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Reflection.  That’s this week’s Photo Hunt theme.  I have chosen two pictures taken by my husband, Mr. Dragyn, this past summer, as he was driving up to meet us in Lutsen, MN.  He stopped in Duluth, and took these beautiful pictures of the moon shining on Lake Superior, with the city lights twinkling merrily.  He says that these pictures don’t show reflections.  I say they do and that they’re lovely.  What do you think?

To find more reflection this week, check out other Photo Hunts at TNChick‘s page!

We’ve lived in our current Lair for 10 years now.  It’s in a rather bucolic setting, with lots of trees, grass, and land around the house.  In fact, that’s one of the things we fell in love with when we bought this place – the maturity of the land surrounding the house.

Something that we didn’t take into consideration when we bought this place was Ma Nature and how we’d be sharing our space with her . . . largess.  By that, I mean her critters, large and small.  Some of the critters we have here are beautiful.  We actually had a red-tail hawk come and hang out on our deck for a while (they have a nest just off of our deck) and we’ve seen eagles flying overhead.  The deer are lovely to watch and the rabbits are cute.  I can sometimes do without the squirrels, but only when they tear up my sliding glass door screen and pee all over the deck.  I love the albino squirrels that have taken up residing in our trees!  There’s just something so cool about them!

The critters that we share space with that I honestly can say I loath are mice.  I hate ‘em!!  For some reason, the very sight of them reduces me to hysterics worthy of a child.  In fact, I wrote another blog post about that very subject earlier this year.

Unfortunately, as the weather becomes colder, those mice try to find a better place to inhabit instead of the great outdoors.  They, in their bid for warmth and food, have chosen my house, something that I simply cannot tolerate!  The latest infestation of mice was noticed this past Saturday, when Mr. Dragyn and SOC #1 were going through the drawers of our kitchen, looking for serving utensils.  There were mouse droppings IN THE DRAWER!!  Big Ewwwww!!!

We took out all the utensils, washed and sanitized them, and put them in other containers so they wouldn’t get icky. I used Clorax Wipes to clean the drawers.  Then Mr. Dragyn had a brilliant idea:  Why not put the trap inside the drawer and see if we catch anything?  Fine. Just be sure to put up a sign so that the other SOCs know not to open the drawer and get tangled up in the trap.

That was Saturday night.  We woke up Sunday to find that the trap did its job.  Mr. Dragyn disposed of the body, while I stayed wa-a-ay the hell away on the other side of the house.  He reset the trap that night.

Monday dawned, with another rodent in the trap.  This one, however, seemed to have been . . . cannibalized.  Yup.  Seems it’s mice-y bretheran decided to snack upon its flesh.  DOUBLE EWWWWWW!!!!!!  Mr. Dragyn disposed of that mess, reset the trap and put it back into the drawer.

Tuesday dawned with yet another mouse in the trap!  Dammit, this is getting old!  Once more, Mr. Dragyn disposed of the mousy remains, reset the trap and put it back in the drawer.  Then, he packed to go out of town for a conference.  **SOB**

Last night, I thought I heard a scrabbling in the kitchen and what sounded like the trap being sprung.  Being a big ol’ ‘fraidy cat when it comes to all things mouse-related, I refused to look.  Instead, I tried to sleep and had nightmares about it all night.

That brings us to this morning.  Wednesday morning.  I still couldn’t bring myself to look in the drawer.  I asked SOC #1 to do so before she left for school this morning.  Sure enough, there was yet another mouse in the trap!  CRAP!!  With Mr. Dragyn out of town, what in the hell am I going to do to get rid of the mouse??

After dropping #1 off at school, I called my friend and told her about the situation:  Mouse in the trap, in the kitchen, and Mr. Dragyn out of town.  She laughed at me, saying, “Didn’t you go through this in the spring?”  Um, yeah, but that was then, this is now!!  What am I gonna do?? “Why don’t you call your friend down the street to see if she can’t take care of it for you?  Or ask her husband to do it!”  Tempting. . . but since they’re going through a divorce, I seriously doubt either one would be interested in my dilemma.   At this point, I’m hysterical as I’m talking to my friend, saying things like, “I will gladly sell my body to get someone out to my house to take care of this rodent problem!”  And the sad thing?  I really would have!!  I am seriously afraid of mice, even dead ones!

She calmed me down and made me see reason.  Finally, she asked the perfect question:  “Isn’t there some pest company you can call to help you?”  That triggered my memory.  We do have a pest management company!  Environmental Pest Management!  I quickly get off the phone, give my 3 SOCs something to eat (all the while, trying to ignore what I knew was in that drawer), and called them.

The lady who answered the phone was wonderful.  She didn’t laugh at me as I explained the situation (dead mouse in drawer, husband out of town, and I cannot bring myself to remove it).  She contacted a technician, who in turn contacted me.  He was at my house within 40 minutes and removed the mousy remains.

Since we’d had so many mice in such a short period of time (for those of you keeping track, that was 4 mice in as many days), the technician suggested that he put out mice bait traps.  These are little things that look like black triangles with poisoned bait inside.  The mouse eats it, brings some of it back to the nest and poisons the rest of the colony.  Perfect!  He also said that they’d be back in a month and that if we got another mouse in the trap, to call him and he’d be back tomorrow!  SCORE!!

Life here in the Dragyn’s Lair is definitely interesting.  Yes, even with rodent infestations.  But knowing that I can take care of this with a simple phone call has given me a piece of mind like you wouldn’t believe.  And I didn’t have to sell my body to get it!

In August 2008, my Servants of Chaos (SOCs), I mean, children and I vacationed with my parents up in Lutsen, MN.  One of the things I remember so clearly about our time up there was how clear the colors seemed!  Perhaps it was the crisp mountain air.  Or just being away from the city.  Or just being on vacation!  Whatever the reason, I just remember how blue the water (for both Lake Superior and a lake up in the Gunflint Range) was up there.

Here are my offerings for this week’s Photo Hunt, all from our vacation.  Enjoy!

Lake in the Gunflint Range

Lake in the Gunflint Range

Oldest SOC on Basalt Rocks off of Artists Point

Oldest SOC on Basalt Rocks off of Artist's Point

Black Schooner on Lake Superior

Black Schooner on Lake Superior

To find more Photo Hunters, check out the tnchick’s blog.