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Posts Tagged ‘Holidays’

How to Make Healthier Choices While Enjoying the Holidays

Healthier Choices While Enjoying the HolidaysThe holidays tend to be a dreaded time of year for all ages who are trying to maintain our weight, or even shed some pounds. When we’re surrounded by so many unhealthy treats, what can we do to make healthier choices while enjoying the holidays?

BYOF

When going to a holiday party, ask if you can bring a veggie tray or other healthy dish you know you love. That way you’ll know there will be something there you can eat. If you’re going out to a restaurant with some friends, look at the menu ahead of time (not when you’re hungry), choose the healthiest option and stick to it when you get there and place your order. Don’t even consider any other options.

Eating before you go out to a party or restaurant is also a good way to keep your calories and portion size down and make sure you know exactly what you’re eating.

Don’t Stand Next to the Food

Most parties have one room where all the food is laid out. Avoid that room. If you’re hungry, make yourself a plate with the healthiest offerings, sit down and eat it, and be done. The most important thing to avoid is eating all night long, and one of the best ways to avoid that is by loading up on healthy food right away. That, combined with keeping a safe distance from the food table after that will help you avoid all the tempting sweets.

Drink Water

We tend to consume a lot of alcohol around this time of year and that’s not healthy. It’s high in sugar, which spikes our blood sugar, which in turn makes us eat more when the sugar crash comes. It’s also hard on our livers, so if you do decide to indulge in some festive drinks this time of year, keep it to one alcoholic drink per party. The rest of the time, stick to water, which will help keep you hydrated. Make it sparkling water with some lime and it will look and feel like a gin and tonic, but your body won’t punish you for it the next morning.

Three Bites

When indulging in unhealthy foods, some people practice the “three-bite rule,” which means they enjoy three bites of it, and then they’re done. If you’re eating a piece of cake, three bites is usually about half the piece, depending on how big the slice is. Three bites could also be one cookie, brownie, or a couple pieces of fudge. Besides, after three bites you tend to stop really tasting it anyway, at which point you’re just shoving food in your mouth because you’re high on the combination of fat and sugar.

Talk

The point of parties is to see friends and family, new and old. Look at holiday parties not as a chance to stuff yourself with food and alcohol, but to talk with your friends and family members and even meet new people. Ask them how they’re doing and what they’re looking forward to next year. If you don’t know them, ask how they know the host(ess). If you’re talking, you can’t be eating.

Here at Stillwater Senior Living, we treat our residents like family. Our apartments include studio, one bedroom, and two bedroom suites. They are designed with security features, maximum accessibility, and include walk-out patois with a full range of amenities for the entire family.

CONTACT US today for more information and a tour of our beautiful state-of-the-art community.

How to Keep Holiday Traditions Alive in Assisted Living

holidays in assisted living

As the song says, it’s the most wonderful time of the year. But for some seniors, this season can be stressful. The holiday season is full of traditions and memories that can trigger emotions, even loneliness. It’s up to caregivers to lift the spirits of our seniors and help remember the good times while creating new memories that can be thought upon for years to come.

At Stillwater Senior Living, we are getting in the spirit of the season in much the same way families here in Edwardsville, IL do. We encourage our residents to get involved in the many holiday activities that are happening between now and the end of the year. Time with friends, family and neighbors is really the reason for the season. It can be the best medicine for beating stress and confusion that can be brought on by the holidays.

The following are some tips that will help you to help your loved one get into the holiday spirit and enjoy the season.

Decorations

One of the best ways to get your loved ones in the holiday spirit is to encourage them to decorate their personal living space. Bring them some special ornaments to hang on their own personal tree. Having grandchildren assist in the decorating can create special memories while making their living space cozy and warm.

Baking and Cooking

Seniors often have special recipes that they have passed down to loved ones. Why not include them in the baking and cooking process? They would find a lot of joy in assisting their grandchildren with baking those special Christmas cookies and decorating them.

Take a Stroll Down Memory Lane

Encourage your loved one to talk about loved ones from their past and share their stories of Christmases past. It can help lift their spirits and keep them feeling happy the whole season long. Look at old photo albums, home movies, and listen to holiday music to help bring back memories of happy holiday memories of the past.

Holiday Cards

Get a box of holiday cards and have your loved one help you address them. Keeping in touch with friends and family during the holiday season can bring your loved one lots of joy. They will also have joy when they get cards in return from family and friends across the country.

Holiday Outings

Take your loved one on a shopping trip. They can buy gifts for their friends and loved ones. The sun during the day will do them so good. Seniors that get out in the sunlight are less likely to suffer from seasonal affective disorder. At night, take them on a drive to look at Christmas lights. If it’s cold outside, bring along a thermos of hot chocolate to keep them warm. A blanket might be a good idea as well.

Holidays are built upon tradition. They strengthen the bonds with our loved ones. They influence our mood and bring us joy. These traditions are meant to be forever. Here at Stillwater Senior Living, we encourage our residents to keep family traditions alive and share them with other residents.

CONTACT US today for more information and a tour of our beautiful state-of-the-art community.

Holidays = Family Gatherings

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Family gatherings amidst the holiday plans gets more challenging. As the family expands through marriages and offspring, the decisions on date, time, place and menu come into play.

This year I decided to make it easy. We are meeting at mom’s new residence, Stillwater Senior Living. We’ll use the Activity Room, leaving the dining room and Fireside Lounge for those residents who are staying around – not headed to a relative’s home. With Chef Bret and his kitchen crew preparing our meal, my sisters and I will have more time to visit, play cards, learn a new game and reminisce with Mom instead of busily attending to those details. But since no family get-together is compete without the sharing of food, we’ll share our respective overabundance of sweets that always surface in our homes this time of year. Don’t forget the camera…we’ve got to record the gathering.

What makes Stillwater a great option for us this year is that it is mom’s home with the services of assisted living. So if she gets tired or needs something from her apartment, we’re right there. It’s accessible, familiar, and free for family use . The community prides itself on having several inviting spots to gather families. It even has a toy area, uniquely Stillwater. Though our youngest family members will not join us this year due to cross-country move. Other grandchildren have schedule conflicts with spousal family events. Still, for the 18 who can be together, it will be wonderful! The community-wide Wi-Fi will make it easy to skype or video-chat with those who are absent.

We continue my mom’s family tradition of gathering on Sunday between Christmas and New Year’s Day. Though gratefully we won’t require renting a hall for 70+ relatives. Just the memory of it makes me smile. Oh the secrets and new toys we shared among our cousins of the same age. Then there was a group of uncles who played poker back in the corner. Invariably, we joined in a few rounds of Christmas carols and holiday hymns.

Gotta run…Cookies don’t bake themselves.

May your holidays be filled with family and fun!