When you or a loved one is moving into a retirement community it is important to maintain a sense of home in the new place. Since moving already involves so many changes all at once, it can feel less disruptive when you plan ahead, creating an environment that best reflects you or your loved one.
A great way to establish a sense of home in your retirement community in Glendale, Arizona is to create a comfortable space, staying active in social groups, and maintaining your favorite hobbies. Below are a few tips on how to accomplish all of this.
Related Blog: How to Plan Your Move From Your Home to a Retirement Community
Creating a Comfortable Space
When you move into your new home in a retirement community, bring your style and sense of décor with you. If you had a particular wall of art or personal pictures, it is a great idea to try recreating that in your new home. This will help brighten your new environment with familiar features, by pulling together your old home and your new home. Consider bringing these items with you:
- Art and pictures of family and friends – Familiar pictures and artwork on your walls will keep your memories active.
- Blankets and bedding – Sheets and bedding from your old home will help keep things familiar as well as maintaining the comfort that you're used to.
- Movies and books – If you watch the same movies over and over, or love a particular author, bring those books and movies with you. Anything that you have as entertainment at home will be helpful when you move to an assisted living or retirement home.
- Pets – Check to see if you can bring your pets with you into the retirement community if possible.
- Kitchen ware – Your dishes, utensils, and pots and pans are items that can help maintain familiarity from your old home and bring you comfort when cooking in your new kitchen. If you have sentimental pieces, holiday dishes, or family heirloom dishes bring those items with you as well.
Stay Active in Social Groups
There are plenty of ways to keep active and maintain a social life in your new retirement community. Groups to join, classes to take, and events to participate in. It is easy to get overwhelmed with new events and groups, so start out with what you are comfortable with. Groups can include:
- Book clubs – This club is good if you are a big reader and want to share that with others, talk about the books you read and learn something new with a group of people who share your interests.
- Craft clubs – Crafts can include knitting, crocheting, and quilting along with paper crafts and scrapbooking.
- Exercise classes – Staying active in exercise classes will help keep your body and mind active. There are plenty social opportunities in classes which will open up new relationships and friendships in your retirement community.
- Volunteer events – When you give your own time to help others it gives you a chance to give back to your community. This is also an opportunity to meet new people and learn something new.
Maintain your Favorite Hobbies
There are so many different hobbies that people participate in and they can be solitary or group experiences. If you have a hobby bring it with you to your new home. If the space is different you can always scale down what you do. For example, if you enjoy gardening, but do not have a large back yard, consider a smaller hydroponics system in your kitchen, or potted plants on your patio. Also consider teaching a class on your hobby to others in your community. Reach out and see if there is any interest and share your knowledge. This will help keep you sharp and give others an opportunity to learn something new and put it to use. Some hobbies to keep up with are:
- Writing and journaling
- Watching sports
- Building models and dioramas
- Gaming – checkers, chess, card games and many others