Caring for the Family at the Holiday Season
December 2, 2015
Family Caregivers in Pittsburgh PA
Between the youngest and the oldest generation are the family caregivers. Now, in addition to the regular household maintenance for two or more homes, the family caregivers will be working to put together memorable family get-togethers for the holidays.
And, in truth, sometimes, although it can be wonderful to have everyone together, it can also be somewhat overwhelming. And if company is coming and the parents or children require special diets or there are traditions about which dishes to use, it can be a lot overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be.
With a bit of planning, a willingness to ask for (and accept) some help, and the ability to realize that the holidays don’t have to be perfect, the holiday season can be far less stressful and far more enjoyable for everyone.
Here are a few simple things to make your season brighter:
1. Lower Expectations – Maybe this year, the dinner won’t be enjoyed on the fanciest china in the dining room if the family caregiver has been too busy to attend to it. Maybe eating around the kitchen table on regular dishes or even paper plates can keep the prep and cleanup times to a minimum.
2. Enlist Help– No matter the ages or abilities of children or parents, everyone can pitch in. Young children can be taught how to set a table, grandparents can (depending on mobility, of course) oversee them, and everyone can pitch in with the cleanup.
3. Keep it Simple – Family dinners with all the trimmings can be made ahead, and there are lots of opportunities to cook in a non-traditional way. Perhaps this year a dinner can be roasted in a slow cooker instead of taking up the entire oven, and that frees the oven up for baking and other goodies.
4. Pot Luck – There is no reason that every family invited can’t bring something to share. Just because the family caregiver may make the “best” mashed potatoes or gravy or soup or anything else doesn’t mean they should be the one to make it all. So by planning the menu ahead of time it makes it easier to share the load.
5. Stay Flexible – If doesn’t matter what time families get together this holiday season, what matters is that everyone IS together and that it works for all, especially the family caregiver.