You see, ever since we moved back to our house, we've had a problem with fleas. The people who rented our house had a dog, and boy howdy the fleas are insane. They haven't bitten any of us or anyone who has come to visit (that I know of!) but they are eating poor Charisma alive. And twice I saw a flea actually jump on me. This is unacceptable.
So I started researching how to get rid of them. We don't want to use a bug bomb because the chemicals are horrible and we have pets and kids around these parts. So I was researching natural remedies.
One of the ideas I came across said to spread diatomaceous earth on the carpet. If you don't know what it is, you can google it for more info. But basically, from what I understand, it's coral (or something) crushed into a very fine powder. People and animals can eat it and it helps skin and hair, helps with digestion (basically it sweeps the gunk out of your intestines) etc... Anyway, I happened to have a very large bag of the stuff, so I thought I'd give it a try. Oh! The reason it works to kill fleas is because it scratches the protective coating off their bodies and they shrivel up and die.
So I start spreading the DE all over the carpet. I had read that it is best to wear a face mask, but I'm not one to follow directions. Unless it's a recipe, in which case I'll follow it to a T. Well, actually that's not true. I always alter it a little bit. But that's neither here nor there and I have wandered off on a tangent.
Back to my carpets. So I'm liberally throwing the stuff all over the carpet. It's very dusty. Extremely dusty. I probably should have worn a mask. It's sort of filling up the whole room with dust, so everything looks hazy. But I'm intent on killing those dang fleas DEAD! Did I mention I started this project at 10:00 at night? Yeah. Smart cookie, I am.
After I've spread the stuff I go to vacuum it up. I had planned to leave it overnight, but once it was on the carpet I knew I had to get it vacuumed up ASAP otherwise the whole house would be covered in it from the dog and kids tracking it all over. So I get our trusty little vacuum out and start trying to clean it up. I'm pretty sure I burned the motor on that poor thing right up.
This is what it looked like after I had vacuumed. It's not great lighting, and you can't really get the full effect. Basically, the vacuum just made nice, neat little lines through the DE on the carpet.
Shoot. What do I do now? The vacuum smelled horribly of burning rubber and wasn't doing anything to suck up the DE anyway. And there was still enough on the floor that it could do serious damage to the cleanliness of the rest of the house.
Luckily for me, my sister had loaned me her Kirby. Soooo I put him to work. He did a better job. Sucked up much more of the DE. See?
Hooray! Yippee! Looks great, right?
What you can't see in this picture is that there is still approximately 12 pounds of DE stuck in the carpet. There is also a fine film of the stuff covering EVERYTHING. The couches. The TV. The dining room table (which is adjoined to the living room). The computer cabinet. The windows. The coffee tables. It's EVERYWHERE.
So now I have to figure out if I should dust first or try to get Kirby to be more of a man and do a better job. See, I guess maybe I had user error the first time around. Apparently if all is well there will be a little green light that's on while Mr. Kirby does his job. And there wasn't any light on when I was vacuuming last night. And I sort of was clued in that something wasn't quite right when tough Kirby wasn't picking up crumbs that I could see. He's supposed to be a sucking machine, and he wasn't living up to his reputation.
So I'm thinking this will be a long process. Dust. So we can sit down without looking like we have powdered sugar all over us. And so we can breathe without getting DE in our lungs. But then, I still have to vacuum which is going to stir up MORE dust. So I'll have to dust again. I hate dusting. Really, really hate it.
But that's what you get when you start harebrained projects in the late hours of the day after many stressful and exhausting hours with demanding, grumpy children who cause you to dive face first into a bag of peanut butter M&Ms. And bake scones at bedtime. And then eat more than your fair share.
I tell you what, if I see a flea or see the dog scratching... well, I'm just gonna have a break down. That's all. And then I'll be forced to continue baking and eating these delicious scones.
Trust me, the picture doesn't do them justice. I don't have a fancy Canon DLR or Nikon or whatever else people use to make their food look so good you may or may not be tempted to lick your computer screen.
I'll let you know how this all turns out. In the meantime, I'm off to eat another scone and drink more coffee.