Thursday, December 23, 2010

All the Creatures Were Stirring...

...and the little assholes totally wrecked the lovely tableau I am about to show you.

Except for, you know, that one line in the story, mice pretty much get ignored at Christmas time. I don't think that's right, so I made sure to create some Christmas memories for my little rodents that they wouldn't soon forget.

(When I told Alex of my plan, he gave me a weird look and said, "You're a funny lady." I don't think he meant it in the ha ha sort of way.)

But before I get to that, I need to show you this. I forgot to tell you that I got a car for my mice.

Gerbil has already been pulled over for speeding.

Poseidon spent, like, a week just hanging out in there.

The best part was the time I was cleaning the cage and picked up the car, assuming it was empty, but there was a mouse in it. Quinn and I laughed and laughed and laughed.

Well, because mice don't have calendars, I decided to make yesterday their Christmas. I had actually put a lot of thought into Mouse Christmas. Because mice chew everything, I had to find chew-friendly decorations. Because no one makes Christmas rodent chew toys—an obvious lapse on the part of the pet industry—I had to make my own.

I decided on wooden stocking cutouts, like those you can find for 29 cents at the craft store. I couldn't find them, so I bought some cheap wood squares, thinking I could cut stockings out of them.

Then I started to worry about splinters.

Scrapping the cutout idea (and the $1.45 I'd invested), I decided to make my own out of cardboard. I wanted to decorate them, but I was afraid ink, lead, or crayon wax would kill the mice, so I left them plain, which was sad, but responsible.

I know. I'm a little crazy.

Then I had to think of a way to tie the stockings up. I found a jute string that I don't think will kill the mice if they eat it, but then I worried about creating little nooses for the mice. Like, "the stockings were hung in the mouse cage with care—oh, and look there's Squeaky hanging too."

It's possible I was overthinking this, but who wants a Mouse Christmas tragedy?

So yesterday I cleaned the mouse cage and then, because everyone enjoys a  White Mouse Christmas, I made it snow in Mouse Town.

Then I rearranged the snow seven times, because that's how I am.

Next, I hung up the stockings with care. It's hard to see them, but they are mouse-safe and tied to the ladder over there. I cut them out of cardboard. They are of a uniform size, but for one, which I am designating as Scabbers' because she's kind of an asshole.

See, the snow is better like that, no?

Next, the coup de grace, which would have been better if I wasn't worried that brightly colored marker ink would kill mice, the Christmas tree.

Imagine a dramatic tree-lighting ceremony here.

I am SO smart. I made it stand up. It was even strong enough that when Squeaky draped herself over the top, like a live Mouse Christmas star, the tree didn't fall over. I took a photo of that, but it didn't come out because of flash on glass issues.

Even mice need presents to unwrap, so I put a food-in-a-box toy in there.

I hope they're not mad that they have to share. I bet Scabbers will be. Jerk.

At this point, we were ready to start Mouse Christmas. My elf helped with the reintroduction of the local fauna.

Man, it must be terrifying to be one of our mice.

The Mouse Christmas celebration was short, but delightful.

Mostly I think I confused them.

To Quinn's chagrin, I had not made mini-Santa hats for each mouse. The stockings were a big hit though. In fact, one of them has gone missing already, so I consider them to be a complete success.

Scabbers is pissed that she got the small stocking and is looking for a fight.

Also, I wish that I'd taken this next photo before I had my Christmas cards made up, because I might totally have foregone photos of my children and used this instead.

Gerbil is smizing.

Shortly thereafter, the mice destroyed everything I had created for them.

Ungrateful pests.

This is what I woke up to this morning. The stockings have been capsized, the tree has been tipped over, and the mice built a little snow buffer so that I can't even watch them eat their present.

I guess Mouse Christmas is officially over.

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