Monday, May 21, 2007

The moth saga continues

The moth saga continues at the Raising Five house.

Even after clearing out the cabinets in question last weekend, all week we continued to see moths.

So on Saturday my helpful husband and I pulled out every item out of every cupboard in the kitchen. Every. Last. One. It was something like moving, only without the boxes to keep things from spilling all over the place. I was grumbling over the ridiculous waste, as we threw out old boxes of cereal, spices, pasta - anything that was a potential harbor for our unwelcome guests.

I figure this is why generations before us did "spring cleaning." My grandmother used to repaint her shelves and wash her walls every spring (ask me if I've ever done that!)! I think our generation counts on all the BHT and preservatives, and modern, airtight packaging. We think food should last forever. But moths figure out a way, don't they?

Jesus' words kept going over and over in my head:
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. Matthew 6:19
Yes, moth and rust had certainly taken their toll on my kitchen. We threw out several huge trash bags worth of "treasures." While I was at getting rid of food, I also found unused appliances, cookware and dishes that I hadn't used in years. Most had sat so long they'd rusted, tarnished or were broken. What use were they to me? None at all.

Once we started putting everything back in the cabinets Sunday night, one of the kids commented to me, "Wow, I didn't know our pantry was that big!"

Hey, she was right! There was still plenty of food in it, but now I could see the back wall. How sorry is that? Had there been that much unnecessary stuff in there before? I guess I just kept cramming more and more items in there until I couldn't tell what I had anymore. No wonder our moths found a haven here!

I hated the work, but I admit I'm enjoying my clean cabinets and fresh shelf paper. I just hope moths can't get into the fridge....


Julie said...

I had the same moth problem several years ago. After throwing out everything I also, at the recommendation of my mother in law, took all my dry goods and put them in rubbermaid containers - flour, sugar, baking powder, all of it (new stuff since I threw out the old). Something about the moths not being able to live in the air tight containers. Seemed to solve the problem. Good luck!

Jenn @ Knee-Deep in Munchkin Land said...

Oh, the moth problem sounds like a nightmare! I can't imagine having to do that much cleaning in one day (or weekend!) =) It is amazing how much "stuff" we accumulate, isn't it?!

Code Yellow Mom said...

Nothing like a good clean-out, though, huh? And great analogy - we all accumulate and/or harbor mothy, rusty things that keep us from enjoying the real bounty around us. I really like this post - a great reminder!

Andrea said...

Yes, we had the grain moths...what a nuisance.
That verse played continuously in my head during that time, too. Fitting.
I hope they scadattle for you!

Deborah said...

That is too weird! I just had the same problem....well, actually, I've had the problem, known I had the problem, and ignored it for about 6 months (at least). It started with some spilled corn meal in the back of my pantry.

Then all winter we got these little moths, which I tolerated by swatting them down to the floor w/ my hand, then stepping on them. (Also, my 3yo, our resident "bug killer" would always be willing to squish them.) Actually, my dh said I looked like I needed to be committed to an institution because I would just go around swatting the air. Looked kinda crazy!

Anyways, I finally realized I had a problem....duh. I didn't know they were grain moths til I read someone else's comment on here. But that's where I found them, in the pantry, in all the grain products. Especially anything that was a brown rice product, of which we have much.

So one whole day I cleaned out my pantry and threw away a bunch of stuff. Feels good though to have my pantry looking nice.

Am I living in the twilight zone, or do we just have a lot in common?

Elise @A Path Made Straight said...

Yikes! I've never heard of so many moths - call Guiness! ;)

The words from Jesus are good for us all to remember - even in my tiny house, after downsizing several times this year, we still have too much.

Thank you, Katherine, for going before us and encouraging!

Susanne said...

My mom did spring cleaning every year, too! I can't imagine what work you guys had to do all at once. It would have creeped me out thinking they were in my food.

Great lesson you were able to give us out of the whole ordeal though. Maybe that'll make you feel better about the whole thing?

Beck said...

Good post.
We don't have moths, but we do have ants. LOTS OF ANTS. Ick! So this week is going to be spent getting to the root of the ant problem. Nasty.

Laura said...

Holy moths! What a lot of work you had to do but at least there was an upside to it all! Sounds like it was well worth it especially gaining all that space...woohoo!

Love the scripture verse!


Unknown said...

Oooh, sorry for all the trouble, but what a great reminder about how little good all that "stuff" does for us.

Lauren Penn said...

We have a gnat problem!! I had a cute window plant that really spruced up our little apartment. and then one day, all the gnats were all over the place. as soon as you swat one, you'd see another! so out with the plant. yet there are a few stragglers... so annoying. Good luck!