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Tallahassee families adapt to celebrate Thanksgiving virtually

Posted at 6:42 PM, Nov 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-26 18:47:39-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The Thanksgiving table looks different for many families this year. Instead of a table full of extended family members, many are setting the laptop down to video call instead.

The CDC urged families to keep this Thanksgiving to just the family members in the household. Local families told ABC 27 it's a small price to pay this Thanksgiving in exchange for good health.

What's Thanksgiving day without reminiscing?

Gealdine Seay got the chance to laugh about good times with her son, daughter-in-law, brother, and sister-in-law this Thanksgiving. Unlike years past, this time Seay remained in Tallahassee, her son in Texas, and her brother in Oregon.

"Either we would have been in Mississippi or here. But this year we said no travel," said Seay's son Malcolm.

The family says Zoom is this year's champion.

"It's a new opportunity for people to engage with each other. Certainly, we would love to give each other the physical hugs and that presence," said Malcolm Seay. "but if there's a good side with the pandemic, it has forced everybody to engage with technology in a more real way."

It's not just the Seay family adapting. For the first time, Terry Paulson and Derrick Traylor set the table for two this Thanksgiving.

"We had planned to visit Terry's family in Charleston, South Carolina," said Traylor."We had those plans in place for maybe a good 4 or 5 months."

Despite missing out on quality time with family, the couple says there is something more relaxing about this year. The two have made meals for as many as 17 people. They say this year is much more simple.

"With the way things are now, it's just whenever things get ready," said Traylor.

Still, there are high hopes that the smaller Thanksgiving isn't here to stay.

"Hopefully in the next year when this thing is under control and a vaccine is released, we can do this on a bigger scale with the people we love," said Paulson.

Both families say their Christmas will look just like Thanksgiving