Hard to say why it is that as we get older, the days seem to rush by quicker. Perhaps that’s why we cherish them so. With our passing years comes a lasting wisdom—and an appreciation of what each day can offer.
The fall season bursts into our lives with vivid color. As temperatures cool, we watch leaves turn to fiery reds, bright oranges, bronzed browns, and sunny yellows. From the tops of trees, catching a ride on a breeze, the leaves flutter and twirl and dance as they fall to finally carpet the earth in a rich tapestry.
And we learn about the beauty of letting go.
How can we enjoy the autumn season fully? Whether in our own homes or spending our days with friends at the Senior Care Partners P.A.C.E. Day Health Center, there are many ways to enjoy the seasonal changes.
Take a leisurely walk. Around the block or at a nearby park or even just to your mailbox, let your eyes drift upwards to take in the colors of autumn leaves. Notice the mums many plant in their gardens around this time of year. Listen to the crisp crackle of dry leaves beneath your feet. Smell the crisp air and feel the cooling breeze. Walking is the best exercise, improving mood, cardio activity, and brain function.
Spend time in your garden. Wrap that warm shawl around your shoulders and enjoy sitting for a while in your yard, taking in those colorful leaves and refreshing air. If you feel up to it, plant some flower bulbs to greet you in the spring. Place a pot or two of flowering mums around the yard. Rake leaves for good cardio exercise.
Decorate for the season. Some winter squash and gourds are so colorful and patterned that they are beautiful all on their own—but go ahead, paint a pumpkin for those little trick-or-treaters coming around the end of October. Arrange a few gourds on your table as a centerpiece. Collect a few red and orange maple leaves for the centerpiece. It will bring a smile every time you see it.
Pick a puzzle with an autumn theme. Puzzles are always fun, and one with a seasonal theme can be especially fun to solve. Puzzles, digital games, or board games, can make for an enjoyable time spent alone or with friends, reducing depression and giving focus to the day.
Try a new recipe or revisit a favorite recipe for a taste of fall. Fall is the season of apples, pumpkins, cinnamon, and warm and fragrant spices. Baked apples or cinnamon oatmeal cookies bring delicious smells to your house and are wonderful to share with friends and neighbors. Add cranberries to those roasted brussels sprouts. Create a pasta salad of the fall harvest. Add a cinnamon stick to that glass of warm apple cider. Enjoy the bounty and invite a friend to the table.
Make a gratitude wall. With fall comes Thanksgiving, but we can be grateful for our many blessings on each and every day. When we take a moment to be aware of our blessings, our mood lifts and the day seems to get just a little brighter. Writing down our blessings can reinforce that feeling of gratitude even more. Your wall can be as simple as a series of Post-Its naming what makes you grateful—a kind neighbor, a good friend, a health issue resolved, a warm home, a loving pet. Or you can post favorite photos of things that make you smile.
At Senior Care Partners P.A.C.E., we are most grateful for you—our many participants who bring so much joy to our every day. Thank you for being a member of our community!