RA Solutions
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RA distraction, hydroponics

Several years ago my granddaughter, Madison, gave me a basil hydroponic kit. It was a blue ball jar with a wick, some little white stones, basil seeds, nutrients and instructions.  I love kits. I loved this one. I had great fun growing my basil. Easy and rewarding. Several years passed.

Last year I spent the summer in the wound clinic. Nine weeks of wound care, bandages and ace wraps. My life was consumed with going to the wound clinic once a week and then coming home to wound care the other six days. I spent less time in my garden and more time as a patient. Sometime in July anger and frustration by my limitations overflowed. I stopped gardening.  I say it as a voluntary thing. But in reality, I just was not able. I put my blinders on and I became a happy houseplant.

This is a new year. My RA is disabling. My hands are a mess. I drop things unless I pay attention.  I am in disabling pain sixty percent of the time. However, I do have the other forty percent.

This is when my unique but not always practical logic kicked in.  I decided on a new approach to a favorite pastime, gardening.  I bought a hydroponic growing kit. QYO. It has twelve pods, a light on a timer, water that is being circulated by a motor. It has plastic cups to hold the pods, little domes to cover the pods while waiting for the seeds to germinate. I have lettuce and basil growing nicely. I have added oregano seeds. The instructions with the kit were in German. A little problem. But everything seems to be fine so far.

I want to use my hydroponic setup as a herb garden. My chives, parsley and oregano need to be replaced. I love watching the little plants grow and I enjoy fresh herbs in my cooking.  My version of hydroponics is not labor intensive. Water needs to be changed with fresh nutrients every two weeks. Not hard to do .

I need to keep the project small. No elaborate PVC pipes holding hundreds of little plants. My simple QYO with an overflow to my little indoor greenhouse. Easy enough. Rewarding. An RA distraction. An RA life adjustment. A new adventure.


  1. Kari Osier says

    I am sorry you need to adjust, and it’s so hard to deal with that pain. It’s difficult to give up pleasurable things but we do find a workaround, I think that’s really cool what you’re doing! I gave up cross stitching and knitting, and I love crafting but am particular, and found quilting at the sewing machine is so much less taxing on my hands. So of course now it’s time for an upgraded sewing machine! 😁


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