Stuck-at-Home Guide

Stuck-at-Home Guide: Basics Edition

Since we’re all staying home—and it’s looking like we will be for at least a while— you might be starting to wonder how exactly you’re going to fill up your time. Senior Planet has got some tricks up its sleeve with digital gatherings and events. But it’s also important to stay as connected as possible with family, friends, and neighbors, give back to your community, get the material supplies you need, and find new ways to keep yourself entertained.

This is the first post in our digital stuck-at-home handbook, a collection of articles with everything you need to stay informed, supported, and entertained in the days ahead. This edition covers some basic; future posts will go more in depth. Something you want to make sure we cover? Share your idea in the comments below!

Bonus: many of the following resources are also available as apps on your smartphone or tablet devices. Find the solution that works best for you.

A Basic Pre-req: Internet Access

The first step: make sure you, and your friends, have internet access. (Yes, we realize the irony of posting that on the Internet…) The number-one best way to stay connected and up-to-date right now is through home internet access, and fortunately, several companies offer low-cost options for seniors. We’ll be doing a more extensive post on that soon.

One thing to note: whatever internet service you choose, make sure it offers speeds of at least 25 Mbps so you can stream video.

To find an Internet Service Provider (ISP) in your area, use an online tool like BroadbandNow. Type in your zip code and look for “Residential Internet Provider.” But here are a few of the most common ISPs that offer special deals for seniors:

As for devices, Senior Planet generally recommends Chromebooks for a low-cost option, iPads for an upgrade, and desktop PCs for serious users.

Entertainment: Explore the World, Virtually

With a library card, you can continue to borrow digital resources like e-books, audiobooks, music, tv shows, movies, and more. Visit your local library’s website to find out which services they partner with. Now’s also the perfect time to check out video streaming services, download a few podcasts, or explore the depths of YouTube. Cultural institutions are moving exhibits and performances online too, but if you just need a break for something mindless and happy, animal videos are the way to go. The Cincinnati Zoo is offering daily Facebook Live video streams of Fiona the hippo, and Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium filmed its pretty adorable penguins roaming and visiting other exhibits after closure.

Culture

Library Services

Project Gutenberg also offers over 60,000 free e-books without a library card.

Video Streaming

Food & Groceries: Try Something New

Most restaurants will allow you to call and place an order for delivery. But now’s a great time to experiment with services like Seamless, which allow you to order food from thousands of restaurants online (we’ll take ours with extra guac). You can also try a delivery service like Instacart, which connects you with a personal shopper who will take your custom grocery list, pick up all your items, and drive them to your door.

Not into having someone else handle your shopping? If you’re an early riser, Stop and Shop is now open from 6:00-7:30am ET just for people aged 60 and up.

Grocery Delivery

Restaurant Delivery & Takeout

Health & Wellness: Put Your Mind At Ease

The whole reason we’re staying at home is to protect ourselves from a virus, but other health needs don’t get put on pause. Major pharmacy chains offer RX delivery, and Postmates, listed above as primarily a food delivery app, can pick up some basic pharmacy supplies for you. Meditation can also be a powerful tool during this stressful situation. Right now, the meditation app Headspace is also offering some free tools picked just for this time, and it’s offering totally free subscriptions for healthcare workers.

Prescription Delivery

Meditation & Sleep

Animal Care

While you may not be thrilled about staying home, your animals are probably fans. Give them some extra pets, and use a service like Chewy, which delivers pet food and supplies right to your door. If you’re feeling anxious about walking your dog, or if you’re unable to, Rover can connect you with a reliable, highly rated dogwalker.

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

COMMENTS

9 responses to “Stuck-at-Home Guide: Basics Edition

  1. I took a few computer classes from and I wanted to know when am I going to use this information, well the time has come and I want to say thank you for the information list I will share it others .
    Ps my kids are so proud me

  2. Thank you for the links you have provided, in Australia it wouldn’t open for me for Streaming Opera but it seems I can get virtual tours of the museums, great.
    It may be a good idea to address the use of ebooks for those who unlike me don’t understand. them. Many libraries will give lend freely, a wonderful resource.

    Thanks for all your positive advice.

  3. What’s for dinner? Posting of pic of ingredients & finished dish to show how resouceful , creative and diverse our community is. Through in a receipe from the web to tie in tech use. It may help some feel less isolated.

    1. Could you please address resources for food for low income seniors . . . self isolated at home, . . . unable to pay for groceries or meals delivered . . .
      Many of us do not have extra money to access the food resources you have listed. Food banks are not in my neighborhood and do not have delivery options and would require leaving home to travel on public transportation.
      Meals on Wheels is overwhelmed and not helpful yet.

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