Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Jim: His Plants and The Rat

So, it's the time of year when we are cleaning up the backyard...putting the flowers and plants in the garage, putting away the pool toys, preparing the little garden for the winter.

And by "we," of course I mean, JIM.

Jim has always had a lot of plants and flowers. I don't mind. He's got a green thumb. He has planted "cuttings" from plants or flowers from the different places we've lived. A couple of times, when we've moved, he's put it in the contract that he could dig up this plant or that tree...and the yard pretty much would look like it had been hit by a cluster of meteors by the time the moving van pulled out.

KIDDING. (slightly)

He's gotten "cuttings" or seeds or bulbs from his Dad...who brought them from his old home place. It's really cool to have plants and flowers that came from seeds from plants and flowers that Jim grew up having at his childhood home.

We have also been known to stop on the side of the road, so that Jim could get out of the car and dig up something that he'd "had his eye on for a while."

Don't worry...not from anyone's yard.

(that I know of!)

But when we moved here, it's like he went all MAMMAW on us. He probably has no less than 37 pots or planters in the backyard, and he fusses over them like a mother bird fusses over her babies. It's annoying, really so cute.

What else is really cute is that allll of those 37 pots or planters have to be put in the already full garage. Have I mentioned that we JUST got both of our cars in the garage? It only took us 3 years!

We have a lot of stuff in our garage, I will admit it. But we have a big family. We have some furniture out there that we claim we are "saving" for this kid or that kid. So you can imagine that finding room for all of Jim's plants is challenging. And slightly aggravating. 

Anyway, that is all BESIDE THE POINT of this post.

So, last week, while Jim was cleaning up outside, he started sweeping up all the dog hair on the porch. Maggie, our geriatric, Black Lab hangs out on our covered porch. I love Labs, but she sheds a LOT. So he's moving furniture and plants and sweeping up all the hair, and when he moves the grill, he goes, "uh-oh." There, in the corner, behind the grill, are tons of little poo-poo pellets...and a pile of potato peels, banana peels, apple peels...like a little pantry for some sort of critter.

Jim came in and said, "we have a RAT," and immediately I started trying to figure out the quickest road to the local animal shelter...to get a cat.

Because just the word, "RAT," brings images of Ratatouille to mind. Right?

I said, "maybe it's a little mouse." Like that's better? I don't even know. 

He said, "No. This is big...like a WHARF RAT."

Which, we live in Arkansas...WHERE IS THE NEAREST WHARF? 

(And don't say on the Arkansas River...that doesn't count)

I said, "could it be something other than a RAT?" He said, "Not likely."

I said, "A raccoon?" He said, "It can't be a raccoon."

I said, "A possum? A squirrel? A chipmunk? A bunny?"

Jim said, "No," "no," "no," annnnnd, "no."

And then proceeded to give me a detailed description of what each animal's poo-poo looks like, and how this couldn't possibly be anything other than a RAT.

And then, while I blacked out, he went to the store and bought rat poison...Which, does anyone remember that day when my mother-in-law told me she went to Wal-Mart for 4 things: a new phone, panties, rat poison...and cookies. That pretty much sums up our family right there. 

ANYWAY, then he went out-of-town for the weekend...and I was beside myself thinking that this giant rat thing was going to crawl behind the grill, eat the poison, go crazy...and then probably die right by the back door.

Even tho it didn't happen, I thought about that scenario all night long...and the solution I came up with might surprise you. Because, as I was thinking of what I would do if that happened, the only logical answer I came up with was to get the shovel, scoop up the dead whatever-it-is...annnnnnd throw it over the fence in the dead of night.

Mature, I know. But DEAD RAT.

"But You, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head." Psalm 3:3

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