Best Holiday Activities for Seniors
The holidays are full of gathering family and friends to share a meal, bake a few dozen cookies, watch a favorite movie, or share stories. Family events are often intergenerational, meaning you might have to find ways to entertain your 85-year-old mother and your 5-year-old grandchild with activities that transcend age and foster meaningful connections. Whether you are searching for holiday activities for seniors to do with your loved one or Christmas crafts for seniors to try with the whole family, we’ve got you covered.
Here are some of our favorite activities to suit almost any crowd.
Holiday Activities for Seniors
Keep up with favorite holiday traditions that conjure up happy feelings of the past with any of these holiday activities for seniors:
- Bake or decorate Christmas cookies
- Look through photos of holidays gone by. Create a scrapbook and include brief descriptions of what is happening in each photo.
- Take a drive to look at the holiday lights in your neighborhood.
- Make hot chocolate or stop by a favorite coffee shop to indulge.
- Put up holiday decorations in your loved one’s home.
- Watch a favorite holiday movie together.
- Wrap holiday gifts together.
- Host a family gift exchange at your loved one’s home.
Holiday Activities for Seniors with Dementia
Finding enjoyable activities might be challenging if your loved one is living with Alzheimer’s. Holiday activities for seniors with dementia can look like holiday activities for seniors without dementia: focus on tradition and sensory stimulation to create a meaningful moment together.
- Reminisce about holiday traditions.
- Share a cup of coffee and use festive cups and saucers.
- Take a drive to look at holiday lights in your loved one’s old neighborhood.
- Dance to your favorite holiday songs.
- Look through holiday cards that come in the mail.
- Paint your loved one’s nails a festive color.
- Smell traditional warming spices, like cinnamon and nutmeg, and talk about what they remind you of.
- Copy favorite family recipes in your loved one’s handwriting and put them in a recipe box for family members as gifts.
- Look through holiday ornaments and decorations together, putting up only what is manageable and safe.
- Sing holiday songs or play “name that tune” with classics.
Christmas Crafts for Seniors
We have you covered if you’re looking for Christmas crafts for seniors. Here are a few ideas and links to get you started.
- Make a holiday wreath for their door and yours.
- Make holiday ornaments for their tree, your tree, and for gifts.
- Dry out orange or lemon slices and use them to create a garland.
- Make homemade holiday cards to send out in the mail or attach to gifts.
- Make homemade wrapping paper by stamping or drawing on butcher paper.
- Make cookie mixes to put in mason jars as gifts.
Holiday activities, including Thanksgiving activities for seniors, are all about the connection during the activity more than the result of the craft. Focus on the experience, and you’ll find that everyone leaves with another happy holiday memory to think fondly about as the year moves on. Happy holidays!!