Holiday Activities for Seniors

By Sandy L. White

Do you have any Christmas activities for seniors in mind this holiday season? Are you all caught up in the sights and smells? When Christmas comes around what excites you? Is it the reuniting with friends and family? Or maybe its the ginger, mistletoe, cinnamon, and pine all rolled into one glorious scent that hits your nose like an amazingly warm hug. The epitome of hopefulness, cheer and the motivation you need to face the year ahead with gusto.

With the bustle of the holidays we can sometimes put aside the time we would like to spend with some of the other people in our lives, like seniors. Spending time with the elders in your life doesn't have to be an inconvenience. Often we put off visits with them because we are so busy and slowing down to the pace of a senior can sometimes leave us feeling like we're not accomplishing enough or getting things done.

But here are a few ideas on how to make your elderly loved ones happy over the holiday season, while taking the time to spend it with them.

With Christmas activities for seniors involving physical activity there is always some risk of injury, so you definitely need an understanding of their capabilities. Some are more agile than others. Whether they will be able to participate in musical chairs, for example, is something you should know before hand. A modified version of musical chairs is something to consider, having a hand clapping version instead of walking, or maybe touching your nose or even simply singing along if the other forms prove too difficult.

You may also consider a tamer game or Christmas activity such as baking, doing crafts, story telling, reading aloud (try the whole story of 'The Grinch Who Stole Christmas') or even simply enjoying nature's glorious winter magic with an outdoor stroll. This can often be a wonderful time of enjoyment to rejuvenate the beloved senior in your life.

My grandmother is a woman of eighty two, with Parkinson's disease, and a very strong emotional connection with the rest of our family. She used to be the one always getting out there and doing things, and now that she isn't able to as much as before she seems to be at the whim of our families placement for her. Not a very enjoyable position, especially around the holidays.

She says that she remembers a time when she never left her house around Christmas time and would spend it all with her family. When new years was spent with friends, and when no one thought it should be any other way. When popping over for tea around a cozy fire really was just popping over for tea, and carolers would come around and sing for a cookie or some other sweet little treat. The singing voices of those indoors would mix with those outside and bring around the wonderful feeling of togetherness.

We shouldn't let all of our busy activities take over the pure enjoyment Christmas activities for seniors and time spent with the elderly in our lives. They are not a burden, they are our heritage, our memories and a real representation of who we too might be one day. It isn't difficult to make them feel involved, needed, wanted and worth spending time with. And it isn't difficult to enjoy the time with them ourselves.

Susan L. White is a contributing writer to Nursing Home Activities Resource where you can find Christmas Activities to do with seniors as well as activities for every other season, including crafts, games, exercise and so much more. Visit our site to see some festive Christmas Activities for Seniors.

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