Friday, January 3, 2014

Every Super Hero Needs An Arch Nemesis

Every year, usually in the fall, since we've been home owners, Daniel (that's my husband if you're new to this little blog) has an arch nemesis from Mother Nature. Every.Single.Year. I guess every super hero needs an arch nemesis right?

Year 1 - Barking Dogs

A new renter moved in behind us (well sort've off to the side behind us) and apparently had 2 dogs she kept in the back. They barked ALL NIGHT LONG. It was so frustrating especially since we knew the dogs weren't well cared for. After weeks and weeks of listening to them, we, along with another neighbor, contacted the landlord. Problem solved. Still makes me sad about the dogs though.

Year 2- The Tree Frog

At our old house we had window boxes along the front windows. Apparently a cute little tree frog (not pictured here, this is just a sample pic) decided to take up residence there. EVERY TIME Daniel would lay his head down to sleep at night, the tree frog would serenade him.

To appreciate his frustration you must understand that he has to go to bed around 8:30-9pm every night because he's up at 3:30am to get ready for work. Every time people. At one point he was out in his boxers spraying the window boxes with water to get it to stop making noise (while I sat inside giggling). It was uncanny how it knew when Daniel went to bed.

Year 3 - Mickey, the mouse that is

Imagine Daniel sitting on the couch at 4am eating his cereal, reading his Bible and getting prepared for his work day. He looks over and sees our old black cat, Sasha, looking up at the fireplace tools. Slowly she paws up as if to pat something. Daniel thought that odd so he watches. Finally he realizes there is a mouse on top!

He screams "ANNA! Come quick! Come quick!"

I leap fall out of bed in a panic thinking something is really wrong. To which I'm greeted with Daniel saying "look there's a mouse in the house!" I then gave him "the look". You know the one. The one that says "I want to kill you with my x-ray vision eyes that I don't have but will somehow muster right now".

The mouse runs, the dog runs after, chaos ensues. All the while Daniel is saying "a mouse in the house! we have a mouse in the house! what do we do? I've never had a mouse in the house!"  while I'm trying to capture the mouse. At one point I had to stop and tell Daniel that he had to stop talking. I was without caffeine at 4am and it's not safe for him.

Jackson, our lab, did capture the mouse. I was thrilled and tried to get him to go outside with it but he thought he was in trouble so he spit it out.

Long story short, we finally got the mouse to run out the front door and I went back to bed. However, he did come back.  Daniel captured it this time (by this point he was over the shock of a mouse in the house) and walked it, while in his boxers (hmmm a theme?), down the street, around the corner and to the park. We were still anti-traps at this point.

We finally found the small hole around the pipe in the kitchen where it snuck in. A little steel wool and the problem was solved.

Year 4 - Minnie, the mouse

Apparently Mickey told his friends he had a great place to go because one of them came to visit. The steel wool must have gotten jostled out of it's spot or something. This little mouse turned out to be very determined to become a member of our family. He avoided all attempts to catch him. In fact, I'm pretty sure he laughed at us at one point.

We quickly became trap friendly at our house, trying all kinds. That little sucker was smart. He knew exactly how to avoid them yet get the bait. Now why we didn't call Terminix is beyond me. We had a contract with them. Guess we were DIY pest control, at your service.

Finally Daniel caught him in a trap. How do I know? Daniel sat straight up in the middle of the night and yelled "GOT HIM!"  (while I once again almost fell out of bed in a panic).

We obviously fixed the problem because we never saw a mouse in the house again. I still wonder if our cat may have brought it in.

Year 5 - Lord of the Flies

Daniel kept complaining that there were tons of flies in the house. He would walk around spraying them with Clorox Clean-up, because you know, that's not going to damage anything, and he swore it was the easiest way to kill them. I think he told me something about neurological blah-blah-blah...

He would fuss and fuss to keep the back door closed because I was letting in flies and it vexed him to no end that he couldn't figure out why there were so many. As soon as a door opened, he wanted it closed. On and on it vexed him. And the spots of bleached wall or spots on the windows vexed me. Truthfully, I did begin to wonder why we had a few more this year than previous years.

Little did we know that we left some Blue Bird food (aka worms) in the container near the deck...and they were rotting/hatching/growing flies. I went to put in some new food and was knocked over by the gross-ness. Gag a mag. Literally. There were maggots crawling all over it.

But viola! I figured out why we had flies around! A quick rinse out (not by me of course) and the problem was solved.

I may have nicknamed Daniel "Lord of the Flies" for a while.

Year 6 - A Vole

Most recently Mother Nature sent him a vole (or was it a mole? I don't know for sure.) This guy devoured and destroyed our yard - front and back. Daniel knew better than to try some of the gimmicks but researched and asked around and found a repellent he thought was humane yet effective. I simply told him to treat for grubs since that's what the vole/mole is eating. Take away his food and he'll move on was my theory.

So every weekend and many weekday nights, Daniel would be seen spraying the repellent on our now soft and squishy yard full of tunnels. (Note: he did have pants on.) After a few days he hung his head and said "Mole 1...Daniel 0"

After a few more days he came in and said "Mole 2...Daniel 0" Our yard didn't look quite as bad as the picture above but those same tunnels were there, just minus the grooves (we had raised tunnels).

I'm still not sure how he got rid of it or if it just went away on it's own. Either way, I don't think Daniel ever really scored a point.

Year 7 - TBD

I wonder if we will have any in the new house? I'm pretty sure there will be but it's yet to be determined. Right now we have lady bugs all over the house but they aren't quite at arch nemesis level. Whatever it will be, I'll be sure to update you while I giggle at empathize with my husband, you know in a "I'm totally supporting you" kind of way.

Go get 'em, honey!

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