by francy Dickinson www.seniorcarewithspirit.com
Dear Francy; My parents downsized to a small home, they’re both health challenged and they have no money to go anywhere! How can I bring more smiles to their lives?
Perfect day for smiles when we are talking about Awards time on TV, the top Dog Shows are in the spring, Derby Day will come in May and then Tiger Woods is back on the links, again. There are always special movies, special events and something fun to watch or be involved in – you just have to make it special.
Bring you or your family over to their place with pizza and popcorn and watch the TV event with them. That way it’s a special night that you all enjoy together. No worry if you know nothing about horse racing or opening day of baseball, it’s the event that counts.
If you have time, give your mom a facial while you watch the red carpet interviews. Talk about the dresses and the pretty girls. It does not mean you have to see all the movies or know the award winners, it’s just the event that makes the night fun. How about all of the girls from grandma to grand daughters get their nails done while you watch TV. A girls night –
Your dad can have his time in the sun, there are pay for view games, fights and sports events you and your husband or friend can make it a guys night out. Make or buy an apple pie and serve it warm with vanilla ice cream and you will have all generations of the guys in your family – happy as can be.
Summer means there’s lots of summertime fun events. Free fun at that. I love concerts in the park, we have a small community near us that has a terrific 4th of July parade that is so small and reminds you of the old days with the kids following on their bikes or walking their dogs. I love it!
There are community events, small market days or flee markets set up in each community and even great ice cream shops to get that old fashioned ice cream cone.
Life does not have to be pricey. Dinner out can be fried chicken from your kitchen, or from the grocery store deli section. Potato salad and pickles are all you need…with some old fashioned bottles of cream sodas or root beer. Drive down to the lake or sea shore and have a nice picnic. If your parents are no longer able to get out and walk…then just stop by and get hamburgers off the dollar menu and drive to a place with a great view and eat in the car.
There are still drive-in movie places here and there…they still allow folks to have a good time. It might not be easy for those that have to use the bathroom a lot, if that’s the case rental movies are the best.
I recently had my sister and her husband over and we watched a movie that reflected the time when they were growing up. We all laughed and had a good time together over a simple movie. I served a good dessert and the evening was really very nice.
I have friends that have movie night with about three couples, once a month. They bring a potluck dinner and take turns ordering movies. Simple, low budget enjoyment with friendship kicked in to make it even better.
Outside BBQ’s in the summer make it fun for the grand kids. Older people just love to watch young people so buying that blow up wading pool for Grandpa’s back yard will keep the kids busy all evening. Just do what you like to do, but do it with them.
Yes, it does take more of your time to carry around things from house to house. Yes, the kids may throw fits to go away from their computer games for an evening, but a twice a month visit that’s filled with enjoyable things for everyone is not a bad way to encourage family nights.
For many years, my mother had Sunday dinners. All of my sisters and their young families would come and we all enjoyed the full family together for good food and great visits. There is nothing wrong with a once a month gathering of family at your parents home, with you doing the cooking. Your parents can look forward to the event and the family can still have those memories and family ties that make for healthy realtionships as kids grow up. Even if it’s a tight squeeze, its the food and family that count.
Once a year, on Queen Victoria’s birthday in May, my girlfriends and I used to go to our larger city (Seattle) and have high tea.We would dress up, wear hats, gloves and even tiaras and have a grand time. It was so much fun. You can re-create that sort of thing in the back yard with your sisters, daughters, nieces and your mother. Life can be fun with little things, it may seem crazy and take time & energy on your part – but fun is fun. Money does not have to be a stumbling block to enjoyement!
Thanks for taking time to care about your mom and dad. How lucky they are that they have you to keep them smiling. Please go to my website www.seniorcarewithspirit.comand take a look at the other senior care tips that I have for you. Remember, if you’re thinking about placing your parents in a care facility of any kind – I have a FREE service that will help you make those decsions and find just the right assistance that they need its all on the web site please do visit.
Thank you, francy