Losing someone close to you can be extremely difficult; this hit me hardest when my late Grandad passed away 8 years ago. It is hard to put into words how it feels, not to be able to get reassurance from them any more or confirmation that they are OK. One way that helped me to deal with his loss is to think about him frequently and it helped that I had something physical to see, it really helped me. So, I thought I would put this post together of wonderful ideas, from Age UK, on creating special ways to celebrate the life of your loved ones.

Dedicate a memorial bench

When Grandad passed away, my Mum asked family to put some money together to buy a special bench. Dedicated to Grandad. It is currently at the house where he lived, where he has been my whole life, so I can go to Grandma’s and sit on “his” bench and stare around his garden. It’s amazing how warming it feels to know that I am sitting enjoying what he would have done on so many days too.

Plant a tree in honour of them

I love this idea. I planted a yellow rose bush when my Grandad passed away. One of his favourite roses was a yellow one and so I got one just to feel a little closer to him each day. I also became more interested in gardening, because he loved it so much. I just wish I had spent more time with him in the garden when he was alive, I could have learnt a lot from him.

Wear their accessories

This is such a cute idea. It might be a watch, brooch or even a pair of their socks. Anything that makes you feel close to your loved ones is appropriate. I have an old brush that I use, I keep it in a place that is safe but not locked away so that I can be reminded of him every day. It’s nice to have something close at hand that can make you smile when you reflect on those happy memories.

Donate to Age UK in their memory

A more generic way to celebrate a loved one is to donate in their memory. Age UK can help you with any questions and they have a lot of helpful information on the different ways to pay tribute to a loved one. You may want to make a one-off donation, or you may want to set up a regular gift; if something was close to your loved ones then it’s always nice to pay tribute in this way.

Create a photo album

There are so many online websites that will allow you to create beautiful photo albums, I love the Photobox Coffee Table photo albums. The photos are printed directly on the album paper, meaning they do not move, and it keeps the memories safer in the album. You can create an album of happy memories of your loved one and look at it whenever you want. The perfect way to celebrate their wonderful lives. My Grandad was 90 when he passed away and had such a full life, his stories were fascinating, and he has some wonderful photos.

If you have a special idea, or something you have done in the past, I would love to hear about it in the comments below. I love celebrating the people that have left big holes in our hearts. Thanks to Age UK for sharing such wonderful ideas on such a emotive subject.

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Last Update: Tuesday, 24th August 2021