Poor Man Survival
Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources
I've done so much for so long with so little, that now I can do anything with nothing…Grandma
Granny Crabapple tells you how pinch a penny!
Old Granny could teach the government a thing or two about saving money and how to balance the budget. She is famous for making a dime do the work of a dollar! Here are a few of her top hints…
1. Get rid of the kids! Those little critters are expensive to raise so stop having so many children. They always want this or that expensive electronic toy and parents are usually dumb enough to race out and buy them something which will be in next years’ garage sale. Teach them to read and send them to the library for gosh sake. Tell them to go out and mow a lawn for some neighborhood granny like me…maybe they’ll get a tip [or a boot in the but if they screw up]. And they don’t need those distracting cell phones to sext their friends with. Do you like those $100 a month family plans Verizon offers…put the damn money into an education fund. Kids don’t need cell phones, period! [There, I just saved you more than $100 bucks a month].
You could always sell the little buggers to some gypsies I know!
2. Make your own cleaning stuff. Dump those expensive paper towels and use a rag which can be rewashed a 100 times and make your own all-purpose cleaning liquid by mixing 40% ammonia with lemon scent, 50% water and drop or two of dish soap. Put it into a spray bottle and clean your kitchen and windows for pennies.
3. Dump cable TV or get their cheapest plan. How many stupid episodes of Survivor or the hillbilly channel do you need? Hell, even the news sucks and the networks are just a mouthpiece for the government and you don’t need any more of their propaganda or kool-aid. [Speaking of Kool-Aid, it’s a lot cheaper than those sugary sodas your kids are loading up on…plus they might even lose some of those fat bulges they’re carrying around because they spend too much time playing computer games. Boot them out of the house and lock the door. They’ll learn to play on their own, it comes natural and beside, you need some time to reflect peacefully on how you can take over the world and make it a better place as our two political parties sure haven’t had any success!
Average cost of raising a child hits $245,000 (CNN Money)
Learning to be more self-sufficient will save you $$$
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Stay tuned for future penny pinching insights from Granny Crabapple…
"He who does not economize will have to agonize"—Confusius
Getting Rid of Pet Odor
We’ve owned dozens of cats over the years and their ‘spray’ can be very annoying. We also purchase many storage units and lots of items at auctions each year and frequently find animal odors present.
Several years ago, we moved into a house where there had been dogs. We had a cat and he was very territorial! He sprayed every corner of our dining room, over and over again. Apparently the doggy smell was strongest there. I was about to give up and have the room removed, since I couldn't remove the "zoo" odor, when a friend suggested using club soda. I bought a liter bottle and poured a generous amount onto the carpet, letting it fizz. When the fizzing stopped I used lots of paper towels to blot up the liquid then let the area air dry. I did every corner of the dining room (it probably looked like some strange ritual by then!). It took a few applications but the odor went away! I hope this works for you as well as it did for me. I also use club soda when someone (or one of the cats) has vomited on the floor. Takes the smell away in a snap!
Try Enzyme Neutralizers
Have you tried the enzyme odor neutralizers such as Simple Solution or Nature's Miracle? Personally, I've found Nature's Miracle to be about the best. You have to follow the directions EXACTLY though and saturate the area with the product, then leave it there the appropriate amount of time. You also have to treat ALL the areas where the animal has urinated, because if you leave a spot undone, the animal will smell that and think it's still "okay" to go there.
This stuff can be expensive if you purchase it through a place like PetSmart, etc. on a regular basis. I've found the cheapest source of this stuff (and other pet products) to be Jeffer's Pet Supply 1800jeffers.com. They have some amazing deals. They also sell an ultraviolet light to help you "view" the urine stains, but this seems kind of expensive for what it is. Unfortunately, sometimes depending on your sub-floor or flooring, the odors still persist.
Another product I have used are the "Smell-Eze Granules" at no-odor.com and these work fairly well, though are relatively expensive, for getting rid of urine smells. You sprinkle this on your carpet and the granules absorb the odor (different from the grocery store-type carpet deodorizers; these have no smell on their own) I also bought the Smell-Eze bags of granules that you place around your home (for smoke, pet odors, etc.) and they worked great for a while, then seemed to conk out. Whatever you use, it is sometimes a challenge to conquer these smells, but it can be done!
Color Safe Bleach
I moved into an apt where cat urine was abundant. I used Vivid Safe Bleach and it removed every trace of the smell. It did not stain or lighten the carpet, but I would try a hidden area first. I poured the Vivid on the spot, rubbed it a bit, then covered it with paper towels and heavy object. I kept replacing the towels
Finally Tried Odo-Ban
We had two large dogs and still have one cat that had "accidents" in the house. I tried everything, from vinegar to baking soda, to commercial bacteria cleansers from our local pet store. The best thing to use and I strongly recommend it is a product called "ODO-BAN" it is available in one gallon containers from Sam's Club. If you lived nearby, I would be happy to give you a cup of it. Just mix it 1:3 parts water, sprinkle on the spot, (we used a watering can as it was a large area, and let dry) Once it is completely dry, it is impossible to detect any odor. Also you can put it straight in a spray bottle and spray it in the air to get rid of odors too. Take it from someone who used it on a "skunked" dog. IT WORKS!!!
Baking Soda Solution
I had a cat who was getting elderly and had kidney disease. She started going into our lower level den behind a couple of chairs and urinating. I think what enticed her was the fact that we had sustained flood damage and the carpet had gotten wet and had a dank smell to begin with. Then she added to it before I could treat the wet smells from the flooding!
After getting the carpeting dried out and cleaned as well as possible using the standard carpet cleaners, I realized the urine smell was very much still present. I have a handy little book called "Baking Soda-over 500 uses..." and here is what finally worked for me. To prevent the lingering smells in a carpet, they advise to clean up what you can, then generously sprinkle the remaining spot with baking soda. Scrub gently, from the outside toward the center, with a stiff brush or sponge dipped repeatedly in clean water (test for colorfastness!). Blot up the moisture with paper towels. Leave a last small layer of baking soda powder sprinkled on the spot and vacuum it later when the carpet is dry. I had to repeat this several times, but it worked! No more smells!! Carpet looks fine! (and this was an OLD carpet)
For general deodorizing, they also advise sprinkling baking soda on carpeting monthly, or as needed, before going to bed and let it set overnight. Vacuum the next day. They include a home-made carpet deodorizer recipe:
1/2 cup baking soda
1/2 cup cornstarch
15 drops of your favorite essential oil fragrance
Get to the Source
Lift up the carpet and get the affected padding out of there. Cut out a square piece of the padding and replace it, or if it is foam rubber wash the affected piece. You will not get it clean while it's on the floor, a carpet scrubber is only meant to clean the carpet, not the padding. If it is washable, clean in a mild solution of dish detergent and warm water, then rinse in vinegar. Dry thoroughly before putting back down (staple into place).
Once the pad is clean, the carpet should be shampooed. I've done this for people before. A) Spot treat the area with carpet cleaner solution straight out of the machine and let sit for 5-10 minutes. B) Clean the carpet per instructions on the machine. C) Replace the shampoo in the machine with white vinegar and go over it thoroughly one final time just as if you were shampooing the area.
If the cat or any cats are still in the house, this will not be good enough. The cat will still be able to detect the smell, as will cats to follow it, and they will mark the area. If you plan on having a cat again, the carpet and the pad are not salvageable, except in a room the cat would never be allowed into.
Ammonia and Oil Soap
Use equal parts (about a tablespoon each) ammonia and Murphy's Oil Soap and dilute it in a gallon of water. It worked for us…
Additional useful gems for making life better…
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Yours in freedom,
Bruce ‘the Poor Man’
A Shallow Planet Production