Gift ideas for elders

momfromthenorthDecember 15, 2007

Does anyone out there have any gift ideas for seniors (in their 80's)??? I am totally stumped. I've asked them what they would like or need and all they say is that they don't need anything. That they have everything they need. Same response from my SIL who see's them weekly. (She is also stumped)

Any suggestions? They are in fairly good health but don't get out much especially in the winter/snow. TIA! :)

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Postage stamps, gift certificate to their grocery store, handmade gift cert promising you'll 'do' something for them. I'm nowhere near their ages but I've been telling my kids that I don't need anything for several years. I'm downsizing, decluttering, and I don't want/need 'things'. There are 2 things I've told them they can get me if they absolutely must give me a gift. One is live flowers and the other is food, which could mean being taken to a restaurant, gift cert to one or my grocery, or homemade goodies.

Good luck,

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 10:56AM
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I agree. The last thing I want is more 'somethings' to have to deal with.
A Gift certificate to a department store would be nice if you can get one with several months to go before the expiration date.

Do they like wine? or some other alcohol? My husband would enjoy a case of his favorite beer. A big fruit basket. Nuts, like pecans and cashews.

check out the specialty aisles in the supermarket for salad dressing, sauces, etc. that they may not want to spend money on, but would like to try. If they like cheese....perhaps a basket of different varities would work.
Good Luck! I am sure you can come up with something very satisfying.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 11:57AM
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I agree with the other posters. More "stuff" is not needed. Even more clothes aren't helpful unless there is a real need.

How about a gift certificate from a favorite local restaurant that would DELIVER a meal to them? Or a special home-cooked meal that you put together for them to heat & eat at their own convenience?

Do they have a DVD player? Perhaps a few old movies starring their favorite personalities. Many of the newer DVD releases of old movies come with close captioning, if that's a need.

Is there a special old family photo that they love? You could always enlarge it & frame it.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 12:45PM
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My MIL would give her mother things Grandma wouldn't buy for herself (finances). Small bottles/boxes of crackers, jell, meats, etc. One cousin gave Grandma a case of TP every year for Christmas...Grandma LOVED it!

For my mom, also in her 80's, I try to get things she'll use. This year I did something a little different, and it was a huge hit! We were orignally to do our family Christmas with her the 15th. Medical stuff changed that to the 29th. But I got little things & wrapped them individually, dated them, for her to open daily. One a day from the 16th to the 25th.

I had hot pad holders, kitchen towel, tiny porcelain doll from the Dollar General (she has a large doll collection), blank note cards, a candy bar, an individual size bag of Ritz Bits (any chip/cracker would work), a Santa filled w/ candy (Dollar Gen, again) that could be shelf decor or an ornament, 5x7 notepads that she uses ALL the time, S&P set for her collection, and for Christmas Day, a book of the word search puzzles she enjoys. She was thrilled!! and I've already started looking for things for next Christmas.

Anything they use daily or frequently could be used, and suited to your budget. Stamps, as someone mentioned; how about a calling card? A written promise to rake leaves in the fall or wash windows in the Spring. These are just a couple of things that come to mind.

Hope this helps someone for next's never too early to be planning so we don't 'break the bank' :-0
Happy New Year to all!!

    Bookmark   December 27, 2007 at 1:50PM
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I used to buy appliances and gadgets for my mom. This year I picked up 2 boxes of red wine that she likes (she drinks a glass every night at bedtime). Re-subscribed to the local newspaper for the next year and picked up groceries and items at Dollar General. When she tried to pay me, I just said Merry Christmas. I think she appreciated this more than previous years.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2007 at 1:02PM
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I know this is late, but I bought several of these gadgets for my mother and she LOVES them. It's a remote to turn on a lamp (or other electrical item that plugs in). Some of the benefits are if she needs to get out of bed during the night (night lights aren't bright enough for her), she just clicks her remote and her bedside lamp comes on (no tripping in the dark). If she wants to read or work at the desk, she just clicks on the remote for her reading lamp or desk lamp and she doesn't have to reach over table/desk and lose her balance (happens often) and potentially fall.

Here's a link to it. *Note: The ones I bought are singles, with a single wall plug unit and single remote programed to operate only to that particular plug-in unit. (It's not confusing to her because each remote is in a different room, but if she ever did have two or more remotes in a single room I'd use my label maker and label each remote accordingly, such as "desk lamp" and "floor lamp" to lessen any confusion for her. ) They run about $10 ea, on sale last week at Menards for $7.50, might still be on sale.

The only potential drawback: if super switch is connected to a lamp that plugs in, but lamp also works on a wall switch as well, the supers switch overrides the wall switch so wall switch won't work. Ideal for lamps or other electrical items that plug into an outlet that isn't also operated by a wall switch.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2007 at 12:43PM
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I made my parents a 'this is your life' video for them by putting favorite pictures of them to songs and burning it on a DVD with my computer. They loved those videos and have watched them dozens of times. I made a 'how to' website to help others build a video for their parents. See the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: - Make a

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 9:27PM
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1. Meals from a company like Home Bistro (do a google for the web site, or just figure it out, it's really obvious, we're not allowed to post websites I believe). We tried some of their soups, very tasty. You can either pick items you think they'd like or give a gift certificate with a catalog. We got Mom a gift certificate, but she has been too confused/unmotivated to figure out how to call and order the stuff from the catalog! I told my husband we should have just picked out some meals, but then I'm sure she would have complained that she didn't like our choices. But, if your elder is less aggravating than mine, it would be a great gift.

2. A simple TV remote. When Mom was in the hospital, she was RAVING (and she rarely likes anything) about this great remote control for the TV that they had - it had four or five buttons - on/off, volume up, volume down, and change channel. No number buttons, no auxiliary inputs or resets or anything else to mess up the TV! This particular one was wired to the wall, she couldn't understand why I wouldn't buy one just like it for her. But I found something similar on the web called "Tek Pal Large Button TV Remote". It's big and easy to use and the buttons are lighted. I'm going to order one for her - I hope she likes it.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 2:08PM
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