Preparing for Yom Tov under Lockdown

With Israel on the verge of another lockdown, especially with Yom Tov coming up, you may be feeling a little panicky. We have done this before and we can do this again. There is nothing to panic about, but a few easy steps can make this a less stressful lockdown. Definitely plan for the worst and hope for the best. When you are prepared and ready then you can handle almost anything.

Many times we leave things for the last minute that don’t have to be left for the last minute. Take this time to do these things now and then you won’t have to get anxious about doing them later. Remember that even if the stores that you need will be open, there will be serious restrictions on transportation and shopping so it makes sense to shop earlier rather than later.

Be Prepared for Yom Tov Under Lockdown

Shopping: make a list of all the basic things you will need for Rosh Hashanah through Sukkos! The food stores will definitely be open so you don’t need to rush and buy food now. It’s the other things you will need that may not be easy to get or may have to be purchased at a premium. Think Yom Tov clothes, entertainment, paper goods, etc.

Start with Rosh Hashanah- write down everything you need. Next, Yom Kippur- do you have entertainment for the kids? Do you need an extra machzor? Sukkos- do you need a new sukkah? A new light? Some new decorations?

Go through the list and do whatever you can now. Worst comes to worst you will be prepared early.

Are your kids home from school?

One of the hardest things about lockdown is having the kids home from school. The good thing is that with Yom Tov coming up, there are tons of fun and timely activities you can do with your kids.

  • Make a list of activities that you may want to do and make sure to have all the necessary tools in the house, just in case. Some ideas include baking a special Yom Tov dessert or making a special Yom Tov dish or making a Sukkos decoration. Making something special like a centerpiece or napkin rings for the Yom Tov table can be fun and have your kids be included in preparing for Yom Tov. There are plenty of things to do with kids at home when you have the supplies ready.
  • Prepare for a Yom Tov without guests. Whether you will be sitting at the table alone or with your kids- everyone will be having a small guest list this year. Take the time to prepare for how you want the mood at the table to be. Prepare Divrei Torah and Zemiros to sing. Now is the chance to have a meal the way you want to have it.
  • Make it Yom Tov in your home. You may not be able to eat your mother’s honey cake but there is no reason why you can’t make your mother’s honey cake your own. Now is the time for a person or a couple to establish what traditions they want to keep in their home and what new traditions they want to create. Reflect on what things and experiences make Yom Tov special for you and make them happen.

Preparing to Survive Bidud (Quarantine)

There is a good chance that you or your family may have to go into bidud at one point. While we all dread getting that phone call being prepared and organized can make it a lot easier.

  • Have some staples in the house. You can easily order food and groceries but it’s a good idea to have some food and staples in the house just in case. No need to go crazy- just have an extra bag of flour, sugar, milk (and chocolate!) in the house.
  • Make a bidud box. Both adults and children enjoy having something special to look forwards to. I have a few things in my “bidud box” that we take out when we need to be in bidud. This can be a new game, project, or book that is set aside for bidud to make it a little more exciting. Kids will be happy with a new game and couples can get a new puzzle or paint set to do together. Buy yourself a little something exciting to put away- that way when you get the phone call you have something to look forward to as well. A lot of handling bidud well is the emotional aspect. If you are prepared and calm the time will go by easier and quicker.
  • Speak to friends and family and make them your go-to bidud person. If you need to have something picked up or have an errand to run, then you have someone who can help. If either of you are in bidud you will help the other.
  • Write down information about stores that deliver, restaurants that deliver, and other services you may need. Having this information beforehand can help you. is a great resource if you need help getting food or medication.
  • Be determined to make it count. While being stuck at home with just your spouse or your kids can be difficult it can also be a time of bonding and family togetherness. Make it a point to engage in activities that make it easier to grow together as a family.

May we all have a beautiful, safe, and healthy Yom Tov!


Below are some helpful resources for your convenience while you’re in “bidud”.


While in quarantine, you will need a way to get basic groceries without leaving your house. Click below to order online and have groceries delivered to your door. For restaurants and catering options, click Restaurants.

When ordering, be mindful of Hechsherim.


 Here is a list of restaurants in Jerusalem that deliver to your door! See below for catering options for weekday and Shabbos as well.

Disclaimer: Live Your BIL is not vouching for the kashrus of any of these places. Be in touch with your Rav to know if you eat there.  


Sruly's Travel Chavrusa Anytime Touro College Israel The Mentch