This week at Hill House we celebrated all things about love and kindness as we geared up for our big Valentine celebrations. The week was filled with crafting and baking activities as well as a fun themed interactive chocolate cart.
Monday morning, we started the week with our chair-based exercise programmes.
Others looked through gardening books to identify flowers we had growing in the winter flower beds.
That afternoon we were treated to a sensational chocolate tasting cart, bursting with milk, white and dark chocolate as well as a vast variety of flavoured chocolates. Did you know after flowers, the UK spends on average £58 million on chocolate for Valentines! So, what better to celebrate than to indulge in a little.
Tuesday morning our 1950’s reminiscing scrapbook brought back many fond memories and we spent time talking about the 50’s over a cup of tea.
After the morning teas and coffee round, we got stuck into a Valentine’s themed game of bingo in the lounge.
Our arts and crafters met in our garden view lounge, lots of hard work and effort went into making our stunning tree of love and happiness.
That afternoon we were delighted to have Louis play piano for us and have a good hearty singalong.
Listening to or singing along to music is a great engagement tool for the aging brain. It provides a total brain workout; Research has shown that listening to music can reduce anxiety, blood pressure and pain as well as improve sleep quality, mood, mental alertness and memory.
Wednesday morning our sensory games and activities were enjoyed by residents who wanted to test their hand eye co-ordination, whether it be cog maze puzzles or using our interactive Omi table to play sounds and images.
Others tested their minds with a group game of giant scrabble. Scrabble is the ultimate crossword game in which every letter counts, so it was a race to make the best words and use up all our letters to be the winner.
Our garden view residents got creative and made loved ones Valentines cards ready for the big day.
That afternoon our monthly resident’s meeting was held in the lounge. These meetings are held once a month and enable us to give feedback around events, activities, hospitality and housekeeping. We share what we would like to see more of and also to share any ideas on new activities or improvements to our home.
The meeting was followed by a fantastically energetic exercise work out for everyone.
We love our picture pair game where you not only match images but it is old vs new, so we matched an old phone with a modern phone or penny-farthing and a bicycle.
Others completed jigsaw puzzles and cross word puzzles.
Thursday morning, we looked through our war time reminiscing box, it has a mixture of old posters, booklets and ration books. We also took part in therapeutic colouring themed around Valentine’s Day.
By sharing memories from the past through reminiscence therapy, people with dementia can develop more positive feelings while reducing stress and agitation.
The afternoon was filled with fresh flowers as we gathered to arrange this week’s floral agreements.
Friday morning, we crafted stunning Valentine’s cards with friends while listening to love songs through our alexia.
We played ball games before lunch in our garden view lounge others spent the morning enjoying manicures and hand massages.
That afternoon we engaged in therapeutic colouring. The act of colouring can increase eye and hand coordination. It also improves dexterity, grip control and focus. It is important for seniors to strengthen motor skills as much as possible and colouring is a great way to do this.
Saturday morning, our retro toy box was explored in the garden view lounge we used and played with a toy, it brought back so many memories of toys we had ourselves and for our children.
Other games were played on our Omi interactive centre as it projected quiz games on the floor, testing our knowledge.
A group game of floor bowls was played in the lounge. Bowls is fun to play no matter the group size, it also all-inclusive. Whereas most sports require participants to be in your finest physical shape, bowling allows a mixed group of sizes, ages and skill levels.
That afternoon we watched a true British love story film. At its core, Pride and Prejudice tells the love story of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy, both of whom have to overcome their biases in order be together.
Sunday morning our weekly streamed service was offered to those who wished to watch on the TV,
others spent the morning painting Cupid table decorations and playing card games.
Morning newspapers were read first thing Sunday morning. Later we rummaged through our hobby bags reminisced and explored them. We spent the morning sharing stories of DIY jobs around the house or taking on bigger wood work projects. Others played board games one to one.
We were delighted this week to receive Valentine’s book marks from Year R at the local Fleet infant school. They must have worked so hard at making them and we look forwards to making use of them in our books.
Sunday afternoon was full of laughter and fun as we made stunning heart shaped biscuits ready for Mondays Valentine celebrations.
Baking stimulates the senses, so it can be an effective tool for encouraging older people to enjoy their food more and try new things. The feel of the flour, the smell of bakes, watching the frosting go on; all help to stimulate the senses and build up a healthy appetite.