This Saturday we will be kicking off our fall festivities with our annual resident, family & staff picnic at Park River. The weather is looking to be absolutely beautiful! I love this time of year! There are so many fun crafts to do with the residents, yummy treats to bake and I love our fall decorations around our care center. It is so cozy & feels like home.
I was asked last week by a family member on how to make their mother's room more cheerful and comfortable for her. Her mom is fairly new to Park River and is having a hard time adjusting to her small space and is missing her old home. There were a few tips I offered her, hopefully they were helpful! Knowing that she is not the first person to feel this way, and definitely not the last, I thought I might share them on our blog.
I think it is always important to decorate for the season. There are a few reasons why this is recommended. For residents who have dementia, this helps with reality orientation. When your loved one can see themed decorations of different seasons, they are familiar with the weather, the holidays & special memories that they associate with the time of year. It's also nice for them to have a big calendar with important dates pre-marked for the year. Think birthdays, anniversary dates & things to look forward to (such as the picnic that the whole family will be coming to on Saturday ;-) )
It's nice for them to have pictures on their walls and around their rooms. Whether it be family pictures or paintings, have the pictures be something that represents, or has meaning to your family member. They are always a good conversation piece and it gives our residents a chance to express their personality & things that are important to them. Just remember, small pictures are hard for them to see and if you have too many bunched together (such as collages) it can get confusing for them to remember who is who.
Always bring something that represents "home." This might be a lamp, a quilt, or even a chair. Care centers can seem pretty big and confusing & residents can easily forget which room is their own. You want something to stand out, so when they see it they know they are "home." Something on the outside door, such as a wreath or a sign may be helpful too.
I hope you find these tips helpful! We take pride in offering a comfortable & welcoming atmosphere at Park River. It's important for your loved one to feel like they are home. I look forward to seeing everyone at the picnic on Saturday!