So what have I been up to this past week? Decorating for Christmas! We even had 6 inches of snow to add to the merriment. I love to collect decorations for Christmas throughout the year, but my favorite pieces are the ornaments that my son has made me over the years and taking them out each winter always brings a smile to my face. At the end of the season, I carefully pack them away and store them in my upstairs side closet. Each year went along smoothly as the one before with its new handmade ornament added to the group... That was until that fateful year... Oh yes, the dreadful year when a mouse found his way into our house! And where do you think he decided to set up residence? Yep, in our side closet!
It has been some years since the incident, but I remember the time well. It was an early fall. As I began to doze off in bed, I heard a scratching at the wall behind me. No way! My cat raised her head up, and sure enough, the scratching of little paws could be heard again. Then, our little friend raced up and down the length of the closet, having a gay old time for a good part of the night. At the time, I thought he was a little to jazzed up even for a mouse. Little did I know, he was on his own personal sugar high!
It took a couple of days, and the intruder was caught. I did not think much more about our unwanted visitor until a few months later when decorating for Christmas. I was unpacking decorations for our main tree and pulled out my son's handmade gingerbread man. Now in my defense, this gingerbread man had been stored without incident in the closet for three Christmases prior, but unfortunately, that record was about to be broken. The photo you see below is the repaired ornament. At the time, he emerged from the box missing his M&M eyes/nose and chocolate chip smile. (Thankfully, I am a chocoholic and that was quickly mended!) But as you can see, this mouse lacked a fondness for clean fresh peppermint breath, and he left a good portion of them behind. Instead of ruining the little man by pulling off the starmints (this candy hoarder had some of those on hand too!) I chose to leave those 'as is' as a reminder of the adventure this ornament had.
I must add that now this ornament is kept in a drawer in my front room. I laugh every year when I see him. Some people may not like the idea of half eaten peppermints, but maybe it is the Beatrix Potter in me that thinks it is a story waiting to be told every year.
Just an interesting side note... In the same box of Christmas decorations, there was an ornament that my son made out of a dog biscuit. Oddly enough, the mouse left that untouched. I guess, I really don't blame him. My preference has always been for sweets, too!