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Slightly frivolous question re Christmas presents

queenquackers

Registered User
Oct 2, 2013
19
I've been thinking of getting my mum and dad some new placemats for Christmas, as my dad mentioned they could do with some new ones, my mum was admiring my ones last time she was round my house (details from Monet's water lilies paintings) and since Mum really struggles with unwrapping gifts by herself, I thought it would be a good idea to make her main present a joint one (so Dad has good reason to unwrap it himself). However, I'm sure I've read somewhere that patterned placemats and crockery can further confuse a person in the late stages of dementia, as they think the pattern is food. Am I better off getting something quite plain, or abandoning the placemat idea altogether? I know other people have much more pressing concerns than this, but I'm really racking my brains trying to get my Christmas shopping done and out of the way so I can focus on making the festive season as stress-free as possible for my family.
 

Tin

Registered User
May 18, 2014
4,825
UK
I think you should get what she likes at the moment and this seems to be your place mats. No point worrying about how she could view them in the future. I have four different sets of place mats that I never used before mum came to live with me. There are two sets she really likes, 1. oval with various herbs, 2. square with scenes of Westminster Abbey. Of course she doesn't use them, just likes having them on the table. If and when they start to confuse her, I will stop using altogether or try another set.
 

Mrsbusy

Registered User
Aug 15, 2015
355
How about getting placemats with photos with the family on? Can get them done online and I think a well known chemist does them too, also supermarket with four letters. Then she can see familiar faces and they would be big enough to see clearly.

Maybe get her coasters to match and give them a present each? So hard to get things for aren't they? My parents still not used last years presents!
 

Raggedrobin

Registered User
Jan 20, 2014
1,427
i would get the ones you think she will like. Dementia is so unpredictable in what it affects, she may be okay with patterns. Familiarity seems to me to be the key, Mum recognises things by how they are. Whenever I go in the first thing, to my surprise, that she notices are the colours and patterns of whatever I am wearing and she seems to enjoy seeing different clothes.

Mind you, when my Dad first went into a home he was forever putting the cork drinks mats into his pocket. This was because at home he had got into the habit of taking a rich tea biscuit upstairs with him in his pocket and he just carried on doing it but thought the mat was a biscuit. Buy he had macular degeneration too.

By the way, not a stupid question, it is a good thing to consider and actually thinking what to get people with dementia for xmas can be so difficult.
 

CollegeGirl

Registered User
Jan 19, 2011
9,524
North East England
I would get them. It's so hard to think of presents so if you've had this inspiration, I'd go with it! They are small enough to be put away if they become a problem in the future, but if your mum will get pleasure from them now, that's good enough in my book!
 

LYN T

Registered User
Aug 30, 2012
6,960
Brixham Devon
I agree-get what you know your Mum will like NOW. Re. the present opening how about getting a box, put the present in, wrap Xmas paper round it but don't seal. That way your Mum could just lift the lid off!

Love

Lyn T XX
 

Raggedrobin

Registered User
Jan 20, 2014
1,427
It's funny with the not being able to undo wrapping paper, isn't it? I end up wrapping things up for Mum and then having to unwrap again, seems a bit mad but she sort of gets the idea it's a gift.:D
 

CollegeGirl

Registered User
Jan 19, 2011
9,524
North East England
I find it really sad that I can't wrap anything for my mam, now. She has no idea that she's being given a present. She can't take a card out of an envelope, so I give her them without. Sometimes she can read the odd word printed on the card, but doesn't know what it is she's looking at. It's heartbreaking - mam always loved a sentimental verse, the soppier the better, and now she can't even get pleasure from that.

So - get those place mats and make your mum happy, queenquackers, while you still can.
 

Dimelza

Registered User
May 28, 2013
130
I agree queencrackers, go for the ones your mum likes now.
My dad is like college girls mum has no concept of anything like that any more. I just buy him sweet treats instead!