Thought For Today

I am so glad that you have found this site and I hope you will find encouragement and joy as you read through my thoughts on God, family and life.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Unwanted Guest

When looking in on Abby, I noticed that she had taken good care of her babies.  "Having
them near me daddy helps me to go to sleep!"  She will make a wonderful mommy.

Every evening we have a ritual in preparations for getting our son and daughter to bed.  The first thing we do is to get them into pajamas, and then get their teeth brushed.  Next I fill water bottles and it is time for a bedtime story.  Lately we have been reading from the Little House on the Prairie series with Laura Ingalls Wilder.  The children love hearing about her life since she grew up just north of us in the “The Big Woods” as well as near by where I grew up in Southwestern Minnesota in the town of Walnut Groove.

The kids look forward to our story time each evening and that is what encourages them to get ready for bed so quickly.  A couple of days ago, the events of our routine would change though.  While the kids were brushing their teeth, I took the opportunity to start filling the birdfeeders outside our windows, those that are facing our meadow.  I noticed a red-breasted grosbeak was on one of the feeders, and the feed was running low so I used this opportunity to get this chore done.  Each time that I fill the feeders, I have to reach out of the windows and pull them towards me.  This evening though, was going to be no different, but with one exception, I looked over at the other feeder, glanced down at the ground below it and spotted a skunk eating the sunflower seeds that had dropped from the feeder above. 

Our tuxedo cat, Toby.
My first reaction was to jump back since the targeting area on the skunk was facing me.  I quickly cranked the window back in to avoid any bad smells from hitting the window and ricocheting onto me and into the living room.  My mind raced back a few months prior to the time when one of our cats got sprayed, probably by the same skunk.  Anne and I had the dickens of a time cleaning it with soap and hydrogen peroxide, and vigorous showering.  The last thing I wanted to do was to go through a repeat performance, but now it might be with myself instead of the cat. 

During my rapid retreat into the safety of the living room, a thought came to mind as to how I could convince our smelly friend to leave, and perhaps not come back ever again.  I went to the sink where I had a large pot of lukewarm soapy water soaking, (I was trying release some sticky noodles off the pot.)  I reached for it and ran to the window directly over Daisy Mae (what we call the skunk).  I cranked open the window just enough to release several gallons of warm soapy water.  I could hardly hold on to the big pan since I was laughing so hard.  Our home is on a steep sloop and the ground is a good ten feet down from the window.  I figured it would be hard for our little friend to get his/her aiming devise straight up in the air while trying to miss the deluge of soapy water at the same time.  My children were in the background watching the whole scenario (toothbrushes in their mouths) with questions I imagine about my sanity.  After a few seconds I got the courage to look out another window further up from the bath site.  Our unwanted friend was gone and only a pool of suds was left where it had been.  I looked up at my children, and thought at that time, that it was appropriate for an explanation as to their dad’s maniacal behavior.  After explaining as to what had just transpired, I next saw them roll with laughter.  They knew how hard it been for our family the last time we dealt with Daisy Mae (as we call her.)

We get many visitors that pass by our home, (most are welcome) here twins discover Will and Abby's sandpile.
Both our daughter Abby and my wife Anne have had encounters with the skunk before.  Abby was sitting on the porch after supper and Anne was coming back from a walk when she encountered the skunk near our doorstep.  It was almost dark when Anne saw the skunk and almost mistook it for our tuxedo cat.  She was about to approach it, and pet the skunk when she realized the precarious situation she found herself in.  Both wife and skunk retreated full speed in opposite directions.  Abby several days earlier, was sitting on the porch when the skunk came by her.   Our little 6-year-old pumpkin was pretty scared and started to scream.  The skunk hearing Abby screaming retreated into the forest very quickly at that point.  Tonight though, only one thing was running away with great speed, and that was a very clean little skunk, albeit very wet. 

Anne is gone this week grading Advance Placement exams in Kentucky, so when telling her about the incident over the phone, she laughed very heartily over what had just taken place.  Hopefully our little visitor will never return again, unless of course by being cleaned up, it found making friends with other animals much easier now, and of course it wants another bath.  I don’t imagine though that will be the case.