Recently my mil (89 with dementia) said she'd like to have her bread machine back (we "borrowed" it a while ago because the last time she tried to use it she mis-measured ingredients, programmed it all wrong, the bread burned, and the pans nearly had to be thrown out). A day later she presented me with a shopping list that she'd made up after going through a stack of recipes she'd cut out of a magazine...recipes that called for large portions (she lives alone) or involved a lot of prep work. She used to love to cook and bake, but it has become obvious to my husband and I that she can't follow recipes any more. She mis-measures, doesn't read ingredients correctly, skips steps or repeats them...and then I'm left with trying to figure out if her latest "project" is salvageable or should just get tossed into the trash. Her Parkinsonism has also caused her to lose a great deal of manual dexterity and messed with her depth perception...she frequently drops and/or knocks things over. She can't safely cut or chop vegetables, can't stir or pour batters without spilling, can't "lightly grease" a baking pan without going through half a can of cooking spray! She doesn't always ask to bake or cook, but every now an then she gets a yearning to try again and seems to forget (or chooses to ignore) her limitations. It's one of the tougher things I have to deal with - how to make her understand there are certain things she just can't do anymore without destroying her sense of independence and usefulness. Offering to "help" her with it is not really an option because the whole reason behind her decision to try baking some brownies or trying a new recipe is she wants to do it HERSELF. I think she wants to prove to us (and probably herself) that she still can do some things without either of us helping. Any feedback from other caregivers out there who've encountered similar situations would be welcome and appreciated!