The Christmas Mouse

Christmas morning 2014, DH (dear husband) preached his first Christmas morning sermon. As soon as church was over, we jumped in the car and drove from the Quad Cities to Southeast Michigan… with the cat. Whew.

Two days after Christmas, DH was downstairs with my mom, and I had just gone upstairs. I could hear DH sounding excited, and I could hear my mom sounding freaked out. I went downstairs to check out what was happening. DH said, “I saw one of Kitty’s mouse toys on the family room floor… and then it moved! It was just staring up at me and slowly walked away as I moved toward it!”

“It’s under the couch! It ran under it!” my mom was shrieking. DH and I pulled the couch out and found the most adorable little mouse running along the wall. He quickly found a new hiding spot in the Christmas stocking that was on the floor next to the fireplace. I went and got my dad, told him we had a Christmas mouse, and we could probably catch it if we threw a thick, old blanket over it and scooped it up. So that’s what my dad did, and then he went into the garage.

Next, I hear, Bang! Bang! Bang! Bang!

My dad smashed my Christmas mouse with a hammer.

I totally understand that this mouse would have come back had we set him free in the woods outside the house, but there are plenty of fields a short car trip away to release him in. Poor Christmas mouse.

As DH and I drove to a store to pick up some things, we decided to buy my dad’s Christmas present since I had accidentally left his original present back home in the Quad Cities. What had I gotten him? A wireless computer mouse, ironically. My awesome husband then came up with a devious plan. Rather than wrap up this present and give it to my dad saying, “Here’s what we forgot,” we would plant the mouse behind the couch and trick him into thinking a second live mouse was found.

So DH and my mom planted it while I talked to my dad. My mom starts shrieking, “There’s a second mouse! It went under the couch! Get it! Kill it! Get rid of it!” My dad growls and grumbles about how much he hates mice, but then heads back into the garage.

“What are you doing? It’s in the family room,” I said.
“I’m getting the blanket to catch it in.”
“No! That’s gross! It’s all bloody and probably diseased. Use something else! Or look to see if the mouse is still behind the couch or if Mom’s screaming scared him off!”

I lost that battle. My dad went out to the garage, took the blanket out of the trash, shook the crushed mouse out of the blanket, and brought the bloody blanket into the house to catch the second mouse. Gross, gross, gross. DH and my mom tilted the couch back, revealing a package that was face-down. My dad was peering all around and said, “Where is it? I don’t see it,” assuming that the package is just something that fell between the wall and the couch, completely focused on finding and killing the mouse.

DH says, “Oh, wait… what… what’s this?” And he picks up the package, and turns it around so my dad could see it.

Oh my goodness, my dad’s expression. How can I describe it? Confusion, amusement, embarrassment, anger – all at once. By now, DH, Mom, and I are all cracking up, and Dad is telling us how cruel we all are.

I love my family.

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