Quad wins $20000 for accessible backyardOct 26 03:17
You may have never heard of the National Association of Realtors before, and you may have never heard of HouseLogic either, but all you need to know is that they're awesome. They awarded Allison and Aaron Smith (Aaron is a C6 quadriplegic) a $20,000 backyard makeover.
HouseLogic is a cool offshoot of the National Association of Realtors. It's a website that gives advice on improving your home, it has hundreds of how-to projects and the site tells you how much equity you will build by improving your home. It's a pretty great website if you're a homeowner.
I know a lot of people with disabilities live on, or below the poverty line, and owning a home is nothing but a dream, but sites like these can still be helpful for learning how to improve things in your home, even if you rent. And in this case, the latest in backyard wheelchair accessibility.
Let's talk with the winners of their big backyard makeover giveaway. Allison and Aaron Smith are pretty cute couple. They have a little boy and live in Santa Maria, California in a quintessential suburban home. However their tiny backyard is nothing but a square of dirt. She wrote in saying his 40th was coming up and bam, they won $20,000!
And for the next five weeks airing each Wednesday, HouseLogic is going to be posting videos of the progress in their backyard. If you watch and answer questions correctly about each episode on their site, you'll have a chance to win $1,000! Learn more here (the winner will be announced Nov. 30th)
Of course they'll be installing accessible paths (priority number one), raised garden beds filled for herbs, vegetables and flowers, an accessible side path and something Aaron really wants, to be able to pick apples from their apple tree.
It will be interesting to see how many new accessible garden ideas they share. I have a balcony garden myself and have learned a lot of wheelchair tips along the way, such as plastic containers are key if you use a power chair and high winds can ruin pretty baubles. But a backyard garden is a completely different thing. I can't wait to see the end result!
In video #1, HouseLogic interviewed the couple, as well as their contractor, about their upcoming backyard makeover (you can view the video here). And in video #2 (that's all that's out at this point), they get a glass door installed on the side of their home (you can view that video here)
Must be nice living in California, being able to do a backyard makeover in October. No, I'm not jealous. Not at all ;)
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Tiffiny Carlson is freelance writer and writes the “SCI Life” column for New Mobility. She's also a C6 quad from a diving accident that occurred when she was 14 years old. A lifelong resident of Minneapolis, Tiffiny has been a writer in the disability community for over 10 years and writes for several publications and blogs, as well as her personal blog BeautyAbility. Her work has also appeared in mainstream publications such as Nerve.com and Playgirl.