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Have you or someone you know lost some vision?
Had some loss for some time and want to gain more independence?
Whatever your circumstances, you can shop for groceries on your own independently with very little help. Wouldn't that be awesome?
There are many ways to shop for groceries when you have vision loss, all with varying degrees of monetary costs and help involved:
Local Delivery Service
Many cities and even small towns have a delivery service / taxi service that can make small deliveries. I would only recommend this for the occasional item that you need "now" - such as a missing recipe item.
Another similar service that you may want to know about is UberEats for food delivery from restaurants that don't offer delivery.
Walk or take Public Transit
If you live close to a grocery store, consider walking there, you'll get good exercise, orientation and mobility (O&M) practice, and get familiar with your neighborhood.
The same goes for public transit, take a bus tour of your area and find a grocery store that's convenient on your route. Some advice, the best grocery store on your route may not even be the closest one to your home - pick a store that's easy to stop at and has a return route without many "exchanges" or long wait times.
Grocery Store Fulfillment Service
Some grocery stores have shopping fulfillment services - you call or fill out an online form with your shopping list and can just pick it up at the customer service department. Wal-Mart offers this service in some places and will even put the groceries in your car for you. So use a ride-share service like Uber or Lyft, or your taxi and just have them wait while you go in and claim your order. No long hassle of searching for items on rows and rows of shelves.
If your local grocery store doesn't offer a fulfillment service, you can call ahead and request a personal assistant - an employee that will walk with you and either read you prices and items, or fetch them for you. This also saves time hunting around for items when you can't see things well.
Shop in Bulk
Shop in bulk when you have a ride with a friend or relative. Grab all the big bulk items like toilet paper, paper towels, canned food, pantry items like flour, sugar, coffee, etc. This way you won't have to struggle with getting these heavy or awkward-sized groceries home on your own - whether you're walking, taking the bus, or ride-share.
This way you have -
Use Amazon Fresh
Another new service you may want to check out is Amazon Fresh. A produce and grocery service offered by Amazon.com. They offer an unlimited service for only $14.99 a month and the food is delivered right to your door!
BONUS - Grab some Promotional Codes!
For some extra savings, use these promotional codes when you shop on Amazon:
15% off Peet's Coffee k-cup packs - 15BRAZIL32CT
20% off Gillette Venus Women Razors with Olay - 20VENUS
20% off Gillette Fusion Gel - 20GILLETTE
$30 off Tiger JAX rice cooker - 30TIGEROCT
20% off Global Pet Nutrition soft chews - 20GPN
So, there's many ways to shop when you have vision loss and without losing your sense of independence as well.
What other ways do you do for shopping? Share your experiences!
There are millions of people in the world who live with some degree of sight loss either from birth, or caused by an injury or old age. All of those people want both their indoor and outdoor spaces to be completely safe and secure so that they can be independent in them.
When it comes to outdoor spaces, visually impaired individuals need a space that’s free of clutter, well-lit and well-marked. Designing such a space doesn’t have to be difficult and expensive. It only needs some careful planning and a few useful tips that will allow their inhabitants to live and move more comfortably outside. Here’s how you can do it for your outdoor space.
Use Color as a Guide
Many legally blind people can see up to a certain point, and they can see bright colors and changes in lighting. These can help them as guides through their outdoor space.
The use of bright contrasting colors is especially helpful to partially-sighted people to differentiate between different areas and spaces. For instance, garden paths can be made out of red or orange pavers to provide a good contrast with green lawns.
You can also opt for outdoor furniture in different colors and textures to prevent bumping into it. If you have a green thumb, make sure all of your gardening tools are painted in bright colors that will make locating and identifying them much easier
Good organization and tidiness is the key safety element for people with complete blindness or visual impairments. If everything is nicely organized it’s easier to remember where everything is located.
You must always know where all your sharp gardening tools are, and you can even consider creating a database of your garden inventory. If you love to take care of your plants, you can create neat little labels for them in Braille or use vivid colors to make signs.
This way, each individual plant will get exactly the right care. Also, always know exactly where your fire extinguishers and telephones are when you’re outside.
In order to eliminate as many hazards as possible, make sure that your front yard and your garden are well maintained to avoid any inconvenience. Your outdoor paths should be wide and perfectly flat. As soon as you notice some bumps or broken pavers or bricks, have them removed and replaced. Additionally, try to keep your greenery well maintained, and avoid letting your plants overgrow and cause obstructions in the path or on the stairs. It’s way easier to move around without all these obstacles blocking your way.
Another thing you should consider is removing all cables and watering hoses from pathways. They can be hard to spot if you leave them on the ground, and you can easily trip or slip on them.
Lastly, you can secure the slippery surfaces with non-slip rubber matting and be sure that no matter the weather, the outdoor living space will be hazard-free.
Get Smart with Lighting
Visually impaired people greatly benefit from good lighting, so make sure to incorporate it in your outdoor spaces. If nothing else, at least illuminate your pathway and the entrance.
Also, pay extra attention to your stairs. Make sure to install LED lighted handrails and lights on each step. The best solution for your stairs are linear lights that are easy to install and offer great illumination.
Also, use better lighting near your outdoor furniture to make it easier to spot and avoid it.
The Importance of Handrails
Every set of stairs in your outdoor space should have sturdy handrails. You can even use linear lights and gently illuminate the handrail so you can spot it more easily.
Another great way to ensure outdoor safety is to put up rope handrails along your garden paths or use them to make barriers. Ropes look amazing in any garden, plus they can give you an additional sense of security.
If you implement these safety tips into your outdoor space, you or your visually impaired family members can enjoy it without any worries.
About the Author
Catherine is a passionate home design consultant from Melbourne. She loves making homes beautiful and buildings sustainable, but she also like sharing her advice and knowledge with people. That is why she is also a regular contributor to the Smoothdecorator blog. Besides all this, she loves reading and enjoys a superhero movie from time to time.
The OrCam device is a smart camera that sits on the user’s glasses and reads text aloud to people who are visually impaired or blind.
While the OrCam device is not exactly “glasses for blind person”, it definitely looks that way. The device is so small and discreet, it is barely noticeable. Besides its compact size, there are many amazing OrCam features that make the device unique and accessible.
Easy to Use
OrCam MyEye is an intuitive wearable device with a smart camera that clips onto a regular pair of glasses and is able to 'read' text and convert it into speech relaying the message to the user. The device is activated by a simple intuitive gesture – pointing your finger or pressing a single button. Using OCR - optical character reading - technology, the device can read printed materials on almost any surface such as newspapers, books, computer screens, menus and more.
Many people who are visually impaired or blind have to carry around a heavy magnifying glass to read text. The OrCam MyEye is small and light and simply attaches to the right side of the user’s glasses frame. The camera weighs ¾ of an ounce and has a thin wire, easily hidden behind the ear, which connects to the base unit or “brain” of the device. The base unit is about the size of a cellphone and can easily sit in one’s pocket or on a belt strap.
“You are what you wear.” Wearable technologies have grown tremendously in the past few years. Smart electronic devices that can be worn on the body are practical and discreet. The OrCam is no exception. Although they are not exactly glasses for the blind person, the device sits on the individual’s glasses frame and is so discreet that it can barely be seen by others allowing the user to fit in with the crowd.
Unlike other OCR technologies, the OrCam does not require a scanner connected to a computer or internet connection. All the information stored in the device is private and only accessible to the user.
For people who are visually impaired or blind and have conditions that cannot be corrected by glasses or surgery, the OrCam MyEye can be life-changing.
Who would have thought that this little camera situated on a pair of glasses could help people who are blind or visually impaired regain their independence?
When you’re trying to make cozy and fully functional surroundings for people with low vision, there are some practices you should always keep in mind. These practices are considered as the universal design – the design that can be beneficial to all of the potential users of the space.
The main goal behind the principles of the universal design is to make everything accessible to people that have low vision. Setting a place for blind or visually impaired people doesn’t have to be impossibly hard. You just need to understand the basic needs of the potential space users and you need some time to plan out everything. Some of the things you can think about are smart use of lighting, contrast, colors, and space in general.
We’ve scoured the web and we have managed to gather some of the best suggestions you should keep in mind when thinking about readapting your space to fit the needs of visually impaired people. Hopefully, this article will point you in the right direction when it comes to home renovations needed for people with low or no vision, so without further ado, let’s jump in.
One of the biggest problems for the visually impaired people is moving around the place. It gets easier as they get used to space, but there are some things you can think about right from the start. First of all, you need a clear traffic area – a part of the house used for navigating. With clearly defined traffic area that has no obstacles along the way, it’s way easier for people with low vision to move around.
Rugs can be quite a nuisance for the visually impaired, as they practically represent an obstacle on their way. Make sure your rugs are taped down and immobilized, or even better, get rid of it. Another thing you should consider is removing all the electrical cords from pathways and hallways. You can tape them down, or lead them over the ceiling to avoid making any kind of obstacles for visually impaired people. Don’t wax the floors, use products that don’t make your floor glare and keep the chairs pushed under the desks and tables.
Take care of lighting
Visually impaired people, especially elderly people whose eyesight is not totally lost need a lot of lighting in order to function properly. Think about that when you’re designing your house interior. Keep in mind that any kind glare in any combination should be avoided, as it makes life more difficult for the visually impaired.
Use adjustable blinds and curtains so you can adjust the natural light more easily. Place the mirrors around the house in such a way so that they don’t reflect or create glares. Use the general light, but also use a number of smaller lamps around the house to make sure there are enough light sources. Also, use lighting near furniture so it’s easier to spot for people with vision loss.
If you’re living in a house, then there are some great things you can do to adapt it for people with vision loss. These modifications can prove to be beneficial to everyone, as you can both upgrade your household and help any household member that has impaired vision.
Think about changing your windows for bigger ones, and try to let as much light in as you possibly can. Another great thing is renovating your roof. As the roof is one of the most important parts of the house, you can add roof windows to let more light in, and while you’re at it, make sure it’s been painted properly to extend its lifetime. As the experts from ASAP Roof Painters in Sydney have noted – well-painted roof with enough roof windows can significantly elevate the value of your property.
Use color and contrast smartly
Using the color and contrast to your advantage can help you a lot when you’re visually impaired. Usually, people with vision loss can notice highly contrasted items, so place light objects in front of a dark background and dark ones in front of the lighter color. Make sure that the doorknobs are in contrast with the doors and mark all the steps and sharp edges with a contrasting color so they’re easier to spot.
So, as you can see, making house modifications that can significantly help people with impaired vision is not impossible. It requires quite some planning and it requires a full understanding of the needs that visually impaired people have. The process of adaptation is not that hard once you know everything that needs to be done.
Another really great thing about these house modifications is that they show you care and that support is what helps quite a lot of visually impaired people deal with anxiety and stress that follows the slow or total loss of vision. Hopefully, these guidelines will help you get a better picture of what’s really needed in the home of a visually impaired person.
Last Christmas, I got an air fryer from my folks and have loved it since.
An air fryer is a kitchen appliance that “fries” food but with little or no oil used at all. It does this by circulating hot air around the food. It’s like a tabletop convection oven. Most models come with a basket that looks like a deep fryer basket, but without needing all the heavy oil.
My air fryer is an Actifryer from T-fal, it’s rated #3 on YourBestPicks.com. Check out the link for all the pros and cons of each air fryer brand.
Like I said, most air fryers come with a basket, but mine doesn’t. the Actifryer comes with a paddle that slowly stirs the food around. A great advantage over the other models as those require you to stop midway and stir or shake the food midway through cooking. With the paddle, the food gets stirred and flipped over for nice even browning and crispiness.
T-fal has two models, the larger model not only can hold more food, but comes with a grill plate to grill food as well. I’ve got the classic model which suits our family of 4 just fine.
You can cook a wide variety of food – vegetables, meats, fish, seafood, snacks and even desserts. I believe the food is tastier and it sure is healthier than “traditional” frying.
Here’s our favorite French Fries recipe:
Homemade French Fries
*Courtesy of the T-fal Actifryer Cookbook (included with Purchase)
Feeds about 4 People
Prep Time – 15 minutes
Cook Time – 40 minutes
2 lbs. Potatoes
1 spoon of oil (Spoon is included with Actifryer – equivalent to 1 TB)
My special trick of soaking the fries in cold water for several minutes seeps out the starchiness of the potatoes and you end up with soft fluffy centers while retaining a crispy exterior.
For other awesome T-fal Actifryer recipes check out The Skinny Actifryer Cookbook from Amazon.
Advantage for Blind and Low Vision Users
Another advantage I’ve discovered with using an air fryer is that it’s GREAT for a low vision user like myself!
As much as I love my cast iron pans (Southern girl going on 11 years here), I find it hard to fry when I can’t see that well.
There’s the danger of:
The advantages for blind and low vision cooks are:
How awesome is that? I love the peace of mind I get with my air fryer!
Also, cleanup is a snap! Just load the pieces into the dishwasher. Done!
Disadvantages of an Air Fryer
This is what some websites listed as disadvantages:
Let me dispute those for you:
So, can you tell I love my air fryer? So excuse me while I try out a Cinnamon Apple recipe.