Thursday, July 26, 2007

Help! Mosquitoes are taking over!

We just had twenty cubic yards of bark dust and garden soil delivered the other day. Along with the bark dust came hundreds and hundreds of baby mosquitoes. OMG the horror... I already despise our existing mosquito population... but now hundreds upon hundreds of new residents????? I have at last 10-15 bits on me right now. My natural repellent is helpful, but was no match for THAT MANY at once. *sigh* They're so small that they can fit through our screens so I couldn't even cool off the house last night (we don't have A/C). I had to wake up at 5:30 this morning to cool it off while the little winged vampires were sleeping.

I did some research last night on natural repellent/exterminator products and found a really interesting one. It's called Mosquito Barrier and it's made with some super-duper strong garlic juice that disolves their exoskeleton and kills the larvae. Anyone have any experience with this product??? I read their testimonials and none were from Washington state. Several from Texas and Arkansas though and they seemed very pleased.

After some of that research, I also read that cinnamon oil works quite well so I went running to my spice cabinet and grabbed my big Costco container of cinnamon. I know it's not cinnamon OIL, but I was freaking out over the sheer number of mosquitoes outside. So I went running outside at 9pm (being bitten in the process) shaking cinnamon all over the beautiful, newly spread bark. Smelled wonderful! LOL And to my total amazement, it seems to have worked a little - I was able to go outside for an hour this morning and didn't get bitten once without any repellent on! So it must have killed some of them, although I could see more swarming where I hadn't put cinnamon.

I'm not desperate enough to use DEET though... I'd rather get bitten and risk getting West Nile Virus than spray neurotoxins anywhere near my body, yard or children.

Suggestions please!!! :)

Friday, July 13, 2007

"Made From Sugar, So It Tastes Like Sugar"

While trying to create a new insecticide in London, sucralose was discovered. It was accidently created while mixing sulfuryl chloride into a sugar solution. Once they realized the mixture was sweet, they experimented with hundreds of other chlorinated sugars before finding the perfect one. The chemical name for sucralose is "1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-beta-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside."

According to Mercola's research, this is how Splenda claims sucralose is "Made From Sugar, So It Tastes Like Sugar."

Sucrose is tritylated with trityl chloride in the presence of dimethylformamide and 4-methylmorpholine, and the tritylated sucrose is then acetylated with acetic anhydride.

The resulting sucrose molecule, TRISPA (6,1',6'-tri-O-tritylpenta-O acetylsucrose) is chlorinated with hydrogen chlorine in the presence of toluene (toluene is produced in the process of making gasoline from crude oil).

The resulting 4-PAS (sucrose 2,3,4,3',4'-pentaacetate) is heated in the presence of methyl isobutyl ketone and acetic acid.

The resulting 6-PAS (sucrose 2,3,6,3',4'-pentaacetate) is chlorinated with thionyl chloride in the presence of toluene and benzyltriethlyammonium chloride.

The resulting TOSPA (sucralose pentaacetate) is treated with methanol (aka wood alcohol, paint remover) in the presence of sodium methoxide to produce sucralose.

Mmmmm.... sounds yummy, huh?

Monday, July 2, 2007

Applegate Farms Organic GRASS-FED beef hot dogs!

Applegate Farms is now selling Organic, GRASS-FED beef hot dogs! So excited! I just bought a pack yesterday and I'm about to make them for the girls.

Applegate Farms Grass-Fed Beef hot dogs

There has been a little confusion over the nitrates/nitrites issue since Consumer Reports came out saying even the brand above contains them. This freaked me out at first because Applegate Farms is a wonderful, honest company. They respond to emails and honestly care a lot about their animals and the products they produce. It really stunned me to hear about the nitrite report. Luckily Chewy-Mam put my mind at ease by finding a thoughtfully written letter by the CEO of Applegate Farms regarding this topic.


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