Category Archives: Living

Gnats on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

Gnats along the Mississippi Gulf Coast are a major problem that most citizens encounter every day. These small fruit flies are commonly mistaken as baby insects, but in actuality, they are full- grown adults. These annoying insects are one of the Gulf Coast’s worst insects. There are a few ways to prevent gnats. Everyone on the Gulf Coast has experienced their fair share of aggravation with them. With a little bit of research, we can find many solutions of preventing and stopping gnats. Identifying a gnat infestation is fairly easy; all it takes is seeing a swarm of adults flying around. However, there are many ways to get rid of gnats quickly.

Female_black_fungus_gnat

Gnats can develop in wet soil, so the best way to stop the invitation is to find any plants with wet soil and allow them to dry out. This will prevent the gnats from being able to reproduce, stopping the infestation. Gnats can also survive on fruit; the best way to prevent this is to keep your fruit in your refrigerator. Gnats are a pest by any means and should be dealt with and stopped any way possible. Some even say pouring vegetable or olive oil in your kitchen sink will get rid of the problem.

Using bug spray can keep gnats away from you when outdoors. Gnats can bother anyone, so being prepared is always a good thing. Bug spray will not kill the gnats, but it will keep them from swarming around your face. Bug spray can be used for instant gratification, but for a long-term solution, you should follow the instructions from the paragraph above. Gnats have always been an issue for those of us living on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and we should research a much more permanent solution. I can personally think of several occasions in which gnats have disrupted and aggravated me.

I remember when I was younger and playing baseball, several times gnats would swarm the field we were playing on. One night the swarms were so bad I remember a gnat flew into my eye, causing me to miss a pop fly in the outfield. We used to hold our gloves up in the air to try and keep the gnats away from our faces. Maybe one day we will have a solution to stop the gnat infestation that bothers our Southern way of life here along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

Gnats have pestered us as a society for far too long, and it is time we seek out a permanent solution to stopping the gnats’ population growth. We have discussed some methods in this article that can remove gnats from your home and even some that will prevent them from breeding in your home. We have also brought up short-term solutions such as bug spray, but there is no permanent solution to the gnat problem, outside of calling an expert. A certified bug exterminator can set you up on a permanent maintenance solution. We have several great local companies on the Mississippi Gulf Coast such as Harvard Pest Control.

Making your own liquid laundry detergent.

Living on the Coast of Mississippi with 2 very active kids, a puppy and a husband, we do lots of outdoor activities. We play sports, ride bikes along Waveland Beach, go to the splash pad, play in the sand, swim at the pool and so on. With all of this come a lot of…….CLOTHES WASHING!  Not where you thought I was going with this huh?! HA! Well, I have so many clothes, towels, swimsuits & various sports uniforms that pile up in my washroom. Because I  wash clothes everyday, I used a massive amount of detergent. This can become quite costly. The light bulb went off!  “Let’s make our OWN laundry soap” I told my husband with excitement!  I figured it would save me money & the aggravation of having to haul home those heavy bottles from our local club store. I loaded my husband and kids in the car and headed out to the store.  We were able to find everything at one store!  woot woot!

Bucket, Washing Soda, Fels-Naptha, Borax and a mixer blade to make laundry detergent.

Items required to make washing detergent at home.

Always wear eye protection and gloves when dealing with chemicals of any type.

This is what we got!

  • A five gallon bucket & lid (one time purchase)

  • A bar of Fels Naptha soap

  • A box of Borax

  • A box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda

 

Once we were back at home, we immediately got to making the laundry soap.  It took no time at all. Within 30 minutes, we had our first batch of detergent.  I was so excited!  I could not wait to use it!  It worked just as well as any of the brand name soaps and was a fraction of the cost. It no longer pains me to fill that little measuring cup of liquid soap on a daily basis.

Besides water here are the three main ingredients in home made laundry detergent.
Clothes washing detergent from water and 3 base products.

By the way….you can get started on this for about $12!  Yep…that’s all!  The second batch of laundry soap and every batch after that will cost even less since you won’t have to buy the bucket again!

Here’s what you do to make home made laundry detergent:

  1. Grate the whole bar of Fels Naptha soap. I used a regular box cheese grater.

  2. Put the grated soap bar in a pot of hot water and continue to heat on medium low until all soap chunks are dissolved.  The soapy water will be a bit foamy.

  3. Fill the five gallon bucket half full with hot water.

  4. Pour in the hot soapy water mixture.

  5. Add 1 cup Super Washing Soda.

  6. Add ½ cup Borax (I sometimes add as much as a cup).

  7. Stir that up.  A long wooden paint stirrer works well.  You can also use a paint stirrer that attaches to a power drill. Use whatever you have.

  8. Fill the bucket up to the top with more water. Give it another quick stir.  Snap the lid on.

  9. Let it sit overnight.

The next day you can fill up your containers with the soap.  I saved my old bottle of laundry detergent to fill, but you can use anything you wish (milk jugs, etc.). I leave the rest of the soap in the five gallon bucket until I am ready to transfer it.

 

Happy Washing Y’all!