Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Power boats on the lake :) and mice in The Palms :(

The other day there was quite a racket coming from down on the lake and I looked out the window to see this speed boat racing around.  It was fun to watch it.  It would sit in the water, then the front would rise up in the air, and then take off, leaving a huge water tail in the air.  I'm not sure what that's called, a rooster tail?

I have no idea what kind of boat this is, but I'll bet a lot of you know.  :)

And you know what?  "Camping" outside of Camping World on the street you can see lots of nature going by, too.  Here are a few critters I snapped while we were waiting for our part to come in.  This first one is one of those black beetles that walk slowly along the pavement, and when they see you coming close, they stick their butt in the air and their head down near the street.  I've tried to get a photo before at Storrie Lake, but couldn't get a clear shot.  This one isn't bad.  They just stay in that position, head down/tail up, until you're far enough away that they feel safe.

Do they think they're hiding?  News flash, beetle: We can see you.

Bunnies!  I haven't seen any for a while.  This little guy was near Camping World's road:

Cute little Mourning Dove sitting on a block fence along the road by Camping World:

And yes, we had another mouse last night.  Katie was sleeping up in the bunk with me and all of a sudden I find myself holding her back.  In the dark, she was going to jump down onto the couch.  Oh, no you don't!  I turned on the light and made her stay and got down, then lifted her down.  She went wild, tail wagging furiously, pointing her nose into the cab of the truck.  Bummer.

I got dressed, turned on all the lights, got the keys and flashlight and headlamp and unlocked both cab doors.  Took out the camp chairs I was storing in the passenger area and checked out the traps under the seat, then checked the driver's seat floor area.  Nothing.  I have baited traps under both seats, and sticky traps, but no sign of mice. I re-baited the traps with fresh peanut butter, closed things up and went back inside.  Katie was lying in her bed on the couch and wouldn't come up with me, so I left her there for the night.

About a half hour later, she's barking like crazy, running into the kitchen, and sticking her nose right on the lower cupboard under the sink, again tail wagging like crazy.   Obviously the mouse was in the cab of the truck, or under the couch, and had just run to the kitchen and slipped under the kick board and into the area behind it. 

There wasn't much I could do at that point, so I just went to sleep.  This morning I emptied all the lower cabinets and drawers, and look what I found under the oven, behind the drawer that holds my pots:

You can see the dryer sheets I put under there, and some cotton balls that I put up in the right hand corner of the photo with Peppermint oil on them.  Also, at the top of the photo is some steel wool that I used to fill a hole where the grey dried foam had a little opening.

And right in the center of this picture - "someone" has gotten a whole bunch of cotton balls from throughout The Palms - I guess the peppermint oil doesn't smell anymore - carried them to this area, fluffed them up and made a nest of them.  There is a nice little hole in the middle that is hard to see in the photo, but it would be perfect to give birth to lots and lots of  baby mice.  RIGHT THERE UNDER MY STOVE.  Geez, thank goodness I found it before it was put to use.  It was still nice and clean and white.  Anyway, I poured a lot of fresh peppermint oil into the nest and covered the whole thing with a plastic strainer I had.  They won't be able to get the cotton balls, but the odor is sure coming through.

Then I went around The Palms and renewed all the peanut butter in the traps, put the flashing solar lights in the engine again, and I'm on guard now for sure.  I guess I'm going to have to set a task alert every week or so to check all these areas.  What a pain!  I haven't heard the mouse today, but if it appears he's present again tonight, I'm going to move The Palms.  That usually works for me.  I guess the mice go out during the daytime. 

I had nice visits from two other solo female travelers yesterday afternoon.  Vermont Chris came by for a visit and brought her dog Edna, of course.  Edna is the cutest little dog, she has just gotten a haircut and her face wasn't covered with fur - she just looked darling, and Katie loved her!  I haven't seen Chris and Edna for - probably - two years.  It's been a while, but they both looked great and it was so nice to catch up.  I wish I had remembered to take a photo.  We were sitting outside overlooking the lake, when a car pulled up, and out comes Patti - remember Patti and her dogs from Storrie lake?   She's been up in Bluewater and just arrived here at Elephant Butte Lake State Park.  We all talked for a while, then Patti drove back to her campsite and Katie and I needed a walk, so we walked Chris and Edna part way home.  I couldn't believe how much fun Katie was having.  She and Edna were running, romping, sniffing, rubbing faces, I've never seen her do all that before. 

For anyone out there who doesn't check Andy Baird's website from time to time, you've got to check out his digital watercolor paintings.  I absolutely love what he's done, and can't wait to try it myself.  I swear, this man is going to make me buy an Apple laptop!  I just love all the bells and whistles he uses with his music, and now his paintings, using programs on his Apple computer.  At the end of his photo gallery, Andy explains how he did it.  I have a PC laptop, but I'm going to search around and see if I can find a program that will help me produce watercolors from my digital photos.  If you know of any, please pass on the info?  (NOTE: I've found a free program that is for PCs - FotoSketcher. I'm downloading it and will let you know.)   I'll post any worthwhile artwork I come up with.  BTW, I think Picasa has something that will do this, but I don't want to load that on my laptop.  I'd rather have a specific stand-alone program.   :)

From me and Katie, have a great Wednesday, everyone!  :)


  1. That makes for a nice "mousy story". Molly can't stay away from them either. She gets totally excited.

  2. When you move you better be sure that the mouse is outside, otherwise you and Katie will have a new travel companion. (grin)

  3. My husband rolls up little balls of cotton from the cotton balls and pushes it onto the mouse traps. We never had any luck with peanut butter and peanut butter stales in a short time or dries out. The mice have to work to get the cotton off of the trap, they use it to make their nests. In working to get the cotton ball off of the trap it snaps and kills them. Get one every time!!! Good Luck!!! Diane

  4. Try original scent Irish Spring bar soap. I cut it into chunks and put the chunks around the RV there is something about the scent that mice don't like. I've used it for years in my "campers" and have never found "evidence" of the little vermin inside or around... Good stuff...

  5. oh, geez you have sure had a time with the mice!!! and there was my tried and true dryer sheet, they were using it!! the little stinkers!!! like that worked!!?? so nice to meet up with people you know and get a good visit in... Take Care

  6. Sorry to hear about your mice problem. I have similar stories in the subfreezing winters here in Indiana. It is amazing how far they will take dog hair from the trash to make nest. I can't use traps and peanut butter, my bloodhound likes to find them and lick off the peanut

  7. We use Irish Spring. Leave in box. Bob taped one to the engine and one to the generator. No mice in 2 years.

  8. We also have a mouse in our rolling house. Of course we have to remove a drawer to set a trap or remove the pest!

    Love your photos today.

  9. I think I've picked up a mouse in my travels also. I'm hearing scratching in the middle of the night. Emma couldn't care less. :(

  10. Irish Spring is a new mouse preventive to me. Sounds like a good clean way to get rid of them!

  11. Your mouse stories, if compiled, could make a bestseller! Glad you're having fun otherwise.

  12. Oh, no! I am so sorry to see you are having these uninvited guests again! What a pain! But I have to laugh at their resourcefulness....If their tiny little brains only knew the purpose of that cotton! I like the idea of putting the cotton on a trap, since they need that for their nests. I will be curious to see if you try that and have good results. Good for Katie for being on patrol!

  13. Yep rooster tails is what there called. Been up at the property for almost a month those little beetles are here 2. Kinda reminds me of the old ostrich cartoons.

  14. For digital painting the standard is Corel Painter. You may be able to pick up a used copy cheap but make sure it's unregistered.


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