This preteen's creativity serves as a simple reminder to celebrate the holidays safely.

By Melissa Mills
October 06, 2020
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Illustration by Francesca Spatola; charlotting/RedBubble (2)

In a time when so much has been taken away from so many people—jobs, security, health—families are questioning just how they'll celebrate the fast-approaching fall and winter holidays this year amid the pandemic.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Halloween is still on the table, but celebrations will have to be tweaked to fit 2020 safety guidelines, some of which include the staples you hear day in and day out: wearing a mask, social distancing, and washing hands.

With mask-wearing becoming a contentious topic these days, it's important to take the word of public health experts and wear a mask to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Excitement over Halloween festivities is no excuse to forgo the recommendations that are helping to keep Americans—including all of our loved ones—safe.

"I am concerned about safety during holiday celebrations," says Charlotte Anthony, a 12-year-old from California. "So I created a line of holiday-themed stickers to encourage kids to keep wearing a mask while celebrating." Anthony's stickers, available on Redbubble, feature adorable pumpkins, black cats, and candy corns all sporting the hottest accessory of the moment: a mask.

As a mom to a 2-year-old who's just learning the importance of wearing a mask—and accepting Hershey's Kisses as payment for time spent in said mask—I'll personally be buying a few of these to help him wrap his head around this weird reality we're living in in a fun way. This isn't the Halloween I pictured for him, especially since he's old enough to really enjoy it this year, but my family will certainly be doing everything we can to keep ourselves and others safe.

Courtesy of Charlotte Anthony

But the fun doesn't stop with Halloween. "I have also created a 6-feet sticker in holiday colors for people to use in businesses, classrooms, and public spaces to help remember to keep your distance," says Anthony, who also created a Rudolph wearing a mask sticker in time for Christmas.

If we all take these gentle reminders to heart and keep up with simple health protocols, we can all safely celebrate the holidays, help keep COVID-19 at bay—and inch back to things being a bit more normal.

Anthony is putting her money where her mouth is this Halloween. "My friends and I are having a virtual costume contest," she says. "I will be wearing a masquerade ball costume, with a mask, of course!" 

This 12-year-old's got the right idea. Now the rest of us just have to follow suit.

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