"Summertime, and the livin' is easy."
For most of us, summertime is actually when the livin' gets hectic and harried, probably due to squeezing in activities while the kids are out of school, trying to coax the garden into bringing forth an abundance of produce, and hitting all the family reunions.
The last thing you need is more activity in your already crowded summer, right?
Some activities actually cause us to slow down and reassess our priorities.
One of those things is spending time with the older generation. When your loved one can't race through life, you have two options: slow down and go with them or speed up and leave them behind.
Sadly, many elders in America have been left behind.
But because we know that this is a default, seldom a conscious choice, we're giving you a gentle reminder. Your loved one may have caregivers, but they also need someone to take life with them--slowly. We could all stand to go at their pace for a while this summer.
Here are a few things for you do to take it slow with your loved one:
Build a fire and watch the flames with them. Try to resist the urge to make it a picturesque evening with a multitude of fire-roasted dishes. Keep it simple. Just sit and watch. If you absolutely must eat something, keep it to s'mores. Campfires bring out the best in people if we let them. That's when everyone feels relaxed and the stories come out.
Make lemonade together and sit on the front porch to enjoy it.
Go flower-picking or flower-smelling. If you want to smell flowers, take them for a stroll in our courtyard. Or--even better--take them back to their home-place where you can pick a bouquet for them to bring back to their room.
Sit in the sunshine or find a sunbeam and talk about shared memories, maybe even dig out some old photo albums.
Go out for ice cream (or bring it in). Ice cream brings out the best in all of us. In fact the only rush involved with ice cream is to lick it before it melts, and who's going to complain about that?
Do you have any other ideas?
Why not make this summer a time of "livin' easy" with your loved one?