Roll Yarn into a Ball

Sometimes the simplest activities are the best, especially as the disease progresses. So consider having the person with moderate to severe memory loss roll some yarn into a ball. This simple, rhythmic motion is great for relaxing, keeps hangs busy, and can take as little or as much time as you like, just use more or less string! Honestly, I have no idea why people take a perfectly good skein of yarn and roll it into a ball, but I know that they do, and that’s good enough for me. This activity is great for former knitters or crocheters, for whom the motion should be stored as muscle memory.

Once the yarn is rolled you can either 1. craft with it 2. unroll it and roll it again. A cat would be more than happy to help with the latter, and the person with dementia can enjoy watching the cat play (though be sure that the person isn’t upset that the cat is undoing all their hard work!).
The saying “happy as a kitten with a ball of yarn” is VERY true in my experience!

The person with memory loss might need help getting the ball started, but should be pretty self-sufficient from there. Using thicker yarn may also be easier and makes the ball grow faster, which is gratifying for some. If the person can’t get the hand of rolling the yarn by themselves, they might like to hold out their hands and let someone else wind it around them (see the retro picture below). The softness of the yarn is a pleasurable sensation and it’s a good time to reminisce about old crafts they may have done, other soft things, other ways they might have helped their mothers, etc..

1 Comment »

  1. Tracey said

    Thank you for all of your interesting and inspiring suggestions! It’s good to know that we are not alone. Sometimes it’s difficult to think of ways to fill our days, I so appreciate all of your helpful ideas!! This is the first time I’ve sent you a comment but I wanted you to know that we are out here and we always look forward to your messages!!
    You make a difference in our life …
    THANK YOU!!!! 🙂

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