Ottawa Retirement Home Enjoys Arts and Crafts

As people age, physical limitations begin to hinder enjoyment of activities that were once part of daily life. Today's seniors find alternatives through the enjoyment of arts and crafts projects that provide a sense of accomplishment while maintaining an active lifestyle. [1] At Thorncliffe Place and other Ottawa senior retirement homes [2], arts and crafts instruction is provided to residents as part of daily activities. The trend in many Ottawa Retirement homes is to have craft fairs that showcase the creativity of residents. Thorncliffe has its own Bazaar in the month of November with all proceeds donated to charity. Crafts for the elderly are much more advanced than they once were. Regardless of whether a resident is new to crafting or has been crafting for a lifetime, mental or physical limitations that often accompany aging make it difficult for some seniors to enjoy certain crafts. However, by adapting the craft or using special equipment, most senior citizens are able to once again enjoy a favorite pastime. [3] There are a number of easy crafts for seniors [4]that many people don't realize seniors would enjoy learning. Thorncliffe still offers options of easier tasks that may involve the use of pipe cleaners and papier-mâché, but residents are also invited to continue what they did when they were younger. Making jewelry, for instance is very popular while others still quilt, knit, and crochet. There are some new talents many residents at Thorncliffe can learn for example painting with oils and watercolors, this allows them to be creative, have fun and relax on a Saturday afternoon while feeling productive. [5] Another popular craft especially at Thorncliffe is creating greeting cards; this allows them to create something that is useful and could be given away to family members and enjoyed by all. Other popular activities at Thorncliffe [6] that allow the residents to express their creativity include creating pictures, posters, arts and crafts, ceramics, weaving, cooking and non-cooking activities, gardening and scrapbooking. Thorncliffe Residents are still as active and engaged as they ever were, so they are not limited to the ideas of craft hour in the Thorncliffe Garden Room. The art making process is creative and can serve as a way to explore your past and your present experiences. Whether you look at art work as therapy or just a way to have fun it is a powerful tool. It's never too late to discover or to find new ways to relax an essential part of who you are. The idea is that the elderly should continue to do what they did, what they love to do, and whatever they can do to keep their minds and souls healthy and happy. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]

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