In the UK the Harvest Festival is traditionally celebrated on the Sunday nearest the harvest moon. Harvest Festival reminds Christians of all the good things God gives them. A tradition that is now part of many people’s lives whether or not they are Christian. This week residents explored all things harvest and Autumnal with sensory exploration tables filled with crisp orange leaves, acorns and cones or making a 2D life size scarecrow. Baking up a harvest loaf and using food traditionally harvested at this time of year in the cooking club recipes.
Monday morning started with a keep fit class, moving to music.
Exercise has countless benefits for those of all ages, including a healthier heart, stronger bones and improved flexibility. For us, there are additional benefits, like the fact that regular exercise reduces our risk of chronic diseases, lowers the chance of injury and can even improve one’s mood.
Elsewhere autumn leaf rubbing brought back memories of this wonderful season and traditions we would enjoy like walking through leaves and hearing them crunch under foot.
Monday afternoon we took part in a sensory stimulating harvest cooking club. Working together to make the iconic harvest breads. We worked together needing and shaping the traditional plated breads.
The modern British tradition of celebrating Harvest Festival in churches began in 1843, when the Reverend Robert Hawker invited parishioners to a special thanksgiving service at his church at Morwenstow in Cornwall.
Garden view lounge loved the Harvest themed brain training games and therapeutic colouring of harvest vegetables and scarecrows.
A simple act, such as colouring, takes our attention away from ourselves (and the things that are causing stress!) and onto the present-moment event. “In this way, it is very much like a meditative exercise.
Tuesday morning, we joined for a great game of skittle in the lounge.
Before lunch we were delighted to be part of the sunflower awards ceremony, where staff and care partners who have gone above and beyond in their care towards us, are nominated for awards. We couldn’t be prouder of everyone who received their award and prizes.
When care partners bring their four-legged friends with them on visits everyone rushing over to say hello.
We were also so proud of the staff members who have passed their NVQ’s, they have worked so hard and are so deserving of them.
Tuesday afternoon our harvest theme continued and harvest wouldn’t be harvest with out a scarecrow or two so our arts and crafts club met and crafted a life size scarecrow out of paper, fabric swatches, straw and other household materials. It was a fabulous afternoon as we shared stories and enjoyed much laughter.
Spending time one to one looking through family pictures and sharing our memories is the perfect way to spend a Tuesday afternoon.
Wednesday was a fab day for the residents of Hill House and with Wallie by their side residents received there Covid-19 booster jabs.
That afternoon we were enchanted by care partner Dorena’s piano recital, we all joined around the piano to listen to her play. With a couple of piano teachers and ex pianists here with us we love having the piano played for us.
We also engaged in one-to-one activities and sensory play and spent time chatting with family on facetime.
Thursday morning our flower arranging group met in the lounge to arrange this week stunning flowers, others spent time playing balloon bounce or taking a trip to the hair dressers.
That afternoon group physio with Rebecca was a huge success, Rebecca has created a diverse programme suitable to our individual and group needs and hosted her first group session, we loved it and can’t wait for her to come back for the next session.
Friday morning, our favourite exercise game starts our day off in our garden view lounges with a fab game of balloon bounce. It is great to see the whole lounge joining in by the end. Playing exercises games helps us stretch and move our arms and legs while having fun.
Our harvest sensory box was being explored in the lounge area with crispy colourful leaves, acorns, pinecones and lavenders spread across the table we charmed our senses as we touched and smelled all the autumnal items, chatting about how certain smells or textures can transport you back to a memory.
Another day, another dog, Hudson popped in for a quick hello as he was passing by just before lunch to see a few of us who have grown very fond of him.
Friday afternoon we popped on our aprons and whisked up an autumn apple sponge cake. We were intrigued to learn you can cook a sponge cake in the microwave and at first were sceptical but after trying our cooked sponges, we are fans of this fun and easy recipe.
We loved making the cakes individually following the recipe, adding seasonal apples and a touch of autumn spices.
Also adorning their aprons in the lounge, we spent the afternoon making rock cakes. A Rock Cake is a small currant cake with a hard rough surface. Helping one another out we mixed and whisked the ingrediencies together before shaping and placing them on the cooking trays.
Saturday morning started with a game of scrabble as a small group, while others enjoyed jigsaw puzzles of their choosing or reading their daily newspaper.
After lunch as we settled down to this weekend’s movie, with snacks in hand and drinks poured while others took walks around the gardens and got out in the autumn sunshine.
‘Be our guest visits’ focus on those who wish to spend their time away from the main living areas of the home, with many small lounge areas across the home there is always activities set up for anyone to take part in.
Over a cup of morning coffee, a group of gentlemen and our activity teams were chatting about their interest in boxing and how they have boxed in the past. Bryony our activity coordinator set up on an iPad the boxing match from the early hours of the Sunday morning for the gentleman to watch with a big British fighter in their triopoly match the men were hooked.
Others spent the morning attending the special Harvest festival church service being streamed through to out TV.
Harvest festival has a special place in many people’s hearts from attending as school children or being the floral arranger at their local church for many years and creating stunning displays for the church at harvest.
Opting to listen to the church hymns while taking part in a solo activity brought great joy to some, others sung their hearts out to the church hymns.
After a sensational roast pork lunch, a game of completive floor darts took place in the lounge with everyone playing for themselves trying to get the highest score on the board. Drawing a big crowd for fabulous Sunday afternoon of games and laughter together.
Therapeutic harvest colouring was the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon on garden view choosing between paints, chalks or pencil to create their pictures.