Wednesday, June 16, 2010

How To Get Rid Of White Flies

My Lantanna's are FULL of those freaking things.  I spray water on them and hundreds and hundreds if not thousands of the things come up into my face and fill the air.  I figured the next time the exterminator comes out, I'm going to have him spray those plants to get rid of them.

Well, he - the exterminator dude - just called.  I asked him about white flies.  He said his spray won't do anything to them........but......(I'm waiting for something about high dollars to get rid of them to come up, but then again, knowing this guy, maybe not, wasn't really sure) Dawn dishwashing liquid will. 

Fancy that.  I product you can buy for $2 at the grocery store.  Mix it with water, spray the plants.  I doesn't hurt the plants. 

Now, hear me out here. This guy could have just said: "Yes, we can deal with that, we have a special chemical that we can add to the mix.  Of course, it is expensive stuff and will cost you an extra $30 for the treatment".  He could have TOTALLY taken advantage of me, as I have never heard that Dawn dishwashing liquid gets rid of white flies. 

Instead, he tells me he will have his guy add the stuff to the mixture when he comes out next week - for no extra charge!  In 2 ways, he has totally "wowed" me as a customer: gave away an industry secret and is charging me nothing extra to use it in his next application!  THIS company and this guy that is running is a true example of excellent, quality, unbelievably GOOD customer service.  It has been that way since I started using his services.  He has ALWAYS given me great pricing on regular treatments and any special treatments that go above and beyond.  Were that every company that I deal with - Walmart comest to mind - would do the same. 

Oh, how does Dawn kill them?  It doesn't have any special "poison" in it, he tells me.  Instead, when it dries, it encapsulates them.  They suffocate and die!! 

Hey, if you happen to have this problem, you can simply put a solution of Dawn into a spray can or even a spray bottle with water and do it yourself.  Since my exterminator is doing it for no extra charge, I'm not going to bother.

Lesson Learned: I Won't Be Forgetting............

.......to shut off the irrigation drip system ever again.  I did it several times last month - sometimes up to 10 hours, just totally forgetting I had turned it on.  My water bill was almost $100 higher than normal.  I KNEW it was going to affect my bill, I didn't know it was going to be that much.  Perhaps there is merit to installing an automatic controller after all.
Regardless, I will be setting a timer whenever I turn it on and that will remind me, if I forget (which I get the feeling I won't be having much of a problem with now that it's biting my wallet) to turn it off. 

I stepped on the scale today at both branches of my work - same reading: 196 pounds.  I haven't seen it this low in a long time now.  Not that that's "low" by skinny standards, but I am definitely making progress, albeit ever-so-loving-slowly.  I don't care how slow the progress is, as long as there is progress.  If I ever break into the 180's range, that will set something off in my brain to simply finish this thing off and get it over with.  I'm trying not to get overly excited about today's readings - in my quest to lost weight, I have noticed that it will go up and down around a particular weight before it finally goes down to a lower "setting".  I'm not taking drugs, eating fancy diet foods or doing much of anything different except watching what I eat.  Even then, if I eat something "bad", I just don't eat much of it.  A bagel today?  Probably not the greatest thing for a diet, but it was the only thing I ate until I got off of work.  I then had a chicken sandwich - small sandwich and it had no mayonaisse or cheese on it (good thing). 

Mostly, and again, I have been finding that just cutting out the cheese in my diet has ramped this thing up quite a lot.  Non-fat dressings also are the only thing I am using, not reduced or half -fat - I want NO fat and LOW calories.  My Subway salads are now done without any cheese or sauces.  Just red wine vinegar.  There are times when I just have to have some cheese on something - I infrquently indulge.  I ate a LOT of cheese up until the point not long ago that I realized that that stuff is loaded with fat calories.  LOTS of them.  It was tough to stop eating that stuff, but I have managed to mostly stay away from it.  I have not had any mayonaisse on anything and I have not digressed into using ranch fat filled dressings like I used to. 

As I say, the only way to effectively diet if you just want to cut back on calories and change nothing else is to be anal about it.  Inspect every nutrition label.  If you have something without one, look it up online.  I get plenty of exercise at work, btw, and also my yard doings, so - I figured if I could just get the eating part down right, walaah. And, walaah it is.

As for now?  My UV Sterilizer came in the mail today and I already have it hooked up.  Thought I'd go outside, in the shade over by the ponds and sit there with a cold drink and listen to the sounds of the water and watch the fishies eating.

Later.
ben

Wednesday

Interesting times we are living in.
Lots of buzz about this being the end times referred to in various places throughout the Bible, but most specifically in the book of Revelations.  If you've never read that particular book of the Bible, I heartily encourage anyone to take however long it takes and read that book straight through.  There is some pretty incredible stuff in there.

Trailer tenants will be moving out - probably next month or so.  He is getting his Social Security retirement benefits and they also suggested that he probably qualifies for SSI.  We were discussing this yesterday and, of course, I brought up the subject of them possibly getting their own apartment or something.  They already have a place in mind.  I'm not trying to get rid of them, not at all.  It's just that living in that trailer undoubtedly isn't the greatest thing on earth.  If he were taking in around $1,400 per month in benefits if he got both of those, well, they could easily find a place that includes electric and water for less than $500 per month.  They would still have money left over to get the cable and whatever else they want.  It's not a LOT of money, of course, but for people that have been living in sheds and moving around from place to place, well, it's a  gold mine.

I am not sure what I am going to do with that trailer once they are gone.  I'm thinking get rid of it.  I only got it to help them.  I could use the money.  Take the Mastercool evap unit off of it, sell it separately for $100 and then sell the trailer for $700.  Of course, God doesn't always have me doing the things that I think I am going to do, it's possible that someone will "appear" out of the blue that needs a place to live. 

"We set conditions (for talks) so that, God willing, you'll be punished a bit and sit at the negotiating table like a polite child,"
That is Iran's "president" talking about the U.S.  What a piece of work this guy is.  We need to be punished, this is laughable. I guess more laughable is the idea of our President doing anything concrete about this situation with Iran's nukes.  The only real source of hope I have for eliminating this threat is Israel, who apparently is well into talks trying to get passage through the skies of different nations that they would have to fly over to carry out a mission to destroy the facilities.  It's going to happen, one way or the other.  Israel is not going to sit around waiting for Iran to get nukes, it's just not going to happen.  Whether it is the beginning of WWIII, who knows.  Better get your hearts and minds right with the Lord is all I can say about that, in preparing for a worst-case scenario where the entire world becomes a theatre for war.  You think I'm crazy, that's fine.  The Iranians and others with the same mindset think the U.S. and Israel should be destroyed.  They think it's our "just" punishment.

Onto other things.  I checked my savings account yesterday, up to a whopping $137.  I had it up to over $300 and then ran into financial roadblock and took out some money to save me.  I still have differing amounts being taken out of my checking account throughout the month and being deposited into the ING account.  It's small amounts - $5 and $10 - but there are a lot of them.  I don't miss the money gone and I certainly can't say that, in a bind, I abhor the idea of having had put some money aside in case I have an emergency. Frankly, I need at least $800 in there - in case AC goes out.  That's what it costs to fix it under warranty, and the warranty still has a couple of years left in it. 

I never did get the AC fixed in my car, I am driving around in this heat without it, and I can say that it dramatically reduces ANY desire to go ANYWHERE once I get home from work.  Not a bad plan, actually - just don't drive the thing, save the gas, done.  I just don't have the money to fix it - almost $400 - right now, suffer like lots of other drivers that have their windows down while driving in 107 degree heat.

I fixed the leaking pond yesterday, wanted to give the patch overnight before doing anything.  I will fill that pond up, put most of the plants in it and transfer the fish to the other pond that I have had sitting there, full of water, just letting the water get "ready" for them.

BTW, my ideas that water can be cooled via evap cooling were definitely spot on.  In the large pond, I have a pump that is shooting water almost straight up into the air.  It comes back down on a rock structure that I layered in there - this structure is about a foot and a half or more above the water level.  The water sprays all over.  Even after sitting in the direct sunlight all day long, that water is cool.  The other pond? I just have a filter going on it.  That water gets warm.  My thoughts are just that I'm glad that the water DOES cool and I don't have to worry about coming home and finding baked fish floating on the surface.  The cost - running a low wattage pump all day long.  Yeah, well whatever.  Electric use is around $14 per day right now.  It came down a buck or so with putting that sytrofoam in the kitchen sliding glass door.  The difference in that room in the afternoon is palpable. 

Oh, the only drawback to the evap cooled pond is that it loses several gallons a day of water - that's the way it works. 

Well, work dayis almos here, I'm outta here.
ben

Well first off, I've been sitting at a place in Hammond, Louisiana, for 7 hours and will be here at least another 10 before I can get ou...