The spring and summer seasons herald the kickoff of pleasurable and entertaining events with family and friends. Who doesn’t look forward to picnics in the park, outdoor family reunions and weekends at the lake?
If you’re a family caregiver, this season of increased activity isn’t always good news, especially since a loved one might be apprehensive about going out. If you’re an older adult tired of being cooped up, you might have a different view. Getting back in action could be higher on your priority list.
A little pre-planning can help make it easier for an older adult to take part in summer festivities, even if health, mobility and stamina threaten the fun. However, if you or a loved one isn’t up to more robust activities, check out this list of fun things to do. If you’re planning activities together, make sure loved ones participating are not ill or experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
Top 10 Fun Things to Do with a Senior this Summer
- A day of painting or coloring
With the popularity of adult coloring books, you can enjoy this pleasing pastime with all the generations. If your family is particularly artistic, you might even want to try your hand at watercolors and paint self-portraits to share with the entire family.
- Lunch outdoors
If the weather is nice, lunch on the patio or deck may be a great alternative if you or an older adult no longer has the endurance to leave the family home. Pack up a picnic basket with all her favorite foods, put out a checkered tablecloth and you’re set!
- A visit to the park
A trip to the park, even if you must drive an older adult there, is a good way to help relive their memories of taking younger children to the playground on warm, sunny days. Sit on the park bench and reminisce.
- Garden anywhere
Gardening is a favorite hobby for many seniors. If you or your mom can no longer maintain a garden, planting flowers, herbs and vegetables in pots is a great alternative. Check out ideas online and on Pinterest, or go to your favorite garden center. Many have gardening classes and activities, too.
- Start a book club
If Dad still enjoys reading, why not enlist a few of his friends or family members to read a book you would all enjoy? Gather the group for coffee and tea, and share thoughts about the book. There are also online book clubs for older adults if you or your senior loved one would prefer that option.
- Check out the town’s events
Your own neighborhood could provide a wealth of activities. Search for area activities on Facebook or through the local media. Popular summer activities in many communities include concerts and plays, ice cream socials and parades.
- Plan a tea party
If Mom has been ill or isolated for a time, a small tea party could be just what she needs to boost her spirits. One family caregiver noted that her mother’s family members recently got together for tea celebrating what would have been her grandmother’s 100th birthday. The various generations all enjoyed hearing what it was like growing up decades ago.
- Share a hobby
With school out of session and the kids itching for something to do, why not ask Grandpa or Grandma to teach your children his or her favorite hobby. Whether it’s knitting, woodworking, playing guitar or working crossword puzzles, children will enjoy learning a new skill while getting better acquainted with a grandparent.
- Anchors away!
You’re never too old to ride on the waves with the wind blowing through your hair. If you own a boat or know someone who does, what a great experience for the entire family to spend some time out on a lake. Remember the hat, sunscreen, fishing pole and life jacket!
- Pick fruit
Picking juicy cherries or other fruit in season may have been a past summertime task for the senior in your life. Check out fruit farms in your area and load up the entire family for a weekend afternoon outing. Even if Mom can’t pick fruit, she’s sure to enjoy watching (and tasting)!In addition to planning fun activities, try a staycation, too!