What do you get for a Cincinnati senior who resides in assisted living? It can be quite a challenge for many people to puzzle out great holiday gift ideas for older loved ones living in retirement care.
With the holidays upon us, we thought it would be a good idea to take a moment today and parse out a few parcels that parents or grandparents in assisted living would be glad to find waiting for them under the tree. Read on to find our four best senior gift ideas!
1. Framed Pictures
Who brightens your older family members’ days the most? You!
It’s natural that, after moving out of their longtime homes and into assisted living, many older people feel a bit disconnected from the familiar. Visits from family members, from children and grandchildren, are always cherished.
But what about those times when you can’t visit? Many residents here at Marjorie P. Lee, and at our sister Episcopal Retirement Services retirement communities, love to decorate their apartments with pictures of their loved ones.
Framed pictures are inexpensive, simple gifts that many seniors enjoy. So too are electronic picture frames — which you can pre-load with many pictures of the family for your older loved one to peruse, enjoy and share to their neighbors.
2. Electronic Readers
Seniors today are pretty tech-savvy. And tablets are becoming easier and easier for them to use. We often see our senior residents using tablets as portable, bright and easily-viewed e-readers.
But you don’t have to buy an expensive iPad just to give your older loved one the gift of reading. Dedicated e-readers give them the same functionality for a much lower price — $200 or less
Devices like the Kindle allow seniors to zoom in on text with the simple swipe of a finger. They feature clean, open text displays that make reading possible even for seniors with moderate eyesight impairment.
E-books are simple to purchase and easy to download. One Kindle can hold an entire library of books through its cloud storage capability.
Text files are automatically organized and the search function is intuitive enough that even the most timid tech users can quickly learn and become comfortable using it.
Of course, some seniors still prefer the feeling of a page between their fingers. And for them, a few good books will do.
Take your loved one to the bookstore — it’s a great opportunity to spend time visiting, and for your older relative to enjoy getting out and about while picking out some new literary favorites!
3. Home-Cooked Meals
Although the food at many retirement communities is excellent, including here at ERS, seniors in assisted living (or who no longer cook for themselves) sometimes report that they miss a good, old-fashioned, home-cooked meal.
If Sunday or holiday dinners have been a longstanding tradition in your family, we can certainly accommodate you.
Sounds like it’s time for you to get out the slow cooker and get to work! Making your loved one’s favorite dinner or dessert and bringing it with you on your next visit is a thoughtful way to show how much you care about them. You can of course bring food to enjoy during your visits with your older loved here at Marjorie P. Lee.
We even have rooms you can reserve for larger family dinners! If Sunday or holiday dinners have been a longstanding tradition in your family, we can certainly accommodate you, with a little bit of notice.
4. Gift Cards to Favorite Stores or Restaurants
Many seniors live on fixed incomes such as Social Security and pensions. For some, the budget can be pretty tight.
Gift cards to your older loved one’s favorite department stores, coffee shops, or restaurants are thoughtful means to allow seniors on modest budgets to enjoy a little bit of luxury.
They’re also a good incentive for spending time together — seniors who no longer drive themselves need someone to take them to the store. Plan a day out together. Go put those gift cards to use and enjoy each other’s company!
Use these gift ideas to brighten your loved one’s holiday season.
If your older parent or grandparent is in assisted living or has recently downsized out of his or her home, the gift ideas above are useful and enjoyable. Or, come up with your own senior gift ideas and share them with us on our Facebook page!
Most of all, this holiday season, make sure that you take the time to visit your older loved one. Even an hour or two spent visiting together will brighten spirits and make this holiday a memorable one.