Because seniors are at higher risk of contracting COVID-19, they may not be able to celebrate fall by going to large public gatherings such as apple orchards, pumpkin patches, and Halloween parties to name a few. Fortunately, there are still lots of festive fall activities that seniors can safely enjoy with their families while being safe and avoiding large crowds. Here are ten festive COVID-safe ways for seniors to ring in the fall:
1. Take a walk to enjoy the fall foliage
Here’s a good chance to get out of the house! Now that the weather is cooling down, seniors may be able to spend more time outside and take longer walks than usual. Strolling around the neighborhood will give them a chance to admire the changing leaves and enjoy the crisp fall air. They might even get to see some cute creatures preparing themselves for hibernation.
2. Bake some apple pie bites
Nothing says fall like apple pie. However, baking one from scratch can take over an hour and may be difficult for older adults with memory problems. To keep things simple and still festively delicious, try making these easy apple pie bites with store-bought crescent rolls instead. They’re just as tasty as homemade pie without all the effort! The smell of baked apples is sure to put anyone in a great autumn mood.
3. Paint pumpkins
Seniors with arthritis may find it easier to paint pumpkins rather than carve them so this is a great activity to still create festive decorations. Smaller pumpkins will probably be easier to carry and paint. To make the pumpkins even more festive, use fun Halloween stencils in the shape of ghosts and bats.
4. Color a fall scene
Coloring isn’t just for kids! It’s a great creative outlet for people of all ages that reduces stress and increases dexterity. Coloring festive fall scenes like this pumpkin patch will get seniors excited about the season ahead and help them pass the time.
5. Have a Halloween movie night
Seniors will love having a Halloween movie night and rewatching classic scary movies like Dracula and Frankenstein. Make sure you have a tasty snack like pumpkin spice popcorn to enjoy while watching. Take Halloween movie night to the next level and get your loved one fake vampire teeth, kitty ears, or another small costume accessory. If your family can’t be together, Netflix has a watch party feature that allows different households to watch a movie at the same time. Scary fun family time.
6. Plant seasonal flowers
Now is the perfect time to start an autumn garden and plant beautiful seasonal flowers like mums, pansies, and asters. Not only will this pass the time, it will also set a beautiful scenery to look at daily.
7. Do a fall jigsaw puzzle
Doing a fall-themed jigsaw puzzle is a great way for seniors to keep their minds sharp and pass the time. A recent study in the Archives of Neurology showed that 75-year-olds who do puzzles regularly have brain scans similar to 25-year-olds.
8. Go birdwatching
Fall is one of the best times to go birdwatching due to bird migrations that typically happen this time of year. Because many birds are flying south for the winter, you’ll be able to see a variety of exciting species daily. Remember to bring your bird guide so you’ll be able to identify them and take note of which ones you’ve seen this season!
9. Knit a cozy sweater
Knitting is a fun hobby for seniors that can prevent cognitive impairment, reduce stress, and even help manage chronic pain. If you start knitting now, you’ll have lots of new sweaters and mittens to wear all winter long. Not a sweate person? Knit for your grandchildren or donate whatever you knit to organizations that give to people in need.
10. Light the fire and read a book
Now that the weather is getting cooler, it’s finally fireplace season. Light the fire and cozy up with your favorite book and some pumpkin hot chocolate. If you’re not in the reading mood, simply set up an audio book on your speakers and enjoy the show.
Although seniors may not be able to do many of the typical festive fall activities because of COVID-19, there are still plenty of ways to celebrate the season. We hope these activities get you in the fall spirit and keep you and your elderly loved one entertained.
Are you a senior or do you know a senior that may need extra help moving around, getting things done, or simply is in need of companionship this fall? Contact us at Professional Caretakers to see one of our skilled in-home caregivers may be able to help make this fall season easier.