Storage solutions

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stickywicket
stickywicket Member Posts: 27,730
edited 21. Aug 2016, 08:10 in Living with Arthritis archive
Apologies for absence. We've been back in the Borders viewing more bungalows. One thing is abundantly clear. Wherever we go, despite having already chucked out loads of stuff and furniture, this will be a big downsize requiring more of the same.

My problem is storage and access to it. All my joints – shoulders, elbows, fingers are foreshortened due to all the years of RA. My feet are wobbly and my old TKR not very bendy. My reach is pathetic. I'm OK with anything situated 2'-5' from the floor. Above and below is out of the question.

Currently we have a big lounge and bedroom and decent-sized dining/computer room on the ground floor plus a bathroom, loo and small but beautifully adapted-to-my-needs galley kitchen. (One wall is just cupboards with pull out shelves plus the fridge which Mr SW cleverly mounted on a plinth for me.) Upstairs (where I haven't ventured in years) are our sons' old bedrooms, now guest rooms. The chances are we'll be moving into an even smaller, square, unadapted kitchen (can't afford a new one though probably can afford a few adaptions), a smaller guest room and smaller dining/computer room.

Where/how do I store everyday stuff so that I can access it? I'm thinking everyday crockery, groceries, laundry stuff, pans. (Crikey! Even our meds have an entire drawer to themselves these days :lol: ) Not to mention bedding, towels etc. And all between the heights of 2'-5'. I need horizontal room not vertical. How do the rest of you cope? Any suggestions?
If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
Steven Wright

Comments

  • mig
    mig Member Posts: 7,154
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    A right proper conundrum takes some thinking about,think it calls for AC diy squad.
  • Numptydumpty
    Numptydumpty Member Posts: 6,417
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Get your fridge sorted for your wine, nothing else matters much :wink:
    Numpty x
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,636
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Lots of drawers, preferably with softclose thingies on them so they don't slam. I went down this route for the kitchen when I renovated the house I'm now in. I wish I could have had more drawer units but having to accommodate plumbing ruled that out(and made fitting shelves awkward). However all my pans, some dishes, towels and other kitchen linen are in 4 deep drawers, with cutlery and small bits and bobs in 2 shallow ones.
    It might be possible to put slim(ie not deep) storage on the backs of doors, lined up to avoid shelf edges, for small items such as spice jars, packets. I also use the kind of baskets that hang underneath a shelf to store things in the pantry under the stairs as I can't reach to the back of the shelves but need to use as much of the space as possible.
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    The way we do it in our house is anything I need throughout the day while my OH is at work is put within easy reach for me. And anything I can't reach when he is home I just ask him to get it for me. I hate to ask him but he insists as not for me to hurt myself. The normal day to day stuff I try and keep where I can reach it easy. I know you can't keep everything at easy reach.
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I read this earlier today and have been thinking about it ever since but (as you might surmise) not particularly hard. :wink:


    Pans? Ditch 'em and learn to live on ding food, pot noodles, packet soups and ready-prepared salads for the healthy option. Baked beans etc. can be eaten cold from the tin.

    Laundry requisites? Ditch 'em too, become familiar with life in the altogether but cosset yourself on cooler and wet days (there aren't many of those in Scotland) by wearing a bin bag or two. The rain will also take care of bathing issues.

    If you cannot bring yourself to do this (and I admit it is a rather radical step) then dispatch Mr SW once a week with the laundry to your son's abode. Use his facilities (I presume he had use of yours for twenty or so years so now it's time to repay that debt).

    There be more than a grain of truth in saying the biggest source of clutter is Mr SW - could you put him in storage instead? DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,730
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Mig – we have a DIY squad? Why did no-one inform me of this :o In which case, will you all DIY me a kitchen extension, please? Who's the brickie, plasterer (I know many of you love to get plastered :wink: ), sparky, labourers (That's labourers not layabouts. Spades are for shovelling :too-hot: not leaning on :hammock: )?

    Daffy - Thank you. You have reminded me of how I used to cope before the kitchen was adapted. I had a plastic 'thing' which attached to the inside of the 'broom cupboard' door and held all my house-cleaning cans, bleach, washing up liquid, sponge scrubbers etc. I will probably have a door or doors suitable for a similar device. I've never done the 'undershelf' things as, with fused wrists and fused or ultra-wobbly finger joints, I don't think I'd be able to negotiate the area underneath. Drawers are definitely my friends, though, but unfortunately they require floor to stand on. That's in short supply. You have given me much food for thought, though. Lakeland, here I come :D

    Bubbadog
    – Thank you. We do use the system of the top cupboards belonging, essentially, to him and containing all the stuff we only use when we have guests, and also the multipack items.

    I know of some marriages which work brilliantly on your system but I'm not sure ours would :? Mr SW is great when I'm ill or incapacitated but I think if I were to give him even a verbal 'To do' list each day, ours would falter. We get by mainly on the muddling through system – or lack of it. I cook, for example, with what I can access and he doesn't grumble if he has fish two days running – well, not much anyway :lol: And, if I couldn't vac, tidy up or dust he'd take about a month to notice.

    DD and Numpty – ever the practical, sensible ones and the forum's best creative thinkers 8)

    Numpty, the wine is, of course the kitchen's VIP but I fear we shall need to soak it up with something at some point. Pot noodles and microwavable gunk, according to DD. Excellent advice, of course, though we were rather hoping to combine food with nutrition and nourishment. It's a bit of a fad of mine.

    Naturism, eh? In Scotland :shock: We were rather hoping to have a good relationship with our new neighbours not have them running for cover (No pun intended). Yes, that would indeed solve many of the laundry problems and, I guess, we could have a winter wardrobe of thicker rubble bags. As you are aware, Mr SW and I are not huge fashionistas and this would be a thoroughly practical solution but I wonder if it might contravene his golf course's dress code? Can one buy bin bags with a proper fly and belt round the waist?

    Laundry to our son? Oh what delicious payback! I do like that.

    Put Mr SW in storage? Oh the temptation! But, like all domestic equipment, he does come in handy at odd times. He might have a shed, though. What more do a long-time-married couple need?
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • mig
    mig Member Posts: 7,154
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    We have a fashion squad at this moment they're busy scouring the shops for bin bags in different colours and some hopefully patterned ones.
    The DIY squad are busy drawing up plans for a kitchen that will fit any measurements too big lop a bit off too small hammer a bit on simples.Mig


    PS wine rack already complete .
  • mig
    mig Member Posts: 7,154
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    :idea: Velcro for Mr Stickys beanbags. :?
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,636
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    If the budget won'r run to a complete kitchen refit it might still be possible to make changes by replacing one or two cupboard units with drawer ones - carcasses tend to be standard sizes - or alternatively retrofitting a cupboard with drawers, or pullout storage baskets/boxes( popular in those stupidly over-priced 'country kitchens').
    Might be worth looking at kitchen sites online for ideas(or go round showrooms and collect brochures - then you can try things out to see if they work for you) of things to put inside cupboards to make accessing the contents easier, and also possibly fitted bedroom furniture sites.
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,281
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    This is one I dread..not far off us downsizing..so will be watching this for any clues..clothes wise I do have the multi hangers..you can hand many things of one hanger...
    Love
    Barbara
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,730
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Mig – might I suggest tartan bin bags for Mr SW's new golfing attire? Alas, velcro is not usually allowed for golfing trousers. The tartan bin bags must have belt loops.

    Daffy – A cupboard or two was my aim with our current kitchen but I got lucky. A big sale at our local M*gn*t store and a keen young salesman who quickly got the message that my requirements were 'accessible' and 'cheap' gave me far more than I'd hoped for. We were sceptical when he said he'd draw up plans overnight to re-design our current kitchen cheaply, but that's exactly what he did. We kept our stove, washer microwave and fridge (though the latter three were moved) and had all the rest changed. It was installed quickly and efficiently and all for £3,000 which I consider pretty good.

    I am a disgrace to my gender as I hate shopping so, until reading your post, I had no idea how much stuff there is on the market these days. Owing to the discrepancy between the Scottish and English house buying / selling systems, we still are not sure exactly which bungalow, and therefore kitchen, we'll have (hopefully one of three) but my mind is now at rest that, whichever it is, there will be some relatively simple and cheap solutions. Thank you again.

    Barbara - Downsizing starts off very difficult but soon brings out one's ruthless streak and becomes quite fun :mrgreen::lol:

    I can't do the multi hangers. Wrong sort of fingers. I can neither remove one item nor lift the whole hanger off the rail. Just as well I dislike shopping :lol:
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright