The Holiday Season

Christmas and the holiday season is always an exciting time of year for most people what with the gifts, the meals, the family gatherings and the general feel good vibe that goes around in spades. Sadly though, not everyone enjoys the holiday season for a variety of reasons. Maybe they don’t have family or friends nearby, they’re mourning the loss of a loved one or they generally are a bit shy and don’t want anyone to think they’re a burden. While it is a busy time of year, including ageing relatives and friends in the festivities doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are a couple of easy ways to get seniors involved in the holiday season.

 Sit down and write a list of seniors you need to think about.

Knowing who you need to include is the first step to including them.

 Make a list of ways your seniors can get involved in their family functions or events.

You may wish to discuss this with the senior’s family so you can all make preparations to help them get involved. From setting the table, calling out names on gifts or even handing out plates of Christmas cake, there are a number of ways seniors can feel like a part of the action.

 Write your seniors Christmas Cards.

Seniors love to receive mail - even hand delivered mail, so writing a card to give to them sometime over the coming days is a great way to make them know you’re thinking of them.

 Consider a last minute art project as a gift.

Seniors value time over money spent. Painting them a picture, even just a small one and giving it to them in a nice frame is a great way to make them know you care.

 Give them small jobs according to their ability.

As mentioned, you can give them small jobs according to their ability such as handing out plates of Christmas cake, setting the table, lighting candles and the like.

 Give thanks.

Recognize the efforts of your senior relatives and friends, no matter how small.

Warm Wishes during the Holiday Season from At Home Eldercare.

Warm Wishes during the Holiday Season from At Home Eldercare.

Getting Seniors Involved in Halloween

With October here and the fall season setting in fast in many places, it’s time to start thinking about autumn holidays such as Halloween and Thanksgiving. While Thanksgiving is still awhile off yet, Halloween is only a couple of weeks away. In this issue we will explore how you can help get seniors involved in Halloween, a great way for them to spend time with family and friends and get into the season a bit.

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HAPPY HALLOWEEN

Seniors enjoy participating in the holidays.

 Halloween is the perfect time to start wearing some of your best in fall fashion, so you can get your seniors involved first and foremost by helping them get their winter clothes out of storage, washed and ready for the cooler months ahead. If they have a particularly fun scarf, hat or sweater they like to wear for the holidays, encourage them to wear it at every opportunity! Here are some other great ways to get seniors involved in Halloween:

 

  •   Make Halloween themed crafts. Everything from hand dipping spooky looking orange and black candles to making wreaths for the mantle in fun Halloween or autumn themes is a good way to create a fall-based ambiance. You can even make it so that the feature is fall with only a couple of removable Halloween things in the wreaths/decor so that they can enjoy the decorations into November and through to Thanksgiving.

  •   Help your senior shop for treats for trick or treaters. Make a plan together to determine the best course of action in handing out candy. If your senior is really into Halloween, they may like to set up a haunted spot outside where you can help them give out candy in a frightening way - perfect for the kids!

  • Depending on their dexterity and arthritis issues, your senior may like to help make their grandchildren’s Halloween costumes. They may even like to dress up themselves.

  • Watch scary (or funny) Halloween themed films. Be cautious in choosing something too spooky as some seniors scare easier.

  •   Read spooky stories. A lot of the stuff by Edgar Allan Poe is great for this time of year, isn’t too scary and are shorter reads.

  • Bake seasonal treats such as pumpkin cookies, pumpkin cakes and cheesecakes too.

  • Carve a pumpkin together. Get a few of your seniors friends around and maybe have a pumpkin ‘Carve Off’ with a small prize for the person with the coolest pumpkin. This can be done with their family and grandkids too!

So there you have some great ideas on how to get your seniors involved in Halloween. With so many other things to do to enjoy the season, how will you get your clients involved?

Stay tuned next month when we will do a section on ‘Getting seniors involved in Thanksgiving”.

Autumn Activities

Now that September has arrived and the weather has begun to take a turn in many places, you might have noticed that small hint of yellow creeping into the foliage in your local area. While saying goodbye to summer is always a cause for a bit of sadness, autumn can be just as enjoyable, if not more so.

 But what about getting your elderly clients involved in the changing seasons? There are a whole host of great ways to get them involved now that the weather is going to be changing it up a bit. Here are some popular autumn activities you can do with seniors.

 Go for a foliage walk

Getting outside during the autumn months can sometimes seem like  chore but with all the colors bursting into bloom it’s a great time to get out and experience the season first hand. If your senior is unable to get out, you can open the window, take them onto the porch or similar. Going for a foliage walk can be a great activity and you can select choice leaves to make wall hangings with. Simply use a bit of glue on some construction paper to glue the leaf in place, then hang in a frame or similar. It’s a great way to bring the outdoors in and create an air of Autumn in the home.

 Bake autumnal treats

With the autumn comes some of the year’s best fruits and spices. Cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, blackberries, apples and more are all tastes of the season and can be made into pies, crumbles, cookies and other tasty treats. Get your seniors involved in making desserts for their families or plan to get them baking for upcoming holidays such as Thanksgiving or Halloween.

 Make decorations

Speaking of Halloween and Thanksgiving, making autumn based decorations can be a great way to spend some time with your seniors and it gets them not just active, but engaging with the seasons too. You can do this for most holidays (and we will have some ideas for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas on their way in upcoming newsletters), but if you want to just bring the outdoors inside for now, consider doing things like dressing up an uncarved pumpkin (they will last on average between 1-3 months) so they make a perfect autumnal decoration. Try visiting your local hobby shop or craft store to see what kinds of amazing red, gold, brown and orange decorations they have on offer that you can put together with your senior - either as centrepieces, mantle pieces, wall hangings and more.

 

Next month we will talk about getting your senior involved in Halloween and what kinds of activities and treats you can help them with so they can get in on the seasonal fun.

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