With Veterans Day, Thanksgiving and the Yuletide season just around the corner, now is the most opportune time to set the stage for warm and happy family gatherings, and that definitely includes our beloved elderly family members.
Do remember that like little children, ourÂ grand folksÂ have some special needs that have to be met, soÂ I’veÂ come up with a short list of the most essential things one needs to prepare for the upcoming holidays. With the extreme hustle and bustle associated with this time of year, it’s a very good idea to prepare early.
Stock Up on Sundries and Supplies
With all the activities lined up for the holidays, heading to the supermarket won’t be the most convenient of tasks (traffic, long lines, dwindling stocks, etc.). Remember that aside from the usual toiletries all of us use, your elders will have other needs like adult diapers and their medicines and/or food supplements.
If you can, have enough supplies to last the entire holiday season. It’ll greatly reduce your trips to the stores, and with all that time freed up, you can spend more quality moments with the family.
Prepare their Gear
Make sure they also have their accessibility and mobility devices like walkers, braces, or wheelchairs in good working order, ready for some light travel. If their equipment already has some preexisting kink or squeaky moving part, do address the issue immediately as this will certainly provide a great inconvenience if they should break down or malfunction during the holidays.
It’s the information age, and there are some key additions to a senior’s citizen’s arsenal of equipment. One of them is a handy mobile phone for emergencies and keeping in touch with the loved ones. Another would be a tablet computer, to keep them connected and have their minds continually stimulated with literature, games, and other audiovisuals.
Our elders need to enjoy the homestretch years, and we also need to spend as much quality time as we can with them. Have a few days dedicated to some outdoor fun, like a family picnic or a visit to an amusement park.
Do be selective, as you don’t want to end up all stressed out and hassled; that’s counterproductive to the idea of quality time, after all. Try looking for some venues that are off the beaten track (not too remote, though). The idea is to enjoy each other’s company.
Family Meals as Often as Possible
Breaking bread as a family is one of the best times to bond. If you have kids, tell them beforehand to be little more considerate and conversational towards them, and keep their table manners in check; grandma and grandpa need to know they are loved and are appreciated even at the twilight of their lives.
As a side note, do consider them when you prepare the meals. Consult their nutritionist or dietician as to what they can eat without upsetting their already fragile systems. Holidays are notorious for comfort food, and some of these dishesÂ aren’tÂ the best for our elders.
I hope these tips help you and yourÂ grand folksÂ enjoy the holidays in each other’s company. Live well, and Happy Holidays!
About the Author
Stacey Thompson is a professional writer, marketer, entrepreneur, and a lover of weird little animals. She is based in San Diego, California, and is currently working on a blog with her close friends, Word Baristas.