The best gifts for caregivers are ones that make them feel supported and give them well-deserved time off from caregiving. That way, they’ll get a chance to rest, recharge, and have some fun. Here are 10 thoughtful holiday gifts for caregivers.
1. Regular breaks
Caring for an older adult takes a toll on the mind and body. What caregivers need most is to take regular breaks to rest, recharge, and take care of their own health. An amazing gift would be to commit to helping with caregiving tasks on a regular basis. That could mean one weekend every few months, one day a month, 3 hours each week, 2 hours every other week – whatever you can commit to will be a big help.
If you can’t help in person, consider a gift card to help pay for in-home care or respite care for their older adult so they can still get some time off.
Or, you could make regular telephone or video calls to the older adult for extended periods of time to give the caregiver a break.
2. Set up a series of coffee dates
Being a caregiver is lonely and isolating. After the holidays, don’t disappear into your own busy life. Set up a schedule for regular coffee or tea dates so you can continue to show your support throughout the year. If you’re in the area, take them out to their favorite coffee shop or bring their favorite beverage to the house.
If you live far away, give them a gift card to their favorite coffee shop, like Starbucks, and make a phone date so they can sip their favorite drink while you catch up. While you’re chatting, don’t forget to ask how they, the caregiver, are doing. And see if you can figure out how you can help in other ways, rather than waiting for them to ask.
You could also gift them with a new coffeemaker, their favorite coffee, or their favorite tea so they can make their favorite beverages at home.
3. Relaxation and pampering
Caregivers are usually in permanent stress mode, so they could always use a little help to relax. A spa or massage gift certificate is a great way to de-stress and loosen tense muscles. Spafinder is a convenient way to find local spas and buy gift certificates.
You could even take this gift to the next level by adding something extra. If they can’t leave the house because nobody else is available to care for their older adult, it could be tough to use your gift. Volunteer to help out while they’re getting pampered or include a gift card to help pay for in-home care help.
4. Home-cooked meals
Eating nutritiously is a time- and energy-consuming task. Taking meal prep off a busy caregiver’s to do list is a wonderful gift! Load up their freezer with home-cooked meals that can be easily reheated.
5. A nice meal out
Another great present for caregivers is a gift certificate to their favorite restaurant. A fantastic accompaniment to this gift is to take care of their older adult (or pay for caregiving help) so they have the chance to leave the house to enjoy a nice meal.
Or, you could get them a gift certificate for a local restaurant that provides delivery service or a gift certificate to a service like Uber Eats, Grubhub, or Doordash that delivers take-out from their favorite restaurants.
6. A clean house
Cleaning often gets pushed to the bottom of a caregiver’s to do list, but it’s not comfortable or relaxing to live in a dirty house. Arrange for a cleaning service or roll up your sleeves and do some cleaning yourself to take this chore off their list.
Or, you could also gift them with a robot vacuum cleaner that will keep the floors clean.
7. A well-maintained home
Whether it’s mowing the lawn, fixing a slow drain, or getting leaves out of the gutter, there are household chores that always need to be done. As your gift, complete these chores yourself or hire a handyman.
Even better, make this an ongoing gift and commit to helping with a few chores every month or hiring a regular service.
8. Encouragement and support to pursue hobbies
Many caregivers immerse themselves so completely in caring for an older adult that they lose touch with their own interests. Encourage them to regularly take time to pursue those hobbies by giving gifts that relate to their non-caregiving interests.
We don’t want to sound like a broken record, but the best part of the gift would be to help them get time off from caregiving so they can do something fun. If you’re nearby, visit with the older adult so the caregiver has time to pursue their interests.
Or, offer to telephone or video call the older adult to keep them company so the caregiver can spend time enjoying their hobby.
9. Stress management through journaling
Writing in a journal is a surprisingly effective way to reduce caregiver stress. Gifting them a beautiful or inspiring journal is a great way to encourage this therapeutic activity.
10. Relaxation with yoga
Yoga is good for the body and the mind. It helps press pause on the troubles of the day and encourages caregivers to clear their minds and stay in the present moment. A wonderful gift would be a yoga mat and gift certificate to a local yoga studio. Or, a yoga mat and DVD (like this one) that they can use at home.
NOTE – If you are a caregiver…
This holiday season, let family and friends know about the gifts you’d most like to receive. To nudge people in the right direction, you could send a link to this article in an email and include a note that says something like, “Hello! In case a hint would help with your holiday shopping, I want to share my wish list with you. #1 or #7 in this article would be wonderful!”
Source: Daily Caring Blog
We hope this information is helpful to you in the important work you do as a family caregiver.
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