Tag Archives: ingenuity

I Bought a Beard Trimmer, and It Wasn’t for my Husband!

Living within one’s means is a tough thing to do; whether it is the inability to work, or the inability to find adequate work, many people struggle to keep their bills paid and their fridges full. This causes stress. For me, the best thing for stress is to take up a hobby. Something that you love to do that takes enough brainpower to distract you, but not so much that you get frustrated. Preferably you will enjoy a cheaper hobby like coloring or writing, but if your hobby is expensive like mine, you may need to get creative in order to enjoy your hobby without creating any additional stress.

Most people I know love to quilt. What most people don’t know is that quilting can be quite expensive. Even if you decide that all your quilts will be made from scraps and you buy a second hand machine; you will be appalled at the prices of scissors, thread, needles, mats, rulers, rotatory cutters, blades and even patterns. So in order to quilt on a budget you need to learn to cut corners. Where is the first place you should go to learn about how to save money on this hobby? Other quilters of course

Quilting boards and blogs on the internet have been a great places for me to find ways to save money. I now know which shops offer free or discount shipping and that Harbor Freight has blades that fit my rotatory cutter for a fraction of the price. My most recent discovery was my most exciting to date, and it’s one that can benefit other quilters like me with a disability.

The quilting world loves its gadgets; there are machines that cut for you, natural light lamps, and hundreds of rulers that guarantee accurate cuts, all of which come with a hefty price tag. My most recent find in the sewing gadget world seemed like a dream come true. An automatic seam ripper? Sure, it seems ridiculous, until you find yourself hours into taking apart forty blocks with one corner sewn in backwards. But the price stopped me in my tracks. This $20 dollar gadget looked a lot like a beard trimmer to me.

Sure enough, I found that the modal number for the gadget toting itself as an automatic seam ripper was really just this beard trimmer wearing a clever sticker and a heftier prices tag. I know what you’re thinking, “you did not buy a beard trimmer to quilt with!” But I did, and you know what? It works! Will I use it every day? No. Will it save me from the pain and wasted time when I make a really big mistake? Yep!

Making your favorite hobby affordable may take some investigation. It may also take doing things that seem a little crazy sometimes. But in the end you will be glad you took the time to find a more affordable option, that way you can enjoy your hobby without feeling guilty.

What’s the weirdest gadget you have ever bought to save time?

New Uses for Common Household Items

It isn’t always necessary to buy a specialized product in order to adapt the world to your needs. Often times, you can use everyday household items already at your disposal, in new and creative ways; turning them into a mobility device or another form of assistive technology.

I am always using my body and the objects around me in new ways in order to make my life easier. Sometimes this makes people nervous. For instance, I have been known to carry anything from a slip of paper, to dinnerware, in my mouth in order to avoid an extra trip. This drives my Dad crazy, he thinks I might break a tooth; but if it is good enough for my dog, it is good enough for me. Other times my ingenuity leaves people wondering “why didn’t I think of that?” and soon others, even those without disabilities, are using my methods in their daily routines.

I have a tall bar stool in my house. It is located right next to my fridge in the kitchen. It is not for sitting, even if I wanted to sit on it I couldn’t. I do, however, use it for a number of other things. First, I use it to hold my coffee cup and cereal bowl while I pour milk in the morning. This saves me from have to make trips back and forth from the table to the fridge in the morning. Secondly, I use it to carry things from one side of the kitchen to the other. I simply place the item(s) on the stool and push the stool from one place to the next. It slides very easily on the kitchen floor. Finally, I use it for stability, when sweeping or picking something up off the floor. The third instance isn’t as common, thanks to my Mint and my dog. However, it is good to have options.

Another common item that I use in uncommon ways are tongs. You can probably guess what these are for. I not only have CP, but I am also short and cannot reach past the second self in most of my kitchen cabinets. Since step stools are hard from me to climb, I often use the tongs to give me a few more inches of reach when I am in a pinch. There is a technique to using tongs, but with a bit of practice any one can master it. Though I must caution that this is not recommended for heavy or breakable items. This warning comes from personal experience.

The last item I use frequently are those reusable grocery bags. I use them to carry heavy objects, like my laptop, from room to room, especially if I am going upstairs. I can’t carry the bag on my shoulder so I hang it on my forearm, or for a hands free trip, around my neck.

Of course these tricks and techniques won’t work for everyone, but I think that all of us can benefit from thinking outside the box in order to live UNlimited.

What everyday items do you like to use in new ways?

Real Time Web Analytics