Monday, February 24, 2014

Staying Vertical

As we age falling becomes a bigger threat to our health and well-being. This winter has been especially challenging to avoid falling on the ice that coated everything so I thought that I would talk about ice creepers or ice cleats that fit onto the bottom of your boots. Being retired I find myself outside even on the most wretched of days tending to our horses and chickens, plowing snow, filling bird feeders, or getting the dogs out for their run. Several years ago I purchased a pair of ice creepers made by ArtiMate. They are made of a very tough but pliable rubber that stretches over the bottom of your boots. This winter I've put them to the test, wearing them on my Muck boots for over a month and am still amazed how good they grip the patches of ice that are everywhere here on the farm.

I have a high instep which makes it difficult to take off a "slide on" boot such as the above Muck boots and since I wear these boots every day I decided that I needed a bootjack to make my life a little easier. Now a bootjack turned out to be harder to find than I had imagined and after finding several at antique-second hand stores for $40.00  and up and reading about them on the internet I decided that I could build one. While my wife would tell you that I'm not the handiest man with a hammer and nail I am pretty proud of my creation. Below on the right is my "prototype" bootjack and on the left is my "finished" bootjack made out of some scraps of plywood I had laying around. It works extremely well and makes taking my Muck boots off much less of a struggle.
As you age it's all about making life easier :).

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