How to Stay Cheerful When Staying in a Nursing Home

How to Stay Cheerful When Staying in a Nursing HomeHow to Stay Cheerful When Staying in a Nursing Home


Living in a nursing home may seem depressing and unexciting to some people. However, it is far from the truth. These facilities for seniors have excellent facilities and host several activities to keep their residents happy and engaged. If you want to move to a skilled nursing home, it can be a great way to socialize and build mental and physical strength. The activities typically focus on ensuring everyone has fun and gets an opportunity to interact with the staff and other residents. Read on to learn about some fun activities in senior nursing homes when moving into one.

Activities for Nursing Home Senior Residents

Reputable nursing homes have experts to ensure the facility’s recreational programs match the residents’ cognitive and physical capabilities and help fulfill one or more care goals.

7 Popular Social Activities for Nursing Home Residents

Birthday Parties

Some nursing homes allow residents to participate in organizing the parties. You can take part in decorating a room, help bake and decorate a cake, arrange games and music for the party, and more, depending on the facility’s traditions and rules.

Ice Cream Socials

This activity is always a hit with residents. The staff arranges different flavors, such as chocolate and vanilla. They have top favorite toppings, including strawberry sauce, hot fudge, caramel sauce, whipped cream, and some add-ons extras like nuts, sprinkles, cherries, and crushed Oreos, depending on the preferences of the residents. You can choose your favorites and enjoy having the ice cream with great company.

Outdoor Parties

When the weather permits, the staff may set up a cooking area to grill hot dogs and hamburgers. Kitchen staff often get involved in providing side courses such as baked beans, potato salad, coleslaw, and more. You may also enjoy picnics in the park and nearby places.

Book Club or Story Time

This includes different things such as the following:

  • You can tell their stories with other patients and staff in the facility.
  • You can talk about the historical events they witnessed.
  • Staff can read books to the residents.
  • You can read a specific book and discuss the details together.

Musical Events

Consider participating in group sing-alongs with songs from different decades. You can also help with the arrangements by including residents’ favorite songs. In addition, some nursing homes invite musicians or choir groups for recitals and celebrations.

Food-Centered Activities

Frosting cookies, baking brownies, cookies, or muffins, and baking and decorating cakes are fun activities. You can have the goodies as dessert. Coloring Easter eggs and making popcorn and fresh salads are good socializing opportunities.

Holiday Programs

Nursing homes typically celebrate holidays to ensure the residents don’t miss out on special occasions. Some popular ideas are Labor day, Thanksgiving, Halloween, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and Independence Day.

5 Top Physical Activities for Seniors in Nursing Homes

Skilled nursing facilities typically do not create strenuous plans that can exhaust the participants. They will consider the limitations of each resident and decide on the activities so that everyone has a great time. Some of them include the following:


The specialists will create a fun routine considering the residents’ physical capabilities. Tossing, bouncing, and kicking beach balls are excellent physical and mental stimulation activities. Simple exercises can also be arranged to encourage residents to be more active.

Resistance Training and Stretching

These activities often involve large elastic bands to help you stretch, strengthen, and tone your legs and arms. Doing so in the morning will relax and enable you to start the day positively.


Including other residents and forming a gardening group is an excellent idea if you enjoy growing herbs, having small indoor plants, or planting flowers in pots. In addition, you can volunteer and work with the staff if the facility maintains gardens. This way, you can enjoy fresh air and sunlight to keep depression, loneliness, and boredom at bay.

Crafts and Handwork

Research shows that crafts are an incredible source of entertainment for nursing home residents. They promote manual dexterity, provide a sense of accomplishment, and help you stay calm and relaxed. Depending on your interests, you can take up sewing, knitting, drawing, sketching, painting, origami, and more.

Pet Therapy

Some nursing homes allow you to bring your pet when you move into the facility. This can be therapeutic and help you feel less lonely. It is beneficial to ask the staff about the rules and regulations of having a pet on the premises so you can prepare accordingly.

5 Engaging Games for Seniors in Nursing Homes

Playing Cards

Card games offer many benefits, including the following:

  • Develop and strengthen fine motor skills
  • Facilitate bonding
  • Enhance memory and strategic thinking


This traditional American card game is popular among all age groups. Although there are many rules to it, it is fun and engaging. Since it allows many players, you will get the opportunity to socialize with many residents.

Board Games

Board games are fun, promote bonding experiences, and help enhance brain functioning and cognitive skills in seniors. Some of the top favorites in nursing homes are Chess, Checkers, Bingo, Scrabble, Dominoes, and Monopoly.


Puzzles are an easy and exciting way to keep yourself entertained and occupied. They can boost your mood and give you a sense of accomplishment. Crosswords, Sudoku, and Word Search are some of the best ones you can play.

Physical Activity Games

Senior-friendly physical games are ideal for boosting flexibility and strength. They can also help reduce blood pressure and maintain bone structure. It is wise to participate in this type of activity under the proper supervision and support of the staff.

Our Nursing Home is an Oasis of Positivity, Love, and Care

The Holiday Retirement is a reputable nursing home in Rhode Island. We offer short-term care arrangements to ensure recovery after illness, injuries, surgery, and long-term stays with excellent amenities. We have a patient-friendly building in a convenient location to provide maximum comfort for our residents. In addition to daily care, our team will host well-planned activities and comfortable dining arrangements.

You can call us at 1-401-765-1440 or fill out our online form for more information about our Holiday nursing home in Providence. We will ensure you a healthy, happy, and safe experience.

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