Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Fire Ants Invade

We have battled fire ants (in many spots) in our yard ever since we moved here about 2 years ago. This weekend they decided to come into our house! Of course, we have had other ants in our house before, and after some treatment with Terro they quickly disappeared. These fire ants are not interested in the Terro nor in fire ant bait. [As as aside, Lance folded a little piece of paper and taped it over the fire ant bait, so our dog wouldn't be able to easily lick it but the ants would still crawl right through the bait. After checking out that situation, Connor described it as the ants going into the tent and pretending they're camping and eating the poison. We thought that was very perceptive and creative of Connor.]

By last night, the ants were so bad that they were crawling along every "line" in our kitchen and breakfast areas: along the floorboards, along the grout lines in between every tile on the floor, along the doorstep areas, etc. Some even ventured outside the "lines." Connor was bitten several times last night on his heel. It was a nightmarish situation for me, because I do not like bugs, especially not in my house! Especially not aggressive biting fire ants in my kitchen!

Now, compound the fire ant problem with our air conditioner ceasing to work yesterday. And, Lance had soooo much business work to do, especially involving phone calls that ate up his time. So, last night as I lay in bed (with all our windows open for the cool breeze), I could not sleep. Blessed little Noelle slept a record 10:00pm to 5:15am, but I only slept 10:30pm to 12:30am. The rest of the night I could not get the image of crawling ants out of my mind. I tried to pray without ceasing for peace. I tried remembering my blessings and how we were safe and sound and the ants were not the worst pestilence or problem in the world. I tried doing some extra hard Sudoku puzzles that usually help me fall asleep. Nothing worked.

Well, this morning we called the air conditioning repair man and he will come Thursday. We called the pest control people and they will come tomorrow. Lance has dedicated his day to our two problems, and has helped quite a bit. He discovered the problem with the air conditioner (a water pump is not working) and can do something to get our air conditioner to work. He would like to try to fix the problem, and if so we can cancel the repairman's visit, so that is what he's working on now.

Also, Lance came up with a creative way to reduce the volume of ants in the kitchen. We were getting nowhere with killing them one by one with a tissue, and Windex seemed to only temporarily stun them, so Lance started getting them with tape. He uses fat heavy duty masking tape strips, picks up many ants at a time, folds the tape on itself to trap and smash them, then tosses the strip into the trash. We still have hundreds of ants, but I am able to go into the kitchen again. I do have a wonderful husband.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

New Noelle pictures

Here are some current photos of Noelle. She wore the green outfit that was Connor's in honnor of St. Patrick's Day.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Dutch Butter Cake

Last night was International Night at Connor's preschool. Each class chooses a country (usually a child or parent is from the country) and the class learns about the country, makes crafts representing the country, the sponsoring family displays things from the country, and they serve food and drink that you would eat in the country. It was so much fun to visit each classroom and taste the food and see the interesting pictures and things. Each child gets a little passport (with their picture in it) that gets stamped at each "country."

Connor's class choose The Netherlands, as his friend's father is from there. Our job was to make Dutch Butter Cake and bring it in. We were given the recipe and it was so simple and so delicious, I thought I'd share it. I like that it is very easy to do with children. (As you can see by the ingredients, it is not low carb or low fat.)

Dutch Butter Cake

1 Cup butter
1 1/3 Cup sugar
1 Egg
- Mix well
1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
- Mix well
2 Cups flour
- Mix well
Pat into 2 round cake pans
Bake 18 minutes at 350 degrees.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Cool websites

I have found a couple of websites where I have recently spent a bit of my time, and I thought I'd share:

Time waster:
www.blogthings.com has all these crazy quizzes you can take. I don't know why they are so addictive, perhaps because they are really short and I feel I can take just one more, or perhaps because some of them are so bizarre I want to know how I'll do on them.

www.dietfacts.com has the nutritional info for all kinds of foods, by brand or by restaurant. I just read about this site in Newsweek. I have been wanting to find a place to look up how many calories (and fat, carbs, protein, etc) are in particular food items we buy at fast food or sit down restaurants. I know that some of those delicious meals in nicer restaurants are swimming in butter and/or cream sauce, and sometimes wonder just how bad they are for me. Now I can find out.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

A tough week

Boy has this been a tough week for us. As I posted earlier, Noelle was miserable on Wednesday because of her vaccines. She really cried like she was hurting all day and into the evening. She did not nurse well because she would repeatedly stop nursing to cry. I suppose that the decrease in nursing along with my increased stress caused me to come down with mastitis on Thursday morning. I spent a good deal of the day in bed racked with chills and then with a 103.3 degree fever. Lance had to take care of Noelle and Connor. I'll spare you all the details, but today both Noelle and I are much better. In fact, Noelle was better by Thursday morning, and she has done just fine enduring my illness. Because of my decreased milk supply, she is nursing VERY frequently, which means less sleep, but I am very happy and thankful for how well we are doing. However, now Connor is congested and has a bad cough. I suppose if it's not one thing, it's another.