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With coronavirus restrictions in the UK threatening to put a dampener on our Christmas celebrations, how can we spend time with friends and family this festive season? We won’t be able to host large gatherings indoors, so now’s the time to get creative and think outside the box. Luckily, there are still lots of options for those of us looking to have some fun with our loved ones.

Facebook Live is still a relatively new feature on the social media platform, so a lot of people haven’t tried it yet. It’s simply a way to share a live video of yourself in real time that broadcasts on your social media account – and don’t worry, you can choose who sees it! So, if you’ve got a group of people you’d like to catch up with all at once.

Online party games are a great way to avoid the curse of small talk and awkward silences that can sometimes spoil group video calls. If you’ve got a smart TV, console, tablet or even just a phone there are loads of apps and games you can download and play with your friends. From traditional classics like Scrabble, Monopoly and trivia games to the more adult drinking games, there’s so much to chose from.

Even those of us stuck in Tier 3 restrictions are allowed to meet as a group of 6 outdoors, so get bundled up and meet your friends at your nearest Christmas light trail. And we’re not just talking a few fairy lights here! There are dazzling displays to be seen across the UK, from animal-shaped lanterns at Chester Zoo to gorgeous glowing flowers at the RHS gardens (with four different locations across the UK).

Macmillan Cancer Support have created their very own online Escape Room, challenging you to solve online puzzles and work as a team to escape to freedom! It’s not only an excuse to gather your friends or family together, you can also raise money for a great cause at the same time.

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