By Lisa Devlin

When it comes to holidays and special occasions, it can be a challenge to find something thoughtful for the seniors in your life. What can I get them? They already have everything they need, and I don’t want to give them something else that to will have to take care of or find a place for.
I believe the best gift you can give them is the gift of time. Time can be hard to come by but, with a little thought and planning, you can give the senior in your life a great hour, afternoon, or day. And, by the way, they appreciate it during the entire year, not just the holidays, so if you live within a reasonable distance, what a special gift this can be for both of you.

Think about something the senior has been able to do for themselves but now has become more difficult. My 93-year-old grandmother can get someone to bring her groceries, but she has told me that she misses just going to the store to see what is new on the shelves. Thanks to the scooter carts that are in most stores, seniors can easily go up and down the aisles and shop. A great idea is to ask the senior what their favorite dish is or maybe you have a recipe that they always made for the family and you want to learn how to make it. Go shopping, get all the ingredients and then make the dish together. You may finally find out what Grandma put in those delicious cookies that she never told anyone about. In my family, it was sour cream in the chocolate chip cookies.

If they do not enjoy shopping maybe find a time to take them to see an old friend or relative that they have not been able to visit.

Really the ideas are as diverse as the seniors in your life. Things like afternoon walks, a trip to the bookstore (yes, there are a few that are left), going to a movie (some theaters play classic movies once or twice a month, or maybe they would like to see the latest blockbuster), or you could simply go to the park and people watch together.

Spend the afternoon just catching up and maybe asking questions you always wanted to know and record it for the rest of the family to enjoy. My grandmother has begun to record her life story on a cassette tape. I am sure that will be something when it is finished.

What a gift it is to spend time with the senior in your life. The best part it is not only a gift for the senior, but it is a gift for yourself and one that will bring you joy and happiness for many years to come.