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Blood Sucking Creatures!

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Yesterday we went hiking in the woods for the first time in a while. Between the weather and allergies and crazy flooding/rains this spring, we hadn't really been out this year like we normally would be.

Well this time I forgot something very important. Normally when we go hiking we prepare by rubbing tea tree lotion on our arms and legs and torso before putting our clothing on. Then before we put shoes and stuff on, I spray some stuff with a bit of deet.

Well in our excitement I forgot.

On the way back on the trail, we must have walked through a tick nursery, because when we got to the car, we were covered with teensy tiny ticks (and what I suspect were mites or chiggers but am not sure). The really tiny things, 10 could fit on the head of a pin. I am old so it's hard for me to see something that small without glasses. My kids said they looked like ticks complete with white spot.

If those were ticks, I can see now how people can get tick borne illnesses and never find a tick bite or tick. Those suckers were so tiny, that they were difficult to see with the naked eye.

The kids started stripping down in the car and picking them off and wiping them on a handi-wipe, because that's all that we had.

They must have had barbed legs because once you got them on your fingertips, they were very difficult to remove. The handi-wipes have chemicals on them that I hope kills them, like soapy water on most bugs.

They were in our hair, armpits, around belt-waist areas, socks and behind ears and in other places

I have in the distant past, during bad years for ticks in various states, encountered a phenomenon, where ticks climb to the highest surface they can find, (Trees and sometimes playground equipment) and then drop onto passing warm blooded bodies (us). So heads up.

I have found that tea tree lotions work well as a repellent on naked skin under clothing. That way the deet is applied only to clothing when needed and not to an actual breathing person.

We put the kids in a bubble bath that contains tea tree and lavender essential oils, and that seemed to help as well, for removal. But when I put the ticks in soapy water as I picked the off, they did not die quickly like a flea or some other bug. So far we have not found any obvious bites on anyone.

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