During the month of October, my husband and I celebrated 23 years of marriage. We debated how we wanted to celebrate, and ultimately decided to spend a couple nights in Denver, enjoying some good food, touring some local breweries and catching some fun farmers’ markets.

All of this we did to great success. For those of you who are wondering, the hotel felt very safe and clean…aside from check-in and a few people at the restaurant, it was very quiet. All but one of our dinners was outside on a patio. The single dinner with an inside reservation charged us $25 per person in advance so we wouldn’t run out on the reservation and leave them high and dry. You can see why; their dining room was quaint and lovely. It would normally hold around 50 people. During COVID, they are probably getting in less than 25 at a time.

Restaurants and businesses, whose normally quaint locations charm us with their smallness, are now feeling handicapped by that same little footprint as they
navigate what should be one of the busiest seasons of their year. How many of us are willing to stand in line outside because no more than ten can shop at a time? What will we do when we lose the comfort of an open-air patio for dining and
meeting up with friends?

Let’s hope creativity and some resilience on their part, and a whole lot of patience and compassion on our part, get us through the next few months. In the meantime, it is the perfect time for families to get reacquainted with good, old-fashioned family time. The kind where you sit around a table playing Clue or Monopoly, baking cookies and watching movies together. We are in for a long winter and the change from normal will make more than a few a little depressed during the season where it is usually party after party.

Laurel Thompson has some great suggestions in her article to help those whose holiday has been altered due to the pandemic. Sometimes the best salve to
sadness over what we don’t have is to create something new and make it part of future celebrations. Look for opportunities to make those new traditions with family and good friends this year.

As for me and my husband, we have vowed to take more classes this winter. Cheese and wine appreciation, cooking, maybe some new skills—we are going to
take the opportunity to challenge ourselves. After 23 years, we can find the humor in most things, so failed attempts at poetry or souffles will be right up our alley!

However you spend this season, look for love and laughter (and maybe a little adventure?), and show kindness to everyone, we can all use it!

See you in December,
Angie Grenz