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I remember one holiday I bought my parents two large grocery bags of items that my Mom would never have thought of purchasing. Mom had her regular items that she had bought for the past 70 years..... so I thought it would be fun to try other things, like getting Cheetos's for Dad.

It is never easy to buy for elders who pretty much are happy with what they have. Once my parents had passed, I noticed Dad used everything I had bought for him, that man loved new tools. But I would find the clothes I bought for Mom still with the tags tucked away in a guest room dresser... Mom rather wear her regular clothes until they became rags decades later.

I know caregivers are always wondering what to give their parent(s) for the holidays. Let's start a list.....

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I'd like to give a replacement for me! Sorry, rough day.
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GardenArtist, I know what you mean. I wished I could have clone Hazel to help with the housework.... clone Martha Stewart for holidays and birthday parties.... clone Bob Villa to help Dad with fix-it items.... clone Julie Childs for doing meals.... clone the Ice Road Truckers to drive my parents where ever they wanted to go.
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^^^^ P.S. My Mom still wouldn't have let those people come into the house. Dad would let Bob Villa in :)
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Oh boy! This is a hot button question for me. My mom is almost impossible to buy for when it comes to Christmas gifts. I had fabulous luck with Bon Ton stores (Herberger's for us) with their Breckenridge line of nice, warm and fuzzy tops. My mom loved only the zip up type with patch pockets and no collar. Well, guess what they discontinued this year? Every zip front top! Argh! They only have sweatshirts which she can't manage to pull over head.

Thankfully, I discovered some Alfred Dunner tops that perhaps, big perhaps, will fit the quotient. She is extremely picky right down to her choice of toothbrush. Life with a narcissist is no walk in the park.
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My mom (95) likes warm pj's.. I'm getting her some deep lavender, fluffy ones this Christmas. She always comments about how pretty my purple robe is. She also comments about my bling blouse. So if I see one like it, I may get her that too.
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FF, Norm Abrams would also be welcome. I can imagine long conversations about woodworking. Abrams was a true craftsman, a true artisan.

Thinking of your first post and how many people would be needed to substitute for what we do is a good reminder of the multiple roles caregivers play.
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Seniors are funny to buy for --- they tend to save new clothing 'for a special occasion!" (MIL is 99 years old!!) With spills on clothing, shirts and tops that are prints and therefore disguise the spots may work! One year my nieces gave my Mom a VERY pretty articial flower arrangement. She loved it (always thought it was real) and I loved it since it didn't need watering!!!I guess it all depends upon the nature of the person and the challenges they face. For a woman it might be a trip to the beauty parlor (or a certificate if there is one in their facility) . SMALL doses of food treats. I noticed some visitors brought over huge layer cakes and batches of brownies. REALLY who is going to eat all of that. (Most of it end up in the garbage. But now, we are bringing over 'special desserts' once a week for our loved one and for each of the others at her lunch table. We visit before lunch, bring her down and leave the 'goodies' on the table for the group to enjoy. They squeal like 5 year olds -- OH girl scout cookies, or homemade cookies or watermelon or --- This is cheap enough and brings more pleasure than we had EVER anticipated. Magazine subscriptions if they can read them (reader's digest has a large print edition).
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Another gift idea if one's parent are still able to write addresses on greeting cards... buy packages of cards from Hallmark [I remember when these cards use to be in boxes] and buy postage stamps. If you go online to the USPS they have a great selection of stamps to buy compared to what they offer at the local post office.
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Food, the last refuge of the elderly. Harry and David gourmet is pricey, but the presentation packaging is real nice, useful, even the plainer, cheaper boxes. The items are sealed up to last a long time.
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Another idea that I find I need for myself.... ball point pens that are extra thick, some have a rubber grasp which makes these pens much easier to hold.
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