It is certainly a good thing that I went out and bought myself a Dyson handheld vacuum last Christmas, because it has come in SO handy. First, it sat all charged and ready for action for months and months and I never ever used it, but then last week came the time for the handheld … Continue reading “10-16-08”

It is certainly a good thing that I went out and bought myself a Dyson handheld vacuum last Christmas, because it has come in SO handy. First, it sat all charged and ready for action for months and months and I never ever used it, but then last week came the time for the handheld to spring into action!

That’s right, it’s wasp season. Every day this week three or more wasps have made their way into the house and caught my attention by banging against the window, banging against the ceiling, or buzzing by my head and making me scream.

There’s little I hate in the insect world as much as I hate wasps. They’re just EVIL looking. Wasps and black widows are the bugs I hate the most, and luckily I haven’t seen many black widows lately. In fact, I don’t think I’ve seen a black widow since I killed one with my bare hand last year.

(Now having said that, I’m sure I’ll wake up face-to-face with one tomorrow.)

So the Dyson handheld, if you’re considering purchasing one for yourself, is very much NOT all that and unless you have a LOT of little spills (of the dry variety) that need to be cleaned up, I don’t think it’s worth the price. The suction is lacking, I hear tell that when fully charged it only lasts for a few minutes, and really when it gets down to it, I don’t actually NEED a handheld vacuum. I’ve honestly only gotten it off the charger a few times in the several months since I bought it, and it’s almost always to suck up a bug.

The suction, let me reiterate, is very much lacking. I actually have to have the end of the vacuum covering the wasp before it gets sucked into the vacuum. With the Dyson upright, if I wave the hose in the general direction of the wasp, it sucks it up.

Also, the trip into the handheld doesn’t kill the wasps, and I can hear several them in the canister of the handheld right now (over in the corner of the room), buzzing angrily. Which leaves me with a dilemma – I mean, I don’t want the evil fucking things to SUFFER and die slow and painful deaths, but if I take the canister off to toss them outside, they will take flight and team up to land on my fucking FACE and sting me directly in the eyeballs.

O lord, what is a wimpy hater of wasps to do?

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I realized the other day, after I’d traded some emails with a reader (hello, Neca!), that I hadn’t told y’all that I’m currently using a powdered laundry detergent instead of the liquid stuff. The liquid stuff gets kind of annoyingly semi-solid, which makes it a pain to pour out of the old vinegar jug I’d been storing it in, and I stumbled across a recipe for powdered laundry detergent, and decided to give it a try.

It makes a TON of detergent – the recipe is here – and I keep mine stored in an old 40-pound Fresh Step scoopable litter container (which I cleaned first, of course). So far it’s working really well for me. It’s been almost two months since I made this batch, and I easily have at least four more months’ worth of detergent, if not six.

If you don’t like the liquid stuff, you might want to give the powdered stuff a try. You could probably halve the recipe (or even quarter it?) if you don’t want to make so much at once.

And while I’m sharing recipes I’ve recently posted on my recipe blog for non-food items, I stumbled across a recipe to make your own freezer bag (like those you use in a cooler to keep your food cool), and I haven’t tried it yet, but I wanted to have it in a place where I’d be able to find it easily, so into the blog it went! See the recipe here.

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That little Delmar is just a lovebug. He’s gotten to the point now where if I go into the room and sit down, he slowly makes his way over to me, meowing sadly the entire way like I’m forcing him to make a long and arduous journey to receive the love that is his due. I pet him and pet him and pet him, and he never gets tired of it. I lay on the floor and he snuggles up to me and drapes himself across my arm and sometimes he naps, draped over my arm.

Lem no longer runs for the cat tree when I enter the room. He also doesn’t necessarily come right over to me, but he comes over eventually. He likes to be petted and to lay on me and he purrs SO loud.

Marion can be lured over with toys – she’s the nosiest, I totally should have named her Gladys Kravitz, and the most playful of the bunch – and so I gather up all the toys and roll them around the room and toss them into the plastic basket in the middle of the room, and she can’thelp it, she HAS to come down and bat some toys around and see what I was tossing in the basket.

Claudette will not be lured. She’ll allow you to pet her, and she’ll let you hold her for a good long time, and she’ll even purr very loudly, but as far as HER approaching YOU? Darling, I think not. At one point yesterday I was laying on the floor reading, Delmar draped over my arm, and she walked around the edge of the room to get to the food dish. She kept an eye on me, but that she’d come down off the tree and move around with me in there? I think it’s only a matter of time before she’s laying on her back in my lap, informing me that I better rub her belly and make it SNAPPY.

2008-10-16 (7)
Delmar, next to a 20-ounce bottle of water. He’s a teeny thing!

More pictures at Love & Hisses.

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2008-10-16 (8)
“Sunshiiiiiiine on a Boogie’s face gives him the squinty eye!”

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2007: No entry.
2006: It’s like when you’re in the car and you smell something, so you turn down the radio and sniff harder.
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: “That’s because it fucking HURTS!” I yelled.
2002: TV talk.
2001: Is it just Fred and I that immediately think “Chrissie-anthemums”, or did y’all see that episode of Three’s Company as well?
2000: The Spider Dance.