Monday, April 22, 2013


Spring is here! Well, mostly - the temperature is a little low for this time of year but I think it's stabilizing to near-normal values. Plants in our garden are growing, the grass is green and growing, the birds are arriving en masse at our feeders, and the ants are here.

Of all the signs of spring, it's the ants that I dislike the most. I don't mind them when they're outside in the ground but they find their way into our house via the cracking caulking around the patio doors. From there they travel through the cracks between the hardwood planks to Gozer's food, other plants, the bird food, and the rest of the kitchen. Each of the last two years we've woken up one day to find huge numbers of ants between two areas.

This year we were lucky; we have Gozer the Huntress. She loves mice but she also loves insects - including ants. Over the last couple of days I've noticed her watching the floor and licking at it. I took a closer look and saw the ants. I spread some diatomaceous earth down around the areas where they travel in the hopes that if they cross the barrier, they'll die.

Because the temperature outside has warmed up, I've been spending time outside working in the garden. One thing I've been working on with my psychologist is figuring out how to do things I like without overdoing it. So the way I've been working is to set an alarm to go off in 30 minutes. When it does go off, I take a break, relax for five or ten minutes, and get a drink of water. Then I evaluate how I'm feeling; if I feel good, I set the alarm for another 30 minutes. I've only been doing this for a couple of days but I seem to be less exhausted than I normally would after doing the work. I hope this process works because I'll need all my strength to deal with the ants.

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