Archive for ‘Around the Home’

April 19, 2018

#550 – Pastry Blender to Potato Masher

PastryBlenderPotatoMasher (1)

If you have compromised hand and wrist function, kitchen chores, like mashing potatoes, can be a challenge. Good tools are essential, as is finding creative uses for the items you already have.

I have a pointy-ended potato masher (see bottom image, on the right), which doubles as a torture device. I had to press down on the end of the handle to apply enough pressure to mash those spuds. While I was getting the job done, I was also gouging my palm. (A mixer or food processor works, but sometimes I don’t feel like hauling out or dirtying those items.)

I was delighted when I found a pastry blender with a handle that is ergonomically-suited to me. It allows me to keep my wrist in a neutral position while I mash, mash, mash those potatoes. My mother-in-law blesses me each time she uses the one I gave to her. My sister-in-law used it at Christmas and she raved about it. Guess what she’s getting as a gift? Shhh, don’t tell her!

If you’re new to stocking a kitchen, or are new to RA, I’d suggest that you select a potato masher, or a pastry blender, with a handle that is horizontal. If you can’t find one, at least choose a potato masher that has a rounded tip on the handle. (See bottom image, left side.)

More creative uses for things you already have:

 

December 12, 2017

#544 – Give Your Hands a Rest

If you don’t have resting splints, you can improvise with some rolled-up face cloths, or hand towels.

Do it while you’re watching a movie, or when your hands “tell” you they need a break. You can place a cold-pack (no, I’m not talking about beer!), if needed, over your achy, breaky hands, at the same time.

Giveaway F.Y.I.

If you missed out on last year’s fantastic Giveaway that Makes Scents for a bottle of Organic Headache Relief Serum from Purify Skin Therapy, wander on over to Auntie Stress Café and enter my Giveaway for Holiday Headache Relief.

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February 23, 2017

#517 – Thrifty Tubes

tubes

A chronic illness can be costly – energy, health, money, relationships and time. A waste-not attitude can save you money, with the added bonus of doing your small part to decrease the amount that goes to the landfill.

It’s surprising how much product remains in a squeeze tube, even after using a tube sqeezer. Once I can’t get any more toothpaste, cream, mustard, or whatever is inside, out, I use either scissors or a utility knife to perform “minor surgery” on the tube. I then transfer the contents to a clean container. There’s actually quite a bit of product left in the tube. For example, by doing this I usually have at least an extra month’s worth of toothpaste.

I had to laugh when I was telling a friend about this little trick. She commented that she also does the same thing. Maybe that’s why we’re friends – we think alike!

January 11, 2017

#514 – Goodwill Snow Challenge for Gym Owners

One very snowy and cold Northwestern Ontario winter, long ago.

We’ve had an unusual winter here in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. Since the beginning of December we’ve had what most of the rest of Canada usually has – snow and colder temperatures. In fact, this is the most snow I’ve seen since I’ve lived here. There are a number of problems with this – the municipalities aren’t set up to deal with the snow with enough equipment (like sidewalk plows and odd/even parking), nor in their budgets. Driving around, it is clear that a number of people don’t realize that there are bylaws on the books that require owners to remove the snow from the sidewalks in front of their homes and businesses (another post for another day).

When you live in a snowy climate and are mobility-challenged with a condition such as rheumatoid arthritis, it can be a challenge to be a good citizen by shovelling your walkway and driveway.

While browsing through the Delta Parks, Recreation and Culture Leisure Guide I came across a page that melted my heart, even if it didn’t melt the snow. There is a call for Snow Angels who are volunteers who shovel the sidewalks and driveways of the residents who are unable to do so, thus ensuring safe passage.

I’m proposing a goodwill challenge for gym owners whose patrons religiously come to lift, push, step, climb, cycle, row or run their way into better health. Why not create some healthy competition between gyms, such as Trevor Linden’s Club 16, or Steve Nash’s Fitness World, to see how many mobility-challenged homes can be shovelled after a snowstorm? Prizes could be rewarded, even though the opportunity to do some functional fitness (aka real-life workout), enjoy fresh air, and to do something kind and valuable for someone else, should be reward enough.

Imagine if a flurry of Snow Angels descended upon your home or that of a loved one, spreading kindness and goodwill, while helping to encourage mobility and independence in those who might otherwise be housebound. This would be an act of community service that not only warms the heart, but also clears the path to enable the mobility-challenged to get out of the house and take part in the exercise they need to maintain the mobility they do have.

I could see The Arthritis Society, The Arthritis Foundation, The Canadian Cancer Society and other groups who support people with mobility challenges working together to promote this within the community. Exercise and volunteerism are great antidotes to stress and depression. Mental Health advocates can also encourage their clients to get shovelling!

Let it snow! Let it snow? Let it snow. Or, maybe not!

 

 

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