What to get for the “chronologically gifted?” The age-friendly ideas below address the special interests or concerns of persons in their later years.
Providing an experience. Don’t add to household clutter—give an activity! This way, you give the fun of anticipation as well as countless hours of enjoyment afterwards, remembering. Ideally, arrange the gift as something your loved one can do with someone—you or a friend. After all, “a joy shared is twice a joy.”
- A gift card for a favorite restaurant.
- A book of movie passes.
- Tickets to a theater or musical performance.
Supporting connection. If your family member has been outrun by the pace of technology, a simple device might be fun. But only if you can be the tech advisor to set it up and maintain it! Or can provide for in-person tech help as part of the gift. Consider:
- Fax-to-email converters. Your relative can write a note and put it in the machine to be emailed out to others. Conversely, a converter fax can receive emails to print out on paper. No computer or Internet required!
- Simplified phones and tablets. These come with a special interface that has large buttons and limited options. Without the whiz-bang features older adults don’t need, these devices let non-techies enjoy the connective opportunities of the Internet.
Honoring cherished memories. Over time, your loved one has doubtless accumulated many fond memories of people and events. Reminiscing is fun, even if your relative has memory problems. Help your loved one savor recollections of beloved people and experiences with:
- A puzzle made from family photos. Another, similar option is to have a blanket printed with photos of your choosing.
- A digital photo frame. Connect a “smart frame” to Wi-Fi and you can even upload new pictures remotely. (Again, be sure to include tech assistance as part of the gift!)
Looking for distinctly practical gifts?
Perhaps your loved one needs help getting around. Or he or she may need a grab bar or other safety device. If you are concerned, give us a call at 1-800-789-0586 (toll-free). As the Roanoke and Lynchburg experts in family caregiving, we at Gentle Shepherd Hospice can help give you a sense of the most appropriate device or services your loved on may need or connect you with services that can do an assessment.