Summertime is the season for cookouts, road trips, and family reunions; and like any celebration, thoughtful planning can help make this special occasion the highlight of the year.
- Traveling can be stressful, especially for seniors in assisted living, as they are accustomed to certain routines. When traveling with seniors, planning ahead is the key to success. Prepare your loved one for road trips and let them know how long it will take to arrive at your destination. Is it a 30-minute drive, or 3 hours? If it’s a longer trip, make sure to take frequent restroom and rest stop breaks. Get out and stretch the muscles, take pictures, and have fun at each stop. Check with caregivers for on how to manage medication needs during your trip.
- Include your loved one in the celebration by asking them to contribute something to the party. Ask them to recount a favorite family story, or share a milestone memory. If they have a favorite family photo, consider using it for the invitation backdrop. The idea behind family reunions is to re-connect, share old memories, and create new experiences.
- Do a pre-check of the grounds or facility to make sure it’s easily accessible. If your loved one is in a wheelchair, make sure there’s a clear path to the food and festivity tables, the restroom, and the dance floor! The idea is to make sure every family member feels welcome as an integral part of the celebration.
- Pay attention to dietary needs. For seniors with food allergies or diet restrictions, menu changes can make for a very uncomfortable ride home. Check with caregivers and plan ahead so they can enjoy the celebration without any repercussions.
- Ask family members to do mini tributes to your loved ones with pictures, videos and fun stories.
- Create the ultimate take-away. Give your family reunion a name or slogan and have it embossed on tee shirts, lightweight robes, mugs or magnets as a memento that your loved ones will cherish.
From babies to seniors, family reunions are an opportunity to celebrate in an ageless expression of love. We at Senior Living Management wish you and your loved ones a fun-filled summer.