Regardless of what holiday you celebrate, winter crafts are always a fun idea for seniors. It’s wonderful to be able to create something with your loved one that can be cherished forever, and also provides your loved one with a sense of accomplishment afterwards.
Although the holidays are over, many of these crafts can provide entertainment all winter long. Try a few out with your loved one and see what you can create!
Flower and centerpiece arranging:
You and your loved one can create centerpieces from flowers and figurines to spruce up tables and windowsills in your home. Pick out a few different assortments of flowers, colored ribbons and small sculptures and seeing what you and your loved one come up with! For an extra element of creativity, you and your loved one can sculpt your own figurines out of modeling clay (such as snowmen) and paint or decorate them.
Make a winter scene display:
Create a winter scene by covering a large piece of cardboard, wood or other sturdy material in glittery cotton (you can also add a mirror for a lake!) paint small toy trees or wooden snowflakes white and cover them with glitter, add lights and/or ornaments, small animal or elf figurines or whatever you and your loved one desire. The benefit of creating this winter scene is that it can be added onto over time. You can make it as elaborate as you please, and there is never a shortage of ideas that you and your loved one can put into it (add little houses, figures skating on the mirror-lake, etc.)
Grow an amaryllis:
During the holiday times, kits to grow these large, beautiful flowers are very popular. The amaryllis grows significantly every day for weeks, so you can literally watch it get bigger from day to day. It eventually bursts into large blossoms, so if you grow several of them they are stunning. It’s one of the fascinating and easy holiday activities for seniors that anyone can enjoy.
Make a window mural:
Window murals are a fun way to express and show off you and your loved one’s artistic talent! Even if you aren’t the best painter, you can always used templates and/or a picture to copy as a reference. Water-based acrylic glass paint is easy to put on and wash off (though you can always keep it if you choose to). Many murals will require more than one layer of paint in order to make the lines more opaque.
First, make a drawing to-size and tape the sketch onto the back of the window. Trace over it with a thin permanent marker. Then choose your colors and paint. Larger areas may be best covered with a sponge paintbrush. A window mural looks fabulous on either a large picture window or in sections on smaller panes, or even on a mirror.
Try pine trees, cardinals on a pine branch, snowmen, singing carolers, an old-fashioned church, or a cottage, plus plenty of snow (or a landscape scene from the area in which you live).
Your local craft store can help you with paint selection and ideas as well. Or perhaps you know someone who has painted on windows before and/or who has a bit of artistry to lead the project. This is great to do with a group or individually.
Make greeting cards:
You can participate in an effort to make greeting cards for family members or friends, or even soldiers overseas or for children who need to spend the holidays in the hospital. There are organizations in most towns and cities that do community service and that can help you link up with those who would appreciate cards. You may discover ways to have many of the materials donated as well.
Games are favorite holiday activities for seniors. Here are a few suggestions (small prizes for winners are always a great idea!)
Marshmallow toss — The biggest ones you can find, tossed into a holiday basket or tin, or through a wreath. Dust them with a little flour first so they don’t get too sticky.
Guess How Many — How many cranberries, colorful gumdrops or candies are in a large glass vase? The person with the closest guess wins a prize.
Break Your New Year’s Resolutions — In advance. Why not. We often do anyway, so might as well make it into a game. Before starting the activity have a team write some outrageous (or real) resolutions on pieces of paper, slide into balloons with a piece of candy, then blow up the balloons. Tie them with ribbons around your party room. At the designated time, everyone can break a balloon and read their resolution — then rip it up and eat the treat.
How can Oxnard Family Circle help you this winter?
Oxnard Family Circle provides respite care for the low cost of 79.00 per day and helps ensure that your loved one is well taken care of during the day while you are at home or at work. Caregivers can attend to their daily lives with the comfort of knowing that their loved one will be taken to Oxnard Family Circle in the morning and brought back home afternoon, will receive two meals a day, stimulation, entertainment, nursing care, exercise and socialization. Oxnard Family Circle has services including assistance with showering, assistance with feeding, and physical and occupational therapy to help your loved one stay healthy and out of a nursing home. Oxnard Family Circle also offers individual or group counseling and caregiver support groups twice a month to help caregivers join together and share their experiences with each other to become stronger individuals overall. Every second Saturday of the month we have an event called Garden of Memories Cafe for individuals with mild to mid stages of memory loss and their caregivers. This gives friends and family members a chance to socialize, participate in activities and access resources that will help provide care beyond our center.
Oxnard Family Circle also offers additional respite care on weekday afternoons and the 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month. Your loved one can receive care from our center until 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 10:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Saturday respite includes stimulating activities and lunch as well as respite for caregivers.
This winter, have fun with your loved one and remember to let yourself relax! Let these winter activities keep you on the bright side of caregiving.
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