything – every little helps!

    The UK is under a second full lockdown in hopes we can have some semblance of semi-normal Christmas.
    But means we’re trashing thanksgiving and Diwali for those here who celebrate them.

    We’re all trying to do our best and this round of covid is definitely worse than the first. No one wants hospitals to run out of beds and forced to make impossible decisions. Being a good citizen has a unique feature set this year.

    Big hugs.

  8. I am pretty sure that if you wear a mask on the plane, you will be fine. You should go see your parents. My friend flew to Arizona last month; she wore a mask, then attended a 100 person wedding in San Diego the weekend after. She wore a mask there too although some people didn’t. She wore a mask inside my house when she dropped by unexpectedly a week after the wedding for Halloween and stayed for a few hours. She is fine and no one in my household has Covid. I live with my parents and children who were home. We do not go anywhere. I’m not saying Covid isn’t real because I have another friend whose almost whole family got sick but that’s because they were ALWAYS out traveling somewhere and didn’t keep to their small bubble. I think if you follow the precautions and aren’t immune compromised, don’t feel so scared about flying to see your parents. Go meet up with friends, toast some wine and maybe have a gingerbread martini too. Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Thanks Elaine! Yeah when I went on a plane in October I wore two masks and glasses. It was very well spaced out too. That’s a great perspective to have. A gingerbread martini! Yum! I’ll take one! Haha Hugs and love xox

  9. Hello. I will just say this, I served in the US Navy for just over 22 years from 1975 to 1997 during the height of the modern Cold War period (under Reagan mostly). Like thousands upon thousands of service personnel before me and after me I can’t begin to tell you how many Thanksgivings, birthdays, anniversaries, births, deaths, Christmases – the list could go on and on. Yes, I volunteered to serve my country then and would do so again in a heartbeat but now it’s everyone’s turn to serve their country and fellow Americans. This may be the only Thanksgiving you may have to give up with family, maybe Christmas too. It’s such a little thing really and it could reap great rewards. Maybe if we all do our small part we can all get together next year at Thanksgiving and enjoy life again. Senior Chief Christopher Whelan (Ret), USN
    Peace and happiness to you and to my fellow Americans.

    1. Thank you for your service, Christopher! You’re right – we can and should all do our part! A little sacrifice. So glad you stopped by. Hugs and love xox

    1. Thanks so much Kenneth! That’s great that you’ll be able to be with family! Hooray! Hugs and love xox

  10. We are going on with Thanksgiving as normal (and I have a big family). I’m done letting this virus that 99% get over it just fine. To put your mind at ease about flying, they recently tested the air filtration systems that they put on planes against COVID and it works really well. The person next to you could have it and unless they spit directly on you, you won’t get it.

    1. Hi friend! Oh that’s great – I’m glad you and your family are doing that! And thanks for the reassurance about the airplane! Means a lot! Hugs and love xox

  11. Screw the restrictions! Making decisions based on fear is a poor and, frankly dangerous way to live. When my daughter wanted to go away to college despite her epilepsy, I said go for it. My in-laws questioned this move, and I firmly told them to mind their own. They raised their daughters to fear things, and I wasn’t going to do that with MY family!

    What should you do? Pay attention to the news they aren’t spelling out for you. I’ve tracked the mortality rate since last February when COVID first started getting attention: reported deaths / reported cases = mortality. At its peak, the rate was about 5.3%. It’s been dropping the last month or more and is currently at 2.34% CUMULATIVE. In other words, the actual CURRENT rate must be mush lower to bring the overall average down that far. Plus the fact that it doesn’t start really going up until you look at people in the 70’s and 80’s.

    EVEN I AM RELATIVELY SAFE!

    You’re in a room with 100 people representing age groups of the general population. 2-3 people will die, and those odds are weighted toward the elderly. Now how worried are you?

    But the media and the politicians lose power when you aren’t afraid. Making you afraid is their bread-and-butter.

    Arm yourself with prayer, facts, and common sense. Go home confidently, Caralyn! And if you or anyone does get COVID, your best bet is a steroid shot. I know of a doctor in Florida who has found that to be effective. Ask you Dr. Brother.

    Aaaand he steps off the soap box…

    1. Haha thanks Jeff. You’re right – living out of fear is no way to live at all! And you’re right – the rate and the actual at risk groups are minute. I do agree that much of the fear mongering in the media was politically driven. I mean, not to open a can of worms, but the “mishandling” of the pandemic was literally the only thing Biden had to run on, other than being “not trump.” But I digress 😉 yes. Arm myself in prayer and common sense!! Hahah thanks for the soap box talk!! Loved it! Hope you and your girls have a fantastic weekend! Hugs and love xox

  12. Caralyn, we always host family and have anywhere from 20-25 people. But just today we made the decision to do our 2 turkeys, 2 stuffings, 2 gravies, and everything else but get it to all so we fix the meal but the dinner will be virtual. My sister-in-law had COVID-19 and it took her 5 weeks to be able to stand up. So, this is not a mandated decision but our family decision because it’s a very serious disease. Is one meal worth someone getting sick and worse? And if you saw the Notre Dame students rushing the field last weekend my niece was one of those. Everyone will eat, we’ll all share the meal together, but we will not be in person. Ted

    1. Oh my gosh, Ted, I’m so sorry to hear that about your sister! Gosh, I’m glad she’s doing better. How scary. That’s a smart thing to do. I hope it is a wonderful time. Praying for your niece! Hugs and love xox

  13. I replied to you over on Twitter, but I’ll say it here too. We’re not having a family get together, limited to only six. Instead were having a funeral memorial for my brothers pet turkey Tom. We will have up to 50 family members present, and refreshments will be served. For those who need that explain, it’s a joke. But I hope you do have a nice family holiday.

    1. Hahah oh gosh you’re funny, Keith. May turkey Tom Rest In Peace, and be comforted by his friends stuffing Sally and Christy Cranberrry Sauce 😉 Hugs and love xox

  14. Hi kiddo. I do plan on gathering with about 12 of my family here in Texas. I will wear a mask, attempt to stay socially distant when possible, no hugs or kisses. I guess the real exposure will be the actual meal. More than likely, I will fill a plate and head to a chair in the den. Risky? Maybe. But at the same time I risk grocery shopping, standing in line on election day, standing in line at the post office, etc. Stay healthy & loved. God’s grip – Alan

    1. Thanks for sharing that Alan. Yes – I think that’s a wise and safe bet!! You’re right – everything we do have elements of risk. Thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  15. Hi Caralyn! I understand your concern. I’m always aware of the possibility that I could pick up the virus and transfer it to my parents. But as my Mom said, we can’t live in fear. So, I take the usual precautions, mask when needed, sanitizer, hand wipes, hand washing, etc., and let God handle the rest. Besides, if He numbers our days, and it’s not our time, Covid-19 can’t do anything. 🙂 Oh, and you have a 96.4% chance of surviving the virus, if you even know you have it. Many doctors don’t even prescribe anything for folks under 60 unless they’re high risk.

    Our immediate family is planning to get together at my Uncle/Aunt’s home on Sunday after. The only time everyone could meet, and still may miss some. They’re getting their house ready to sell, so we’ll probably just order out for pizza so they don’t have to prepare a lot and we’ll have more time to visit.

    I’m glad you’re planning to go home and see family. Maybe this year will mean that much more because of all of this. And I’m sure they would rather have you there even with the risk. 🙂 Have a great weekend! 🙂

    1. Thanks so much Kenneth for sharing your thoughts on this. Your mom is so right – we can’t live in fear. Amen – be practical and safe and let God handle the rest! Yes! Hope you have a wonderful time! Hugs and love xox

  16. My family actually already celebrated Thanksgiving. We decided to get together this past weekend. Part of the reasoning is that my uncle and aunt have recently sold their house and are moving out of state. So this was kind of a last hurrah for any of our family that are still in the area, including my grandmother, another aunt, a cousin, and my mother and step-father. We made a whole day of it. Thankfully, it was gorgeous outside on Sunday, so we spent a great deal of time outdoors somewhat distanced. Everyone brought signature dishes to contribute to the meal. We didn’t wear masks, since we spread out during lunch. But we were all still close enough that we could have meaningful conversations. And as the day drew on and the sun went down, we made use of their fire pit in the back yard. All in all, it was kind of a perfect, if unseasonably warm, fall day. We’ve been having these sorts of get togethers periodically throughout the summer. Cook outs in the back yard, that sort of thing. And we’re all cautious, considering my grandmother’s age and condition, none of us wants to risk passing anything along to her. But I also think about my own mother, who is in her 60s. I wear a mask whenever I go into her house and she tells me I don’t have to… thing is, I work with clients who, by nature, just aren’t as careful about this whole thing as I would be. So I’m continually cautious. But I think we managed to pull of a pretty decent pre-Thanksgiving. Probably the best family Thanksgiving I can think of in recent memory.

    1. Oh really! That’s great that you were able to get together! I love a fire pit night. That sounds perfect. You’re right – have to be extra cautious! I’m so glad it was! Hugs and love xox

  17. ‘If Fascism Ever Comes to America, It Will Come in the Name of Liberalism’ Ronald Regan. It normally begins by creating a fear proposition, at least historically thats how fascism starts, it often evolves into the narrative of “it’s for your own good”. of course that determination is made for you, you dont get to make the choice for yourself, and woe unto you if you fall out of line.

    Of course you will always get the army of screaming absolutists that proclaim that you cant possibly disagree, I mean “are you insane!!!!!!!!” The longer we let fear dictate outcomes the further away from one another we get. People should do what they feel comfortable doing, also do what is reasonable. I have no issue wearing a mask when I am in a public space with other people, that’s a reasonable request.

    I hope your travels are safe and take heart in the knowledge that the louder people scream for others to act/do something the less they are heard.

    1. Hi Karac, thanks for sharing that. Yes, we can’t let fear dictate our lives. Hugs and love xox

  18. Hi Carolyn! I am sending you lots of love! I can totally relate to the feistiness and have taken up jogging for 1 hour a day just to blow off steam (when I never thought I would pick up running again.)
    We are living through such a strange and sad time. I agree there is so much hypocrisy when it comes to the guidelines and the varying ranges of enforcement.
    I am praying for the world and hope that things will get better. One of my best friends tested positive for Covid back in my home state of Washington and she picked it up at church outside in the open air. It just seems so unfair because she is so young, conscientious, and careful.
    I hope that you will have a lovely Thanksgiving with your family. Stay healthy and safe. You are in my thoughts and prayers, always, friend.

    <3 Alana

    1. Hi Alana! Aw thank you so much! Isn’t jogging just the best for mental health?! I always say, it’s free therapy!! Haha I’m joining in that important prayer with you! Thank you friend, hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving too 💛 Hugs and love xox

      1. That is so true! Free therapy that works! I was bummed because my headphones were broken so I ran without music and it gave me a chance to clear my head.
        Sending lots of love and hugs your way too!
        <3

  19. Hello to the Beauty Beyond Bones blog. Incredibly, you’re in for a great Thanksgiving. You deserve the break.

    With God’s favour, both you and your family will be alright on this occasion. Your readers are responding with a lot of enthusiasm. You’ll have a super Thanksgiving.

    God Bless.

    1. Aw thank you Odell! I sure hope so! Yes! With God’s favor!! I hope you do as well! Hugs and love xox

  20. Caralyn, enjoy Thanksgiving with your family. The enemy of our souls rules with fear. God is love and he loves families. You have a greater chance of dying from the flu or in a car accident. Ask God to protect you and your family and thank him that he is doing it!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Thank you so much, friend. You’re absolutely right – the enemy preys on our fear. We must instead radically trust God!! Yes! Great advice! Hugs and love xox

    1. You’re so right about that – faith and common sense! That’s what I’m banking on! Thanks so much for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  21. Yeah I don’t feel comfortable flying with Covid around either. I haven’t gone out much other than to do shopping besides work. I don’t know how.far you live from your family so it depends if uber has a road trip option for that. Thankfully I got 2 cars so I can drive my new car into the sunset for hours on end. My dads place is right around the corner but my mom lives around 2,000 miles away in Arizona. And this Thanksgiving mandate is just really sad like they still can’t find ways to mess with our holidays.

    1. Thanks friend – yeah these times are just wild. I’m glad you’ll be able to drive!!maybe you and your mom can meet halfway?! Have a great thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  22. I definitely understand the fear of COVID, but personally, I feel that the effect it’s had on mental and emotional health has been much worse than the physical (since as people above have said, the death rate is extremely low). Being able to interact with other human beings in person, and especially our family members and close friends, is a part of our mental and emotional health. Anxiety and depression can actually make the immune system weaker, and so I think we have to draw a fine line between being wise/cautious (wearing masks in public places, using hand sanitizer, etc) and being extremely fearful/not living. I’m going to go to Thanksgiving with my family and my cousins and Nana. Yes, there is a risk, but it’s been nine months since this started, and in my opinion, at some point we have to start living again.

    1. Thanks friend – you’re so right – at some point we have to start living again. Living in fear is no way to live at all. Thanks for sharing your heart. Have a wonderful thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  23. My wish would be for a big gathering, but not everyone feels like I do. So I honestly have no idea what the plan is. I will be cooking and eating. Hopefully people will come visit. I’m not saying I want to get sick or spread the virus. I’ve heard the stories and it CAN be bad. But I’ve been very casual about the whole thing so far. I just can’t live in fear. It’s not my personality. I didn’t stay home. I am not a mask wearer unless someone asks me to wear one. I flew on an airplane in July. I go to church in person.

    1. Hi PK, thanks for sharing your hear. Yeah I feel like for a lot of people it will be a game time decision. I agree – we must be smart, but can’t live in fear. Hugs and love xox

  24. Good thoughts–and it’s not only perfectly okay to show some frustration. You speak for us all! Of course, we need to be wise and take care of ourselves and others as best we can. But being completely safe is not really an option for any of us. I can only tell you what I’d think I’d do–I think I’d fly home to be with my family, get out of Dodge–or NY City for a little while). I’ve only flown once since this whole mess started, but I’ve gotta say that I felt the the precautions taken both at the airports and on the planes on which I flew were reasonable and, I guess, pretty effective. (If they weren’t working at least pretty well, wouldn’t flight crews being dropping to COVID right and left?) I was flying to Nashville to record a new album that I’ve been preparing for since well before the pandemic started. I surely didn’t want to either catch the virus or bring it to anyone (my wife’s on immuno-suppressants and doing fine), but, we decided it was worth the risk. No guarantees, of course! Blessings to you for a Thanksgiving that’s good, in whatever way our Lord will redeem it for you, whatever your decision!

    1. Thanks Curtis. You’re right – every single thing has an element of risk. We need to be wise but not live in fear. I agree. I flew once and felt good about it. But then thanksgiving is the largest travel day of the year. Congrats on the album by the way!! Have a great thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  25. The hypocrisy bothers me too. It is okay to have public gatherings as long as it is part of the leftist agenda, but go to church? No. Have Thanksgiving gatherings? No

    1. You guys are funny — see the rest of the world’s “agendas” — it’s everywhere and from what I see in US the “gatherings” are from both the left and the right, human nature. Some say it’s Masonic global control imposed fascism. Others say “the end of days”.

  26. The way you handle this is simple: Ignore Comrade Cuomo’s unconstitutional mandates. Have all the people you want over, or gather with as many as you like. If this were actually the threat they’re all pretending it is, they wouldn’t have had to switch metrics from “deaths” to “cases”.

    And at the risk of sounding slightly repetitive, you can always join the masses of people leaving New York.

    Whatever you do, Caralyn, have a great Thanksgiving. Love ya!

    1. Thank you so much Matt. You’re right – there is an exodus leaving NYC. If it were for my friends and loved ones here, I’d surely be one of those too. You’re right – cases — big difference. Have a great thanksgiving too! Hugs and love xox

  27. Do what you want. This is America. We have no restrictions in Florida and are doing just fine. Celebrate Thanksgiving. These narcissistic dictator wanna bes cannot stop people from thanking the Lord. Nor can they stop people from attending mass or church. They are practicing for socialism which most of us reject and are afraid people will share ideas and revolt against them. I follow God, I do not bow to any man. I only follow commands by government that agree with the Bible. That is ridiculous and they have silenced all media to keep people from declaring what we all know to be true. All bullies are cowards. They are scared and that is why. This virus is real but not even as deadly as our more common flu. If we all stop playing their games and stop being silenced, we can get back to ministry and church and family and all we know we are supposed to be doing, like we are doing down here. Which is why so many people from up there are moving here. Sorry, I digress. It disappoints me that so many are putting up with this crap. Just say no. Our voice is much more powerful that you think, which is why they try to silence it. Ok I digress again. I am passionate about freedom, my daddy was a Marine farmer. Do not let it get you down and do not agree to ungodly dictators. Love you, as always. Hugs!XO 😄❤

    1. Thanks so much Tonya. You’re right – at some point we’ve got to get back to living. We’re living in a straight jacket of fear. Being cautious is important, but time is ticking. Yeah – Florida is doing great!! The media wants to say they’re not— but the numbers don’t lie!! I hope you have an amazing thanksgiving. Love you, my dear friend! This was just the encouragement i needed!! Xox

      1. I am so thankful. God deserves the thanks and we need to make sure we are honoring him above the dictators. We will stand before God some day and not them. Eternity focus is the key. Then we have peace and joy no matter what happens. You got this always with the Lord. 😄❤

      2. You’re so right. One day we will have to stand before the throne. And yes! Living with our eyes on eternity! Hugs and love xox

  28. I know we are all tired of the pandemic, but too many people are just not taking it seriously enough. It’s frustrating for those of us who ARE making an effort to stay home and social distance because apparently the infections are still rising, which might force us into another lockdown. I hope everyone makes an effort to celebrate Thanksgiving safely this year.

    – Katie

    1. Thanks Katie for sharing your heart. That’s so true – I feel like NYC is on the more serious front. I even wear a mask to get my mail in the lobby of my building! Me too. Have a wonderful thanksgiving. Hugs and love xox

  29. Unfortunately around the world the lockdowns are the same but we are dealing with low health literacy issues — the perception of risk, development (the college age early adulthood are more “frisky”) — and personality types (the rebels will and are revolting have you seen Spain?) but the business owners also …NYC lives “by night” jobs. Fear global economy collapse. As for Thanksgiving go! Just take clothes to laundry and clean disinfect all. And maybe a clear dentist type mask. Good luck

    1. You’re right about that Barbara. We’ve got take precautions and use common sense! Hugs and love xox

  30. I am profoundly touched with the situation in your country, what I do is to pray for God’s mercy, healing and for Him to give scientists the knowledge to find the medicine for this Covid 19 disease. Please follow the precautions laid down by the government, however limiting and distasteful. Trust in Jesus Christ, Our Savior, Redeemer and Creator for He cares for you. We are Living in the last days, disaster after disaster, there is flooding in central america, the Philippines, fighting here and There, there is distress of the nation’s. Today I see fighting in our neighboring country of Ethiopia, my friend, let’s trust in Jesus Christ and follow the regulations set by the government. It’s a difficult period, a hard time. Am sorry just hold on tight,until this pandemic passes. Take care and be strong. Jesus loves you and died for you that you may get eternal life. Tc & bye…….. My name is Fredrick and I live in Nakuru, Kenya. Our country is not as badly hit like yours but it’s getting bad daily!!! Bye

    1. Thanks Fredrick. Yes – there is power in prayer!! You’re right – got to trust Jesus and hold on tight! Hugs and love xox

  31. Quarantine those who have the disease, not those who are healthy.

    Let everyone else go back to life as usual.

    Use current proven drug to treat the disease (HCQ, Budesonide, Ivermectin, Remdisavir… + antibiotic + zinc) — all proven techniques used worldwide – and as a prophelatic.

    Everyone should be boosting the intact of vitamins & minerals, such as A, D & zinc and in general.

    Practice practical social distancing & wearing of masks, but do not make them mandatory. (The fact is that not wearing a mask is healthier overall.)

    Vote in new political leaders if you want permanent change in politics.

    1. Those are great points! You’re right – there are really hopeful remedies now! Not to mention the vaccine!! (Except that for political reasons nyc’s governor cuomo won’t allow it in the city!!!!) Hugs and love xox

  32. My family nuclear family: our youngest daughter, sin in law, and grandson live with my husband and I. My oldest daughter, son in law, granddaughter and middle daughter live together. I babysit my grandbabies when they need me. I’ve been in quarentine twice for exposure to covid and not because of being careless, because a family member contacted it at work, while following guidelines. We will be having Thanksgiving. I have to balance being careful without falling into fear. This is a difficult time. Your decision has to be one you are comfortable with no matter the consequences. Praying for you.

    1. Thank you Lorie for sharing that. You’re so right – it is an important balance. We must be safe and do our part to not spread it, but living in fear is equally as detrimental. Difficult time indeed. Thanks for your prayer!! Have a wonderful thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  33. You’ll be fine. Go home and enjoy your Thanksgiving with your family. Don’t worry about this virus, it has a 99% survival rate.
    As for me and my house, we’re having a maskless Thanksgiving with plenty of family members, sharing a potluck style meal as always, and, hey, while we’re at it, we’ll probably drink some whiskey and shout “Trump 2020” for good measure.

    1. Thanks friend. Yes – you’re right – we can’t live in fear. Sounds like you’ll be having a fabulous thanksgiving! Enjoy!! Hugs and love xox

  34. I’ve been with immediate family throughout the pandemic, so I’ll be with them for the holidays. I’m also thinking of talking with my elderly grandparents, who themselves are feeling pretty isolated. I may also check on friends who I sense are feeling lonely.

    I think it’s a tough time that requires some individual sacrifice for the greater good of society (I was squeamish about the mass celebrations too if I’m honest, even though I was personally glad Biden won), but I’ll make the best of the situation I have!

    1. Thanks Brendan for sharing that. You’re right – tough time, and very true. We’re all making sacrifices for the good of mankind. So glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  35. I really feel for you all in New York, Michigan, California, etc. I live in rural GA and mostly am living life as usual. As are most the people in my community. Granted, I already home schooled my children and occasionally we wear a mask where it’s forced upon us. We are more careful about hand sanitizing and if I were to be in close contact with someone high risk I would be considerate of that. But we are not letting this completely alter our life. We are attending church, my children are engaged in youth group activities. We haven’t missed a family vacation (went to the beach in June with 40+ family members, zero social distancing and with 2 frontline health care workers) I’ve traveled to Florida to visit my parents twice and we will do Thanksgiving as usual with our larger family. I think ultimately FAMILIES should decide what they are comfortable with. My parents and in laws are older but they are not afraid of COVID or dying “For to die is gain….” for those of us in Christ. I am more concerned of the effects isolation has on people and my ability to live out the Great Commission than I am of contracting COVID.

    1. Aw thank you so much. Sounds like things are going well!! I think you’re right – it’s down to individual families to decide the risks they’re comfortable taking. Amen – the effects on mental health has been grave. Prayer for all! Have a great thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  36. So, you’re allowed to crowd into a small space with a bunch of strangers on an airplane for hours, breathing shared air that flows into your nostrils around your flimsy mask, but when you get to your destination you’re not allowed to celebrate Thanksgiving with family members you know, love and trust. Nonsensical.

    1. So true. Nonsensical indeed. Thanks Rollie for sharing your thoughts on this. Gotta be smart but not live in fear! Hugs and love xox

  37. We are still doing Thanksgiving, but instead of going to the buffet we normally go to, we are going to order plates of food for pickup from them instead. Thanksgiving is only five of us (four adults and our daughter) so it’s below the 10 person limit. My mom is in the high risk category, but avoiding gathering with her would do more harm than good in the long run, since she lives alone and is lonely. We see her and my sister weekly anyway, so in my opinion it is no different than any other week. Christmas so far looks to be the same, at least with my family and my mother-in-law. Again, the numbers at those gatherings would be under 10. The only thing I am unsure about is the visit to my father-in-law, since his health is questionable and they live across the state line.

    I am definitely irritated about how it’s ok for hundreds of people to pour into the streets to support their political views, but it’s not okay for families to visit. The holiday season can already be hard for many people who are dealing with loss, chronic health issues, etc. To tell people not to be with their loved ones is unfair.

    I am sorry you are still unable to attend in person services at church. Our church has opened up to partial capacity, with registration required before the weekend so they can make sure to keep numbers at a safe limit. Masks are worn by everyone while walking around the church campus and singing, but just being able to see people we have not seen for 8 months is so refreshing.

    I think it’s important to be aware of the risk, and to take precautions as we can, but we still need to keep living life. Living in fear is not sustainable.

    1. Hi Ellen! Oh that’s a great compromise! I agree – at some point you’ve got to weight the mental health detriments against the physical health risks. I agree – there are a lot of unfortunate contradictions. Very too fear is no way to live! Hugs and love xox

  38. Study after study has shown that flying is very safe. They say you’re more likely to get sick at the grocery store. Our family is still undecided about Thanksgiving. We want to get together very much, but my brother and his family work in retail, and my sister-in-law and my daughter work in courthouses, and they are all worried about transmitting the virus. I pray that things get better quickly, and like you, I believe God is trying to tell us something. Over and over in the Bible, we see people turning their backs on God, and they are met with floods, plagues, and disease. It’s time we turn back and ask for forgiveness.

    1. Thanks for the reassurance Amy. I think we’ve read the same literature! My dad too – he’s very encouraged by the flying data. You’re so right – we need to turn back to God!! Hugs and love xox

  39. We will not be with our kids and grandkids for Thanksgiving or Christmas – our group decision. We decided that this is one season, not a lifetime and we are not willing to risk the travel, overnight stays, etc. for that one season.

    What we have cedided is to get creative in our holiday celebrations…instead of our traditional steak dinner on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, we sent Omaha steaks to our kids as the “home edition” of our tradition. I have plans to send weekly surprises to all of our grandsons between now and Christmas to keep the memories of this year positive and not a gloomy, “we can’t be together” mentality. We’re planning to meet each of the kids halfway outside in an area where we can do a truck transfer of gifts. Maybe even decorate the trucks and we wear Santa hats. We’re planning a zoom time then to see the gifts being opened. We want positive healthy memories even though they may not be the traditional ones.

    If we would all follow the scientific guidelines, not the political guidelines or mandates and do what we should, and not what we want, we will get through this. Our ancestors survived much worse with the World Wars and Great Depression for longer times with a grit and determination that we should embrace. Sometimes our instant gratification society needs to heed the wisdom of the past and not think of themselves in pity.

    My two cents and all have a great holiday season however you choose to celebrate. Keep blogging, Caralyn, you are making a difference in people’s thinking.

    1. Thanks for sharing that. I’m sorry to hear that, my friend. You’re right – just a season. And what a fun thing to do with the weekly surprises! That’s such a great ideas!! Have a wonderful thanksgiving, and thanks for your kind words about my blog! Hugs and love xox

  40. Caralyn, it’s a tough call about going home to your family for Thanksgiving, but they are your family? My sister lives 20 minutes from me. We didn’t get together in person for 5 months due to COVID-19, but now we’ve decided to bubble together – we are family! My other siblings are coming for Thanksgiving – if the weather’s nice we’ll be outside, otherwise spread out in my sister’s big house. Whatever you decide, may your day be blessed with gratitude grooves… Life is a gift! – Virginia

    p.s. I haven’t commented here in a long time, but as someone who has followed you for eons on WP – thank you for courage sharing honestly from your heart. You inspire so many, including me!

    1. You’re right Virginia, it’s a tough call for sure. Bubbling together! Oh that’s so great! I’m glad to hear that! Yes – life is a gift 🙂 thanks for such kind words about my blog. You are a blessing to me! Have a wonderful thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  41. I have come to it that this disease is so contagious it’s almost not if but when. That said I am doing everything I can to mitigate that outcome, but short of moving to the deep wiids of yellowstone and living in a cabin for the rest of my life living off the land seems to be the only one hundred percent way of keeping this thing at bay. Honestly I feel like I am taking my life in my hands every time I go grocery shopping or out to the convenience store for gas.
    We will have a small gathering at our house this year and I am doing no other events. We will social distance and sanitize, but we are mindful this could be Mom’s last year with us. We can;t do everything but we will do what we can this holiday.

    1. Thanks so much Joseph. Yeah I think you’re onto something there – when. Thankfully I think the treatments are a lot more effective and hey, we’ve got a vaccine now!! Sounds like that’ll me a wise and fun gathering! Have a wonderful thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  42. Here is the ‘Current Best Estimate Infection Fatality Ratio’ STRAIGHT from the CDC website . . .

    0-19 years: 0.00003
    20-49 years: 0.0002
    50-69 years: 0.005
    70+ years: 0.054

    These new guidelines are nothing but a bunch of BS, not to mention contradictory if they are in fact also coming from the CDC. Go enjoy Thanksgiving with your family. You’ll all be just fine. I for one am going to be with my father-in-law who is dying of terminal cancer at home. It’s bad enough we won’t be able to have a proper wake and funeral because of these absolutely ridiculous restraints on our God-given rights. No one is going to tell me who I can and cannot hug! No one has the right to tell me how to live.

    As far as Dictator oops I mean Governor no I mean Dictator Cuomo is concerned, there’s no way in hell some over-reaching, contradictory, hypocritical, power grabbing authoritarian (who is responsible for over 11,000 nursing home deaths and just happens to have a new book out patting himself on the back about how well he handled the COVID) should even be in office! He and Governor Newsom must hang out.

    Fear is a powerful tool. They’ve been telling us for months and months to be ready for a “second wave.” Even Biden said during a debate that we were going to have a “dark winter.” How come? And what kind of crystal ball does he have anyway?!?! Hmmm….Could it possibly be a good distraction from an ongoing election that ISN’T OVER?!?! The controlled mainstream media would much rather focus on a sudden “new wave of COVID” which just happens to coincide with an ongoing election that AIN’T OVER, than discuss wide-spread election fraud which is being exposed more and more each day.

    The mainstream media is LYING TO US. Don’t allow them to keep you in a constant state of fear (speaking to the masses right now). That’s what they want and so far, judging by a lot of comments, it’s working. It’s actually scary how easy it has been for them to control the majority of the population. That’s how freedoms are lost. Between the blatant violations of freedom of speech with big tech censorship and the new cancel culture, well, it’s looking more and more like communist China than the USA. If America falls, that’s all folks.

    1. Thanks so much for sharing those numbers!! When put like that, it definitely puts things into perspective. Thank you for the encouragement, Mondy. You’re right – fear is a powerful tool. I’m so sorry to hear about your father in law. I will be keeping him and your family in my prayers. Have a wonderful thanksgiving my friend. Hugs and love xox

  43. We dissolved our Thanksgiving plans a month ago from our usual large, multi-extended family gathering to separate, smaller single family gatherings. In our case, just us and our kids so, depending on who is in town, that’s somewhere between three and seven. But honestly, it’s even harder to think about next month. Christmas is coming… or is it?

    1. Hi Pastor Partridge, thanks for sharing that. I’m sorry the big shin dog was canceled, but it sounds like you’ve got a nice intimate gathering to look forward to. Very true! Hugs and love xox

  44. We could succumb to a variety of illnesses and fates at any given time without notice. Go hug, love and eat with your family. Tomorrow isn’t promised and you would never forgive yourself if something were to gooos and you didn’t get that time with them – Happy Thanksgiving

    1. You’re so right, RC. When God calls us home, that is our time. Thanks for this powerful perspective and encouragement! Have a wonderful thanksgiving! Big hugs to you xox

  45. Much the same here in the Uk, excepted only people who live in the same house are allowed to be together indoors and get togethers out side are one to one unless you live in the same house. We will be staying shut in at Christmas. We will phone everyone in the morning and then just get on with it. I can understand the frustration of some but the longer some people mess about and keep braking the lock down rules the longer we will be under them.

    As for your thoughts on why your God is doing this, couldn’t this be a big clear out, a sort of resetting for hopefully better things? I don’t know my thoughts are Mother nature has had enough and is teaching us a hard lesson

    Bright blessing and may good health be your constant .companion

    1. Thanks friend, for sharing your heart. You’re right – we’re definitely being taught a hard lesson for sure!! Christmas will surely look different. Thanks for the encouragement. Have a wonderful weekend! Hugs and love xox

    1. Thank you friend. You’re so right – we will get through this! God will see us through! Hugs and love xox

  46. I am living my life like normal in the power of the Holy Spirit. The left and their propaganda media are lying about Covid. The CDC said only 6% of the Covid deaths were actually from Covid. Doctors say masks don’t even protect us and are actually bad for our health. Cuomo is a tyrant who is dominating New Yorkers with lies, fear, religious persecution, and leftist hypocrisy. They are using Covid to control people, and take our rights and freedom. We must stand firm in the Lord and in the truth. Thanksgiving and Christmas will continue in our family, and no elected politician is going to tell me otherwise. Praying the Lord brings healing and peace to all this! God bless!

    1. Hey again ryan! You’re on a reading roll! Thanks for sharing that. You’re right – after all, the pandemic was the only thing Biden had to run on 🤭 Ooops! Didn’t mean to get political 😉 haha but you’re right – we need to be safe and smart but not let fear rule our lives. Have a great thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  47. I loved the rant. I agree that social liberties are being infringed, and fear tactics are manipulating us.

    As for our Thanksgiving, it is impacted more by dietary restrictions than a lack of people. Between my wife’s kidney friendly and diabetic diet and my low FODMAP, our favorite dishes this year are changing, except for the turkey and cranberry sauce. Our children are too far away, and we have the big trip at Christmas to see the grandkids. The deal is that everything changes. I just wish our Nation would slow down the change – most of it is not so good, change wise.

    1. Haha thanks friend! You’re right about that – fear is a powerful manipulation tool. Yes, everything changed. I’ve got some FODMAP recipes for thanksgiving including a paleo pumpkin pie (which I believe is FODMAP!) but I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving. I’ll grab those links in a bit! Hugs and love xox

  48. We need a healthy balance of caution and yet not completely isolate ourselves from those who are most important in our lives. The fear tactics being used seem less about controlling a disease and more about controlling our lives.

    1. You’re absolutely right Stephanie. A healthy balance of caution and yet not letting fear dictate our lives. So true! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving! Hugs and love xox

  49. Nothing much is going to change with my Thanksgiving. I will say that when the news started covering Covid, I was nervous because I have asthma. Then in August, my mom caught the virus and she was the only one in the house who caught it, which is surprising since we didn’t really isolate, wear masks, or use different hand towels (we suspect that we may have had it back in January and that’s why the rest of us didn’t get it).
    I’m also not worrying because we discovered that my favorite tea, rooibos, does more than just taste good. My mom started getting a tickle in her throat and tightness in her chest on the worst day of her illness, so she had a cup of rooibos since it tends to hit the spot when we’re sick. It eased the tightness in her chest, so she had another cup an hour before she went to bed. When she woke up in the morning, the throat and chest symptoms were gone.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing that. Gosh I’m so sorry that your mom had it! That’s great though about rooibos! Good to know!! Hugs and love xox

  50. I’ve really enjoyed reading your post on life in NYC during these times. Thanks for sharing and being honest. You are doing a great job. Happy Thanksgiving.

    1. Aw thank you so much Monica, glad I could shed some light on what’s going on here for ya! Have a happy thanksgiving too! Hugs and love xox

  51. It is really warm here in Texas, so we are going to have a Thanksgiving Day picnic–respectfully distancing but also sharing food and enjoying each other in God’s beautiful creation. Blessings!

    1. Oh that’s so perfect! I hope you have a wonderful time C! Lucky you to have such pleasant weather! Hugs and love xox

  52. What is it that God is trying to teach us through all of this? What truly matters in life, people food and shelter. The sad truth is people have lost connection with the spiritual part of themselves, lost in materialism.

    These are hard times I know and it is frustrating that there are not better plans in place, There should be tests available to buy so that families and friends can have a enjoyable Christmas together. Knowing they are safe, meaning only the affected people are isolated.

    Sadly our governments are very badly run and don’t care for their citizens.

    All we can do is pray that there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel. 🙂

    1. That’s such a wise thought: what truly matters in life. Yes! Absolutely / joining you in prayer! Thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  53. “no singing or shouting…and stay two arms lengths apart…” Apparently the CDC anticipated gatherings of Taylors, as we always sing, shout like the hearers are in the next state, and wind up swinging at each other…;)

  54. Hi Caralyn, you are so right! I plan to spend my Thanksgiving in my usual way with those I love. No politician is going to dictate to me how I can live my life. I don’t live in New York, but I can honestly say it sounds a lot like a dictatorship.
    I’d be honored if you stop by my blog that I wrote tonight and leave your comments. I wrote about how the media and its fear-mongering has negatively impacted us all.
    God bless you. Stay strong in the faith. And enjoy your Thanksgiving surrounded (in person) by those whom you love!

  55. Might I start with saying, I’m so sorry this is so hard with you, and I can relate to your struggle with knowing what is right to do, and more than anything, the uncertainty of where God dwells among that uncertainty. Above all, rest assured that you are redeemed by our Savior, and He is absolutely in control of everything that is happening. As much as we’d like to take credit for spreading a deadly virus or getting our parents sick, it sounds like you are taking every reasonable precaution to ensure that does not happen. It does not sound like you are taking part in reckless behavior that would spread the disease, and as such I think you have a peace in God that you have done all you can do to keep your parents and those around you from getting sick. I have the same fear of being some sort of vector for spreading this deadly virus to my parents who are in their 60’s. I have just been communicating with them as much as possible, and taking precautions around each other when seems reasonably necessary in the moment. In the end of the day, God cares about your heart above all in this manner, and it sounds like you are thinking well beyond yourself, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. However, the enemy is at bay, and would like to insert in this that you are a terrible human being for wanting to even get out of bed and spread the light of who you are as a daughter of the king. Rest assured that the light has outshone the darkness, and even if COVID-19 rears its ugly head, that Christ Jesus will still have the last say. I cannot tell you what is best to do at every turn, but whether you stay or go, I pray that you do it with faith in our Lord Jesus and confidence in His Spirit. He delights in you, and delights that you look to Him at every turn.

  56. Hey, you’re a runner also! I love to run and I feel ya! I feel like something is missing when I don’t get in a run!

    I am from Calera, OK and travel to DFW for work everyday. I have not heard much on guidelines for the Holidays around these areas. I respect individual and private business requests. I abhor government infringements. I am all for civil disobedience and fighting a battle that you can win or one that is necessary to suffer for. I refuse to wear a mask and follow guidelines as much as possible.

  57. Loved your opening para, especially the enticing ‘proceed with caution’ advisory! You’re faced with tough choices in days/weeks ahead, so God bless. Just as a personal note, we celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving Oct.11-12 weekend, at a lakefront site off Lake Erie. We’re also faced with social distancing and restrictions on attendance so we had dinner outdoors around a fire which allowed for more flexibility. Turned out to be a great time. I hope you will enjoy your upcoming Thanksgiving with friends/family, also of course, Christmas. All the best to you and yours.

  58. The thing I keep thinking is perfect eye sight is considered 2020. Maybe 2020 is the year we see things differently and set our focus on what really matters. I don’t know what to say about everything but I know Gods got a purpose and plan.

  59. I’m going to trust the CDC. They live in a world of science and facts. I understand not liking it, but denial may be tragic. It’s more important to do the right thing than the thing you think further defines you politically.

  60. Because of our age and my husband’s auto-immune deficiency, we’ll have to stay isolated at home for Thanksgiving. Am SO looking forward to 2021 and the ability to see family and friends–without masks–and to hug each other again! Those moments will be all the sweeter for the waiting, and heightened appreciation is in itself something we’ll be grateful for when the time comes!

  61. I’m glad I live in South Carolina where the government believes covid is real but also believes we have a little common sense. So it’s ok to eat in restaurants but not your family’s food at your family’s house? What you may not know is that these rogue republican states here in the south st least don’t live in fear because they don’t have fear mongering politicians using terror tactics at every turn. Right or wrong I’ll take it.

    1. Oh gosh – well I’m glad you still have those freedoms!!! Thanks so much Roseann! I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving. Hugs and love xox

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