Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Forced into housework...

We have fleas. I'm not exactly blaming my mother, but we had no fleas until she started staying with us, and fleas had taken over her house by that point. We do have 3 indoor-outdoor cats that could have just as easily brought them inside. Regardless of where they came from, they're here.

Last summer we battled with fleas for months. Raid and Hot Shot sprays and foggers. Flea baths for the unwilling cats every week. It was a nightmare, but after gobs and gobs of chemicals, we eventually got rid of them. So last weekend, when one single little flea was spotted, I decided to nip the whole mess in the bud and deep clean everywhere. I washed all the sheets and blankets. I vacuumed the whole house, even under stuff. (The carpet still looks as beautiful under the couch as when we installed it, which makes me hate the visible carpet, but I had no choice but to cover the pretty carpet just so the whole floor would match. God forbid someone come over, see that spot of pretty carpet and realize just how much we've wrecked it since it was put down.) I bathed the cats. Boxer, my 11 year old apricot point siamese, is the biggest howling baby every time he has a bath. It's really pretty funny.

Yesterday, while settling in for a nap on the couch, I found a flea crawling on the blanket I'd snagged from the girls' room. Ugh.

Last night I bought a box of 20 Mule Team Borax, having read plenty of testimonials about its flea-killing ability. So today I've been sprinkling it all over the carpet and rubbing it in with a broom. I've been washing all the blankets again. I may wash the stuffed animals too (Holy Hell will that be a job!). I've been adding Borax to the wash loads too. Not sure if it will help with the fleas, but it certainly helps with the nasty funk that permeates all my son's linens (what is that?!?). I'm considering making a solution of Borax and water to wash the cats in, but I'm not so sure about that. I know you can use boric acid and water to clean gunky kitten eyes, but I don't know if it's the same stuff in 20 Mule Team. More research needed on that I guess.

So, wish me luck. My house hasn't been cleaned this well since the last flea episode. I'm sure my husband is about ready to have a heart attack. In fact, maybe that's where the fleas are coming from...

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