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  • Writer's pictureInger and Jeff Latreille

Ants, Dog Hair & Poison Ivy

~Monday, April 3, 2023~

Day 1,024

A day we weren’t quite expecting…..instead of a fun time at the beach with Sadie, we played it safe by staying put at the campground. There was a threat of afternoon thunderstorms and lightning so we preferred not being another statistic to Florida’s deadly weather phenomenon. Did you know Florida is right behind Texas for having the most lightning strikes in the country? And Florida averages about 7 fatalities per year, leading the nation in lightning deaths. So keep an eye on that Florida weather people! Anyway, with a better forecast, we’ll shoot for tomorrow to get in some water time and exercise for our girl before Jeff and I tour Cape Canaveral on Wednesday. Our last visit was about 20 years ago, so we’re really looking forward to it!

So we might as well address a few projects. But first, tackling Jeff’s poison ivy. He swears it’s worse than poison oak in terms of the itch. Calamine is just not cutting it….could it be the 4-year old bottle that it is? So off to the store to pick up a newer bottle of Calamine and Cortisone cream and a roll of quarters to do laundry. I sure seem to be writing more often about laundry duties while in hot, humid Florida as the shirts just can’t handle more than a day’s use 🫠.

Once we got Jeff all squared away and a load of laundry in the wash, we each had our list of things to tackle. Jeff’s was repairing the corner frame of our bed at the rear of the trailer. The side panel seems to have separated from the end panel likely from over stuffing the storage underneath. We do have storage under our couch at the front of the trailer as well with a goal of distributing weight evenly throughout the rig, front to front and side to side. If we didn’t, we’d find an even wilder ride behind us while towing. Though Lance does an amazing job with craftsmanship, our constant use of the trailer can affect the integrity of some things. So Jeff’s learned to beef things up even when they’re not broken, i.e. shelving, hardware, etc. As I’ve said before, when Jeff tackles any project, it’s meant to weather even the shakiest of circumstances.

My projects included removing what the vacuum alone can’t…..all the pet hair along the edges of the carpet. Maybe you’ve already discovered this neat little trick. But I find using a slightly damp toothbrush (no, not the one you’re currently using), does an amazing job at catching all that pet hair in those hard to reach places. And I thought our trailer was super clean until I saw just how much the vacuum hasn’t been catching. Ugh! That’s what happens when you are a labrador owner. Next project….the air conditioners. With the heavy use we’ve gotten lately out of our 2, I thought it time to do a little cleaning. It’s a fairly quick task that requires removing the small vent covers and the washable mesh material underneath. I simply run them under warm water with a little Dawn (especially the ones from the kitchen area), and leave to air dry which in Florida is good to go in a matter of minutes. Now our air conditioners are back to singing!

The ant update….they seem to be disappearing. But does that mean they’ve just relocated to a different, hidden room in our hotel? Those would be the small, interior ants we’re talking about. But as of today, Jeff has found an even bigger problem…….bigger ants climbing UP to our trailer. While he was putting a storage bin underneath the rig, he discovered a trail of ants leading to one of the tires. When he removed the tire covers, he found a whole lot more of them on the inside of the fabric. After putting down our own non-toxic deterrents of cinnamon bark and coffee grounds in their path, it seems to be luring them to other greener pastures.

While enjoying a beautiful, light breezy evening (enough to keep the mosquitos away), our dinnertime ended up being in true Latreille fashion….9:30. But I assure you, it was a dinner worth waiting for. Jeff had marinated Ahi in soy sauce and ginger, then seared it after about an hour, topping it with a delicious green onion/garlic sauce. Garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus sprinkled with parmesan cheese and sesame seeds were scrumptious accompaniments. We keep talking about all the adjustments we’re going to have to make once we own a home, especially the kitchen. We’ve gotten pretty used to a small, efficient space when preparing food. But isn’t that how most of America’s great kitchens are run; efficient, small, productive spaces? The only thing missing is adequate counter space which we can’t wait to have more of. I certainly won’t miss having to resort to the trickle over areas of the kitchen table and bedroom credenza for meal prep.

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