Monday, July 29, 2013

Weekend thrifting finds!

To be quite honest, chickadees, I found absolutely nothing this weekend.  Rather than make the usual rounds with Husband, I went outlet shopping with a friend of mine.  Even that trip was less than successful, as I ended up buying one shirt and one pair of pants.

We did stop in at a Goodwill on the way back, but didn't find anything.  Plus, it was a huge mess and not organized at all.  So boo on you, Lancaster Goodwill!

Hubs and I stopped in at one of our usual GWs yesterday, but there was nary a thing to be found.  They seemed to be doing well with their 50% off furniture sale, but there was nothing that we needed.

So rather than post nothing this week, I made the executive decision to show something that I found some time ago but never bothered mentioning.


1.  Space Age mouthwash bottle!  Kind of a misnomer, as this started out life as a whiskey bottle.  I wish I could remember the brand name but it totally escapes me.  This bottle also started out life with a base on it that sort of matched the cap.  Unfortunately, it didn't survive the trip through the dishwasher.  The cap also started out life gold and I spray painted it blue to go with my bathroom.  So many changes have been wrought on this little bottle.

But not as many changes as this guy made:

Click to embiggen.  Trust me, it's worth it!

Look at the awesome lamp they made out of this same bottle!!!  OMG, is that the coolest thing you've ever seen or what?  I wish I knew how they did that because I would totally make matching lamps for the bedroom.

The picture, by the way, is from this awesome blog.  You should totally check it out.

That's it, I'm afraid.  Still going to link up with the coolness at Sir Thrift A Lot, and The Nifty Thrifty, but I'm embarrassed about it.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Defeating the Empire of the Ants!

Okay, so a bunch of you have emailed me asking what exactly it was I did to get rid of my ant invasion.  Rather than reply individually, I figured I'd do it here.  Because I'm lazy.

But first:

No, Joan!  Not polyester gauchos!  Arrrrgggghhh!!!

Okay.  So after extensive research (I Googled "homemade ant bait"), I discovered that there are two kinds of ants: those that like sugar and those that like grease.  The kind of bait you make will depend on what kind of ants you have.

I didn't want to put on my lab coat and do a bunch of experimenting, so I just made two kinds and let the ants choose.

Bait #1 for grease-loving ants:  I took about a tablespoon of peanut butter and added in a little squirt of honey to make it extra nommy and stirred in about 1/8 teaspoon of boric acid powder.

Bait #2 for sugar-loving ants:  About a tablespoon of grape jelly mixed with 1/8 teaspoon of boric acid powder.  I used grape because that's what I had.

A word about that boric acid.  You get it at the drugstore in the First Aid department.  As to why my Wrong Aid was charging over six bucks (!!) for a little bottle of stuff that probably cost a penny to make is anyone's guess.  But I was desperate so I paid.  Oddly,it was on sale.

It's the boric acid that kills the ants, and you have to be careful with how much you use.  You don't want to put so much in that the ants die right away.  What you want is for them to take the bait back to the hive and share it, killing the rest of the colony as well.

Look, Ma--I'm a myrmecologist!

Hubs walked into the kitchen as I was working and, puzzled, asked "What are you doing?"

"Why, I'm preparing a very special cocktail for our little friends," I replied, sounding exactly like Boris Karloff.

So I took the baits, spread blobs on squares of aluminum foil, and put them on the counter where the ants were.  That's when the fun started.

Now, on the (few) occasions where I think of ants, I generally picture them as industrious little buggers, you know, marching in straight lines, carrying food, being all efficient and stuff.  Not these suckers.  Boy howdy, these were the stupidest creatures ever to crawl on the surface of the earth.  They were just running in circles, bumping into each other, all "Derp! Derp!  Derp!" and I'm looking and them and saying "Dudes, get your act together!" For a while, I was convinced that they were too stupid to find the yummy poison I had set out for them.

But find it they did, and it was most unpleasant.  After a couple of hours, the jelly was covered with little tiny ants.  Every time Hubs went into the kitchen, I could hear him say "Ewww!"  He returned to the den and reported that "The jelly is winning."  Apparently, we had the sugar-loving kind of ants.

So yeah, it was disgusting.  The ants didn't seem to be moving, so I thought I had overdone the boric acid and killed them right then and there.  Well,that's not what I wanted (see above), but I decided that a bunch of dead ants was still a good thing and that I'd mix up another, milder batch in the morning.

Next morning, however, all the ants on the jelly were gone!  They weren't dead after all.  I guess they were just napping after eating all that delicious, delicious poison jelly.  There were a couple of stragglers who got thumb-smashed, but for the most part, they're all gone!

I'm going to leave the baits out for a couple of days just to make sure, but I really think this worked.

One final word.  Or a bunch, actually.  Please keep in mind that while boric acid is a low-toxicity insecticide, it's still a poison, and you need to keep it away from children and pets.  Personally, I'm not above saturating my house with environmentally-hazardous petrochemicals, if it means getting rid of an ant invasion, but the reason I didn't was because I didn't want to take the chance of making the little weiner dog sick. By using the baits, I could put them up out of her reach and not worry about her eating them or walking through puddles of chemicals.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Weekend Thrifting Finds!

Good morning, chickadees!

I'll come right out and say that once again, our thrifting finds were rather meager this week.  Maybe some of you can shed some light on this problem.

I've been hitting the Goodwill for years, but mostly just a quick (less than 5 minute) run through to see if anything caught my eye.  Not the most efficient way of thrift shopping, but I did manage to pick up a few very nice things.

A few months ago, I decided that rather than just blithely skipping through, I'd make a concerted effort to actually see what was on the shelves.  This new procedure had almost immediate results, and I started finding a lot of good stuff.  Even Hubs got in on the act, and he found a lot of good stuff, too.

It seems that for the last couple of months or so, the pickins' are decidedly slim.  Is thrift shop giving seasonal?  Are we just entering a slow period?  Is it all just luck?  Or is there something else afoot?  I'll keep going, despite not really finding anything because I know you have to do that.  I just wondered if thrift shopping was cyclical.

Anyway, here's what I found this weekend:

1.  Tupperware!  I'm pretty sure this is supposed to be for pies, but I seldom have pies to tote around.  So I'm going to use this for when I make cookies or something to take to work.  It's nice to have something unbreakable with a cover instead of trusting my china and Saran Wrap. As is typical with vintage Tupperware, it was pretty stinky when I bought it; a trip through the dishwasher cleared that up.  My first purchase at the Rescue Mission Thrift:  $1.00

2.  More Tupperware!  I was pleased to find this container, though I was hoping there were a few more lurking on the shelf.  Alas, this was doing a solo act.  Turns out this is a really handy size and I can still use some more of them.  Goodwill, $1.00.

And that's it, unfortunately.  In other news, Fondue Headquarters has suddenly been invaded by teensy little ants.  Apparently, it's a big problem in our building.  I don't want to use bug spray inside because of the little weiner and the ant baits don't seem to be doing a thing, so I think I'm going to try the jelly/boric acid bait solution I read about on the Interwebs.  Wish me luck!

Linking up with all the marshmallowy goodness at Sir Thrift A Lot, and The Nifty Thrifty.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Weekend Thrifting Finds plus creepy doll alert!

Well kids, it was another slim week for finds at the thrifts. We went to all 7 of our usual stops but even the Hubster didn't find a thing worth buying. I did manage to pick up a couple of things, but it seems like the really dandy stuff just doesn't exist any more.  Hopefully, things will pick up soon.

While I didn't actually buy much, it was definitely a week of Pyrex sightings.  I saw some Terra (first time seeing it in the wild), some Gooseberry, some of the UPC pattern (I forget the real name), lots of Americana and a couple of Primary bowls.  I didn't need the 404 that I saw, having bought my second one just last week, but I was tempted by the 402.  The paint was nice and shiny (mine is quite matte), but it was chipped at the bottom.  It didn't seem worth changing out one problem for another, so I left it behind.

It was also a week of random people talking to me.  Now, I consider myself a reasonably friendly person, but when a total stranger just starts talking to me out of nowhere, it makes me a little uneasy.  I mean, I'm glad you think my eyeglass frames are nice, but I don't want to get into a whole discussion about them with you.  While I was looking for Tupperware, a woman walked up to me and said "I can't buy much 'cause I have my husband with me.  I should have lef' his ass at home."

How does one reply to that?  "Yeah, probably"?  I just smiled pleasantly and moved on.

Anyway.  Here's what I got:

1.  Tupperware!  This is the first piece of plain white Tupperware I've purchased.  What's the official name?  "Frost White"?  Something like that.  Pretty sure this is a one-quart size, so it will be perfect for mixing up some Tang.  Goodwill, $1.00

2.  Pyrex!  This pie plate was somewhat dirty but in otherwise pristine condition.  No chips or utensil marks, and the Flamingo pink is beautiful and bright (I don't think the color translated well in the photo.)  I've wanted a Pyrex pie plate because I've heard that piecrust comes out best in Pyrex, but now I'm wondering something.  Does that apply only to the clear Pyrex, or the opal stuff, too?  Does anybody know?  Goodwill, $2.00

Oops, almost forgot to add this.  Not thrifted, but I got some coupons in the mail from MicroCenter (home of the sale flyers with print so small I can't even read it) and walked out of the store with this:
3.  Weird, off-brand wireless router!  Free.  I know!  I've never heard of this brand before, and it's not something I need myself, but my brother doesn't have WiFi in his house, so I thought I'd give this to him and get him into the 21st century.

Okay.  I didn't buy this, but it practically screamed at me from the shelf and of course, I texted a picture of it to The Girl Child:
Click to embiggen.  Do eet!

Creepy doll!  OMG, what were they thinking when they made this (and what about that doll in the background with the O Face?)?  Was there ever a child who said "Mommy, I want a doll that looks like it's going to bite me!"  Yeesh.

I can't decide whether it looks more like the Zuni Fetish doll:

or Diana Ross:


Linking up with all the deliciousness at Sir Thrift A Lot

Monday, July 8, 2013

Weekend Thrifting Finds: I'm back!

Well, kiddos, I'm frightfully sorry about the last couple of weeks.  Due to a couple of unexpected visits to the vet and a tooth situation, things just weren't looking good on the thrifting front.  We did manage to go to a couple of our usual stops, but we were hurried and well, I guess not very motivated.

Happy to report that we did a little better this past weekend.  Only picked up a couple of things, but I was pleased by both:

1.  Pyrex!  Sharp-eyed readers will realize they've seen me post a 404 before.  Yes, but that was a different one.  This one is in much better--though not perfect--condition.  While the first one I bought a few months back seemed okay at the time, it was really pretty badly utensiled.  I thought I got the marks off but they seemed to keep coming back!  This one has a few marks, though it's not bad.  It's one of the "unmarked" 404s, meaning it's an older one.  At first, I didn't want to pay the price but then I realized that I really hadn't spent much money at the thrifts lately, so I gave in.  $6.00 at Goodwill.

2.  Disk-Go Case!  I will admit that I've wanted one of these since some time in the '60s when they came out.  I see 'em on ebay all the time, but they always go for crazy money.  I found this one in the record section of the Goodwill with no price.  I'm always a little nervous about taking unpriced items to the checkout, but it worked out well for me.  I don't think I'm actually going to use this, as I don't like the idea of storing my 45s without their protective sleeves.  It's a nice color, though, and goes well in my den.  Just looking at it makes me want to fire up my stereo

and play some of my old Archies records.  Sugar Sugar, anyone?  Bang Shang-a-lang?

Linking up with all the creamy goodness at Sir Thrift A Lot.