I may chat about my books, what I'm writing or reading, or just general thoughts. You may read posts about my cats or just my crazy life in general. Comments are welcome, if anyone wants to interact with me. Maybe we can share war stories, whether it's writing related or just about life in general.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Great spider spray

This stuff works

I know there are some of you that wish no harm to anything, even a bug or insect whose bite can kill you or make you very ill.  I like leaving nature alone too, but sometimes I have to call in reinforcements to take care of all the spiders and scorpions here.  I don’t mind them staying outdoors, but I don’t want them in my house.  My house includes my courtyard and patio.  We do sit out there occasionally and it’s nice to be free of the spider webs that cling to everything all year long.  It makes my place look like its ready for Halloween.  Plus, I don’t want to be sitting out there and have a surprise visit from one of these insects who lurk under the chairs and benches.

It’s amazing the things that can live in the harsh environment of the desert.  I can sweep up and in two days it looks like nothing’s ever been touched.  This was wearing me out.  I don’t have a lot of time anyway to devote to this.  I’d like my cleanup jobs to last a month.  Wouldn’t that be nice?

We have black widows that live in our plant pots, plus they’re everywhere out on the patio and courtyard.  They’re in the garage too, along with scorpions, so I have to be very careful where I stick my hands.  We have brown recluse here too and wolf spiders, which are another bad one, although I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen any.  I do know some of the spiders here look pretty fierce.

So last fall I went on the hunt for anything that would work.  I got so sick of cleaning up spider webs.  I wanted to share a product with all of you, in case you have this problem at your house.

The spider spray pictured above really works!  I’m amazed that something that’s actually advertised to work does the job.  Most times I’m disappointed at all the claims products make. 

I purchased this spray at my local Ace hardware store but I’m sure places like Home Dept and Lowes carry it.  Walmart may even carry it.  I’ve never looked there.  It says it kills all the spiders listed above, plus more, and also scorpions.  The stuff isn’t cheap, but it’s worth it.  We’ve had rain and snow and it’s been months since I sprayed this in my courtyard and we have no spider webs.  I’m impressed!  The guys at the hardware store told me I would have to repeat it after it rained, or perhaps after a month had gone by.  Not so, this stuff works!  I did use a whole can of this out there though and my courtyard is about ten by ten in size.  It comes out as a white foam spray and I sprayed against the foundation of the house and around all the walls and pillars.

I’ll need two cans for my patio because it’s at least twice that big.  It’s still worth it though, in my opinion.  With warmer weather coming, this may be useful.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Necessity is the mother of invention

Isn’t that what they always say?  This being true, as far as I’m concerned, today I took it upon myself to drag out the sewing machine and whip up a white dickey and a white sleeveless top for work. 

Now the reason this is a “must have” for me is because we have to wear a white shirt with sleeves and a collar to work.  I look terrible in white, too washed out.  I always have to make sure I use bronzer and blush so I don’t look too pale and half-dead.  So I had this brilliant idea that I can wear a black shirt as long as I have something white with a collar underneath.  The reason this is okay is because over the winter they let us wear a black sweater over our white shirts.


Anyway, I’ve already tried this out with a dickey I ordered over the internet for $5.  Nothing was said at all.  Of course that dickey is a bit short but nicely made.  I had to do a few tweaks on it to make it stay put under the black shirt during the day.

So today I made a longer dickey and a white sleeveless shirt out of the thinnest fabric I had around the house.  It took me two hours to complete this project, so not bad considering it looks halfway decent and I haven’t really sewn anything in a while.  This way I don’t have to wear white all the time.  I intend to find a cute little lightweight black vest or something I can wear over my white shirts.  We’ll see.  If that doesn’t fly, it’s easy to take off at work.

What do you think?

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Take notice of the beauty around you

Photo borrowed from the web

I have to say that I had the roughest time at work the other day and although I only work part-time, I stand on my feet all day.  That’s enough but on top of that everything I did was a disaster, or so I thought, and I was so wishing the day would fly by and be over.

When I thought about it later, my demo reminded me of the episode of I Love Lucy when she worked in the chocolate factory and she couldn’t keep up as the chocolates came down the conveyor belt.  I don’t know if any of you saw that episode, but I’m sure she must have felt the same way I did, as I tried to keep up.  I love my job but boiling water, cooking spaghetti, and serving it from a stainless steel cart in a store full of people is very difficult.  Of course, next time I’ll be better prepared and more organized I hope. All the people I work with are great so, I’m sure it’s just my lack of experience in this type of environment.  Most days working are fantastic and lots of fun.

Anyway, this post really isn’t about work.  It’s about how even the most difficult day can end in such beauty.  We should always relish in that and take notice that we have eyes to see it.  Let me explain.  When all the work things were put away for the day and I stepped outside, the entire sky was a gorgeous shade of pink.  It was pink in every direction and was so amazing.  I breathed in the wonder of that moment wishing I had my camera to capture it.  That beauty instantly eased my tension and I was so glad to be there at that place to see that gorgeous sunset.

This also reminds me the days are getting longer and there will be many more sunsets ahead.  I’m so happy I’ve survived another winter, although it wasn’t near as bad as the winter two years ago.  But I hate any kind of cold weather.  It’s been seventy or a bit above lately and I could jump up and down with joy.

How about you?  Has the beauty of nature made a terrible day better?

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

How safe are grab bars for the elderly?

Okay, the only reason I’m writing about this subject is because we have these grab bars in the bathroom stalls at work.  It didn’t occur to me that they can be just as much of a hazard as they can be a help.  Let me explain.

Maybe this is only my issue.  But we have only thirty minutes for lunch where I work part-time a few days a week.  Naturally we have to rush through this time so there’s enough time to use the facilities before going back to our stations. 

To make matters worse, because of the short lunch time, I always take my lunch and we have to carry clear purses so I tuck my lunch in there and take my bag with me to the break room for lunch.  I usually take rice cakes and peanut butter and some grapes.  I eat this for lunch every day.  Good thing I like this stuff and it needs no refrigeration and is fairly fast to chomp down.  And not fattening either, which is a good thing.

So I have to allow myself about ten minutes at the end of my break to use the ladies room.  Sometimes there’s a line in there, as all of us girls know, and although I’m not apposed to using the men’s somehow I think they’d frown on that at work. 

I have to carry the clear purse with me along with my clear plastic glass of water and my timer to keep me on schedule because I have to make a beeline from the bathroom back to work as fast as I can go.

Well by the time you get all this stuff in the stall with you there’s little time, believe me.  Because of all this I was in such a rush last week that I whacked my head hard on the grab bar gathering up all my stuff to leave so I could wash my hands and get back to work on time.  I almost knocked myself out and had quite a bump on my head for a few days.  Has this happened to anyone or am I the only klutz around?

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentines Day

And yes, I suppose I should have made Raven another hat for this occasion.  And I may at some point.

But the main purpose here is to wish everyone a Happy Valentine’s day.  Even if you don’t have a special someone to spend it with, I hope you’ll enjoy the company of your friends or your pets who give you that unconditional love all year long.

It’s a day to be extra kind to the strangers you meet because everyone out there is fighting some sort of battle, whether you see battle scars or not.  Being nice may make someone’s day special and you’ll feel better for it too.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

May as well give it a shot

Raven in his "spring bonnet"

You’ll never guess what I saw in the newspaper a few days go.  It was an ad asking for pictures of your animals in “spring attire” for the upcoming spring issue. This is a quarterly local magazine.

Naturally, after seeing that, the wheels in my head started turning on what kind of "spring bonnet" I could make for Raven so I could enter him in this contest.  What do I have to lose after all?  I know there will be lots of dogs represented so why not a cat?

My head was all a buzz because he will indulge me and pose in the hats I make for him most of the time.  I went through all my crafts to see if anything would ring a bell.  Then it was off to the dollar store yesterday to find supplies.

On Sunday I had a great time putting this thing together.  The deadline for entry is Tuesday.  I didn’t want to miss that because I’ll be working and won’t have the spare time to mess with much of anything extra.

I think it turned out pretty darn cute!  I hope he gets in, but it isn’t the end of the world if he doesn’t.  Stay tuned and I’ll let you know how all this comes out later.  Maybe he’ll be a published star.  Wouldn’t that be awesome?

Sunday, February 7, 2016

A bone yard for old computer parts

Somehow all this stuff has found its way to my office.  Why?  Why?  Why?  I don’t need more stuff in here, trust me. 

 Multiplying computer parts
It all started when I finally gave up on my old color printer a couple of weeks ago and broke down and got a new one.  I had just purchased new ink cartridges for the old one and I’m still wondering what to do with those.  I hate to see them going to waste.  And now that was an unneeded expense.  I must have a hundred dollars in new ink cartridges I can’t use now, including three extra large new black ones.  I would cry, but that doesn’t solve anything, does it?  I’m sure someone savvier about these things could fix the printer.  I guess I need to think about donating this somewhere.

Aside from that printer issue, hubby decided I needed a bigger computer monitor for my desktop.  He finally got busy cleaning off his desk and taking apart the old computer that’s been there for years and not working.  So one day here he comes and hooks up his old monitor to my desktop computer, so now my old monitor, which is fine by the way, has joined the color printer on the floor of my office.  Sigh.

Everything else from my husband’s old computer setup ended up on the dining room table.  This would be okay for a while because we eat on TV trays anyway so he can watch Fox news.  Meanwhile, I was thinking about what to do with this stuff because I do like to keep the downstairs cleaned up. 

I didn’t have to think about this long because a couple days later, the odds and ends of the old computer parts joined the group on my office floor.  This was a shocker because hubby rarely picks anything up.  I guess it’s my job to find homes for all this stuff now - in my spare time.  I wonder when that will be.  I don’t have enough time now for everything I need to do.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Kitty Alzheimer’s?

Apparently cats can get anything humans can get, including Alzheimer’s.  Who would have ever thought that?  I’ve had many, many cats in my life but none with Alzheimer’s yet. 


Tootie, who will be sixteen next month, has been getting lost in the house and meowing loudly a lot.  When I say a lot, I mean a lot.  Sleeping at night is almost impossible at my house, especially with the added fact that hubby has some viral infection that started out as a cold. 

Today I was off work so took Tootie to the vet for an examination.  She seems to be in good shape according to the vet, who gave us the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s (although he says they don’t call it that for pets, but it’s the same thing.)  Hmmm…

Aside from this issue, Tootie eats well and drinks lots of water.  Of course all this water drinking is normal for an older cat, or dog, the vet said, and that she doesn’t have diabetes, which is what I was thinking at first. 

 Raven checking out the new cat box

The new cat box in place with splash guard installed and paper underneath for easy cleanup
Well all this water drinking either makes her throw up water all over the house, or pee a lot, which includes missing the box at times.  He suggested we get a lower cat box for her so she can get in and out easier with her arthritis.  We’re giving her herbs for that, which seem to help some.  She can jump on the couch by herself again, which is a good thing (unless she throws up there.)  I find myself cleaning up after this cat a few times each day.  The vet told us as long as she’s eating, drinking, and not sleeping all the time, it wasn’t time to put her down.

I suspect she has a lot of time left because, although she ambles about the house, she can run when she wants too and has her moments of “get up and go.”


I keep thinking, as all of our cats get older, I’ll know what to do by looking at the warning signs of the cats that were here before them.  This practice would probably work except all the cats have all died of something different from each other, at least so far.

That goes for everyone except my boys, Wizard and Ceasar, who were brothers.  They both died of kidney disease.


I wonder if Tootie has moments when she knows she’s losing her mind, like my mother.  Or times when she reverts back to childhood thoughts.  I really wish I could understand meows.