With it being almost Valentine’s day, the kids and I are a little behind in taking down our Christmas decorations in Grandma’s room. Today, we’ll be putting up her Valentine’s day banner that her and her roommate really enjoy. This blog post will cover a few ways that you can decorate, spruce up, or liven up their rooms a bit! In our experience, we found that kid made items seem to go over the best, as well as pictures from their life.
Often, when a family member enters an institution such as a nursing home, or assisted living facility, they are going to strongly dislike it. They may even complain about every detail, down to the color of the floor tiles. Many times, residents at nursing homes do not see many visitors, or their families may be far away. It’s always nice to donate colored pictures, small crafts, and things like this to them. It is ALWAYS best to stay away from candies, cookies, and baked goods–as so many have health issues and dietary needs these days! This past Christmas, the kids and some of their friends from school made hundreds of pictures, small crafts, and such. We all spent a few hours walking the halls, and made sure that each person got a gift for the holidays…even the staff. We chalked it up to 26 acts of kindness, and the kids learned some great life lessons, too.
A few Christmases ago, I made photo collages of our entire family, and some of her closest friends for her bare, white walls. She also took to hanging up all the cards she received in the mail from family and friends, too. It was a very simple way to add some color, and give her some things to look at throughout the days. One of her favorite aides donated a cat wall clock to her, and she was given a kitty calendar, too. This past Halloween, the kids and I started making holiday banners. Now it’s turned into sort of a monthly tradition. We spent yesterday cutting out heart shapes, and writing “Happy Valentines Day” on each of the heart, spelled out letter by letter. The kids color the letters however they choose, and then we stringed them on a long string. Once we’re there, it’s easy enough to pin it to the wall so it hangs above her television area. We write special messages to her, and to her roommate on them, too. This is a very easy thing to do with the kids, and for each holiday. There are prominent symbols for each holiday, and cimply cut those out for each letter of your message! (I.e. pine tree/Christmas light bulbs for holidays; Easter eggs at Easter; hearts for Valentine’s; Shamrock’s for St. Patty’s; Flag’s for Memorial/Labor Days; Fireworks for 4th of July; Pumpkins for Halloween; Turkey’s for Thanksgiving…and anything else you can think of!!
Below you’ll find some ideas on how to decorate your loved ones nursing home room, or small living spaces!~
Use wall hangings: Tapestries and wall decor with inspirational messages are always appreciated. Tailor the choices to the person’s interests, hobbies or religious preferences.
Many individuals prefer wall hangings or posters imprinted with verses about grandparents, families, love or humor.
Or try these themes:
Animal lovers: Hang some wall art or pictures of cats, dogs, birds or other animals.
Sports fans: Hang banners or photos of a favorite NFL team logo or incorporate the team colors into the room decor.
Collectors or hobbyists: If the person is a collector but had to leave their precious collection behind when they moved into the nursing home, try to find pictures, statuettes or other objects related to the collection and use those for room decorations.
For instance, a lighthouse collector might enjoy a small framed print of one of Thomas Kinkade’s lighthouse paintings. You can also take picture of their collectibles and have the pictures framed for display.
Stick it on, take it off: Removable, repositionable wall art is a great decorating option, and it’s fast and easy to apply. As a bonus, you can peel it off and change the decor in an instant if the person gets bored or wants a change.
“Refrigerator art”: Remember to include drawings from all the adolescent relatives. Most individuals love to receive artwork made by their grandchildren or other young relatives. These personalized drawings can cheer up a resident who is adjusting to his or her new smaller surroundings.
Family Mementos and Decorative Items
Decorating a resident’s room in a nursing home need not be costly or burdensome. For instance, remind patients of friends and family in a loving way by surrounding them with items such as these:
Favorite photos: Ask the person to select a few of his or her favorite family pictures to display in frames on a bedside table or desk. Include group photos of happy events like birthday parties, weddings and baby showers to help the individual feel connected to family and friends. Use frames of different sizes and heights to add depth and interest to the grouping.
Bed linens: Use colorful sheets, pillows, and bed linens in a pattern that the resident favors. Let them participate as much as they care to in the selection process of bedding. Make sure that the sheets, the bed cover, and the pillows are comfortable and durable as well as visually appealing. Decorative pillows are always a nice touch, if you just want to add a little charm to the room without redoing all the bedding.
Window treatments: Opt for light-colored window treatments to allow plenty of light into the room while the resident is awake. Pick colors that compliment the bedding pattern and theme.
Window Crafts: There are so many crafts that can be made to hang in the window, amd reflect light and colors through the room. One simple craft idea is to melt cheap beads in an aluminum pie plate at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. Drill through it, and BAM! A beautiful personalized window craft! (Pictured below!)
*IMPORTANT NOTE! Anything that you end up taking in to decorate with, make sure that your family member’s name is written on the item, somewhere!
And if you’re thinking about doing a craft for the whole nursing home, please stay away from anything that ends up looking like this:
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