Home Ownership


Our dishwasher, washer, dryer, and fridge have managed to keep running for at least the 8 years we’ve owned the house. I think we’re on borrowed time these days. All are no-frills models from various brands. I’m really amazed they’re all functional.


I’ve been dealing with ants in the house for years. Here, there, somewhere else, no discernible pattern and no particular reason. There isn’t any food or anything where they come in or where they’re found.

2 weeks ago, they came into the bedroom. I knew this because my girlfriend screamed because a flying ant landed on her while she was reading. She checked behind the headboard and there were hundreds of the little buggers all over the floor. Pavement ants and flying ants.

She FREAKED OUT. It took at least 2 hours of moving furniture and cleaning and spraying toxic chemicals into the baseboards before I could get her calmed down enough to even think of sleeping in the living room where I had set up a temporary bed.

I get the house sprayed inside and out 2 days later. It’s been over a week since, and I finally got her to start sleeping in the bedroom again.

She thinks she’s being stupid/crazy for her fears. I have to remind her that fear is sometimes irrational, and sometimes can’t be explained or controlled.

Anyway, we had carpenter ants as well, so the treatment was more expensive than normal and comes with a 6 month guarantee. I haven’t seen one ant ANYWHERE since they sprayed.

I’m going to make up some borax and peanut butter outdoor ant baits and put them under a big, flat rock so that the squirrels don’t drag them all over the neighbourhood. I know that they’re in the old stump on my property and another hill on the side lot. It may take a few months to get the queen, but I’m patient.


Mix the Borax with some icing sugar. Will make them go for it.

  1. Emailed driveway sealing company to find out when he can seal ours
  2. He replies “how’s tomorrow?”
  3. I say “sure”
  4. Bill arrives in my inbox at 10 AM (job’s done already)
  5. I sign electronically
  6. I send payment via the banking app on my phone

If only all services were so easy and, most importantly, free of human interaction.


I can vouch for @Ook’s suggestion.
We had a colony of ants, we used the borax/icing sugar mix, mixed it with water and soaked a cotton ball in the result.
After we put the cotton ball down next to where we thought the colony was living, we saw a steady stream of ants travelling to and from the borax. We saw a reduction in the number of ants within a couple of days, and it took about a week before the ants completely stopped. We haven’t seen any sign of ants since - about 3 months ago now.


Replacing gfis sucks big donkey balls. That is all.


There’s been ads on TV from either Home Depot or Lowe’s about the refrigerators that have a tablet smartpanel embedded in the door. It was something like “when you realize your family activites are too much for just magnets” (to hold notes to the fridge door). That’s one of those niceties that sounds real good until you start looking at what it would cost to fix it if the smartpanel broke. Looking at two from the same brand with same capacity and layout, the one with the smartpanel is $1000 more expensive.

It’s a bit like that built-in vacuuming system I saw for a mini-van. A separate shop vac might be a bit cumbersome to lug around, but then again, those only cost around $30 while the built-in version was about a $700 option. I’m pretty sure you could get a decent tablet to leave next to the fridge for less than $1000 and have just as good, or maybe better, functionality.


You could even attach it to the front of the fridge, still for way less than $1000.


And the tablet can be replaced and will likely receive upgrades for years, compared to the built-in that will likely be EOL’ed in a year or two.


This. Plus you can add an extra (bigger) SD card to the laptop full of movies etc. And take it somewhere else if you want to.

Not to mention security vulnerabilities or ne’er-do-wells managing to hack your fridge/freezer and fiddle around with its temperature settings…


HBO’s Silicon Valley totally had this as a plot point a season or two ago!


Indeed. This is why I’m skeptical of all IoT devices.


You can get a Fire on sale for $35. You could cover the whole fridge front for less than $500.


Sure, if you can actually get into the PRIME DAY page.


Funny enough, I forgot about Prime Day, I swear they are that cheap every few days.


I’m assuming icing sugar is what I know as powdered sugar, more or less. I’m going to have to try it… For years, I’ve occasionally seen ants in my bathroom, but I saw three in the tub (why in the tub??) this morning, and the wife just mentioned seeing several in the area today, too. Arg. Wife came up for lunch today and I showed her @Ook’s recipe and @MikeP’s testimony. I believe she’s used a similar concoction in the past, but we will be trying the cotton ball method tonight. Probably place some outside, too; I saw some ants near the front walk the other day.


I think so. Sugar can be surprisingly complicated at times.

This time of year we get a few of the little tiny ants all the time. The kitchen doesn’t surprise me, nor does the basement. Seeing one in the top floor shower was a surprise recently, though.


Ants will come in and haunt sinks, bathtubs, showers, etc. during the summer. They’re looking for water.


Yup, except when it is flooding and they come inside to get away from it!