Author Topic: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home  (Read 5942 times)

Splendid

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Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« on: January 31, 2014, 12:35:19 PM »
Someone I know has cancer and has been undergoing treatments that make it necessary for her to stay home a lot in order to avoid infection. She's been undergoing treatments for a while, so she is getting discouraged and frustrated, as well as bored from staying at home. Does anyone have any suggestions for things I could send her to help pass the time? She lives several states away, so I'm looking for suggestions about movies, books, one or two person games, easily shipped items.

Some things her daughter told me to keep in mind:
-happy, upbeat storylines are best. Her mom is avoiding conflict as much as possible
-No death. Although the daughter did mention she might like some mysteries (the adventures and trying to figure out whodunit would keep her occupied, and the crime has already happened. So let's say, no one actively dying.)
-No bodice rippers. Romance is okay, explicit scenes not so much.
-She likes musicals
-She doesn't have much energy, so things that can be taken in small snippets are better

I'm thinking things along the lines of Agatha Christie's Hurcule Poirot's Casebook, Archie comics (everybody loves Archie comics, right?), maybe some musicals on DVD would be appropriate. For reference, she is late 40s, early 50s.

Can you think of anything else? What would you send?

Thanks for your help!

lizzzi

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2014, 12:42:46 PM »
Can you get a gift certificate for Amazon? That way she could order her own books and movies.

lcg377

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2014, 01:02:07 PM »
There are paint-by-number kits for adults.  My friend likes really kitschy cat things, so I painted one of the kits meant for older children, and it was actually harder than I would have expected! But it was fun, and you can pick up or leave off whenever.


Annamal

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2014, 01:04:11 PM »
If she hasn't got into audiobooks, now might be a really good time to start (they're fantastic when I'm sick because I just set my ipod to sleep after 60 minutes and if I'm still awake at the end then I do it again. Audible.com (which is a branch of Amazon) has great books for downloading but her local library might have good (free) options.

For happy stories (or at least ones that made me laugh) try Jennifer Crusie, her stories get shelved in either romance or chick lit but she has great comic timing and she's captured that 1940's screwball comedy dialog, Bet Me would be a good place to start.

Now might be a good time to discover the Jeeves and Wooster books by P.G. Wodehouse (or the tv series starring Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry), they're hilarious and the worst thing that happens in them is the occasional night in the cells for stealing a policeman's helmet.

Two Connie Willis books (the Bellwether and To Say Nothing of the Dog) are beautifully light and funny with no death, just maybe don't go in for the rest.

I was raised on the Gerald Durrell books (semi autobiographical books written by someone who started out as an animal mad boy on Corfu in Greece and grew up to st up his own zoo), My Family and Other Animals would be a good place to start (there is a certain amount of animal death over time).

lizzzi

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2014, 01:11:44 PM »
There are intricate coloring books for adults, too, that combined with a big set of colored pencils (also include a pencil sharpener), can be fun. My daughter has sent these to me "just because", and personally, there are times when I really enjoy just sitting and mindlessly coloring. (P.S. Yeah, yeah, I'm sure you're all rolling your eyes. Coloring is pleasant…and guess what, I have a Masters Degree, so phttttt to all who are laughing.)  Another thought I have is to just collect a whole selection of second-hand paperbacks that you think might be OK, pack them up in a big box, and ship them to her. That way, she can pick and choose, and have lots of choices.

schimt

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2014, 01:21:53 PM »
What about a karaoke machine or game if they have an xbox of playstation. Music and singing can be fun and up lifting. Not sure if that would be too much work, depending on her condition
« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 01:26:19 PM by schimt »

GuitarStv

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2014, 01:26:44 PM »
Douglas Adams - Hitchhiker's guide series.  Totally worth it.

Jamesqf

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2014, 01:35:54 PM »
P.G. Wodehouse

TrMama

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2014, 01:43:23 PM »
knitting, crochet, needlepoint, cross-stitch, etc.

Check out Michael's or some other craft store. There should be lots of kit type projects for this kind of thing.

CommonCents

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2014, 01:47:59 PM »
For a more economical approach - get her library card number and start requesting books for her on it through interlibrary loans, to be delivered to her local library.  Then arrange with her daughter/friends to pick up and deliver/return the books every few days.  You can request DVDs, books, cds...

There's a thread here with games and someone posted a link to free games she could play, one move at a time. 

Shropskr

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2014, 01:55:27 PM »
Second taking up a craft counted cross stitch, knitting etc, 
Or learn a foreign language online doulingo.  You can even learn sign language online now.
Take up an insterment.  There are teaching pianos, and online teachers.

Also second a play station or xbox.  Some games construction ones or puzzle ones. Not just shoot em up can really pass the time.  Gamefly let's you rent games like Netflix does for movies this keeps the expense down and let's you try MANY new ones.

Get better soon

Noodle

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #11 on: January 31, 2014, 06:01:49 PM »
Book Suggestions:
Jan Karon, The Mitford Series
English country life novels: Authors include Miss Read, DE Stevenson, EF Benson, Angela Thirkell. All very warm, gently funny novels about the foibles of human life on the village scale.
Georgette Heyer
Meg Cabot's adult romantic comedy novels (a couple of series)
English contemporary romance by Katie Fforde, Sophie Kinsella, Jane Green

(I cannot guarantee no death at all, so you might want to skim specific books before sending, but these are all very light.)

The website jayisgames.com, it recommends browser (also download, but lots of browser) games that might be diverting. Lots are puzzle games with all-ages content.

If she has a tablet, you could check to see if the local library has a service called Zinio, where you can download magazines for free. It's a little bit of a hassle to set up but then is a great source of light reading.

You could consider gifting a Netflix DVD subscription for a few months. A lot of the older movies aren't on streaming yet. She probably is familiar with most of the classic musicals but a new one that she might like is a Bollywood musical called "Jab We Met." It was sweet and funny and has some great musical numbers.

Also, this is not generally what I would call a Mustachian suggestion but this might be one of those cases where it makes sense given the distance and the limitations...there are a lot of subscription box services out there, including ones for crafts. Getting surprises in the mail can be very cheering.

Bless you for thinking of her. I am also in the middle of a health issue where I am stuck home and unable to do a lot of my normal activities, so I know how much this would mean.

Splendid

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2014, 10:07:16 AM »
Thank you all so much for your suggestions! They are great! I appreciate the help.

Mrs WW

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #13 on: February 01, 2014, 11:27:24 AM »
When I read your preferances, I immediately thought about Poirot, how funny to see it mentioned in the very next sentance! My husband I both LOVE the Poirot tv-series. They are so clever, beautifully made and detailed with enough quirk to make it interesting!

Annamal

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #14 on: February 01, 2014, 01:01:23 PM »
Also you didn't mention food (and I know the entire world is full of people telling cancer patients what to eat/drink) but I remember Xeni Jardin of boingboing writing about how juiced fruit and vegetables were the best way she had of ingesting food and keeping it down while she was being treated for breast cancer.

http://boingboing.net/2012/10/23/review-best-affordable-juicer.html

Jules13

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #15 on: February 01, 2014, 02:37:13 PM »
My Mom has cancer and has been bedridden for over a year.  Here are some suggestions. 

If she doesn't have Netflix, you could get her a subscription for a few months to try.  My Mom loves it.  She  has the streaming and has recently added on the mailed DVD portion so she can get old movies that aren't available to stream.  She was watching a bunch of Elvis movies last week. 

DVDs of TV old shows - Dick Van Dyke, Andy Griffith, Murphy Brown, Leave It To Beaver, The Adventures of Ozzy & Harriett

She also loved Downton Abbey even though it had a lot of death in the 3rd series.  My Mom is similar in that only wants to watch happy things, but she loved Downton Abbey so guess she made an exception. :)

Books - agree on The Mitford Series by Jan Karon like somebody else mentioned.  My Mom loved those.  Sweet and uplifting.

Also mail.  My Mom LOVES getting mail.  She has neighbors and friends who send her a card every week.  She loves that.  I encourage you to do that and suggest it to others who might know her.  Funny cards, uplifting cards, cards just letting her know that she's not forgotten. 

Good Luck!

Bethersonton

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Re: Entertainment when sick/stuck at home
« Reply #16 on: February 01, 2014, 03:53:41 PM »
My grandma is on her third go-around with cancer.

I'll second or third or whatever the Netflix subscription. My husband and I got her one, and she keeps joking that she's seen all of the shows and all of the movies in the six months she's had it and she's ready for them to update their content. So it's been a hit!

We also set her up on FaceTime on her iPad and on her laptop. That way she can see family members and not just take phone calls. Google Chat works just as well as long as you have a camera for your computer.