New Traditions in the Face of a Covid Thanksgiving

by | Especially For The Fire Wife, Everyday, Fire Family Life, Holidays, Kids and Family

The Fire Community is no stranger to disappointing holidays. We’ve all had to learn to adapt to scheduling conflicts, unexpected changes and spouses/families being alone on some of the most special days of the year. We have to get creative and create new traditions where old ones just will not work. This year is no different, with all of the added stress for everyone… something new just may be the thing to help the holiday gloom some of us are feeling.

This meme is hilarious – no offense to anyone though. It may have originally been for Military Families (I can’t find the original source) – we know we are not the only ones sacrificing family time on holidays…. Even my daughter works at a big box pharmacy and is working the best Thanksgiving hours this year too. If you rolled your eyes, consider the fact that she is 19 and is experiencing her firsts this year of having to be the one going to work on holidays, it’s a tough reality. Especially after all of the missed events so far this year. Of course, she’ll adapt and we’ll have Thanksgiving on another day and she’ll learn to roll with the punches as an adult having to work special days.

This year with #Covid looming over – Thanksgiving looks even more different for us all and there’s been a buzz among our community and Sisterhood about it. Here’s one particular question and some very good answers that you might find helpful.


Amy asks:
“Does anyone have suggestions for me? I have two kids 2 years and 9 months old. This year the department is not allowing family for Thanksgiving. All my family/friends live south and are too far to fly/drive. Any traditions or ideas to make it fun this year?”


Shift day. Covid. Long distance family. Many of us live this truth and as much as we hate every single bit of the current state of socializing… we urge you all to take a step back, think about it and find true gratitude this Thanksgiving. Don’t let the circumstances ruin the spirit of the holidays.

These answers were just what we needed to hear.  We hope some of this advice helps you, too!


Lots of families need new traditions this year! Great question.
At those ages….. I’d make the traditions about you because they won’t remember it really. What do you want to remember?
How about a thanksgiving gratitude walk?
Or just make different food that will be special for you?
Give yourself a break from clean up and enjoy a day away from chores (as much as possible) -Lori

Spend the day with the food you want, the activities you want, and some quality time with the kids. Celebrate the traditional Thanksgiving the day before or after with your hubby.
We’re in the same boat this year! I plan on making it a relaxing chill day (as much as I can with teenagers!). Jump on here anytime Thanksgiving, and we’ll be here for each other! -Charity

Maybe do something that is special and saved for the holidays that daddy isn’t home. A special cake of cookies. A craft. But something that they can enjoy for years to come that can be special holiday treat for when y’all are rocking it solo. (Which happens a lot) – Stefani

It’s just me and my boys at home this year too. We’re making dinner for the three of us, going to watch a movie, and call it a day.-Terra

So many good things the ladies before me have said. here. I agree. Celebrate a different day (if you want to)! Relax and order supper if you want to. Yes to the parade (if its happening). The hardest part of being a fire wife is making your own traditions, when your ff is on shift. Its hard. Here’s a couple things I do now.

Every Thanksgiving (or whenever the day is he is on shift near the holiday) I talk to our daughter about things she has that others would be thankful for starting when she was about 2. We start looking at things she may not use that others would be thankful to have around the holidays. Maybe a jacket or shoes that are too small. Then we donate them to the local women’s domestic abuse “store” here. This works for us because it shows her to donate and cleans out at the same time before Christmas. I will warn you that at 2, she found a lot of trash, like paper, she was willing to give up and i had to filter what went in the final bag without her seeing, But it started the concept. This year she is 4, almost 5, and has already started her basket to donate.

Also, turkey handprint crafts are adorable and I cherish all of hers to see how she’s grown. I put them out as decoration each year in a little dollar tree frame.

I do these two things when he’s not here as MY tradition. Plus, it probably works better when I’m the only one here. – Morgan


Thank you to the people who must work the holidays, and the families who sacrifice time apart.  We wish you all grateful hearts and happy holidays making new traditions and new memories!

What about you? Do you have any advice or new traditions you plan on incorporating this year? Christmas is right around the corner, New Years too. And who knows what the 2021 holidays look like, right?

Share all of you best ideas for ANY HOLIDAY/EVENT in the comments, we’d love to see them!

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Jessie -

Just a small town girl married to a firefighter since 2008, but she's so much more than a Fire Wife. She's been a member of the FirefighterWife family since 2012 and knows marriage takes a lot of work, even when it's in the best seasons.


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