Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Big-time expenses

July has been an expensive month. First, after a 6-month odyssey with DS's portable lift, we gave up. The company didn't know what was wrong and just kept sending parts, none of which fixed the lift and all of which we were expected to pay for since insurance refuses. We finally said enough and sent them back their parts and told them to forget it. I've never much liked that company anyway. But we still had to have a lift to transfer DS so we bit the bullet and bought a ceiling lift. No way was insurance going to touch that, so I wrote a check for $5,200 and tried not to cry while handing it over. The good news is that we LOVE the lift! It is so easy to use and so much safer for DS. We're going to call it a necessary and worthwhile purchase.

Meanwhile, our roof was replaced as a result of a ferocious spring hail storm. It also took out the gutters and exposed some rotting fascia. Our part of the bill came to $2,700. I wrote that check yesterday. I am very thankful that we were able to pay for the lift and the roof in cash, although our savings is now scary low. We are going to have to focus on building it back up quickly.

I am also dreading the coming power bill. It is so hot here that it's hard to breathe outside. The A/C has been in overdrive (I sure am thankful for it!) and I know we're going to be paying for it.

In better news, we found out this weekend that DD is expecting a little girl - it's been 28 years since we've had one of those around here!


Sunday, July 3, 2016

New service takes the bite out of summer

Here in the Deep South, summer is mostly humidity, watermelon and mosquitoes. Lots of mosquitoes. By July, we usually can't even sit on our patio without getting eaten alive.

Last year, I saw a few signs in yards advertising a business claiming to be able to get rid of the little buggars. I laughed. I mean, seriously? How is that possible? Even if you sprayed your yard, what about the neighbors' mosquitoes?

Fast forward to this year and I happened to meet the owner of that company. After chatting for a bit, he offered to spray our yard for free so we could see how well it works. Since I'm all about free, I told him to bring it on.

His crew showed up the next morning with power sprayers and hit all the bushes on the perimeter of the yard as well as around our house itself. Took about 15 minutes. Twenty minutes later and I kid you not, there was not a mosquito on our property. And we didn't see one for the next three weeks, which is the duration of a spraying and the life cycle of a mosquito. I'm told it creates a barrier around our yard that the mosquitoes won't cross.

Whatever it is, we're sold. We signed up for the remainder of the season (until mid-October). It is costing us $249 to have the yard sprayed every three weeks. Next summer, we'll pay for the entire season.

And it's worth every penny.  Plus, we're saving a fortune in calamine lotion!