If you’re shopping for a family caregiver in your life this holiday season, you may wonder what gifts they’d most appreciate. Caregivers do so much for others, it can feel difficult to adequately express what their effort means to you. If you’re a caregiver looking for ideas to share with friends and family, or a friend or family member of a caregiver looking for a perfect gift idea, this article is for you. Here are 8 thoughtful holiday gift ideas for the caregiver in your life.
A Planned Night Out
Caregivers spend all of their time planning, preparing, and taking care of their loved one. An incredibly thoughtful gift for the caregiver in your life is a planned day or evening out. You can either give a gift certificate to their favorite restaurant for future use, take them golfing, go see a movie, or plan an event (like a concert or beach day) together. This effort will mean the world to a busy caregiver who never seems to find time to leave the house.
Baked Goods or Premade Meals
One thing is for sure, caregivers have a lot on their plate. Something that is on their agenda nearly every day is cooking and cleaning for their loved one. A thoughtful gift for the caregiver in your life would be a premade meal or holiday baked treat tray that they can enjoy without the hassle of preparing and cleaning up after it themselves. For a completely hassle-free gift, give it to them in a tray or dish that they can keep.
A Useful Book
While often rewarding, caregiving is incredibly difficult. Many caregivers feel as though they are going through this alone. It feels like uncharted territory that is both terrifying and exhilarating. But the truth is, millions of caregivers have been in their shoes before and they are not alone. This is why some of the best books for caregivers are books that reassure them of their efforts and help them navigate the challenges they face each day. Here are some book recommendations for caregivers (see the source of this list and more book ideas by clicking here):
- Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? – Roz Chast
- My Two Elaines: Learning, Coping, and Surviving as an Alzheimer’s Caregiver – Martin J. Schreiber
- The Conscious Caregiver: A Mindful Approach to Caring for Your Loved One Without Losing Yourself — Linda Abbit
- A Bittersweet Season: Caring for Our Aging Parent and Ourselves — Jane Gross
- Who Cares? The Give and Take of Family Caregiving – Jerry Bridge
If you don’t have a lot of money to spend, one of the most appreciated gifts is some quality time. They spend nearly all of their time with the loved one in their care, and the topic of conversation may, more often than not, be about the ailment/diagnosis/treatment/etc. Sometimes quality time with another loved one can create a welcomed distraction, both for the caregiver and care recipient. If you don’t visit them often, plan a coffee date or a day that you can spend together.
On a similar note, offering the caregiver in your life some free time is another way to gift something thoughtful. Can you provide care on their behalf or pay for some time of respite care? Freeing up their time for self-care, personal errands, a nap, or a visit with friends will give the caregiver a chance for some much-needed rest.
Anyone with a busy schedule knows that staying on top of the house work can be a tall order. Caregivers are no exception. You can give the gift of peace of mind by hiring a cleaning service for the day or cleaning the house yourself.
Think back to when the caregiver in your life was not a caregiver. What things did they love to do? If you can think of a hobby they previously enjoyed or one they’re likely to enjoy, help them bring that interest back to life. A knitting set, scrapbooking kit, puzzle set, golf clubs, hiking gear, painting kit, etc. can be a welcomed gift that gets their mind busy on something other than care for a bit.
If you’re not sure where to start and none of these ideas inspire you, try a gift card. You can do a generic Visa gift card, or something more specific. Here are some ideas for gift cards that are thoughtful:
- Their favorite restaurant
- Their favorite store
- A massage or spa day
- Their favorite coffee shop
- A bookstore they frequent
Gift cards purchased with the intent of making their day a little easier, brighter, happier, or more relaxing are going to be winners.
The holidays are a great time of year to recognize and appreciate those who care for others. When possible, remind the caregiver in your life that their contributions are recognized, appreciated, and meaningful.
If you provide regular care to your loved one, we at CRC are here for you. As a caregiver, you’re faced with new challenges every day. The California Caregiver Resource Centers were created with you both in mind and at heart to be a free resource as you navigate the challenging role you’re in. We would love to connect you with your local Center, which can talk more about local programs for caregivers, answer your questions, and explain how they can best support you.Share this post: