Posted on December 26, 2012
You can do so much to brighten the holidays for your aunt. Here are some suggestions from the Office of the Ombudsman for the Institutionalized Elderly (OOIE):
- Visit often. Just show up and smile! Take your kids or grandkids. Take a pet, if the nursing home allows. Sing holiday songs together!
- Take her to your home. If possible, immerse her in the atmosphere of the holiday season in your home—the smell of cooking, the voices of people she loves, the colorful decorations. Bear in mind that the chaos may tire her, but she’ll love it!
- Arrange a visit from a religious leader. Spirituality can give a nursing home resident strength and comfort during the holidays. Speak to the nursing home about having a pastor, priest, or rabbi from a local place of worship visit your aunt.
- Get her involved in a project. Make holiday cards for her friends, relatives, or even people you know who may be lonely during this season.
- Take her for a ride. Bundle her up and take her to look at Christmas lights. Take her to a local school’s Christmas program. Even if she’s in a wheelchair, you can take her to a shopping mall and let her experience the excitement and the hustle and bustle of holiday shoppers.
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