Like most everyone else, the race is on to bake , wrap, finish projects, and shop for Christmas. This is particularly challenging this week because both DD and DS have finals that they need rides to. Thankfully I can juggle/mesh their schedules and finishing time will be had around the travel time. And, this year I am a bit further along than in previous years. Now to just transform each year to be further along than the one before. Unfortunately, none of the projects can be shown right now.
So around the knitting and crocheting of projects I encountered a most unwanted, thankfully temporary house “guest”. Last Friday morning I sleepily dressed and headed to the kitchen to make breakfast. I was half asleep waiting for the water to boil to going into my steel-cut oats. Suddenly and unexpectedly a very small, brown and furry beastie climbed onto the back of the counter next to the stove and made a mad dash around the back behind several appliances, behind the sink and hid behind the dish drainer full of clean, dry dishes that were waiting to be put away. As you can imagine, I screamed nice and loud for one or both of the kids to come get rid of the monster and QUICK! DH was not home yet from work and the nasty little thing had startled me rather abruptly awake. Since neither kid had been real willing to get out of bed yet even though DD was supposed to be showering to go to her Health class, they had no choice but to wake up! DD came dashing out of her room without her glasses on, convinced she told me afterwards, that something was wrong with my eye! DS came out prepared to exact payment for being so rudely awakened.
The stove was turned off and DS put Scooter on the counter to go after the mouse. I think the cat was so stunned by being in forbidden territory that he didn’t have a clue what to do. He sniffed around briefly and jumped back down to the floor without disturbing anything, mouse included. While I ran to the bathroom, DS stirred the mouse up. It decided to try and make a run for the back of the stove, however miscalculating, it landed in one side of the sink. DS said it tried to “sling” itself out and finally succeeded just before I came back from the bathroom. I was desperately needing to cook breakfast so I turned the stove back on while DS picked up all but three of the sticky traps he had laid out to try and catch Mr. Mouse. The water was just starting to boil so I could add it to the oats when I saw a quick “flash” of a brown mouse about 1-1 1/2″ long quickly run the last few steps to the edge of the counter and down behind the stove. Arghhh!
We placed traps where they would be in it’s path and I proceeded to clean and scrub everything thoroughly while breakfast cooked. I knew that once breakfast was done and DH came home, the stove would have to be pulled out and we would have to discover how it came in. Then the phone call came from DH’s work. He was calling to let us know that he had to hold over and wouldn’t be home until after 11 am. I explained what happened so he could think about how to best deal with the “problem”. DD was fed and off to school I took her.
To make a long story short, when DH came home the stove was pulled out. At the base of the wall where the wall meets the floor, there was a long, narrow crack just big enough to allow access to smaller mice. A quick trip was made to Lowe’s for two cans of spray foam. DS filled the crack and made a nice barrier of foam along the entire stretch behind the stove. If the mouse or mice choose to try to return, they could try to chew through it, but they would die from ingesting it. Scooter was also told that he was only getting dry cat food and water for awhile until he learned to chase mice. Usually he gets a bit of wet cat food every Sabbath morning, but not this last one. That’s how we taught all of our other cats to get rid of mice. Hopefully we have stopped this problem!