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Holiday Gift Guide For Older Adults

Three types of gifts to show your loved ones that you care.

Holidays can be stressful, and gift-giving can be an added stressor. Picking out a gift for that special older adult in your life doesn't have to be. Read on for our top gift ideas for older adults whether it's for this holiday season, a birthday, or just because.

Tip #1 - Helpful Stuff

We live in a world of surplus.

Stuff is everywhere and many of us are overwhelmed with too much "stuff"! When thinking about gifts for your loved one, think about "stuff" that has a purpose or that can make something easier. Bonus points if the "helpful stuff" gift replaces another item in the home. Check out these 4 "helpful things" that your loved one might enjoy.

Smart Lock - Check out this August Home Smart Lock. This smart lock allows you to open your door with a tap on your phone. This is an easy way to enter your home without fiddling with your keys or allowing family and friends to enter. It is compatible with Amazon Echo if you want to make this lock voice-controlled!

Guided Life Story - Check out this life story-guided journal. This guided journal provides prompts for your loved one to write out their history creating a lovely keepsake book for your whole family to enjoy.

Bath Wrap - Check out this cool Velcro bath wrap. It is a cool mix between a towel and a robe. Getting in and out of the shower can be tricky and it can be hard to keep the towel securely on you, but a robe can be heavy and bulky. This Velcro wrap is just right! It stays securely in place and helps you dry off.

Tip #2 - Experiences

Experience gifts can be a great way to show your loved ones that you care without the clutter. Experiences can be as big or small as you want. The sky is the limit. Experience gifts can build connections and be a welcome change to the day-to-day grind.

Some examples of experiences may be:

  • Tickets to the fox or holiday show, going to see the Christmas lights, going to a concert, or a painting class. Painting with a Twist is a studio in St. Louis that hosts painting events. You can host a private party at their studio and invite the whole family to get together, paint, drink some wine (or pop), and make memories.

You don't even have to leave the home to have a fun family experience. You might also consider having a family cooking lesson to practice family recipes!

When planning an experience be sure to consider any accessibility needs to recipient or other family members may have. You may want to consider:

  1. Transportation - Make sure that you choose transportation that is accessible (not too high or too low). There are several options for wheelchair-accessible van rentals. It can be fun to consider renting a limo or party bus so the whole family can ride together.

  2. Bathrooms - Accessible bathrooms can be one of the biggest concerns for those with mobility issues. Consider calling the location in advance and making sure the bathrooms are accessible.

  3. Accessible entrances - Look for activities or experiences that have accessible entrances. Ramps and valet parking can both be helpful.

  4. Access to mobility equipment- Make sure that the event or experience will accommodate any mobility equipment your loved one requires.

"Fill your life with experiences, not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show." - Tiny Buddha.

Tip #3 - Services

For those of us who are super practical - service gifts can be a great option. Giving the gift of service can make life easier and more enjoyable! Some ideas of service gifts might include:

  1. Massage - A massage can result in physical and mental health benefits. If your loved one has trouble getting out there are mobile massage services. Check out this mobile massage service in St. Louis.

  2. Cleaning Service - Cleaning services are such a big help and sometimes nothing can make you feel better than a clean house!

  3. Meal delivery - Meal delivery kits are not only helpful but fun! Consider having a set number of meals delivered each month to spice up your loved ones' meals. Check out this site for a comparison of common meal services.

  4. Grocery delivery - Consider having a weekly, twice-monthly, or monthly delivery of pantry staples such as milk, eggs, cereal, fruit, or other staples.

In Closing

There is so much more to the holidays than gifts, but it does feel nice to show your loved ones how much you care through a thoughtful gift. I hope this list gave you some ideas to think about. When in doubt - make some time to spend some time with your loved ones. I hope you all have a very happy holiday season and may your New Year be filled with joy!

Jenny Williams, OTD

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