Oh my heavens.
My heart is still pounding as I type this. My hands are shaking. And I had to share.
A few months ago our cat, Oliver, caught a Deer Mouse in the backyard. I saw it happen and threw a sand pail on the mouse and shooed Oliver away. One of the things I do like about our cat (there are many I don't) is that he is a good rodent cat. We rarely have moles, mice, or other varmints in our yard. I intended to keep it long enough to show the kids, but showed #1 first.
The way #1 tells it is all wrong. He says this was all my idea. Nope. HE was the one who suggested we keep it, not me. I was surprised, but after all he loved rodents when he was a kid, so I shouldn't have been too surprised. He'll tell you it was me, but I was on a catch and release mission. Anyway, into a cage it went. We've fed it peanuts, cheerios, and birdseed ever since.
This morning I am cleaning out the homeschool room. It has become a dumping ground in the last couple of weeks, and the boys slept on the floor in there for a few days while we had company. We start back to school on Monday and I would like a nice clean slate. Snug is 1/2 way done with his school year and LMM is going to start kindergarten here soon. A clean well-organized room motivates me more than anything else.
I decided to start with cleaning the mouse (Ralph) cage first since the shavings get everywhere and it tends to be the messiest job. We rarely see Ralph. He is nocturnal and rarely makes an appearance. He's been a rather disappointing classroom pet on my part. He usually hides in a small wicker ball that came with his cage. When you clean his cage you have to be fast-I don't pick him up by hand as I don't really want to be bit. I make sure he is in his ball and then quickly scoop it up and put it in a hamster ball we have-the whole thing fits inside and then I pop the top on. I have to be fast because otherwise he runs out of his wicker ball and runs wildly around his cage for awhile. This time he didn't make an appearance, even in the blue plastic exercise ball. As I cleaned the cage I was becoming convinced that he had passed.
I was starting to feel a little sentimental that our Ralph had died and deciding how to break it to the kids. Then, in a sick way, I was happy. Now we could get something a little more...active. Something actually fun to watch! As I was by this time convinced he was dead, I didn't quickly stick the wicker (ok, it isn't wicker, but I don't know how to describe it otherwise) ball back into the cage. I was deciding if I should just empty the contents into the trash.
SHOOT! That stupid mouse was not dead, he had instead been sleeping or something and sprang out of that ball like a shot and was clinging to my HAIR! Gotta say I didn't keep my cool and then all the kids came running as did the cat. That stupid mouse dropped to the floor and was running all over the room. He then ran under the door and out into the hall. I had grabbed the cat by this time and when the mouse ran in the boys' room I had them close the door and shove dirty clothes in the crack underneath to keep it contained.
After about 15 minutes of furniture moving and LMM being my rodent spotter I finally put a pencil box over him and he is back in the cage. STUPID STUPID mouse.