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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Simple Question

Or maybe it's not so simple...


If you could change one thing about your life (or yourself), what would be it and why?

Leave your answer in the comments section. I'm very curious to see what will be written, I'll write my answer later, I have one but don't want to influence anyone's answer. :)

I'll temporarily remove restrictions on posting comments, anyone can comment, the comments will still be moderated though.  Sorry, had to put the restrictions back on for anonymous postings, thanks spammers, you ruin it for everyone.



All written text from this blog are copyrighted and owned by Wretha unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved, You may download or copy for your own personal enjoyment, but please do not distribute without written permission. You may post a portion of this (or any) message from this blog on another site as long as you include a link back to this site and the original message.

Wretha,

Thanks for visiting!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Eggs & Scorpions

One has nothing to do with the other, but I'm writing about them in the same post, so here goes, LOL!

Yesterday after church, I went by a friend's house to buy some eggs, like many people who live in my neighborhood, they have far more laying chickens than they really need for just the 2 of them, so they almost always have a surplus of eggs. When I got there and asked about buying the eggs, I was informed that I couldn't buy any, but I could have some. She went into the kitchen and promptly brought out a dozen and a half, I offered to pay again but was again turned down, I have to say that I have the best neighbors! These are pretty eggs too, she has the kind of chickens that lay colored eggs, greens and such, they are almost too pretty to crack and eat, almost, they are very tasty too, so that makes it easier to use them.

I do recycle the egg shells, I rinse them out and allow them to dry, once dry I break them into small pieces then spread them in my garden. The calcium and other goodies are excellent for the garden, especially tomatoes, they require lots of calcium to prevent blossom end rot, I also understand it deters slugs and such, they don't like crawling across the broken shells, though I haven't seen even one slug out here.

Now to the scorpions. They are back, about a week ago, one fell on me inside the sky castle, fortunately I didn't get stung by that one, last summer we had a major rash of them, we were killing 2-3 ever night inside the house, I did get stung last year, I have to say, they HURT! Normally I'm a live and let live kind of gal, but in this case, I have to take action, I do not want to get stung again.

When the one fell on me the other day, that was the last straw, I decided it was time to go on the offense, I know that they fluoresce under UV light, so I purchased a 51 bulb UV LED flashlight. I received it on Friday and as soon as it got dark, I put it to work. I went around the sky castle out to about a 10 foot radius, I found and killed about a dozen of them. I don't really want to eradicate the population, I know they are beneficial, but dang it, they HURT when you get stung by one. If they would just stay outside, I wouldn't mind so much, but they manage to find their way inside, and they have a habit of crawling up to the ceiling and falling down on you.

The second night, I repeated the same thing, just after dark, I went around and didn't find as many, I killed about 5-6. This morning before daylight, I walked between my house and my neighbor's house, I killed 2 of them. I think I'm making a dent in the extreme local population. I understand they can live several years (5 is what I remember reading), I also understand that poisons do not work on them very well, and I don't want to poison everything around me, it's just better to kill them directly as I find them.

I also use the UV flashlight inside the sky castle, I look around to make sure there aren't any scorpions crawling around, since they are active at night, it's hard to spot them, but with the UV light, they glow quite brightly and are easy to spot. I keep it next to me at my computer, and when I go to bed, that way if I think there might be one nearby, I can grab the light and look around. It makes me feel much better.

This light works great, it does give off some visible light, that is not necessarily a good thing for the UV part, but for what I'm doing, it's great because I don't have to carry and use a separate flashlight, I can see just well enough to not trip over anything or run into something unpleasant. The flashlight lights up the scorpions quite nicely, they glow a bright green, they almost don't look real, but they are very real and become very squished as I find them. This uses 3 AA batteries, not so many that I mind using them, but it's enough juice to put out quite a bit of light, I have spotted scorpions at 8-10 feet away, though mostly I am finding them at about 4-5 feet. I like the LED part, it puts out good light without using much juice, so my batteries will last longer.

Happy Independence Day everyone! Have a safe 4th of July!



All written text from this blog are copyrighted and owned by Wretha unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved, You may download or copy for your own personal enjoyment, but please do not distribute without written permission. You may post a portion of this (or any) message from this blog on another site as long as you include a link back to this site and the original message.

Wretha,

Thanks for visiting!

Summer Days Before The Monsoon Season

Summer is in full swing, the garden is growing, the sky castle is growing, well sort of growing, it's being improved anyhow. PB has been working on the roof of the extra room on the end of the west deck. I like saying "west deck" because I hope to someday have other decks around the sky castle. It's been so blasted hot that PB only works in the mornings and the evenings. We are supposed to be getting some rain this weekend, though they keep pushing it back, we had 50% chance of rain on Saturday, now it's a 30% on Sunday, I just want it to RAIN!

I've been busier than ever, I am still a caretaker for a friend out here, I go to her house 3x a week and do whatever needs to be done, that usually means cooking, cleaning and such. I'm also driving another lady into town once a week, sometimes more often. She is losing her eyesight and isn't comfortable driving anymore, so I get to go into town at least once a week and do whatever shopping I need to do, we tend to go to the same places so it works out great for both of us, I help her with her shopping too. I bought some brightly colored t-shirts, hot pink, red, orange, safety yellow and purple, I wear one when I'm out with her so that when we are in the stores, she can spot me easily, she has some eyesight, and can still see color quite nicely, I don't have to stick to her like glue, this way she knows when I'm next to her and when I'm at the other end of the aisle.

Back at the sky castle, we hung up a second hummingbird feeder, and the hummers are quite happy about it, just having one means the most dominant hummer gets most of the food, now more of the hummers can get some, though they still fight over it. Right now it's not so bad, but when the Rufus hummer shows up, they are very aggressive and will not share at all, with the second feeder, this will give everyone a chance to feed, unless a second Rufus shows up...

Our west deck is nicely illuminated now, when my Dad came out to visit, he arrived bearing gifts (my Dad is the best!), one of those gifts was a package of those solar lights, this was meant to go on the trail between our house and our neighbor's house. PB had other ideas, he placed them outside around the deck, including the steps he made for the deck, the lights are subtle, they don't make so much light as to attract a myriad of night bugs, but they make a soft light so that you can walk outside on the deck at night and not fear tripping over something or taking a misstep on the steps. PB's Mom also sent a package to us, one of the items on this package was a solar light, this one is shaped like a decorative lantern, the light is green and is quite pretty. We placed it where we can see it from inside the sky castle, PB's Mom is also the best!

I received a printer last week, it's something I have wanted and somewhat needed since we moved here, it would seem that my old all in one printer/scanner/copier died a couple of weeks before moving out here, I had already quit working at Best Buy (bummer), money was real tight and I couldn't justify spending any money on another one when it wasn't a complete necessity. I was able to buy this with my Amazon.com credits from the clicks and sales from this site and the other sites where I write, thanks to everyone who made their purchases through my links, those pennies really do add up!

Here is the printer I purchased, it's a Canon PIXMA MG5220 Wireless Inkjet Photo All-In-One (4502B017), I wanted an all in one printer, I was very interested in the scanner part, since I do a lot of crochet now, it's much easier to scan the pattern (from a magazine or book) and take that with me, or printing off songs (lyrics) so I can use it at my music keyboard, I'm getting better and better at playing BTW, at church this Sunday a couple of people told me I was sounding very good.

Back to the printer, before I ordered it, I was concerned about it working on my off grid system, I knew that a laser printer would not work on a modified sine wave inverter, but I wasn't sure about this particular printer, I was mainly worried about the scanner part not working. I emailed Canon and asked them about it, apparently they don't get questions like that, they couldn't give me an answer, finally they just said "try it and see".  I even considered getting a battery backup (UPS) but then I remembered that even with those, they say not to hook up a printer on the battery side, so that wouldn't work either.

I am happy to state that it does work very well on my system, wow have printers changed in 3 years! It took about an hour to hook it up and get it running, it was mainly the software/driver side that took so long, but I was patient and followed all of the steps. I chose not to use one of the features on this one, it has a wireless printing feature, I can always access that later if I want, but for my needs, I just don't need it, but I'm glad it's available.

I'm being very frugal with it, I only ordered one package of paper, it also had free shipping so it didn't run my total bill up at all. I haven't gone crazy with printing and such, I want to save as much of the ink and paper as possible, even though this printer has separate ink tanks for each color, I still don't want to have to shell out more $$$ for more any time soon.

I have more to write, but I'll save it for another post. Oh, almost forgot to report, I have another book to review, I just received it, it looks very promising, more to come later! You can see my other book reviews here CLICK FOR BOOK REVIEWS, and in case you haven't noticed, I'm now offering ad space on this blog, the prices are very reasonable, I also limit the number of ads so your ad will not be lost in a sea of ads. Be sure to visit my newest advertiser, http://www.shedandshelter.com/, there's lots of great resources there about different ways to make/build/purchase conventional and unconventional homes, many are very inexpensive and ingenious.



All written text from this blog are copyrighted and owned by Wretha unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved, You may download or copy for your own personal enjoyment, but please do not distribute without written permission. You may post a portion of this (or any) message from this blog on another site as long as you include a link back to this site and the original message.

Wretha,

Thanks for visiting!