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Memorial Day ushers in the unofficial start of summer in Georgia! We hope you have had a safe and happy vacation. It also ushers in a couple of things we all need to be aware of, water and mosquitoes! One causes the other, right? but even though the mosquitoes are happy the Georgia EPD is not!
US Secretary of Agriculture tells us, "With Lake Lanier showing only slight improvement after recent rainfall it's more important than ever for citizens to be good stewards of our water supply," said EPD Director Richard Dunn. " The lake remains eight feet below its full water level. Coupled with the fact that it is not unusual during a drought for Lanier to drop six feet or more over the summer, it is critical that metro Atlantans follow a Level 2 Drought Response, which allows reasonable outdoor water use while still saving water."
"Lake Lanier is a large reservoir fed by relatively small streams," added EPD Director Dunn. "Recent rains have provided short-term relief for your landscape, but not enough rainfall to provide significant improvement to Lake Lanier."
Drought Response Level 2 is in effect the Metro-Atlanta counties of Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Habersham, Hall, Lumpkin, Paulding and White.
Remember: In all drought response levels, during installation and for 30 days after installation is complete, newly planted lawns, turf, ground cover, flowers, shrubs, trees and other plants can be watered ANY DAY, at ANY TIME - all irrigation types. But after 30 days we need to be aware of the regulations. Download the EPD flier here.
As to the mosquitoes, let's try not to make them happy. The Georgia Department of Public Health has issued a set of tips to help prevent mosquito bites and control the number of the pesky insects in your yard:
The Georgia Department of Public Health recommends the use of EPA-registered insect repellents containing DEET (20%-30%) or Picaridin, IR3535 or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus. Follow all label instructions for safe and effective use.
If you’re using sunscreen, apply it first, then insect repellent.
Wear light colored clothing including loose-fitting long sleeves, pants and socks to help protect against mosquito bites.
Around your house, "Tip and Toss" every week, or after every time it rains.
Get rid of unnecessary items that hold water and tip standing water out of flowerpots, planters, children's toys, wading pools and buckets.
Toss out items you don't need that hold water, like old tires, bottles and cans.
Make sure doors and windows fit tightly and are in good repair to keep mosquitoes outside.
Mosquitoes are most active at dawn and dusk. Limit outdoor activities during those hours.
It’s been several years since I was too busy to hunt. I can remember one year when I was opening a business that deer season had to be skipped. I never remember missing much of a turkey season until this last year. During the last three weeks of the year, I hunted one time. I was just too busy with so many things going on. I hope that never happens again.Can a hunter be called a hunter who never hunts? Can a fisherman be called a fisherman who never fishes? Can a runner be called a runner who never runs? Or how often does one have to participate before he or she can assume a title. And how long must one refrain from a particular activity before the title is taken away? I mean if I went for three years without hunting, could I still consider myself a hunter? If not three, what about five, or ten years? Would I then have to accept the fact that I once was a hunter but not anymore? I think while we may not agree on the time, we all would agree there would come a time when we would have to relinquish the position we once had.
I once heard a pastor say there are two types of membership models – the club model and the family model. The club model is based upon rules. If one agrees to and follows the rules of the club, he or she is allowed to join. When the rules are broken for an extended period of time, membership is revoked. The family model establishes a relationship first and while there are rules for each family, the breaking of such rules may harm the harmony of the membership but it doesn’t renounce the relationship. For instance, while I may break the rules of my family, I will always be in the family. What model do you think God has decided to base our relationship to him on? I hope you said the family model. It’s true. As God did in the life of Adam and Eve, Abraham, and the Children of Israel, God wants a relationship with us built on grace and faith that he initiates. The do’s and don’ts of such a relationship are not there to establish it, but to make it the most fruitful. This is what separates Christianity from all other religions and as a result it is the only one that can give absolute certainty concerning eternal life. This means while I may miss a season or two, I can still be called a Christian. Not because of my previous actions because of permanent family.