Halloween is quickly approaching, and it seems like anywhere you turn ghosts and pumpkins are popping up. While usually thought of as a children’s holiday, Halloween is an occasion that people from all ages can enjoy. As we age the activities may change, but overall this season offers something fun for everyone.
If you have elderly relatives that want to participate in Halloween, trick-or-treating can be a long and physically exerting activity for some, especially for those with ongoing health conditions or physical limitation. But with a little creative thinking, there are several other options that the whole family can enjoy. Below are a few of our favorites:
Pass out candy. Instead of tromping around the whole neighborhood, spend time together indoors handing out candy to trick-or-treaters. This can be easier for seniors than hours of walking, and it’s a great way to still participate in the fun. Not only do you get to see all your neighbors’ Halloween costumes, but you also get to stay warm and sneak some candy bars too!
Have a costume contest. There’s no age limit for dressing up on Halloween. Talk with your elderly loved one about what they want to be for Halloween this year, and help them put together a costume. You can experiment with different ideas for face makeup or sew a costume together. Even if you don’t have plans to wear the costume outside of your house, dressing up is a great way to get into the Halloween spirit.
Watch a Halloween movie. Whether it’s scary or not, there are a wide variety of Halloween movies and shows that are good for all ages. ABC has the 13 Nights of Halloween special happening during October, and Netflix also has a variety of movies for the season. Not sure what to watch? Here is a list of family-friendly Halloween movies that seniors and young children can enjoy.
Decorate pumpkins. Nothing says Halloween more than pumpkins. This is a good activity for older adults because it can be as basic or creative as they want it to be. If your senior is feeling adventurous, have them carve the scariest Jack-o-Lantern face they can think of. If they want a more relaxed activity, pick up some inexpensive paint at a craft store and have them paint a face or a black cat. And once the decorating is over, they will have a scary token to remember the activity.
Bake a fall dessert. Especially when the weather starts getting cold, baking is a great way to keep seniors warm and active. Ask them if they have any favorite fall desserts they like to make, such as apple crisp or pumpkin pie. If they would like to try something new, you can test out this cider recipe or any other new treat you find online.
Tell scary stories. If you are looking for something different to do in the evenings besides watch TV, ask your senior if they know any scary Halloween stories they can share with you. To add ambiance, turn out the lights in your house and light candles to pretend you’re sitting around a bonfire. If they don’t know any scary stories, do a quick online search and practice reading them out loud in a scary voice.
Make Halloween crafts. Decorating your loved one’s living space with homemade Halloween crafts is a great way to shake up their daily routine. This activity is especially good if they have young grandchildren as well, because it provides a great way for them to work on an activity together. Need some craft inspiration? Here is a list of fun ideas that can easily be made for all ages.
Do you have your own ideas and traditions you like to do with your elderly loved ones? If so we’d love to hear about them. Tell your Angel nurse how you like to celebrate the holiday spirit, or feel free to ask for more suggestions that are personalized to your senior’s health restrictions.