The Catching


We have a bit of a rodent issue in our yard. Some people would say that chooks and rodents go hand in hand – in our case we have two very elderly people who live at the back of our block and their block is completely overgrown, full of weeds and rodents. If we can’t fix that, it is very unlikely we are going to fix the rodent issues on our own.

If you go out there at night, you can hear the rodents scampering and squeaking on what was once a tennis court belonging to the elderly people but is now an overgrown mess..

Traps do not work for these creatures, either because they are way too smart or they don’t like what we’re putting in them. Usually peanut butter has worked for us in the past. Maybe we’ll give cheese a try.

However the other half bought an ultrasonic pest controller which might be stopping the rodents from going near the traps at all.

What we are catching instead – without even trying – is some very poisonous arachnids. And here I will put a read more for those who do not like eight legged creature tales to come as a surprise. Click through to read a fascinating yet terrifying story.
Continue reading

animals, Chickens, fears, Home, spider

Irritatory & Quick Update



This week I went to orientation for the course I am starting next week..

Deities, pretty please, I beg you, give me patience and strength, or else I will not make it through this course without deading people.

Within moments of arriving at the orientation meeting point, there were 3 people who right away showed me exactly who they were, and they are not people I want to know or be involved with. Obviously they all knew each other, and they started right away talking about how little work they thought they could get away with doing, and how this course would be such a bludge festival for them, and what would be the earliest moment they could sneak away for a cigarette.


But it turns out, these three *are* special snowflakes who have done a previous course with this teacher, and a lot of the work they did for their previous course will be accepted for this course, so my earnest hope is that they are rarely in our presence. Please let this be so!

Within moments of sitting down for our orientation, these three were chit chatting amongst themselves, totally ignoring the teacher and the rest of us. It did not take long for them to earn my death stare, nor the death stare of the other *adults* who will be taking this class and who actually wanted to hear what the teacher had to say without the distraction of their special snowflake conversations..

The teacher actually sent them away halfway through the orientation saying they did not need to stay and immediately the atmosphere improved. I found quite a few people I felt drawn to and will like to know more about. That is a good sign for me.

Anyway, we’ll have to see how the special snowflake situation goes. Fingers crossed they will disappear into the bludgeosphere, leaving the rest of us to work together, because I found them extremely irritatory – that is one of my special made up words. It feels exactly how it sounds.

Yes, I know, I am meant to tolerate, etc, yada yada, blah blah, whatevs. But I actually want to do this course and enjoy the work involved with it and anyone who is not there to do exactly that should get the heck out of my way, STAT!

Blog Theme Update

I still had a couple of things I want to fix around here, most important being the ability for people to subscribe to comments which seemed to have vanished with the theme upgrade – You should now see checkboxes and the options Notify me of new comments via email & Notify me of new posts via email at the very bottom of the comment box.

Sadly to get that back, we’ve had to lose my gorgeous blue comment box. It turns out WordPress Jetpack now pulls the comment box from and we have zero control over the CSS, apparently, so we couldn’t get the notify me stuff to be in white.

With that said, if you comment a lot on wordpress blogs you probably want to get yourself a or gravatar account because that gives you notifications when someone replies to your comment automatically. It is free to make an account, and it means you won’t have to type all the stuff into the box each time you comment. :)

Blogging Update

Over here at Life In The Country I have scheduled posts for Mon-Wed-Fri up till the end of February. I’m hoping to have scheduled posts set up till the end of March by the end of this week because once I start school I am not sure how much time I’ll have.

If you see something on Tues-Thur-Sat-Sun – you know those posts are add ins – generally I try not to do that and instead push out a scheduled post, which I have done with this post.

I’ve decided for now not to return Shoe Sunday or start a new blogging series as my plate may be pretty full these first 6 months. A huge thank you to those who did participate in Shoe Sunday and maybe June will see it return.

Rewatch Breaking Bad

The Rewatch Breaking Bad blog is nearly at the end of season 3 – just two more episodes – then it swings into season 4 which was by far my favourite season on the show, closely followed by the almost perfect season 5.

If you have never seen the show I do highly recommend it for a lot of reasons, in particular the amazing performances of Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul.

I have cut back the posting schedule to once a week on Sundays. I already have 8 pre-written and scheduled posts over there and by the end of this week I’d like to make that 12 or even 16 which would nearly take me up to the end of the course. Those posts are a fair bit of work, involving taking screenshots for each episode – those posts take time and effort I might not be able to spare as often while I’m at school.

There is more but I am going to warn you – it talks about spiders – there are no images, I would never do that to you – and if you don’t want to *read* about spiders either, please don’t click through. I won’t inflict them on you as a surprise. My arachnophobia is presently at an all time high, with good reason.

Continue reading

blog housekeeping, garden, Shoe Linkup, spider

Nobody Likes Spiders In Their Shoes.

I live in Australia. We have some of the biggest, ugliest, most venomous and scariest spiders in the world. Do not fear, I am not putting photographs of them here. :) But I did want to mention that I have found a great solution to something many Australians have experienced and tend to fear quite a bit.. spiders climbing into your shoes.

This has happened to me a few times. There seemed to be no solution to it. There never seemed to be any easy way of putting shoes somewhere that spiders can’t get into them. I tend to bang my shoes on the ground so that if there’s any spiders inside they would fall out.

Long time readers of the blog know that I am a major fan of IKEA. The last time I was there I saw these shoe cabinets that you attach to the wall and I thought that was an excellent idea. I couldn’t find a price on them and I thought they would be hugely expensive but today I was at their website and I thought to look for them. I nearly fell over when I saw how cheap they were, only $79! I also found that they have this gorgeous shoe cabinet which will fit in my hallway perfectly. I just have to double check to make sure my shoes will fit. I have huge feet for a woman. :)

Why am I suddenly worried about this? Eeek it is too scary to link to it, but last week a woman here had a Funnelweb spider in her *towel* which bit her. Funnelwebs are big, black, ugly, and VERY poisonous. Don’t do an image search, your skin will crawl for hours. I had been told they were only to be found within a 20km radius of Sydney, but the local hospital here treats several cases of funnel web bite each year. Wonderful! We have them here too. So now I think I need to get me a shoe cabinet.

And believe me, I am carefully checking my towel like my life depends on it every morning. I’ve held myself back from going into a major vacuuming and cleaning everything to make sure there’s no evil creatures fit, but only barely. The urge is growing. If I vanish for a couple of days you’ll know the urge took over.

fears, IKEA, spider

The Spider Intuition – what I carry with me.

The most important thing I carry with me –

One day years ago as I was driving to work, I suddenly had this thought. “There’s a spider in this car”. Ok, yep, sure, whatever. I laughed it off. “There’s a spider in this car.” said the thought, again. Patiently, but somewhat more urgent. I began to wonder if perhaps I was going crazy. “There’s a spider in this car”. Well, my gearstick is a large redback set into resin, so yes, you’re right. There is a spider in this car. “There is a spider in this car”. I thought we just established that?

It was then that I spotted movement above my head, and looked up to see this enormous huntsman spider at least as big as my hand run across the top of windshield directly above me. On the inside. I pulled over to the side of the road as fast as I could and jumped out of the car, screaming and shouting. As you do, if you’re like me with a spider fear.

In the midst of my crazy scared chills down my spine dance by the side of the road, I became aware that I was not quite alone. I saw a pair of feet appear out of the corner of my eye. When I looked up, I saw a policeman was standing next to me. He had a very large grin, and his hand on his weapon resting in the holster on his belt. “Do I need to shoot it?” he said. “It looked pretty big from where I was sitting. Well done on the pull over, by the way, I was worried you were going to slam your foot on the brake in the middle of the road”.

It turned out he did not need to shoot it, but he did attack it with a half empty coca-cola bottle that a friend of mine left in the back seat. By that time his partner had got out of the car too, and he and I were doubled over laughing as this spider ran all over the car avoiding the blows from the coke bottle while the original policeman read the spider his “rights” (you have the right to remain still while I squash you) in between telling us to stop laughing or he would make us kill it and he was laughing so much it was making it hard to outwit the spider.. meanwhile this spider was doing some crazy maneuvers in order to avoid death.

The policemen had seen it sitting above my head some kilometers back, and had been debating whether or not they should pull me over. That may give you some idea of the size of the creature. If not, I have a photo of a similar spider you could look at but I won’t publish it here knowing how scary many people find spiders. Email me, I’ll send you the link. The policeman eventually managed to kill it and I thanked them many times for their help and sense of humor before going on my way.

So, as the day went on, I tried to figure out – how had that little voice known? The spider was sitting above my head. I never saw it, the whole time I was in the car. It was not until I was driving home and I saw the sun glinting on a spider web trail that I understood – my brain had seen that web, and knew a spider must not be far off.

While you’re concentrating on the big picture, your subconscious is taking in many things in order to show you that big picture. My subconscious knew that web had not been there yesterday. My subconscious knows a million little things which it then adds up and if there’s something I’m missing, it chooses to communicate that to me. Yours does, too. This process is lightning fast and we’re not aware of it happening. We use it every day to survive without truly knowing that is what it is.

A book I read some time later expanded greatly on this concept. The book is by Gavin De Becker and it is called The Gift Of Fear. I highly recommend you grab a copy of this book because it will teach you how to listen to your intuition, not just in dangerous situations but in all situations. There’s also a lot of other good info in the book which will calm your spirit and teach you survival signals you can use, and how the media make us fear things we should not fear. He also has written a book that I believe is absolutely vital if you are a parent – Protecting The Gift.

“Intuition is the journey from A to Z without stopping at any other letter along the way. It is knowing without knowing why.” Quote from The Gift Of Fear

My intuition is the most important thing I carry with me. I take it everywhere I go.

The second most important thing I carry with me –

is the ability to be my own best friend. I don’t need to travel with an entourage. I don’t need the constant validation of others to validate myself. I like me. I think others would like me, if I gave them a chance to get close enough to know me. I rarely do that in real life. But even if they did not like me, it would not bother me. There’s a lot of people I don’t like, there’s no law saying everyone must be liked. You guys here probably are the ones who know me best, other than The Other Half and Sephy. I don’t think my parents know me as well as ya’all do.

The third most important thing I carry with me –

I can amuse myself, anywhere, anytime. As Thomas Harris wrote of Hannibal Lecter in The Silence Of The Lambs –

Dr. Lecter amused himself — he has extensive internal resources and can entertain himself for years at a time….He was free in his head.

My thoughts are incredibly precious to me. You’ve no idea what goes on in my head, but if you could get in there and listen you would probably be rolling on the floor laughing. I usually am, in my head, at least. It’s like a really good episode of Seinfeld crossed with Jane Austen crossed with all the other authors on my bookshelf. I have a lot of fun right here in my own skull. That is one reason why drugs never appealed to me – why would I want to escape something so great as the insanity in my own head?

The fourth most important thing I carry with me –

I find and appreciate beauty anyplace I look. Whether it is a really gorgeous piece of fabric, or a stunning sunset, or even just the every day, I look for beauty in it. I waste as little time on the unimportant as possible. I have so little time here that I do not want to spend one minute watching the evening news or pandering to people I cannot stand.

The fifth most important thing I carry with me –

The tips I have been given from so many different sources. Like I said the other day about the Oprah tip –

Years and years ago she did a show on travelling and security and little tips. One of the things mentioned was going to the toilet in an airport, and it’s actually changed the way I view using public toilets anywhere. As in – I always walk to the very last cubicle. People are lazy in general, they will usually use the first ones they reach, so the last cubicle usually is cleaner and has more toilet paper. So even some seemingly silly advice like that can make for lifelong habits that can be of benefit. She was right, especially in Australia where not every woman watches Oprah. I bet in the US it meant the last toilet was the most used! ;)

Some of the really important tips have come to me from books, and many of them library books that I don’t own. So I can’t always give the proper attribution or name where they came from. I was going to try and list some of them here but I’m blank now. I’ll have to post them as they come to me. ;)

As far as literally carrying things with me –

The older I get, the less I want to carry. If I can get out of the house without my handbag and mobile phone, I will do so anytime. I prefer it that way. It might have something to do with me sometimes forgetting to pick those things up when I’m out. So far I haven’t lost anything but it is wiser for The Other Half to be in charge of important things like money, cards you use to get money and keys.

Aussie Police really do have a fantastic sense of humor, which is why I am so sad I cannot listen to them on the radio scanner anymore – they’ve gone digital. ;( I miss you Policemen!

Hump Day Hmmm, life lessons, spider


I was sitting here typing in a post at about a lad we’re all baiting – hilarious fun – and I felt something on my neck, I thought it was a flying bug, so I slapped it. Then I looked down and saw a spider leg.. eeek and it wasn’t a white-tail but it was a close cousin.

One hot shower later, I’m still freaked out and feeling things crawling on me. I’m going to need to strip back this room tomorrow, vacuum, and spray everything in sight with spider surface spray before I can be comfortable at this desk again..



The weather is warming up, and this means the creepy crawlies are on the increase. I believe these encounters come in threes as any sane person does. :) Here’s this week’s three.

1. 3am the other morning I went into the kitchen to get a drink and found a typical house spider on the roof looking down at me.

2. Walking into my bedroom I spotted a house spider on the floor.

3. Returning home to my parents from the pub the other night, and trying to squeeze past my Dad’s car in the garage, I spotted a large redback near the ground.

Me “There’s a redback”

Dad “No it’s not”

Me “Yes it is!”

Mum “She’s right it is”

me – grabs spider spray and attacks spider with it, making the spider vanish behind a box

Dad comes over and pulls the box out so he can find out whether or not it is a redback. It is, of course.

Dad “Yes, it is a redback.”

Me “I must spray the entire house now”

Dad “But it’s dark! Do it tomorrow”

Me “Ok, but only because I don’t live here”

Always when I see a spider, I actually scream. The second one, I screamed so loud the *spider* jumped backwards. It was hilarious! I would have laughed was I not in mortal fear. :) I can laugh now that it is dead. Sort of. However I am also worried, that was in my bedroom, what if he/she had companions? What if they saw what happened and decide to crawl on me when I am sleeping, biting me all over? This is really my only fear, I hate the crawly things and kill them on sight, leaving their dead bodies around as a reminder to other spiders this is a dangerous place for them.

We once had a spider that crawled into our quilt when we’d hung it on the clothesline. For two weeks, the pair of us had bites all over us but we couldn’t work out why. Then one day I walked into the bedroom to spot it crawling out of the covers. I killed it, no more bites, and you can bet I have never hung anything on the line ever since. Oh no, stuff goes into the dryer, and the hotter the better.

However I think I’ve got off very easy because my cats have actually left a bunch of bodies lying around the house lately, they have been killing plenty of them and they like to leave them where we can see them, too but only so we praise them. Thank {insert your deity here} for the cats!

Earlier today I was having a chat with a friend on skype and I spotted several large house spiders outside on the fence. This calls for serious action. I have to get the spider spray so poisonous that I have a really bad reaction to it – the Mortein Surface Spray that works for 6 months. And it did last time, I did the house in February before we moved in and we really had very few creepies. Though it also killed the crickets in the shed and I am hanging out for the crickets to come back, I don’t want to dead them! So I will have to be careful where I spray. But the shed needs doing, it’s probably got redbacks in it too. :(

Redbacks are quite poisonous, those of you reading this who are not from Australia. I believe they despatch you from the planet in about 15 minutes.

Is your skin crawling reading this? Feel like stuff is crawling on you? It’s ten times worse for me writing it considering I’ve had three spider run-ins in less than three days ;)

Australia, spider