Christmas is a magical time of year for Nashville seniors. It's a time when we all act a little nicer and think of others. While some think the holiday has become too commercialized, Christmas isn't about buying affection.
It's about gaining time with people we love. Putting some thought into buying or making a present for giving to family can honor past traditions and lead to new ones. With a little preparation, we can make this year's Christmas an unforgettable holiday gathering.
At some point in the month of December, we gather with our families. For many, that involves time in and around the kitchen cooking traditional meals, baking cookies with children, saying grace and eating until we're stuffed. It's an opportunity to share family stories about Christmases past and remember elders who are no longer with us.
There's an expression "It's the Thought that Counts", and with Christmas, that's certainly the case. Simply handing over a credit card to a clerk to acquire something generic gets the job done, but gifts are only truly delightful when we pour our time and creativity into them. This can mean personalizing something like a calendar, sewing a quilt, or making a handmade craft. Or sharing an exceptional book.
Experiences can also make better presents than things. For example, a trip to a museum that stimulates a grandchild's imagination. There are so many attractions in Nashville to entertain, educate and delight a loved one. Journeys to the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, Ryman Auditorium, a Titans football game, or a shopping expedition to Opry Mills can make for amazing days.
Of course, it doesn't have to be Christmas to make someone feel special. A family trip can mean more memories of time spent together – and the photos from the day can generate an additional present in the form of a photo album.
Elders sustain holiday rituals, which are the things that grandchildren carry forth into their own families as they age and create new branches on the family tree. What fun things does your family do when you get together? Play board games? Sing carols? Watch a certain holiday movie?
When striving toward a great Christmas experience, families need to be appropriate in giving and receiving. It can be challenging to discover what family members want, requiring you to play detective. Remember to keep gifts age-appropriate.
The holidays bring expectations of graciousness – both in giving and receiving. Rare is the teenager these days who will take the time to hand-write a thank you note to a grandparent for a Christmas present, so don't take it personally if they show a lack of warmth when given something they probably need rather than necessarily want.
The holidays are about connecting with family and honoring traditions. It isn't about buying affection. The best gifts have thought put into them, and the gathering goes more smoothly when family members work toward harmony and humility.
With a little bit of thought, this can be one of the best Christmases ever!
Our campus sits on 7 beautiful acres where we garden, play shuffleboard and horseshoes, walk on the walking track and enjoy grilling out. We have watercolor painting classes, wii bowling tournaments, musical entertainers, and card & board games. Indeed, there's no shortage of ways to enjoy life here among one another.
But Maybelle Carter is located in Madison. This means we are fortunate to be surrounded by the Nashville Metropolitan area, which provides us with many interesting adventures. Maybelle Carter bus outings take us to a variety of places.
"We're 5 minutes from the OpryLand Hotel, Grand Ole Opry House, General Jackson Show Boat and the Opry Mills shopping mall," explained Jennifer Todd of Maybelle Carter. "Just minutes away is Nashville proper, which includes attractions such as the Parthenon, the Country Music Hall of Fame, Ryman Auditorium, the Farmer's Marketing, the Nashville Symphony, Nashville Ballet, Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Cheekwood Botanical Gardens, the Nashville Zoo and Loveless Café."
Our bus outings take us to grocery stores, Wal-Mart, dollar stores, Opry Mills, The Mall at Green Hills and Rivergate Mall, as well as restaurants and Summer Crest Winery. Nashville is also home to Goo Goo Cluster candy and Moon Pies. "East Nashville offers one-of-a-kind shopping and restaurants like The Pharmacy and 5 Points Pizza – our residents dine there occasionally," she said.
Faith is also an important part of most seniors' lives. Our area is home to 75 churches of varied denominations.
"Pro sports are big here as well," she said. "Our teams include the Tennessee Titans (football), Nashville Predators (hockey), and Nashville Sounds (minor league baseball)."
Being in the South, antebellum mansions also provide fascinating destinations for residents to go sight-seeing on outings. "Southern mansions include Andrew Jackson's home, The Hermitage, as well as BelleMeade Plantation, Belmont Mansion and Two Rivers Mansion," Todd said.
Maybelle Carter provides all of the comfort and security of small town community with all of the great adventures offered by our proximity to a major American city.