By Beverly Nelson, creator of Stand Up For Caregivers, for Caring Transitions®
The holidays are a time where we can really show our gratitude for those who provide essential services in our lives and the lives of our loved ones. From the people who take care of and teach our children to the caregivers who watch over our elderly loved ones, life without them would not only be more challenging, but often, less fulfilling.
If you’re looking for ways to show your appreciation for a caregiver who is often the glue in your life, here are a few gifts, both practical and thoughtful, that they will truly enjoy.
● Food Delivery: Blue Apron and Freshly are a great examples of food delivery services that bring ingredients for healthy and tasty meals right to your caregiver’s door. This gift is not only thoughtful, but it’s practical as well. Sometimes, the best caregiving gifts focus on saving time and expanding experiences—two things caregivers often need, but rarely prioritize. You can even commit to dropping off homemade desserts and casseroles during the first week of the month for an entire year.
● Engraved Keepsake: You can turn a thoughtful trinket into a more personal, meaningful gift when engraved. Consider a simple, silver locket engraved with initials or an inspirational quote. Stores like Red Envelope and Things Remembered often have vases, picture frames, drinking glasses, clocks and other keepsake items with space for engraving names, special sayings and personal inscriptions.
● Gift Certificate for a Night Out: You can give your caregiver an experience instead of an item with a gift certificate for a night out. Giving a date night could include a gift certificate to a restaurant paired with a gift card for the local movie theatre. If the caregiver enjoys a glass of vino or a cocktail, you can even purchase a wine tasting from the local winery.
● Warmth and Coziness: Everyone can appreciate a burst of warmth during the frosty winter months. A warm, colorful scarf and hat or a cozy sweater paired with a mug and hot cocoa can inspire a cozy night in. If your caregiver has a good sense of humor, you can give them a cozy adult onesie with a fun pattern and covered feet.
● Relax and Rejuvenate: Caregivers have physically and emotionally taxing jobs. A gift certificate for a day of pampering with a massage, manicure, facial or other relaxing spa service can be a superb way to show you care about the caregiver’s health and well being.
● Help in Their Home: Caregivers often spend more time in the home of the person they are caring for than their own. You can help them enjoy their home more by gifting them with a lawn service or monthly housecleaning. This way, when they do have time at home, they can spend it kicking up their feet and not cleaning windows and floors.
● In Your Honor: It’s no surprise that caregivers, when you consider the profession they have chosen, are often selfless people. A truly touching holiday gift can come in the form of making a donation to a charity or organization that is meaningful to them. Consider a donation in their name to an organization that works in an area similar to your caregiver, like researching cures for cancer or Alzheimer's, or a cause that is dear to their hearts, like animals or poverty.
Remember, the holidays can sometimes be challenging for caregivers. Making an effort to give a meaningful gift to someone who gives so much of themselves is a great way to celebrate the season and honor those people who make your life simpler.
About the Author:
Beverly Nelson is the creator of Stand Up For Caregivers, which aims to help protect and advocate for the health and well-being of adult caregivers.