Is your family struggling to come up with a gift for your elderly loved one this holiday season? Maybe you’ve asked and been told there’s nothing he/she needs. Well, you’re in luck because we have a long list of ideas and hopefully, you’ll find something that turns out to be the perfect gift.
Time and maybe a little extra
An idea that is always a winner is the gift of your time. An elderly loved one would probably be thrilled just to have you visit, but we have some more specific suggestions.
- If cooking is a problem, make several small easily reheated meals to put in the freezer
- Help with chores that are no longer easy for them
- Yard work
- Seasonal upkeep of the house/yard, such as cleaning the gutters, raking the leaves, weeding the garden
- Help with the grocery shopping
- Provide transportation to appointments
- Make a regular luncheon, dinner or coffee date
- Go someplace fun together — a movie, play, the museum or for a scenic drive
- Work on a puzzle or play cards or board games together
- Do a simple art project together
- Ask him/her to share life stories and record on tape, video or in writing
- Go through old pictures together
- Arrange to have someone shovel the snow and mow the grass
- If your elderly loved one is also a caregiver, give him/her an afternoon of respite and take care of their loved one
- Ice grippers that slip over shoes and boots
- Universal TV remote with large buttons
- Phone that has large buttons and can be preset with important numbers
- Warm gloves or mittens, hat and scarf for cold weather
- Sun visor or hat with wide brim for summer
- Flip up ice spike for the tip of a cane
- Long-handled shoe horn or reacher
- Working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms (don’t just give, also install)
- A walking stick or cane (make sure it’s the right height)
- Flannel sheets
- A basket filled with everyday items that always need replenishing — tissues, toothpaste, shampoo, etc.
To help keep the mind or body active
- Book of word or number puzzles
- Jigsaw puzzles
- Magazine subscription
- Pass for an appropriate exercise or balance class
- A book, large print if necessary
- A natural light floor lamp
- A magnifying glass
Just plain thoughtful or fun
- Bouquet of flowers
- Trip to the hairdresser or arrange to have one go to the house
- Gentle massage
- A calendar with pictures of children and grandchildren
- Old movies that can be easily watched on TV (on a DVD or with a subscription to a specific channel or to Netflix)
- Rent a movie and also return it
- A professional portrait of the whole family (the entire experience can be fun)
Some of the ideas under the gift of your time can be a challenge if you live out of town or have several other responsibilities. In that case, home care services may be the perfect solution. Advantage Home Care offers affordable personalized services 7 days a week in the southern Maine area from Biddeford to Portland to Topsham. We can go grocery shopping, prepare meals, do the laundry and light housework and provide transportation. And that’s not all. Check out our website or give us a call at 207-699-2570 or toll free at 1-888-846-1410 for a full list of services. We just might be the perfect gift for your elderly loved one and for you, too.
Do you have any gift ideas to share? If so, please let us know in the comment section below and we’ll add them to our list.
Our Aging in Place blog is written by Diane Atwood, who also writes the blog Catching Health with Diane Atwood.