What a fabulous week at the carnival as residents enjoyed traditional fair time games and activities throughout the week. They channelled their inner clown with circus games, played hook a swan and bottle toss. This week also saw the local event that is Farnborough air show, it was the perfect opportunity to celebrate this local event by enjoying lunch in the conservatory and later an afternoon tea.

Monday morning, we have all been creating our own versions of paper swans using paper plates and cutting out feathers. This was to mark the annual tradition of swan upping.

A flotilla of traditional Thames rowing skiffs, manned by Swan Uppers in scarlet rowing shirts and headed by The Queen’s Swan Marker, row their way steadily up the Thames.  ‘All up!’ they cry as a family of swans and cygnets is spotted and the Swan Uppers carefully position their boats around the swans, lift them from the water and check their health. The five-day journey up river has been an annual ceremony for hundreds of years.

That afternoon the fun of carnival continues as we played Hook A Swan our twist on the traditional Hook a swan game seen up and down the country at fairs and fetes.

Tuesday morning, we spent the morning colouring and painting carnival themed pictures to turn into decorations. The repetitive nature of colouring can help ease agitation or aggression, which are common symptoms of dementia. Some experts have likened colouring to meditation as it allows you to ‘switch off’, which can be extremely helpful for people with dementia.

Today we celebrated clowns in all their glory, a performer (as in a circus) who entertains by playing tricks and who usually wears comical clothes and makeup. Someone who does things to make people laugh. clown. verb. clowned, clowning.

As part of our arts and crafts club we made clown ties using a variety of mixed mediums. We were joined by students from Lord Wandsworth school who volunteer for the day.

Tuesday afternoon we were joined by our very own clown who come in to help us with circus skills from juggling, plate spinning and telling jokes.

We love to see Tinkerbelle when she comes to visit her fluffy fur and tiny paws amuse us and her perfectly formed poodle waddle as she goes around the home.

Wednesday, we welcomed students from lord Wandsworth school. We spent time chatting over tea and completed a funfair themed jigsaw puzzle in the lounge.

With the weather cooling down slightly we enjoyed morning exercises in the shaded courtyard. Chair based exercises have been shown to improve cognitive function, reduce depression, improve balance, and improve ability to perform everyday tasks.

That afternoon, we played ring toss another traditional fair themed game linking back to the weekly theme. The game was enjoyed by many of us and after we spent time chatting about other fair games we enjoy playing.

We spent time walking around the garden and admiring the beautiful grapevines.

Thursday morning, we had a fabulous morning as cooking club brought us together to make creamy vegetable soup.

Cooking and prepping vegetables are fully immersive experiences which engage all the senses. It’s a very tactile activity, which allows our residents to experience different textures and sensations. It also gets them moving and can improve hand-eye coordination through peeling, chopping, slicing and other movements. Chopping vegetables is something every one of us have been doing for many years and brings back happy and calming memories of prepping dinner, the children or grandchildren and is a great Activity of Daily Life (ADL)

We also continued with our fairground jigsaw puzzles and created water colour paintings.

We visited our incredible hairdresser throughout the day, she’s so welcoming and friendly and we look forwards to our conversations.

In our garden view lounge, our flower arranging club met as we arranged, this weeks stunning floral arrangements into vases.

Followed by a game of ring toss we have really enjoyed playing.

The afternoon our mobile tombola cart rolled around the home, offing us a chance to win prizes.

Others played our fun coin rolling game, a game of pure luck, we laughed a lot as we watched our coin roll in the opposite direction from what we wanted.

Followed by a group game of dominoes, Traditional games such as Dominoes have many benefits: A fun, social activity. Handling and placing dominoes use fine motor skills and motor-planning.

Friday morning, inspired by the Farnborough air show that has been running all week. We built foam airplanes, while sharing our connection with the air show and airport over the year. A Large group then gathered in the lounge to race their planes through the air and glide them through the finishing line, which brought much laughter.

Our Omi interactive magic table was being enjoyed with vintage airplanes and the sound effects as we wiped the clouds away.

The rain didn’t stop us having fun this afternoon at our air show lunch. Although rain stops us seeing most planes that were meant to fly over. Our incredible activities team moved the fun inside our conservatory so we could still enjoy lunch while watching the air show, we sipped on wine and a G & T we chatted about our trips to the air show over the years.

Following on we moved to the lounge to watch the history of Farnborough Air show and aviation over the years before stopping for afternoon tea and nibbled on cakes while chatting with friends.

We looked through old photos of the air show over the years and learnt more about how the air show started and how it has been encouraged to go back to its routes and not host a public air display anymore.

Our garden view lounge was busy making more model planes and racing them across the lounge others enjoyed an afternoon of dancing and music.

Saturday morning with started with brain training games, memory games for residents exercise the mind to keep it active, is as important as maintaining physical fitness and strength in older age.

Saturday was national ice cream day and we marked the occasion with a game of ice cream Bingo, winning ice creams or lollies as the prize for getting a full house.

Enjoying music and dancing in our garden view lounge.

Sunday was the perfect time for an interactive cooking club activity of the funfair classic mini donuts.

Working together to weigh out, whisk up and combine the doughnut mixture. Baking stimulates the senses, meaning 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.

Our mobile donut cart then rolled around the home offering this sweet treat to everyone.