Gift ideas for elderly shut-ins?

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by willow_girl, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    DBF organizes an annual food basket drive for the elderly shut-ins in our community. From various donors, he gets a canned ham and all the trimmings, plus a fruit basket. He also calls upon people to donate homemade cookies, which he divides up among the recipients and packages.

    I thought it would be nice to see if I could get a few retail stores to kick in non-food items to go in the baskets. The only problem is, I have no idea what homebound seniors might want or need! The only items I came up with, off the top of my head, were vitamins, buffered aspirin, warm socks, and perhaps a book of crossword or similar puzzles.

    I thought I'd have better luck if I asked the stores for specific items (or gave them a list of suggested items).

    So ... what else?!
     
  2. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    it's not practical but i'd guess what they want most is time. someone to come by and take them out to lunch. or change a lightbulb or fix a leaky faucet. or just someone to listen to their stories, even if they already heard them 15 times.

    their needs will be as various as the individuals.

    but on a more practical note... envelopes and books of stamps for paying bills. large print books. magnifying glass. those heated rice bags. gift cards to their favorite grocery store.
     

  3. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Lotion, paper towels, detergent, etc. Anything anyone else might need pretty much!
     
  4. Bink

    Bink Well-Known Member

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    Along with envelopes and books of stamps, pretty stationery and books of stamps. Maybe some ergonomic pens, too.
     
  5. shellycoley

    shellycoley Well-Known Member

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    Things like Kleenex, hand sanitizer, and hard peppermints are always popular.

    Shelly
     
  6. PineRidge

    PineRidge Well-Known Member

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    And more stamps! (My Mom goes through them like crazy!) Also, if you know the people (names and addresses) then making up some address labels on the computer is easy, and great for someone who can't write well anymore, but likes to send cards.

    Lotion, Chapstick, gum or hardcandy....
     
  7. Fla Gal

    Fla Gal Bunny Poo Monger Supporter

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    Non skid socks or slippers.

    Craft items for the people that love to make things.

    A deck of cards for those that like to play solitaire, or even get others to join in a game of poker or canasta.

    Jigsaw puzzles that aren't too large.

    A fancy washcloth and towel with a bar or two of soap and maybe some shampoo or body wash.

    Audio books and some way to play them.

    A bird feeder with a good supply of feed and if need be, someone to put up the feeder outside near a window where they can watch the birds.
     
  8. Bay Mare

    Bay Mare DW to FordJunkie

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    In addition to the other things people have mentioned, a subscription to Readers Digest. ($13.98 for one year)

    AngelaW
     
  9. Peacock

    Peacock writing some wrongs Supporter

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    One of my mom's favorite gifts we gave her was a box of greeting cards -- just a collection of cards for various occasions, birthdays, get well, anniversary, etc., generic cards that could be for anyone. So many times she wanted to send a card but it was hard to get out and pick one up. We didn't pick them from the card aisle -- Target sold it in a box. They might still carry it. If not, you can probably find good ones at Big Lots.
     
  10. Caitedid

    Caitedid The Prairie Plate Supporter

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    I used to do home health care for an older woman, and her favorite gift to receive was scented body powder. The kind that comes in a pretty box with the poof for dusting it on. Also, pet treats for those who have them, pharmacy gift cards, pretty hair things, glasses cleaner, etc. caite
     
  11. davec

    davec Guest

    AA batteries for the remote, books, big tins of popcorn, scented candles.
     
  12. Bink

    Bink Well-Known Member

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    Oh, yes! Excellent thought! And more stamps.
     
  13. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    Large print crossword puzzle books. Jigsaw puzzles with larger pieces (easier to manipulate with sore hands). One of those universal remotes with the large buttons. Phones with large, easy to see and press buttons. If anyone around does handyman work, perhaps a gift certificate or coupons to use for repairs. A calling card they can use for long-distance calls to friends and family.

    Mostly, they want time. Time to sit with them and visit. Time to go to lunch with them. Time to listen to their stories (as maddening as it can be to hear the same story for the 5th time in a day).
     
  14. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    Thanks everyone!!!

    I had better get busy here ... :)
     
  15. watcher

    watcher de oppresso liber

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    Might not be the best thing for a gift basket but one of the best gift items I know of are magazine subscriptions. Its like giving a gift every month of the year.
     
  16. shar

    shar Well-Known Member

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    The women at our church make gift baskets for the shut ins, and one of the most popular items is dried fruit, either small pre packaged bags or sometimes we make up our own bags of it.
    The dollar store often has small sewing kits, a couple needles, needle threader and a few spools of thread usually black and white.
     
  17. Mutti

    Mutti Well-Known Member Supporter

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    phone cards....my MIL thinks long distance is too expensive so give her a 500 minute phone card and she loves it. DEE