Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Homemade Adaptation and Assimilation

Barbara at Therextras is hosting a blog carnival this week about the adaptations we make in our homes to support development. (As noted by mommydearest at The QuirkFactor, there is no popcorn... There never is.... sigh....)

At first I had no idea what to include. The days of labels on everything are gone, I no longer have a big clock face with moveable hands on my refrigerator (not because my daughter is great at time-telling, but because the thing just disintegrated!) And I no longer have plastic links on my cupboard doors--some to keep them shut and others to extend the handle for better gripping... The junior bed and tricky doorknob covers are long gone...

But then I looked around and realized that we have made many adaptations for participation, which I guess does qualify as development. This is a sign to all you young parents. Though the accommodations you make at home may seem like a huge deal when you are looking ahead at them, you will assimilate some of them so thoroughly that you will forget you even made them (or I am having memory issues... nope, it's definitely assimilation!)

Laundry: My daughter is short. This is why we bought a front-loading washer and drier when our old models bit the dust ("Yes Honey, we NEED the new, fancy, more expensive model--it's for Jennn!"). Stepping on and off a step stool to load the washer was inefficient in the extreme and required constant stand-by assist, now I can say "put the dark colors in the washer" and she can.

Kitchen: Many accommodations here.
*We have 2 microwaves--one above the stove and then one on the counter for reachability.
*We have contained chopping and cutting systems so cooking can happen without cutting since I just can't get comfortable with knife skills AND we still want to eat!
*I used to store things in the lower cupboards so that putting away dishes could be for all my kids, but we don't need to do that any more.
*We use pinch clothespins instead of twisties for ease of opening wherever possible. *I have oatmeal and brown sugar cannisters because the packaging was just too challenging, those cannisters were chosen for ease of opening for my daughter...
*I also buy the zipper plastic bags with the slider mechanism. My daughter can open the plain ones, but she can't close them reliably.

Posted checklists come and go around our house as needed.

Bath: The 'safe temperature zone' is marked on my shower faucet with crayon.

I can't think of anything else at the moment... but that is because we have assimilated them so well (and don't you forget it! :)

Picture from here.


Mrs. Mac said...

You've given me some great ideas about ease of cooking in the kitchen for my rather on the shortish-side son with DS. I wish hubby would go for the new washer/dryer combo ... that was brilliant!!:)

Terri said...

:) Why thank you Mrs. Mac! (As an aside, the washer has actually saved considerably on our water usage.)

Lisa said...

Thanks for visiting my blog :)

I enjoyed reading your post....what wonderful ideas that you have!

Maureen Lee said...

Thanks for sharing these handy tips - I've forwarded them on to parents who will certainly benefit from them! Loved the idea of using clothespins instead of twist-ties. :)

terena said...

We like clothes pins too, especially the wooden ones. For some reason they seem to grip better and are easier to handle than the plastic.

The biggest adaptation we made is getting rid of Queen Teen's dresser and replacing it with a large storage cupboard with six shelves so she could put away her own clothes and find them when she wants to dress herself. We also use storage containers for undies and socks to keep them separate.