14 Ways to Celebrate Parents’ Day with Senior Family
Most of us are familiar with Mother’s Day in May and Father’s Day in June. But did you know that July holds a family holiday as well? The fourth Sunday of each July is National Parents’ Day, a celebration of the role that parents of all kinds play in raising great families.
This year, Parents’ Day falls on Sunday, July 27, 2014. To celebrate, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite ideas for spending the day with your senior parents. Whether you’re on the go or cozy at home, soaking up the sun or staying cool inside, these activities are a wonderful way to show your parents that you care.
Enjoy Parents’ Day Out on the Town
Enjoy a meal at a favorite restaurant.
Revisit old stand-bys where you went as a child, or places that hold special memories of birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, or just a memorable night out. Or try the hot new place in town, especially if it offers a new twist on a parent’s old favorite (Upscale meatloaf? Modern mac and cheese? Yes please!)
Visit a new museum.
No matter where you live, there is probably a nearby museum that you’ve always intended to check out. Take mom or dad with you and learn something new! From California’s Bigfoot Discovery Museum to the SPAM Museum in Austin, MN to Leila’s Hair Museum of Independence, MO, new discoveries are right around the corner.
Take in a show.
Browse local listings for movies, music, and theater that you and your parents can enjoy. There are often more options that you think – check out the local paper and online listings for off-the-radar entertainment that’s both entertaining and affordable.
Catch a game.
Take in a local, regional, or national sporting event. Tickets to hometown teams are often inexpensive and a fun way to support local athletes while feeding that competitive spark.
Discover a new park.
Do a little research to find green spaces that are off the beaten path. Walk an undiscovered trail, dig in a community garden, feed some friendly ducks, or pull up a bench for some people watching in neighborhoods new and old.
Make some furry friends.
Animals are interesting, fun, and relaxing for people of all ages. Visit a local zoo, or volunteer at an animal shelter to spend time with dogs, cats, and critters of all types that are waiting to be adopted. Take your dog for a walk with your parents and show off its latest tricks, or bring the folks to your house to get to know your animal companion(s).
Run errands together.
It may not be glamorous, but going to the grocery store or the mall can be an easy way to spend quality time together. No pressure, no timelines, no expense, just a good excuse for companionship and conversation.
Enjoy Parents’ Day at Home
Look through old photo albums.
Take a walk down memory lane by browsing through old pictures. Quiet times with your parents are a nice opportunity to share memories and record any details for posterity. You’ll be surprised what you, and they, remember!
Or give a new one as a gift.
Pictures can be a great way to feel connected to loved ones, especially when you live far away or can’t spend as much time together as you’d like. Take the time to write captions next to your photos to tell the story of your life and your family. Even if your parents missed something in person, they can be part of the experience vicariously.
Cook up something delicious.
Learn the secrets of your family’s heirloom recipes. Sure, you have it written down, but there’s no substitute for doing it together. An extra pinch here, a flick of the wrist there – you’ll become the bearer of family food history and have something tasty to show for it.
Work on a craft.
Ask for your parents’ help with an existing project, or start something new. Scrapbooking, knitting, sewing, painting, making seasonal decorations, or working on a puzzle can keep hands busy and conversation flowing while you visit.
Play a game.
Scrabble, Cribbage, Go Fish, Old Maid, Monopoly, crosswords, wordfinds – the options are endless. Challenge your mind or indulge your inner child with games of all levels that keep everyone engaged.
Show off your gadgets.
Technology like digital cameras, tablets, and smart phones seem commonplace, but may still be of interest to your senior parents. Show them how they work, flip through pictures or games, and impress them with apps like Shazam that display the power of the web.
Make memory movies.
Use that same technology to record conversations about your parents’ lives. No need for a formal interview; sit down, get comfortable, and ask about their childhood, school, work, travel, friends, lovers, and all the other details of full and well-lived lives. Capturing their spirit and experiences in their own words is a special activity that you’ll cherish for years to come.
How do you plan on celebrating this Parents’ Day? Let us know in the comments!