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Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with an Elderly Loved One

Though St. Patrick’s Day might not get as much attention as other holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving, it can still be a good excuse for family caregivers to spend some time with their elderly loved ones. The staff at Westfield Home Care Assistance offers a few fun options for enjoying this holiday together.

Eat Green Food

This holiday is often celebrated with traditional Irish meals like corned beef and cabbage, shepherd’s pie, and Irish stew. You can also make delicious green desserts like lime Jell-O, pistachio pudding, or a white cake mixed with green food coloring. Shamrock cookies are fun to make and eat, and a cake decorated with colored marshmallows is another fun dessert you can share with your loved one.

Listen to Irish Music

Irish music consists of ballads, stories, drinking songs, and beautiful dance tunes. You and your loved one can enjoy the holiday together by watching a DVD of the musical Riverdance or listening to performances by The Irish Tenors, The Chieftains, or The Irish Rovers. Listening to traditional Irish songs like “Danny Boy” and “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling” can make this holiday even more entertaining.

Watch Irish-Themed Movies

You can also find plenty of movies with an Irish theme to watch together, with both dramatic and whimsical feels. Many seniors will enjoy watching John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara in The Quiet Man from 1952, Far and Away from 1992 with Tom Cruise, or The Field from 1990 with Richard Harris. If your loved one wants to watch something a little more fun and lighthearted, the 1959 Walt Disney film Darby O’Gill and the Little People would be a great choice.

Make Fun Irish-Themed Crafts

Some seniors enjoy working on crafts. St. Patrick’s Day projects you and your loved one can take on include making a large shamrock or cutting out a string of smaller shamrocks to hang on the front door. If your loved one needs mental stimulation, pages of leprechauns, rainbows, and pots of gold can be printed out for him or her to color with pencils, crayons, or markers.

Play Games

St. Patrick’s Day is all about socializing and having a good time, and not every activity necessarily needs to fit the theme perfectly. Board games like checkers, backgammon, and bingo are fun and simple, and card games like rummy, go fish, and blackjack are also good ways to have some quality time with your loved one.

Spending time with your loved one on this or any other holiday is a wonderful way to provide social and mental stimulation. If your loved one needs additional stimulation or help around the house with various tasks, reach out to Home Care Assistance. We specialize in live-in care, and we also offer hourly care and comprehensive Alzheimer’s, stroke, and Parkinson’s care Westfield seniors and their families can rely on. For more information on our senior care services, call one of our friendly Care Managers at 908.450.9400 to schedule a no-obligation consultation.