Summer is a time for being outdoors and having fun – whether you enjoy hanging out at the pool, taking a walk in the park, or sitting on your front porch with a nice cup of iced tea. When the temperature rises, people increase their outdoor activity, but older adults are often left behind. Sometimes, family members may not consider inviting their elderly relatives on a summer outing. Instead, they assume their grandma or grandpa may not be able to keep up or would rather be indoors. However, many older persons appreciate a little break from their normal routine and would relish spending time with family members while enjoying a nice summer breeze. So, this summer season, when you are considering your plans, don’t forget to include grandma and grandpa in the summer fun!

A grandson spending quality time with his grandfather for some summer fun.
A grandfather is teaching his grandson to fish.

Involving Grandparents in Summer Fun

Whether your grandparents live alone or with family or friends, they would most likely welcome spending some time with you during the summer. Before planning a day with your grandparent, consider various factors that are specific to older adults. For example, consider mobility concerns, medication needs, or cognitive issues.

Planning an Outing with Your Grandparent

You will want to coordinate with your grandma or her primary caregiver regarding activities for your outing and a time for pick up and drop off. When planning for a day out with your grandparent, prepare with the following aspects in mind:

  • Safety – Ensure that all activities are safe for your grandparent to engage in and are wheelchair accessible, if necessary.
  • Interests – Choosing a location or activity that your grandpa likes will make the day more pleasurable. Involve your grandparent in the decision-making. Alternatively, perhaps your relative is adventurous and may want to try something new. Go for it! Of course, remember always to keep safety in mind.
  • Duration – Consider how the length of your trip will affect how pleasant the experience will be for your grandparent. Maybe a day trip is in order, but perhaps an hour or two will be most gratifying.
  • Activity level/physical demands – Not all older adults are the same. Know the limits of your loved one when it comes to the level of activity or physical demands that they can handle; then plan accordingly.
  • Rest breaks – Anticipate the need to take breaks, especially if your outing includes low to moderate activity.
  • Meals/snacks – Plan to prepare a nutritious meal or have some of your grandparents’ favorite healthy snacks on hand.

Items to Bring

Depending on the plan you and your grandparent come up with, here are some items to bring with you.

  • Water
  • An extra set of clothes and adult diapers (in case of incontinence)
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Sunscreen
  • A hat
  • A sweater (in case it gets chilly)
  • Any required medication

Possible Activities

Again, how you spend the time with your grandparent depends on several factors. Remember to consider your grandma’s or grandpa’s specific needs and likes, then involve them in planning. Here are some possible ideas to consider.

  • Have a picnic
  • Do some fishing
  • Enjoy gardening
  • Take an art class
  • Go miniature golfing
  • Play some board games at the park
  • Invite an instructor to teach a yoga or dance class in your home

Conclusion

When you grab the sunscreen to head outdoors this summer, don’t forget about grandma and grandpa. Staying connected with older relatives adds to your life as much as it does theirs. Family Tree In-Home Care understands the healthy bonds that develop in families and the positive impact these relationships have on elderly adults. For more information about ways to keep your grandparents safe in the summer months, contact us today.