Making the most of holidays with your elder relatives

Here we are in December ready to leap headlong into one of the busiest times of the year. Here are my tips for making the most the holidays with your family.

Slow down and savor the holiday season.

Entertaining, attending events and holiday preparations can take up your time. With the added responsibility of caregiving, this can be the perfect time to choose to slow down. Consider which holiday activities are truly nurturing and fun for you and your family member and keep those in your schedule while eliminating some of the not so fun activities.

Share memories of holidays past.

A little reminiscing is only natural around the holidays. Share and listen to stories of holidays past and special memories that you share with your family member. I think it’s important to acknowledge any empty seats around the table and remember family members who have died.

Try a new holiday tradition on for size.

Whenever you try a new activity, you don’t really know if it will become a tradition in the future. By trying at least one new thing this holiday season, you create the space for new traditions to be born.

If your family member has dementia...

He may find that holiday celebrations are overwhelming. Ask your host to set aside a place for your family member to rest and get away from all the activity. Keep an eye on your family member and when you sense that he needs a break from the action you can step in. If your host can’t provide a retreat, set the expectation that your visit may be shorter than usual.

Great gifts for elders.

Many elders I know are in the process of letting go of possessions rather than accumulating more stuff. Gifts for services, favorite foods or restaurant gift certificates and special items they would never buy for themselves are great gifts for seniors. Gifts that are consumed give great pleasure without creating something else they will have to find a home for.

Wishing you and your family the best this holiday season. I look forward to connecting with you and serving you in the new year.

Exciting Changes to Eldercare Coaching in 2010

Just a quick note about upcoming changes to Eldercare Coaching for 2010.

New Program

Eldercare Answers
Email coaching; Idea filled workbooks; Audio eldercare lessons for one low monthly price.

Change to "It Takes a Village Support Calls"
Starting in January, the calls will have a theme and education presentation for about 1/2 hour at the beginning of the call followed by open discussion.

Is it Time to Discuss Your Eldercare Challenges with an Expert?

Have your caregiving responsibilities left you stressed, angry or feeling guilty?

Do you suspect that your family member needs help and don't know where to start?

Whether you are an experienced caregiver verging on burnout or a new caregiver who is not sure how to help a family member, you can benefit from Eldercare Coaching.

To experience what's it's like to have an expert in your corner providing advice and resources tailored to your unique situation, click here to schedule a no cost 30 minute consultation.

Won't You Join Us At Our December Events

Wednesday, December 9, 7pm PST
Janice is hosting the "It Takes a Village to Care for Aging Parents" Telephone Support Group
Call in number: (616) 347-8400
Pin number: 196932#

To register for this event, please reply to this email.