Each season has its own brilliance. Autumn’s brilliance is its oranges, reds, browns, crispness in the air, and crispness on the ground as the leaves crunch beneath our feet. It’s the sound of sports, and the taste and smell of something comforting and warm.
Autumn’s activities offer a unique sensory experience for all of us and our older loved ones too. Enjoy some activities together!
Here are a few:
- Write or make up some phrases about Fall. One way to write phrases is to start off listing words that you think describe Fall, like leaves, scarecrows, orange, chilly. Next, add another word to each of those words, like crunchy leaves, happy scarecrows, orange pumpkins, and chilly beans. Next, add yourself/someone/or something to each of the pair of words or add some action. So it might sound like this: Children stomp on crunchy leaves; happy scarecrows don’t scare crows; orange pumpkins hate pumpkin pie; the frosty air makes chilly beans. You can be as serious or silly as you want when making up phrases, however, the silly ones are the most fun to make up. Use real fall-type things to touch and look at to help you write a few.
- Look for seeds from dead or dried flowers in the yard. Pick the seed pods from the flowers and save them in an envelope to plant next year. Remember to label them.
- Plan a golf putting green in your living room. Use a golf club, ball, and cup to putt in a spacious room.
- Have the grandchildren help to pick up leaves, dried fall flowers, pinecones, and other fallen natural items. Look at and touch the natural items and see the special qualities in each one. Bring some in and place them in a bowl for fall potpourri.
- Dig out your crock pot to make some recipes that will not only warm up your loved one, but will fill the house with wonderful aromas. Smelling food may stimulate an appetite. Try some apple cider, roast with potatoes and carrots, baked potatoes, or other favorite recipe. The internet is filled with hundreds of crock pot recipes. Look for some recipes together.
- Put out a bird feeder for the birds. You can purchase one, but you can also find something around your home that can serve as a feeder like a tea-cup and saucer, shallow bowl, pie tin, egg cartons, etc… Look around your home for some that will hold bird seed that you may recycle. Fill the bird feeder then watch what birds come to visit. Check out this post for birds that winter over!
- Cut some of the last blooming flowers to dry indoors and enjoy all season. You may enjoy not only the beauty, but the aroma, as in the lavender in the picture above.
- Adorn your table with a centerpiece of gourds, a nice round pumpkin, or other fall items. Gourds come in all shapes and textures to touch and talk about.
- Pull out fleece and other textured lap blankets and set around your loved ones home. He can easily grab one when he gets cold. Pull the sweaters out of his winter drawer and place in a more convenient space for the fall and winter.
- Heat up the hand and lap heating bags for warmth. Sew one together out of some material scraps if you don’t have one already. These are great for chilly hands.
- Along with the grandchildren, carve some pumpkins. There’s nothing like the smell and the feel of the inside of a pumpkin when carving.
Do you have a stash of felt and fabric scraps your saving?
If you have a stash of orange and brown scraps, why not carve some pumpkins that smell good too? This is a simple activity for an older loved one who enjoys crafts. Invite the grandkids to help and make this an intergenerational activity.
- Orange and brown felt and fabric scraps (or other colors of your choice)
- Green ribbon
- Pinking Shears and scissors
- Cinnamon essential oil (optional)
- Cut circles from felt and fabric. I used orange felt and old brown wool remnants. (Since I didn’t have orange wool fabric I just used the brown that I had on hand.) The wool helps to add some plump to the pumpkin whereas the felt lays flat. I used orange felt pieces every other layer. You may use the base of a coffee cup (or other round pattern) to cut the first circle. Pinking shears were used to make a decorative edge, which is optional. (Consider safety and strength of a loved ones hands in cutting fabric and felt.)
- Circles should go from smaller at the bottom, to larger in the middle, then smaller at the top, like the shape of a pumpkin. Cut all sizes.
- Make a small hole in the middle of each circle with a small snip of a scissors.
- Cut a small piece of ribbon, larger than the size of the layers of pumpkin. Make a knot at one end. If you wish to hang the pumpkin make the ribbon longer in order to form a loop in the next step.
- Thread the ribbon through each hole in each circle, stopping at the knot (the knot is the bottom). Start with the bottom layers of the pumpkin first, then add each layer of circles until you reach the top. Then tie the ribbon again at the top to secure it and act as a stem. Trim the top of the stem with a pinking shears or if you wish to hang the pumpkin make a loop, then tie a knot.
- Note that you may need to trim the pumpkin in various places to make it rounder after it is put together in layers.
- Add a drop of cinnamon essential oil between one of the layers of fabric if you want to have the aroma of cinnamon.
- Use your pumpkin to decorate a table, tray, or hang it where your loved one may enjoy it!