For those who love watching dancing or getting out on the dance floor, here is a nostalgic activity that recognizes different dance styles throughout the last 100 years. Using YouTube, explore videos of the Charleston, swing, tango, twist and disco. Ask your activity partner about their favorite dance and if they have any memories of dancing. One Hummingbird client shared that she loved to square dance when she was a teen, and her mother danced the tango! Allowing time to reminisce adds positive energy and warm memories to your activity time. To go one step further, add physical movement by dancing together or offering chair dance with arm movements!
This Gratitude Tree Activity is a special way to focus on what we are thankful for and a wonderful multi-generational craft for Thanksgiving gatherings. Once complete, it is also a beautiful table centerpiece for all to enjoy.
Together, take a walk outside to collect tree branches. You will also need small rocks, one large, wide mouth mason jar (or vase), fall colored card stock, a pencil, single hole punch, twine and scissors.
- Pour the rocks into the mason jar or vase and place the branches into the jar.
- Use the scissors to cut the card stock into leaf shapes.
- Use the single hole punch to punch a hole in each leaf.
- Invite everyone to write what they are grateful for on each leaf, then attach the twine and hang them from the branches.
We hope you enjoy this special way of celebrating the good things in your life, and Happy Thanksgiving from The Hummingbird Project!
With the delicious holidays approaching, Mindfulness Eating is a special way to savor the flavors of the season. This can be done with just about any food, but make sure it’s not too messy and can be easily held in your hand. Also, if your activity partner has any swallowing issues, be sure to select foods that are safe for them to consume.
Before you pick up your food item, explore these questions with your activity partner: How does it look? What color is it? What’s the shape? Then pick up the food item and ask: How does it feel? What is the texture? Bring the food up to your nose and get curious about how it smells. Take a bite and very slowly chew, paying close attention to the flavor and how it feels against your tongue and teeth. Continue bringing this awareness to every bite. How do you feel? Get lost in the moment and see where it leads you.
By inviting your Veteran care partner to assist with assembling care packages for troops overseas, you will offer a valuable connection to their vocational quality of life and sense of purpose. Take a trip to your local Dollar Store to purchase supplies, which you can together assemble and package during a care-package party.
This activity can also encourage reminiscing about military stories. Invite your care partner to talk about their time in the military. Conversational prompts, such as asking about when they were drafted or the day they returned to U.S. soil, can be helpful Honoring these stories supports emotional well being and valuable connections with friends and family.
Thank you to all Veterans for your service!
With the beautiful fall weather upon us, grab a scarf and a blanket and invite your activity partner to find a nice quiet place to connect with nature. This could be a nearby park, your backyard, walking trail, lake or even the beach. As you are surrounded by nature, be mindful of what you hear, smell, see, and feel. Take a few minutes to enjoy the beauty. After you have spent several minutes outdoors, discuss with your activity partner how you feel. Do you feel relaxed? Does being in this particular setting bring back any memories from your past? You can also explore the sounds of birds in the trees or textures of leaves, rocks, sand or pine cones. Relax and enjoy the many gifts of nature and each other’s company.
Invite your activity partner to creatively celebrate this Harvest Halloween holiday! Gather a collection of harvest inspired decorations from your yard or your local craft store. Garlands of leaves, pumpkins, pine cones and autumn baskets are just a few ideas. Together, design a beautiful table centerpiece or front porch decor. While you work, reminiscing about favorite fall traditions and Halloween costumes is sure to usher in the joy of the season!
This time of year offers so many inspiring ways to stimulate our senses! An outing to a pumpkin patch is a great way to connect to the cool, crisp air, community and the various colors and shapes of pumpkins. The textures of gourds offer another fun way to explore the sense of touch. Gather a variety of gourds and small pumpkins and place them on the table. Explore the bumps and unusual designs that make them imaginative and curious. Ask you activity partner to choose their favorite and share why. And don’t forget the apple cider to engage that incredible sense of flavor and taste!
Here we are, at the beginning of the beautiful fall season! Gather some items at your local grocery store or around the house that remind you of fall. This interactive activity allows you to explore your senses and reminisce. Some ideas to include: pumpkins, pumpkin cookies, butternut squash, apple and pumpkin pie, baked apples, Halloween, hot chocolate, leaves and candy! Display all the items on the kitchen table and have your activity partner pick one up at a time. What comes to mind? What is your favorite fall food? What colors remind you of fall? Is there a particular spice that reminds you of fall? Bake or cook a popular fall dish, the possibilities are endless!
With children now well into the school year, hand tracing is a fun way to remember those youthful days. It’s also a special way to help loved ones hold on to special memories (pun intended).
Start by inviting your activity partner to place their hands on a large piece of paper. Once placed, begin to trace their hands. If you want to get fancy, ask what color fingernails they’d like to have! Then encourage your activity partner to name ten things they treasure most in their life. , Write one treasure on each finger of their hand tracing. Display the finished design in visible area where those valuable memories can been seen and revisited frequently!
This can also be a fun intergenerational activity for parties and family gatherings, done with any activity partner, young and old alike!
Here is a unique way to combine environmental, physical, sensory and intellectual stimulation by creating a medicinal herb research project. Start by choosing three herbs, such as fresh rosemary, mint and thyme. Invite your activity partner to research the herbs and create their own special reference cards. Start by smelling the herbs and compare their scents. Then offer pre-printed information about each herb. Encourage your activity partner to read and highlight what they find most interesting. You can then paste images and write facts on the cards. You can even include a snip of the actual herb!
Creating a medicinal herb card collection creates a sense of purpose and offers an on-going meaningful activity!