New Frame of Paskong Pinoy
It is the time of the year when we see flickering lights illuminating alleys and roads, and lanterns shining bright as they hang on house corners. The air echoes the gentle sound of delightful carols throughout the day. The cold breeze tickles our skin as we walk along the pavement at night. Sweet smiles exuberate excitement in our hearts. It is, indeed, Christmas time!
However, amidst this otherwise normally-festive season, the current COVID-19 pandemic remains, with all the turmoil and disarray it has caused. The Philippine government announced that for the celebration of this yuletide season, mass gatherings shall only be limited to a maximum of 10 people, encouraged to be held at a public place with good ventilation, while family celebrations shall only be limited to immediate family or household members, and held at home.
Hence, this entails an out-of-the-ordinary way of celebration. Festivities which most of us grew up to experience remain in the memory lane for now. Offices cannot throw their usual boisterous Christmas parties. No hanging out at karaoke bars. No chilling and actual viewing of light shows at parks and plazas. No white elephant during exchange gifts.
But Filipinos are known to always bend with whatever direction the wind blows. And so what we are bound to explore this December 2020 is the digital version of our very own Paskong Pinoy!
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As the health crisis led us to give alternative approaches a shot, as a way of rejoicing the holidays, the bread and butter of making it remarkable and enjoyable is now on us. So ho ho ho! Both organizations and families can make use of these six (6) creative ways of celebrating and making your digital Christmas one still worth remembering:
1. Organize an Online Party.
Just because there is a pandemic doesn’t mean that you cannot celebrate any party at all. If at work we have found ways to shift meetings online, we can surely do so for our Christmas parties! All you need to do is to plan it out well, ensure that everyone has gadgets and devices, and a good internet connection, and of course, budget for the food – then yay! Here comes your new, unique, and amusing party!
2. Create a Festive Background.
For quite some time, most of us had been engaged in online meets, whether for our companies, organizations, or just simply catching up with our families and relatives. In celebration of Christmas, when we are hosting a virtual party, it will be nice to share the same vibe with everyone. One way is to create a decorative virtual background to be sent to every attendee of the party, so that it will look as if everyone was just in the same room having fun!
3. Send a Gift to Your Monito/Monita Before the Party.
A common feature of Christmas parties is exchanging of gifts. But in a digital party where not everybody is physically present, mailing a gift to your monito/monita prior the actual virtual event will do. Then, everyone can open the gifts they have received prior, during the celebration itself. For those that would be inconvenienced, online transfer of cash will always do!
4. Kill Dead Air with Conversation Starters and Games.
Being locked down for some period, we surely have a bunch of stories that remain untold and unshared. It would be great to make every moment of the digital party count by preparing related questions as conversation starters. This will enable you to know more of each other, and even emanate care which, who knows, might be badly needed by one another.
Additionally, an alternative way of interacting through this new party way is playing games. Since the physical-type of games cannot be done, you can do the “fast talk” (the actual speed of which depending on your internet’s latency) like Boy Abunda to a chosen attendee. You can also do the “guess the title of the song” wherein the host will play a song and the first attendee to guess the title of that song wins. There is the “raise hand” option, which, when used this way, will enable gameplay. These are just the classics and plenty of ideas for online games are available on the internet. You just have to do some research.
5. Ensure that Jose Mari Chan is Present!
“Pwede na po ba akong kumanta?” with Jose Mari Chan peeping from the side is a widely-known meme among Filipinos that start to appear across social media when the “ber” months are fast approaching. We all know that this is because of his famous songs which we hear everywhere during the Christmas season. This setting of vibe through music is important before, during, and even after the virtual party. Not necessarily Jose Mari Chan’s but make sure to have a Christmas songs playlist set.
6. Make it Complete, Dress Up from Head to Feet!
Who says staying at home permits you to look like wasted? Even if done virtually, this is still a once-a-year event so why not complete the package with a fabulous outfit? It will make a good remembrance to have a screen of beautiful men and women dressed as if they will be attending some fancy ball captured within the four corners of a device. More so, you can always take a whole-body picture and post it on Facebook or Instagram. Woo-hoo! A very merry Christmas for real!
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