Two gingerbread houses made this week at care homes. The people making them had varying levels of fine motor skills and these were huge triumphs!
I took some Christmassy ingredients and recipes to Dun Eisdean today.
We produced some mini Christmas Puddings, mini Christmas cakes, mince pies and some chocolate chip cookies. We iced the cakes with a thick icing and a cherry. You can find the recipes on our recipes page.
We went for the mini versions of puddings and cakes to save on cooking time but we definitely packed in the flavour with ingredients such as orange zest, ginger wine, brandy, prunes, raisins and grated apple.
We talked about Christmas cooking smells, memories, recipes and what we remember our Mothers and Grandmothers cooking for us.
I laid the Christmas lights out along the table and we enjoyed Christmassy music on the radio as we worked. The hardest part was softening the butter…and waiting for the oven to cook it all!
I took the colour changing lights to Clisham Ward this afternoon – there wasn’t really opportunity to dance with them but the people there really enjoyed untangling them, holding them, lining them up, watching them change colour and playing games like trying to catch only the red ones, which turned into a popular game as the red ones are always fading away and popping up elsewhere.
I’ve left a list of possible activities with the ward, so that the staff can choose relevant sessions and let me know when they would work well.
In local care homes, I’ve been focussing on the sensory side of Christmas, the smells, flavours, colours, textures and tastes plus of course the lights.
We’ve been making very highly fragrant decorations and foods. Cloves in Oranges, Stem Ginger Cake with orange icing, Mince Pies, Christmas Pudding and a gingerbread house.
I’ve been using the opportunity for exercise with rolling out a stiff dough, handling foods, stirring cake batter and pudding batter etc.
The texture of dough has been a nice memory for people unable to completely create a mince pie and the eating of it all has been a big hit, especially warm and fragrant from the oven.