9 Apr

Easter Ideas During COVID-19

General

Posted by: Cheryl Jessamine

 

5 Ways to Celebrate Easter Weekend During COVID-19

With Easter just around the corner and COVID-19 still ongoing, you may be feeling unsure of what you can do to celebrate during this upcoming long weekend. Now more than ever, it is important that we remember that Easter is a time of transformation and change. With the current climate in society, this is something we are all experiencing right now. While observing social distancing and quarauntine guidelines may change the way you celebrate Easter this year, it cannot take away from the beauty of this holiday – we just have to get creative!

 

Here are five great ways to celebrate Easter 2020:

 

1.            Egg Hunt Alternatives

One of the classic activities to do during Easter is of course, the Easter Egg Hunt. With social distancing in place, many local egg hunts have been cancelled – but that doesn’t mean you can’t host your own! One great option is to hide eggs around your house and your own backyard for your kids to partake in a private egg hunt. If you want to save your groceries, you can even have them draw eggs on plain paper for you to cut out and hide instead! You can also consider organizing a neighbourhood “hunt”, whereby neighbours would put a drawing or picture of an egg on a front door or window for you to find during a safe walk around the neighbourhood.

 

2.            Cook Remotely With Family

Too many cooks in the kitchen” is not an issue with this alternative! Just because you cannot celebrate in-person together, doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the festivities together! While you may not go to the trouble of cooking an entire turkey for yourself, planning a remote cooking or baking session over Zoom, Skype or even Facebook messenger can be a great way to connect and celebrate together. You can even pre-bake sugar cookies and simply have a virtual decorating session!

 

 

3.            Easter Gift Alternatives

While overflowing colorful Easter baskets may not be do-able this year due to shopping restrictions, there are still many ways to give a great Easter gift! In the last few weeks, many people have found themselves baking a non-stop array of homemade sweets from chocolates to cookies to cupcakes. Consider putting your increased baking skills to good use by filling a basket with homemade sweets! You can also include print outs or drawings of gifts you plan to buy – consider it an IOU from the Easter Bunny! Another great option for kids are digital gifts that you can enjoy as a family, such as buying and downloading a new movie or game to experience together.

 

4.            Holiday Crafts for the Kids

While you may reconsider dying eggs this year in favor of eating them instead, there are still many alternative craft ideas for kids! One great option is to print different Easter egg templates from the Internet (such as t his or this) for your kids to color and decorate in unique ways. Depending on what crafts you have at home, you can also have them make chicks and bunnies from paper plates, create Easter bunnies u sing handprints or make tissue paper c hicks. For those of you who are expecting dry weather this long weekend, you can also take your kids outside (to the driveway) and let them chalk it up with Easter symbols or even Bible quotes!

 

5.            Go Online This Easter Sunday

Even if your church does still hold a public service this year, consider if attending is the safest option for you and your community. As an alternative, you can stay connected with your church throughout the Easter long weekend by checking to see if it’s hosting a digital service that you and your family can attend from the safety of your home.

 

During this time it is important to remember that it is okay that you have to do things differently. After all, the biggest part of any holiday from Easter to Thanksgiving to Christmas is connecting with your friends and family. In today’s society, we are fortunate to have access to a plethora of tools (majority of which are free) that allow us to remain connected while physically distancing. Taking advantage of these options – and letting your creativity run wild – will ensure that Easter 2020 is as joyous as ever!

 

Be sure to tag @dlccanada on Instagram so we can follow along with all your great Easter activities this weekend!

Have a safe and wonderful Easter,

 

Cheryl

11 Mar

The Global Market, Coronavirus and its Impact on Borrowing

General

Posted by: Cheryl Jessamine

Another brutal Monday morning as oil lost a fifth of its value overnight as a clash between Saudi Arabia and Russia threatened to flood a world already hobbled by the Coronavirus outbreak with a glut of crude. Canada’s prairie provinces are sideswiped.
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Global Markets in Turmoil as Oil Plunges, Propelling Yields to Record Lows


Global Markets in Turmoil, Oil Prices Plunge Along With Yields
Markets shuddered in the face of a price war for oil and the economic fallout from the growing outbreak of coronavirus. Frightened investors poured into haven assets sending yields to unprecedented lows. Oil prices tumbled 30% after Saudi Arabia said it would cut most of its oil prices and boost output when Russia refused to join OPEC in propping up prices (see chart below). Foreign exchange markets convulsed, as the steep drops in oil and share prices overnight sparked a flight from commodity-linked currencies into the perceived safety of the Japanese yen and the US dollar. The Canadian dollar fell to 0.7362 as of this writing. The Government of Canada 5-year bond yield was as low as 0.284% overnight but has since recovered roughly 0.535%, still well below Friday’s closing level of approximately 0.65% (second chart below).

Stock prices have fallen very sharply in the first hour of North American trading. Panic selling sent the Dow down 2,000 points, and the S&P500 sank 7% after triggering a circuit breaker that halted trade for 15 minutes. The TSX took a dizzying nosedive on the open, down more than 1400 points or nearly 9.0% led down by oil stocks and financials.

The spread of coronavirus outside of China tripled over the past week. The US State Department announced yesterday that older people should avoid travel on cruises, particularly if they have compromised immune systems. All of this amplifies recession fears as the outbreak spreads.

There is concern in the US that the government is not handling the outbreak appropriately. Mixed messaging and an inadequate supply of testing kits came as the number of coronavirus cases in the US topped 500 over the weekend. President Trump retweeted a meme of himself fiddling on Sunday, drawing a comparison to the Roman emperor Nero who fiddled as Rome burned around him. This is a time when leadership is of paramount importance.

Borrowing costs are falling sharply–a silver lining for first-time homebuyers. The best advice for investors is not to panic. This, too, shall pass, although no one knows when.

Dr. Sherry Cooper
Chief Economist, Dominion Lending Centres
drcooper@dominionlending.ca