Oct 31

Marty’s mother was a phenomenal packrat who passed her clutter DNA to Marty, who after a lifetime of collecting prefers, these days, to think of herself as a “recovering” packrat.

Cait, who is considerably younger than Marty, enthusiastically remains at the zenith of her packratting - routinely dragging home “finds” from estate sales, other people’s curbs and second-hand stores, as regular readers of this blog well know.

So here at Gimpy Girls World Headquarters we’re always looking for cutter-busting gurus and bring you several fine ones today:

Jeri Dansky, a professional organizer from California, knows of beaucoup ways to organize and declutter. (She and Marty have been e-mailing recently about tech stuff and even Jeri’s e-mails are clearly written, concise and easy to understand - a rarity in the world of e-mail.)

The this list of clutter-busting kitchen tips. (The Gimpy Girls so revere Kohler that if we could get down on our knees, we would bow up and down in front of Kohler Headquarters saying, “We are not worthy. We are not worthy.”)

And lastly, pick up a copy of amazon.com

Oct 31

In a great spirit of adventure, a pack of students, some sighted, some blind, take on the Grand Canyon and the Colorado River.

Click here for a CBS video of their wild ride!

Oct 31

Check out Scott Rains’ posts on accessible taxicabs getting priority when being dispatched at New York’s JFK Airport. It’s a new program to encourage cab drivers to provide service to people with disabilities.

From Down Under, Scott posts about RollAwayz — a Google Earth tool for locating wheelchair accessible accommodations throughout Australia.

Find them here at Scot’s blog Rolling Rains.

Oct 30

Oct 29

The world needs more Karen Braitmayers.

Braitmayer, according to the American Institute of Architects, has been instrumental in shaping national policy on barrier-free design that benefits people of all abilities.

Braitmayer, who has been elevated to the AIA’s College of Fellows, and her firm, Pacifica Studio, consult on projects involving universal design across the country.

Braitmayer is seen here in the blue-glass bridge at Seattle City Hall, where she pushed for a surface texture on the floor that wouldn’t be slippery for people using crutches and canes.

Her experience as a wheelchair user proved valuable early on in her career as architects regularly stopped by her desk for advice on barrier-free design.

“I’d find simple errors,” Braitmayer said, “that could have a huge impact on accessibility.”

To learn more about Braitmayer, who’s also an avid sailor, Click here to see the Seattle loft Braitmayer designed for a wheelchair user

(via Architectural Record)

Oct 29

This 2008 “Fit House” in Portland, Ore., has a practical renovation for an existing bath.

By removing one wall and adjusting the height of the sink, they were able to enlarge the bathroom and make it more suitable for wheelchair users and children in this family.

(Via My Home Ideas)

Oct 28

Bob, above, and Bailey, below, ready for Halloween!

Oct 27

These articles from CableOrganizer.com explain what makes hand tools ergonomic and, therefore, easier and safer for you to use.

The Fall Prevention Center tells us how to stay upright and avoid spills that sideline us from living more of life.

And finally, UglyHousePhotos.com - pictures of clutter, ugly decor, bad taste and tacky furnishing. The antithesis of Gimpy friendly. Don’t let this be you! (And don’t eat while looking at these. It would be bad for the digestion.)

Oct 26

It’s getting pretty scary Out There with the financial markets collapsing, people losing jobs and energy prices up as we enter another winter.

For too long, we all have thrived on the Big, Better, More Theory of Life and now the bill is coming due. It seems the current situation will get worse before it gets better, giving us all the opportunity to re-evaluate what we really need to get by.

We’re hoping once the World rights itself, as it were, that more people will bond around the idea of shared resources, especially when it comes to designing, funding, and building living spaces that benefit everyone though the principles of Universal Design. This is not wishful thinking.

There’s a whole movement of ingenious people Out There working to give the world simple, basic housing supremely more functional than the spaces many of us live in today. And with necessity being the Mother of Invention, this crisis our world finds itself in may be the kick in the butt we need to move forward, band up and make things happen.

Designer, architect, humanitarian Architecture for Humanity, embraces innovative and sustainable design to improve living conditions for all and he’s dedicating his life to hooking up like-minded people.

Sinclair inspires us and we hope he will inspire you. He would be the first to say that there are millions of people Out There moving Universal Design forward in big and small ways. If you know them - or you are one of them - let us know so we can hook up and help spread the word.

– Cait & Marty

Oct 26

The original Beacon Hill Village in Boston is catching on elsewhere as more people join forces to remain in their homes as they age.

The Washington Post reports here on neighbors in Fairfax County and Capitol Hill forming “villages” modeled on the idea of a hotel’s concierge service.

For an annual fee, the villages use a small professional staff and volunteers to arrange members’ transportation to the doctor’s office or the grocery store, to find in-home medical care or to compile a list of reliable contractors who do home repairs at a discount, the Post reports.

The village approach can be money-saving, the Post reports, noting the faltering economy has given the concept a new urgency.

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