Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Mice are not Nice

I have about 2/3 of a lovely little blog post written. But what just went down pretty much preempts the former topic for a night.

For a few moments, I'm going to step away from the more frequent grief topics I've been talking about lately and cover some different emotions.





OK, now it sounds like an episode of Sesame Street. Sing with me now... "One of these things is not like the other..."

I hate mice. Maybe not quite as much as I hate snakes, but this is really a tough one to measure. I will completely freak if I ever see a snake in the house. If they are outside, I can run, and they will eventually go away. 

But a mouse in the house? Awww, no. When I've seen "evidence" (that's the polite word for mouse turds) in the house, it would creep me out to no end. Spot an actual mouse, dude, I'm doing something quite similar to my snake dance while whimpering out my own tune. 

This spring, Ghon told me I have to get used to dealing with them.


Alas, I figured out how to set traps and put about 8 of them around the house. I believe we caught about 4. And who emptied those traps? ME. Yep, that's right, I did. I put on rubber gloves, opened the trap, and dumped the bodies. To prove to myself that I could do it. And because Ghon had said, "What if I'm not here to do it? You need to learn."

Well damn. He was right again.

However, those were dead mice. We did come across 3 one day that appeared to be young and well, alive. Nope, nada, not dealing with those suckers, and thankfully, he was with the kids and I and did deal with them. One tossed outside with a broken leg but alive, and two more to a friend to potentially save. Because even the mouse hater I am, felt a tiny soft spot for these 2 little babies.

Not anymore. I'm living here. My kids are living here and damn it, I have two cats. Cats that Ghon and I got over two years ago when we thought we might actually move in. Cats, specifically to be mousers.

And still, I have mice. WTH?

We live on a farm, in the mountains, Ghon would say. There are going to be mice. No, there doesn't have to be. Seal it up. Lock it down. No mice required. No vacancy.

A few nights ago, I sat on the stairs, and thought I saw something scurry across the mudroom. But it was so quick, I wasn't sure. I didn't want to believe it. I finally gathered enough nerve to look around - and nothing.

Today, I come home with the kids, and Jonathan starts yelling "Mom! I hear a mouse! I hear something squeaking!"  

No, can't be.

Yes, yes it can be. In his room.

I start yelling - get the cats! Close the door! Don't lose sight of it!

Cupcake had it cornered, but just stared at it. Kinda pawed at it a bit. Mouse rolls over on it's back and plays dead. Yet, no, no it's not dead. It squeaks and tries to scurry off again.

I'd thrown away most of the traps. Hadn't seen any mice, why keep them? They don't bring me joy, so away they went. But I knew where two were... So I grabbed a trap, load it with peanut butter and calmly return to Jonathan's room. Lefty, wants nothing to do with the mouse or the commotion. Cupcake is interested, but not out for the kill. Genevieve and Jonathan are cheering the cat on like they were at a cheerleaders at a football game. I'm wondering if I have the right shoes on, cause if it touches my foot, I'm a goner.

Attempt one, behind the bedroom door. Mouse escapes. M1 - K0
Attempt two, corner of wall and Jonathan's loft. M2 - K0
Attempt three, cornered between a wall and Jonathan's toy shelf. Slide trap in. Nudge it with a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle sword. M2 - Kim Wins.

Now, I've caught the rodent, but, only caught it, not killed in. If you feel sorry for the filthy rodent - stop reading now. 

Why are you still reading?

Into a plastic bag went the trap, into another bag went that bag, and into the trash can it goes.

I remind both kids that this is why we do NOT take food upstairs and that we must keep our rooms neat and clean. Then, whip out the clorox wipes. Genevieve decides to dust mop the dining room floor.  She's not down there long, when I hear "MOM! I HEAR SQUEAKING!"

Aw, hell no. Not again!

Yes. Again.

She told me she spotted it. Then, I spot it.

"Go get Lefty and Cupcake!"

They attempt to find the cats, who are now hiding. They better start earning their keep.

I set another trap. The varmint went into a closet, so I set the trap inside and close the door.

Two. Two freaking mice in one day.

Yeah, disgust. Completely grossed out. Loathing. But pride? That took a minute to process. I didn't lose my cool. Which is helpful for both me and the kids. I got on the floor and trapped it. Well, let's back up and start with staying in the room. Near it. Trapped it. Picked up the trap with a live mouse in it. Disposal.

Not one tear shed.

Not one scream.

Not a one.

Proud. Yep, pretty proud of myself. And the kids. The cats - well, not so much. And the trap, it's still empty.

I need an exterminator. Stat.

As I finished this post from my bedroom, I hear a noise, then a squeak. I kid you not. Am I really sitting here writing about the freaking mice and hear one? I cautiously get up and go toward the hall and hear it again. I definitely can't scream now. The kids are sleeping in the next room. Oh dear Lord, what if it goes in their room?? 
Fortunately, Cupcake is trying to earn her keep. She's watching it. Pounces on it. I arm myself with a box, hoping to trap it. I look at my feet again. Flip flops. Please don't touch my feet. Lefty kinda watches, but lets Cupcake handle things. I look down, mouse is on it's back and not moving. Way to go, Cake!!  I grab a huge wad of paper towels and a bag so I can pick it up. When I come back, it's gone.
Huh. I didn't no mice played possum. It's still alive. Cupcake is tossing it around. Chases it. Pounce. Toss. Chase. I'm now her biggest cheerleader. Down the hall; into the side hall, into the bathroom. I close the bathroom door. Look at my feet again. Me, mouse, Cupcake. Lefty scratches, so I let her in. Let Cake have some more fun. It flips, stops. I muster up what little courage I have, lay the bag down, and use the end of a closet rod that was cut to flick the mouse into the bag. Shake it down. Tie it. Go downstairs and stick it in another bag. Toss it outside just in case mice can chew through all that plastic. Which I think might be possible.
I need to finish this post. Seriously. But I think I'm going to be up for a while. As I finished the section above, I heard a noise downstairs. Then a cat running. And more freaking squeaking. She's got another one. I paused from drafting this and go in for the assist. Cupcake is on fire. She throws a right, she throws a left. Pounce, toss. It still scurries. Got behind a box; a box full of books. A big heavy box. My turn. A few kicks to the box, and I emerge, victorious.

Three down, and I'm scared to go to sleep.

I need an exterminator and lots of expansion foam. Stat.

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