Senior Scene December 12,2016


Believe it or not, there are only 13 more days to pick up those last minute Christmas gifts for your older family members and friends. It always seems difficult to buy gifts for people who seem to have everything or have little need for unnecessary things, so we tend to procrastinate. Thankfully, I am here to help, so if you are still in search of a meaningful gift, here are a few suggestions in no particular order.

  • Smart phones. I have noticed that the number of senior and elderly folks using smart phones continues to grow at a steady pace. These phones can help them in an emergency, as well as help them feel more involved in the lives of family and friends through email, text messages, photos and social networks.
  • Digital photo frames. These are easy to setup with pictures and movies of your family. It is also easy to change or add to the photos. During a visit when the time seems long, they also provide the perfect conduit for story-telling and reminiscing.
  • Audio books. Almost any book imaginable is available on CD or digital audio file. And, if the recipient has an iPad or other device capable of playing audio files, you can download the file immediately.
  • Throws or blankets. Everyone loves a good blanket or throw. They are easy to find and relatively inexpensive. There are even some that are heated for those cold winter days and evenings.
  • Page magnifier. If they love to read, but cannot quite see as well as they used to, a page magnifier might be a welcomed gift. Look for one that can magnify a large portion of a book page and have a built-in light.
  • Socks with treads. Find some incredibly comfy and warm socks that have the rubber material on the bottom. Not only will the socks keep their feet warm, they will also help them from slipping while walking, and are often preferable to slippers.
  • Gift certificates. Treat your loved one to a gift certificate for their favourite restaurant. Make sure it is a sufficient amount to invite a friend along as well if they are living alone. A gift card to a local grocery store is also appreciated, particularly if they would like to purchase a “treat” which is not in the usual food budget. Reloadable gift cards can be an ongoing gift as you can just add to their value throughout the year.
  • Oversized entertainment. Games that have pieces that are easier to grasp and hold such as large checkers, chess, cards, bingo and others are available. You can also find large crosswords or hidden word game books.
  • The gift that means the most … It goes without saying that what the people in our lives really want for Christmas is our time. That means more than anything you can buy and is almost always in short supply. Of course, if you are not near the person, it is more difficult to give, but if you are, give as much as you are able. You will be happy you did.

Once you finish your last minute shopping, save yourself some more time and take your gifts to our Gift Wrap booth at the Quinte Mall. You can take a relaxing coffee break while the volunteers wrap and decorate your gifts in exchange for a nominal donation.