Family time is one of the most important parts of the holidays. From Thanksgiving dinner to Christmas gift exchanges, being surrounded by loved ones is what makes you feel warm inside in the winter! Maybe this year is your first year living in a retirement home, or maybe it’s Mom and Dad’s first Christmas in assisted living.
The transition to assisted living isn’t always an easy one, we know that is true. But, your family traditions and joyful memories shouldn’t have to stop! Here are some tips for celebrating the holidays with your loved ones in assisted living. Check out this article from A Place For Mom, and these resources from Golden Placements for more tips.
Bring the Whole Family Together
The world of assisted living can feel isolating for some. It may be harder than before to keep in touch with distant relatives or old friends. Travel may not be an option, and transportation may not be readily available. Consider bringing together family and friends (cousins, grandkids, whoever!) for a makeshift reunion during the holidays. Bringing family to your loved ones in assisted living – even if it’s an afternoon in their apartment, or renting a room or party space nearby for an evening “out” – will make them feel at home.
Create New Memories and Traditions
Maybe Mom or Dad’s favorite tradition was hanging icicle lights along their roof the day after Thanksgiving. Now, such a physical task may not be possible, and they’re likely in a downsized apartment. Create new memories where the old meets new! Help them decorate their apartment: hang ornaments on a small tree, assemble a wreath for their door, or put up small string lights indoors! With a little creativity, you can make most any tradition new again – even if that means baking Christmas cookies in the activity room of their building!
It’s the Little Things
Just spending quality time with your loved ones during the holidays means the world. Quality time spent with loved ones during this time of year doesn’t have to be formal dinners and big, stuffy Christmas parties. Things like going to worship services together, reading with them or wrapping gifts together are the everyday memories that last a lifetime!