Sunday, January 15, 2012

A Mouse's House

We had dinner guests tonight and so I spent this afternoon in the kitchen preparing the meal. Yes, yes, it was yummy, but that is not what this story is about. So, Mr. 31 got home from work around 4 pm and ran upstairs to take a shower. At just about that time I decided that I would put my homemade chocolate cake onto my cake stand. Okay, well, it isn't really my cake stand.... it is my friend Michelle's cake stand which she lent me for our wedding - two years ago - and I never remembered to give it back to her. I (randomly) remembered, while I was icing my cake, that it was still packed away in our 'scary closet' (you have one of those at your house, right? who doesn't...and I don't mean scary as in creepy. I mean scary as in where-everything-with-no-spot-gets-shoved-and-its a-giant-mess-and-you'd-swear-you-thrift-store-it-all-once-a-year-but-it-never-gets-any-better kind of scary). Anyway, I thought 'wouldn't that cake stand be a great way to display my handsome cake!' I didn't think Michelle would mind if i used it again..... that's just the kind of girl she is - kind, and sweet. and giving, and big-hearted. So, I head for the closet. In order to get to the back shelf - our 'scary closet' is a deeeeeep one - I had to slide aside a cabinet that is on wheels. I grunted, and puffed, and pulled and finally it rolled aside, making room for me to grab the cake stand and, also,...... revealing a small, taupe colored, dead field mouse! 
Oh, yeah, people. I said MOUSE. In my house. A MOUSE in my HOUSE. Dead.  (Deader than a doornail, actually, which I guess is what happens when you have two cats roaming the house. And you all know how viciously fierce my scaredy cats are.<eyeroll>)
I almost reached down for it thinking it was a cat toy, but then I remembered I don't buy my cat toys. ACK! So, long story short I yelled for Mr. 31 - who came downstairs in his towel and with a full face of shaving cream to be my hero and whisk away little-dead-man-mouse - and I spent a good ten minutes verbally freaking out about having a mouse in my house. A MOUSE in my HOUSE.

I mean, how did he get there!?!? (Don't answer that question. It's rhetorical.)

As I finished my cooking (sans the cake stand which I never got to in the midst of all the excitement) I starting thinking about the many other things that slip into our lives unnoticed. Things like television and its seductive commercials and addictive shows. We just got cable in October and, not gonna lie here, we love it. I get my fix of decorating and real estate shows and Mr. 31 has an entire history channel to learn new trivia from and endless sports channels.  But I do find myself, on a more regular basis than I prefer, zoning out in front of it. Watching nothing in particular. Flipping through the channels aimlessly. Looking past the language in a show I like, turning a 'blind' eye to the scads of infidelity that today's tv families portray as 'normal' and 'acceptable'. If the tv looked like that dead mouse, would I sit in the same room with it, giving it my attention every night?
Another "silent sneak" in my life is friends. I love mine, and certainly can not live without them. They keep me sane, and act as my sounding boards, and make my laugh. Seeing them often, spending hours over meals with them talking and confiding, is a crucial 'need' of mine. And I thank God for them. But how much more deep, more amazing, could my relationship be with God if I spent hours a week with Him, if I nurtured my relationship with Him as carefully, and with as much vigor, as I do those relationships with my girlfriends? I think of Asaph's writing in Psalms 73:23-25: "Nevertheless I am continually with You, You hold me by my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You. And there is non upon earth that I desire besides You."  Wow....
I can think of a dozen other things that have snuck in, unnoticed, to my life over the past months and possibly hindered me from spiritual growth. School, anxiety and stressing over minor, uncontrollable issues (why are they so hard to give to God?), shopping..... really, my list could go on. I don't want to bore you all though.
So, I guess I'll set some traps. Yes, real ones smeared with peanut butter and waiting for a little mouse nose to dare to come strolling along (because - as my loving hubby pointed out - 'where there is one, there is probably more'. oh, gag me!), but also theoretical ones to help remind me that I need to be more diligent of the mice in my life. Especially those that may be running around my feet being so silent I don't even recognize the destruction they could be causing.

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