Robert & Billie Nicholson

The winter months have their joys and challenges. As cold weather arrives the warm, inviting interiors of our homes bring comfort to us. They also invite unwanted critters of all sorts inside. We are speak of rodents or insects, not relatives, if you build it they will come. We know that humans are a small part of the total animal kingdom, but we don’t have to share the interior of our homes with them.

How do we deal with unwanted animals and insects when they invite themselves into our homes?  You could call a professional pest control company.  Most professionals do a fine job at a fair price.  There are lots of sources for do it yourself solutions including dedicated DIY stores, online outlets and hardware stores.  Most popular solutions have their pros and cons. Pros are “fast and effective when used as directed and easy to use”. Remember to follow application instructions and do not apply more poison than directed. Cons include “expensive and toxic”.

We prefer to use homemade, natural pest control methods. These methods are inexpensive, natural, and less toxic than commercial preparations.

For rodents: Check walls inside and outside of your home for small holes and patch them. Keep your home clean. Keep trashcans as far away from our home as possible. Obtain 100% peppermint oil and wipe along the areas where rodents tend to run and around doorway thresholds. Keep a cat and place litter box close to the door. Keep a dog. Visit a reptile center and bring home snake poo to place near entrances. Use traps or spray diluted hot pepper sauce along rodent runs and doorways. For more info visit

Pests leave naturally

For insects: For Carpenter ants that eat the wood of buildings call a professional immediately. For all other ants, roaches and hard shelled insects we use a simple mix of ½ cup sugar, 1 Tbsp. Borax, as in 20 Mule Team, & ¼ cup water. Microwave till it becomes syrup and cool liquid. Store extra ant bait in a small jar, MARK IT IN BIG LETTERS and store it away from children as you would do for any dangerous substance. Place the end of a Q-tip in the solution. Put cut off Q- tip onto a small square of waxed paper where ants or roaches are found. Place bait where ant scouts are or under sinks and near drains. Be patient as ant scouts and workers take their find back to the colony. After a few days they will stop coming for their feast as the poison takes effect. Recently our shower had an invasion of ants. When I observed the scouts I placed a small spot of pre-made solution directly on the tile. Within minutes the workers were on station. When they ran low on our special syrup I just brought more for them. Soon they were gone. Other tips can be found by visiting

November 2014

This month’s article includes:

Thanksgiving Day – An American Tradition  a change of economic systems led to this holiday for expressing gratitude

A Winter “To Do” List  Don’t let cold weather catch you unprepared.

Use household items to make your own Gel packs for sprains and swollen joints

Super size your rain water storage

Commit these ground to air emergency codes to memory. You may need them this winter.

Squash Chips – an alternate way to preserve summer squash without freezing

French style Stew

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