4 Ways to Bring Family Together for the Holidays – Even When You’re Miles Apart

Senior couple with family by Christmas tree - three generations
04 Nov 2016

As families grow and evolve, sometimes people move to a different state or even a different country. With an aging parent, the miles between you can feel especially wide during the holiday season. Despite your best efforts to come home for the holidays, it might just not be feasible due to work, health, finances or another commitment.

If you find yourself in a similar situation this year, know that there are several ways you can still bring the family together even if you cannot be with each other in person. With a little care and creative, you can make sure your loved ones know they are on your mind and in your heart!

Make use of technology

Technology has come a long way, especially for helping people all across the globe connect with one another. For the holidays, schedule a time to video chat or facetime with your loved ones. Seeing each other on a screen is better than just hearing voices through a phone. You can also share photos by text, email or posting them to social media. This allows everyone to enjoy the memories in real time, even if they cannot be there in person.

Send a meaningful gift

Think ahead and plan to send a special gift that is sure to arrive in time for the holiday. This doesn’t have to be something expensive, rather aim for something meaningful. Create a photo album, write a book of short stories recapping your year or have a favorite photo made into a mug, blanket or other useful item. When your loved one receives this gift, they will also enjoy the memory it represents.

Make alternative arrangements with a friend or caregiver

If you have an aging parent who might be spending the holidays without family this year, make arrangements to ensure they don’t spend it alone. In a retirement community, they are sure to receive the socialization from other residents and caregivers. If they live alone, arrange for a friend, neighbor or in-home caregiver to be with them on this day. Having someone to talk to and to share a special meal with will be greatly appreciated.

Set a date for your next visit

Most importantly, be sure you have a date set for your next visit to give everyone something to look forward to. If you can’t make it home for the holidays, when can you find time to visit next? Don’t let time slip by without making an effort to connect in person. Feeling a hug and holding a hand are worth every effort to make the trip and be with your family in person!

Will you be spending the holidays away from your family this year? Share how you plan to make it special for your loved ones!

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