Make the Holidays Happier According to a post from First Light Home Care (Dec. 2017), there are close to 12 million seniors living alone. With the holidays arriving, and the COVID-19 pandemic, many of them are lonely, unhappy, and even depressed. How can you and I make the holidays a happier time for them?

1) Spend some time visiting Participate in an activity they love such as a card game, reading the newspaper or a book, watching a favorite t.v. show, listening to some music, or just talking.

2) Help around the house Often, it is difficult for seniors to perform housework. Spend some time doing the dishes, dusting and vacuuming, cleaning the bathroom, raking leaves or shoveling snow, etc. Some simple de-cluttering could be a huge help.

3) Grocery shopping and light cooking Seniors are afraid to go to the grocery store right now due to COVID-19, or they may not have transportation. Create a shopping list with them, do the shopping, and cook up some light meals that can be stored in the freezer. If they have a favorite meal, cook with them and then enjoy a sit-down meal with them.

4) Be a chauffeur About 1 in 5 people over the age of 65 don’t drive. Offer to drive them to doctor appointments, dental appointments, eye exams, etc. If there’s a local senior center, you could drive them there so that they can spend time socializing with others. Senior centers often provide exercise classes, meals, education, card and reading groups, etc.

5) Decorating help Offer to help decorate for the holidays. Help to make the home festive, wrap presents, write and mail holiday cards, etc.

If you notice that your family member, neighbor, or friend appears to be failing (not able to keep up with house and yard work, not taking medications correctly, talks about being alone and lonely, experiencing falls, etc.), senior living may be a great option. Everything above, and more, is provided in a senior living community, i.e. companionship, socialization, entertainment, nutritious food, housekeeping, transportation, and holiday decorations.

What other ideas can you think of to support the seniors in our community?