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All she wants for Christmas is to go home to her apartment and get all her stuff back.

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I am the out of town child for my mom. Last year I bake a ton of different goodies and placed them in plastic containers to send up. My sis could then just put them in the freezer and take mom a few goodies a day for a long long while. She hates to bake/cook and would often stop at the grocery to bring something to mom. This way mom gets something better for her and it gives my sis a break as well. Win, win. Will do it again this year. She goes through long stages where she cannot eat at all, she when she will, I say let her have what she wants!
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Bring her a CD player with traditional Christmas Carols. Alzheimer's patients tend to recall songs they once. we're familiar with. Sing along and watch her reaction. They get truly happy and remember most of the words to their favourite songs!!
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I would make an album of all the old family photos for her. I would ask family members to visit in small groups. I would sing all her old favorite songs or hire a male quartet to sing to her. I would bake her favorite Christmas cookies. I would spend time remembering the Christmases of long ago when her children were small.
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More details would be helpful, but here are a few quick ideas. How about a nice outing -- lunch for example. The gift of time always works. Homemade goodies, special soaps or shampoo, a pretty top or slippers. If she is suffering from a form of dementia, (I think) it's ridiculous to ask what the person wants or needs. That is part of the brain that the disease affects. The first year in a facility, I gave my loved one a sweater at Christmas. She always liked sweaters. It went in her drawer and I took it home a few days later, she never even knew about it. I wrapped it again the next year. And since she had more than enough clothes, I again took it home. Now it is here with me but she is gone. BUT I did bring her home for a Christmas dinner the first year she was in a facility. It was a nice change of pace for her. There were just 6 of us (including her) and we kept the visit short, less than 3 hours total. Large groups and unfamiliar places can set them off. It was really for my brother and me that I brought her over. Fortunately, it went well. Others in her place wanted to go back to the facility after 20 minutes.
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My experience with NH's is that everything is washed on super hot temps that breaks down the fabric quickly. I suggest for the colder months to get items like sweat pants, sweat shirts, blankets that they can use to cover their laps and legs especially if they are wheelchair bound. Framed pictures of family or themselves when they were younger. Special treats they enjoy during the holidays, homemade cookies, peanut brittle, etc.A slide show of photos from family members growing up and over the years of the persons life. Christmas cards from family or friends to let them know that people are thinking about them...make a display on their bedroom wall. It really is endless...without being extravagant. Enjoy the process and make it simple...Hugs to you!!
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