Ideas for Spring Outings

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Now that weather is warming up, it is a great time to bring your loved ones outside to enjoy the arrival of spring.  After a long winter of limited sun, icy paths and cold temperatures, everyone can enjoy the sensation of the warm sun on their faces and the beauty of the natural world putting on its annual rites of spring.  Here are a few ideas to help you take advantage of this special time.

Bird Feeders

The bird world is in its glory right now.  The birds are very active, singing from first light until dark, building nests and defending their territories.  If you put out a bird feeder, you can enjoy watching the birds come to feed.  You can enhance this activity by having simple pictures of common birds to consult.

Walks in the Park

Parks are fully alive now with flowering trees and bulbs.  Take a walk through a park near you, or seek out a park with paved pathways and benches for sitting.  If you are ready for an expedition, head to the Arnold Arboretum at 125 Arborway in Jamaica Plain.  The lilacs are now in bloom!  This Sunday, May 12 is Lilac Day, a special day given over to admiring the fragrant blooms, with arborists on hand to discuss lilacs.  This day is usually very crowded, and depending on how your loved one responds to crowds, you may opt to attend on a day before or after the official celebration.

Is it Time for Ice Cream?

Some of us would say that it is always time for ice cream.  And now that the weather is warm, it is a great way to entice people to come outdoors, especially if they have become used to sitting inside during the winter.


This is now the time to start planting summer flowers, fruits and vegetables.  It may not be easy for elders to actually garden a patch of earth, but there are many designs of raised planters and large pots that can be tended while seated.  It is a wonderful way to engage people who have enjoyed gardening in the past.


For all the golfers, head to a putting green, or find a simple putting game that can be placed outdoors.  For those who enjoyed the links, the continuing connection to the game can be very rewarding.

Host a Garden Party

Take advantage of the nice weather and have an outdoor party.   Use pretty tablecloths and napkins; add flowers, and offer lemonade, tea and cookies.  Encourage all participants to dress up and put on their best spring finery!  It is nice to change the pace and feel special.

As always, we encourage you to adapt these suggestions to suit the interests and abilities of your loved one.  A short outing that brings everyone home happy is far better than a more ambitious plan that tires out the participants.  Don’t be afraid to change the plan or cut it short if you think that people are feeling confused or tired.

We hope that you enjoy the arrival of spring no matter how you decide to celebrate it!

Heather Sawitsky and Yvette Chute, White Oak Activity Coordinator

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White Oak Cottages  6 Longwood Drive  Westwood  MA  02090  •  Telephone 781.320.1999