Summer Pleasures for Caregivers
Caregiving is a year round endeavor that doesn’t just stop so that everyone can enjoy the beautiful days of summer when they arrive. Caregiving can make it challenging for both the caregiver and the care recipient to find time and energy to appreciate the season. Here are some ideas that we hope will help you and your loved one enjoy this summer.
- Spend some time outside– depending on your location and mobility, this may be sitting on a patio, deck, yard or courtyard. Set up chairs and take a few minutes to just breathe and enjoy summer. A stroll in a local park or a walk to a café for a cold drink is fun for those who can be active.
- Bird watching is a popular activity and this can be done in any location, even from a window if going outside isn’t feasible. Setting up a small bird feeder can lead to many hours of pleasure. Online resources or books from the library can help you to identify birds.
- Frozen treats- whether it is ice cream, frozen yogurt or even frozen grapes or berries, these treats are delicious on a warm day. Visit an ice cream stand together, pick up some ice cream next time you are at the grocery store, or freeze some grapes or blueberries and savor them one at a time. Try making this one ingredient banana “ice cream” recipe. Whatever frozen treat appeals to you, make it special by sitting together to enjoy it.
- Music- listen to music that says “summer” to you. Check this list of the 50 best summer songs of all time to see if any of your favorites are included. Many towns in the greater Boston area have free outdoor concerts in the summer. Boston Central is a starting point to find events near you if an outing is feasible.
- Fresh produce and flowers-Nothing says summer like fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers. If you are able, plant herbs in a container outside or on a windowsill and use the harvest to flavor salads, vegetables and meats. If herbs aren’t your thing, brighten your home with a flowering plant. If you are able, visit a farmers market and buy some locally grown produce.
- Games and puzzles- Have fun with your loved one playing a board game, cards or working on a jigsaw puzzle. Board games and cards lend themselves to playing on a patio or porch if a small table is available. If you don’t have an area to keep a jigsaw puzzle set up all the time, there are lots of jigsaw puzzle accessories that can make the process portable.
- Library resources- Summer is a great time to get better acquainted with your local library. Aside from books, many libraries have movies, talks and performances. This MA library site is a starting place to learn more.
- Outings- Be a tourist in your own area. Outdoor activities, sightseeing, arts and culture may be a fun addition to your summer. If accessibility is an issue, massvacation.com is a good resource for accessible venues.
Hoping you and your loved one enjoy some lighthearted summer pleasures!