Winter Funerals

Funerals are very personal ceremonies whether they are for a close relative, a friend, or yourself. I recently went to an important one myself. You’d think mobility access would be taken for granted in situations like this, even in winter. Nope. Despite the fact most New England funeral homes are made over Victorian homes that originally included several porches and stairs, access is not something that has been overlooked. I’ve always seen street level entrances or ramps suitable for electric wheel chairs or mobility scooters as needed. Parking lots are generally clear of snow and well-marked. I did find the interior to be a bit crowded, particularly with both a power wheelchair and a mobility scooter arriving at the same [...]

Let’s Dance!

When I was young, I always wanted to dance. I danced in my room, backyard, in front of the television, and wherever I could without driving my parents, brother, and our poor dog crazy. Music was always important to me, and it still is today. I finally took my first, official dance class two years ago. I looked around, eyeing up the other (much younger) participants, but my nervousness and awkwardness soon dissipated and wow… what a release! Dance is a great outlet for anyone, even for individuals who use scooters or power wheelchairs. Research shows that dance can be a HUGE stress reliever—and it’s an excellent workout too! Please keep in mind that it took me about 20 years to get myself out on the dance floor for a class. If [...]

How to Self-Fund Your Mobility Independence

Mobility issues in 2013 may take some dramatic turns as future needs and declining federal monies collide with baby boomers’ increasing frailty and the obesity epidemic. The demands for broader insurance coverage, changing technology and inordinate spending for institutionalized care may make self-funding solutions a more and more necessary option. Government safety nets work for now, but we may not always be able to rely on them. It never hurts to have a backup plan. I have spent a lot of time price-shopping for mobility scooters and honestly it is not as bad as you might have been led to think to aid your own mobility when it becomes evident your independence is being challenged. You can start by setting aside a $5 bill once [...]

How To Clean and Disinfect Your Mobility Scooter

So I was on the way back from the gym, using a shortcut on my mobility scooter that took me through an unused parking lot. Before I realized what I was dealing with, I’d run over a couple of cigar-shaped pieces of goose droppings. It brought to mind rubber gloves and cleaners. Not my favorite subject, but something I have to deal with on a regular basis now, especially with all the viruses associated with winter. So, how do you go about sanitizing a mobility scooter? How often do you need to do it, and how do you make sure it is germ-free? With all the time I spend on my scooter, the times I have ridden it to the dinner table to eat and the times I haven't quite made it to the bathroom, I never once gave it a thought about how [...]

How to Set Realistic New Years Resolutions

The New Year is a time to reflect and set goals for the next twelve months. This is a great time to look back and evaluate big decisions and determine whether they were bad judgments or stellar decisions, deserving of a pat on the back. So if you haven't already, take about a couple hours this week, sit down with a cup of coffee or tea, and get your notebook out from the drawer. Focus your thoughts and get on track to improve your life for the next year. The first step is to create an annual self-evaluation chart with three columns. The first column will include “Major, Important Decisions” you made in your life this past year. This may take some time to deliberate, because the beginning of the year may be pretty fuzzy. Title the second [...]

How and Why You Should Aim for Lower Cholesterol in 2013

Now that we have all said our goodbyes to 2012; the New Year is upon us, and I’m sure many of you have made resolutions to eat and live healthier in 2013. I know I have some personal health goals I’d like to meet this year including lowering my “bad” cholesterol levels. Lowering your bad (LDL) cholesterol levels might be a great resolution to work on because of its serious health implications. Due to its chemical makeup, high amounts of LDL leads to plaque clogging arteries and atherosclerosis, putting you at risk for heart problems down the road. A few ways that LDL can be lowered is through losing weight, changing your diet, doing cardiovascular exercise such as racing or swimming, quitting smoking habits, and interestingly enough, [...]

Tips for Planning Your Wheelchair-Accessible Retreat

Ready for some winter rest and relaxation? Winters can be brutal in some parts of the US, and it can definitely be a great time to escape to the sunny Caribbean or warm countries in the Southern Hemisphere. Whether it’s the beaches of Mexico or the Tropics of Africa, traveling abroad may be the exact reprieve you need to escape from the real world and embark on an adventure or even relax without worry. However as you may know, travelling isn’t always friendly for those confined to wheelchairs, especially in countries with different laws in place for the disabled. While regulations generally make airports easily accessible, it can sometimes be difficult when travelling abroad. A great resource I came across was WheelchairTraveling.com, [...]

Angels Among Us

There is a place I visit on Sundays where everyone is welcome. It is also a place that believes in helping the whole community. The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Atlanta works with a lot of organizations that benefit society as a whole. disABILITY LINK is one organization whose table I visited last Sunday at the church. I am glad I did! This is a wonderful grassroots organization that specifically "promotes the rights of all people with disabilities". I love this agency because they concentrate on people who need the most support. This dynamic organization can help you find employment and most importantly, provide follow up support to help you successfully maintain the position. disABILITY LINK is a great way to network and connect [...]

A Special Holiday for Everyone!

The holiday season is a time for reflection and showing thankfulness and generosity. As my daughter anxiously waits for the prolific Christmas morning, I remind her that the holidays are truly more about giving than receiving. That philosophy is a little difficult for a five year old to wrap her mind around, but we adults know that is for certain.  If you have a disability or care for a person with a disability, you know that medical bills and purchasing healthcare and mobility supplies often take up the entire budget and then some. Whether you are interested in giving or need assistance, there are some resources out there for you and your loved ones. The Salvation Army has been our country’s charitable staple since 1885! I encourage [...]

Adaptive Cooking

Thanksgiving is a time to appreciate the important things in life, like food and family! I fondly remember enjoying big Thanksgiving lunches as a child with my extended family on the farm. Thanksgiving traditions tend to evolve throughout the years, but I do miss those days as a child with no worries but an overfull belly. I do not consider myself a cook, but I know that cooking can be both therapeutic and offer a feeling of accomplishment when you relish in that first taste of your creation. Cooking can become difficult as we age and lose motor function. Thank goodness there are products out there that can keep the cooking alive! Disabled Hands is a great resource that directs you to manufacturers of adaptive cookware and utensils. Check [...]