Life is Worth Living

A Mouse Tale: A Tragedy and A Triumph

Look, things got pretty desperate around here the other day. I was parking my Sweet Ride, picking some children up from school, when I noticed something. Something so repulsive and grotesque that even the most manly of men sometimes tremor in disgust: Mouse Droppings.

Yes, Mouse Turds. Right in my center console, where I keep my sunglasses and extra napkins.

See??

I cannot even begin to describe my feelings and emotions when I first saw those two Offensive Poops. All I can say is, I got out of my van quickly.

But then, as I reached back into the van to grab my purse, I noticed something even more horrible. So horrible that I grabbed my phone and immediately called my sister in sheer revulsion and horror. There were numerous Mouse Craps on my chair! I SAT on mouse CRAPS*! Unbelievable!

I sat on this. I can’t believe I sat on this. (Yes, those are crumbs in the background. No wonder the mouse defecated all over my chair.)

I immediately hit Speed Dial to my sister, “Katie, you won’t believe it. I just SAT ON MOUSE TURDS IN MY VAN!”

Without pause, and as cool as a cucumber, she calmly responded with, “Burn it. Just burn it.”

I thought about her advice. It was good advice, for it would surely kill any infestation of rodents. But then, I hesitated. Buying a new van would be kind of pricey, and who has that kind of money? No, something else would have to be done and meantime, I had to get these kids home. So I grabbed a napkin and brushed The Offenders into the street, calling on my Guardian Angel to protect me, and formed a plan.

Plan to Get Rid of Mouse:

  1. Bribe the boys to deep clean the van. Obviously with 7 mostly young children, we eat in the van, and clearly the thing is a mess and desperately needs attention. “Boys, $10 to each of you to clean this thing out! There will be Candy Bonuses if done to my satisfaction and you douse the thing with Holy Water.”
  2. Relate my feelings and emotions to my husband immediately upon entering the house, where he is currently “working” from home.

And here’s how that conversation went:

Amidst slamming of van doors, banging of house doors, and children laughing and shouting, I desperately yelled up the stairs, “Dearest! We need to talk. Right now! I just sat on Mouse Turds, and this is unacceptable, and I have to go take a hot bath. I need a glass of wine. And you need to get that mouse out of the van immediately. I don’t care if you have to use Vacation Hours to go buy mouse traps. I’m not setting foot in the that thing again until there’s a dead mouse in a trap. Even then, I’m not so sure. What was that about wine? No, I don’t care if we gave up wine for Advent. This is an EMERGENCY. Now where’s my glass?”

Well, enough of this saga. Being the good husband that he is, though, he took an hour of Vacation, drove to the hardware store, and bought 8 mouse traps. (Which I thought was a bit stingy. I told him to buy fifty.) Then he dutifully set the traps, and the next morning, we had a very dead mouse.

Here are some photos to document the Tragedy and Triumph:

Loyal and Devoted Husband setting traps. Bless his soul!

Thank you, Jesus, for giving me sons to clean the van and check mouse traps.

Disgusting. Just disgusting.

In the Name of all that is Holy and Clean and Rodent-Free, may this never happen again. Amen. Alleluia.

*I am sorry for the vulgar language, but truly, this is what I thought. A stronger foul word may have entered my head too, but good Catholic that I am, I quickly rejected that word.

Flashback Friday

Flashback Friday: Biology 101, Firemen, and Donuts

How was your week?  Here are a few highlights from mine:

  1. Yesterday we caught Strider as he was finishing up his breakfast.  So we don’t know what he actually killed.

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Here he is.  Just a blood spot and a tail left.

I guess he doesn’t like eating tails.  So we had a little Biology 101.  What rodent has a white tail?  It looks a little thicker than a mouse or vole, but what?  A rat?  Doesn’t that tail look a little short for a rat?  We don’t know.

2.  Then there’s this, which we almost missed.

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I am sorry the quality is poor.  It’s the upper teeth and snout of whatever poor creature fell into Strider’s path.  Yuck.  Just yuck.

3.  Remember that Ditch Fire we had a week or so ago?  Well, the Fire Chief invited the boys out to the station for a private tour.  So I asked my father-in-law to take them, and he did.  They all loved it.

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These firemen are awesome.  They put all their gear on just for the boys.

They even let the boys get in their trucks and spray their hoses.

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Grandpa was secretly jealous of this part.  He wanted to spray the hose too.

4.  Someone drove by and knocked our mailbox over.  Bummer.

5.  It was the Feast of the Assumption last Wednesday.  So after Mass, we went to the local donut shop and ate donuts.  Besides the normal kinds of donuts, they had oreo cookie donuts with chunks of oreos on the frosting and donuts made to taste like snickers candy bars.  The animal cracker donuts with pink frosting were a hit among my girls.

 

Life is Worth Living

Strider Does the Unthinkable

Now he’s done it.  Look what the cat drug in.

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Strider.  The Killer.

Yes, it’s a robin, and it’s dead.

I’m all about cats killing animals, especially of the rodent variety.  And I don’t mind at all if they proudly drag those dead carcasses into my garage.  And it’s really not so bad that those dead things sit there until I notice them, whereupon the cat proudly rubs against my leg and then eats it.

But robins?  No, this is where I draw the line.  These lovely birds are a sign of spring!  They’re a sign of life!  And beauty!  They’re one of the first birds to return to the cold, cold North after ten months of winter!

You know what my Grandma Martha used to say about shooting robins, right?  (Click HERE for her murderous threats to guns and little boys even thinking of such things.)  I wonder what she’d do to this cat?

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I’ll tell you what she’d do.  She’d have Grandpa run it over with the 806.

You bet Strider ate this robin too.  But no, not the feathers.  They were strewn all over the place.  I had to have my son vacuum up his mess.  At least with mice and gophers, the whole thing disappears – snouts, tails, guts, and all.

Flashback Friday

Flashback Friday – Toddlers & Guns?

How did your week go?  Here are a few highlights from mine:

  1. At the Easter Vigil, the lady sitting behind my husband was genuinely concerned that the toddler might start something on fire.  Like my husband.  So she kindly tapped him on the shoulder and offered to hold his candle, but of course he could not give up the candle because then the toddler would scream.  Candles are so much fun at Mass!
  2. Anybody have problems keeping toddlers in Time Out?

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Time Out Chair.  Notice how it’s empty?

My toddler was supposed to be sitting in the Time Out Chair, but if nobody’s watching her, of course she’s going to get out.  Here’s where I found her this morning:

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So cute.  And so naughty!

No, this is not her crib.  No, those are not her pacifiers.  But she thought it would be really fun to climb into her baby sister’s crib and pretend to be the baby.

3.  Why say something in 3 words when you candy it in thirty?  This is the motto of my fifth child, a girl of course.  “Mom, she pulled my hair.  And it really hurt, and I told her that.  She grabbed my hair like this, see?  Then pulled it really hard, like this.  Then I cried, and told her to stop it, but she just laughed and kept right on pulling.  Mom, I really don’t see why she gets away with this sort of behavior all the time…”  Blah, blah, blah.

4.  My parents visited us for a few days.  My dad is a great story teller.  This time it was all about guns and rodents.  He grew up on a farm with 7 brothers and sisters, and for awhile they had chickens, like a lot of chickens.  Seriously, 12,000 of them.  Now being the youngest, it was his job to pick eggs with his brother.  Of course they had egg fights, but the real fun was shooting the rats with a BB gun.  There was never a shortage.  And then for more fun, they’d go find the bull and shoot him in the behind, just to watch him tear around a bit.  Then when they were sick of that, they’d shoot pigeons.  But never, never did they shoot any robins.  For they were always sternly warned by their mother, “If I ever, ever catch you boys shooting any robins, I’m gonna take your guns, I’m gonna give your guns to your father, and he’s gonna run ’em over with the 806!”  (An 806 is a tractor, by the way.)

My dad’s mother is the same woman who wore lipstick every day of her life.  For good measure, here she is:

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Grandma Martha.  Want your day to be brighter?  Just wear lipstick.

5.  Drink of the week:  Lemon Martini.  I know, I know…it’s not a real martini because it’s made with vodka instead of gin.  But let me tell you, it’s great.

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It’s made with freshly squeezed lemons.  I love my husband.