unwelcomed house guests

We’ve been sharing our home with another family.

To be honest, they weren’t really welcome.

I like to think our home is hospitable, but there are just some families you really don’t want in your house.

They were the kind that confused my floor for the toilet.

They scared me and creeped me out.

Thankfully my oldest was thrilled to help throw them out.


Who knew a couple tiny mice would send me running on top of the counters? The first sighting happened when I was alone downstairs (I wrote about it on facebook…some crazy mice stories over there). We got rid of that one. And then other one. And then one afternoon, the kids and I were in the kitchen….and we saw another one. I fled to the counter, my oldest – my hero – was all about catching it. He got to work setting up a trap.

I decided to help him a bit with his trap…after I put on my boots on in case it decided to run across my foot. All that rubber would surely protect me from the tiny mouse. Right?

While watching my 5 year old try to lure it out with cheese (that he just decided to eat), the little guy made it out and safely hid behind the fridge.

We just stood there wondering what my oldest would do next to protect us. Littlest Brother and FireCracker were safely standing on staircase watching me jump and squeal.

I told everyone to scream when I moved the fridge so the mouse would run out the door. Well, it came out with a partner and I really screamed. Then the boys screamed too. Then FireCracker started crying…and both mice made it under the wood and back under the oven.

Chris came home and saved us from those two. Then he saved us from two more. I think we are only family living here again. I hope.

And you thought after that Warrior Dash post that I was tough.

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  • andy - hilarious. love this story. you guys are too funny. my son would probably be standing on the counter with me. (he is the oldest but only 4) so we would be stuck there will my husband came home, i’m sure. πŸ™‚ however my nephew would have been very much like you oldest. engineering things to trap the mouse. so so great. glad you guys are the only ones living there again. πŸ™‚

  • karen brown - we had an elusive “friend” i had to borrow the neighbors cats to get rid of. (after all, he ate our pistachios during the cover of night.) not cool. it’s amazing how something so small can completely freak me out.

  • Karen - I tried to catch one that was residing in our cupboard… it promptly jumped onto my chest to which i squealed and fell off the chair. My children thought it was hilarious!

  • the whyte house - Oh, I am dying laughing…mostly cause I know that would be me on the counter!!! Hahaha. Good job kicking your tenants out!

  • Kimberlee Jost - Those boots were worth whatever you paid for them for this exact moment. No mouse is crawling up your pant leg in those!

  • tobi - hey there! i cant believe the first time i post something on your site, its about mice. πŸ™‚ i love reading your blog, because i can relate to SO much of it. and i can relate to this – except for us, it was a rat – living in our fireplace! EW! i called my friendly pest control guy, and he told me that you have to take action quick, because they breed at the speed of light. so good luck! i feel for you. i really do!

  • Kristin - You are so funny. I love that you caught your son eating the cheese on camera – so cute!

  • Liz - You crack me up! I unfortunately had a little mouse decide to live in my daughter’s car seat, which we were storing for baby #2. Well, I pulled it out, and let’s just say that the mouse is no longer living and my car seat is unusable. Yuck!

  • Lori - Love the boots!! I hate mouse poo. gross.

  • lauren - eeeew! that’s a lot of mice! :/ seriously— cats are awesome for that. just borrow a good mouser for a few days. it really works like a charm with the added bonus that the smell of mr kitty scares future house guests away. i love the pics of mouse craziness! πŸ™‚

  • Anna Marie - I LOVED this and could just imagine it all as you were describing it. So cute that your oldest was taking on such a big role while Daddy was gone. You will be well taken care of when those boys turn into men :o)

  • Lindsay - We’ve had the tiny little demons too. Yuck. I hope you got them all. They freak me out and make me gag. I love that your boy tried to trap him. . . protecting his momma and siblings. . . he’s gonna make a fine husband some day! πŸ™‚

  • Tessa - I would have been right there with you on top of that counter! I am so freaked out by mice. I know they are tiny and even kind of cute, but they totally send me running. I think the fact that a living creature is hiding and living in my house is just totally not cool and so intrusive! So, hats off to Big Brother – he would be my hero too!

  • Jen @ Rambling Renovators - That was too funny (and scary!!). I love that you had the camera handy to catch the action. Your son is awesome – such a brave boy!.

  • amanda torres - Eeek! Mice. Right before we moved out of our old house we had to put mice traps out in the attic and under our sink. I never saw one alive, but I did find their little droppings. The grossest part was the stinch one left behind the wall. Apparently the thing died behind a wall, and we couldn’t get to it. Thankfully the smell went away before the new owners moved in. I dislike MICE!

  • Pleasant Vonnoh - I literally laughed out loud. I love it (but feel your pain!)

  • Ranee - we live in an old farmhouse and are all too familiar with these furry friends. yuck! I’m glad to say I think we’ve finally solved our problem, though and hopefully you have too!!

  • Leigh - I have the best mouse story, and yes, my husband saved the day. Ater hearing it get caught in the trap, terrifying sound I might add, it wouldn’t die. It kept squealing and trying to crawl across my kitchen floor. I was freaked. I ended up putting an upside down trash can over it to keep it from getting too far until my husband got home. You have to find out where they are getting in. As soon as we figured it out we were able to patch up the hole and haven’t had a problem since. Good luck!

  • BeckyH in MA - ROFL!!!!
    This reminds me of when my DH saw a big bug in his bathroom; he screamed like a girl and stood on the toilet. My DH is a big, burly guy, so this was a hysterical sight to see. I deal with bugs, spiders, & mice. He does the snakes.

  • Melissa - Haha! I laugh because I’ve been there. Those pesky little mice. I was quick to take pictures and blog about my mouse hunt too πŸ™‚


  • Jodi - They breed in the Fall and Winter. Make sure you really, really get them. Or come next Spring……yikes! Not to freak you out anymore, just saying! Good luck. Love your little protector but really love the cheese eater. Hilarious!

  • becky - oh, this gives me the shivers. we’re remodeling and before we tore out the front of the house, we moved all of our food storage to a hallway closet and then put big cabinets in front of it and then sealed it all in with plastic. a few months later, when we were ready to open things up again – i opened the closet and the fattest mouse you have ever seen had made a home in there. he ate a hole in everything that wasn’t metal and ever can he ate the paper off of. ps – he loved beef broth, weird. and everything was covered in months of poop, papers nests and mouse pee. ick. it was horrible, especially cleaning it up. best of luck.

  • Sarah Kristiansen - Man, I have TOTALLY lived that nightmare!! We tried EVERYTHING, but what finally did the trick was steel wool. My hubs found every tiny hole from the basement into the first floor, and every little hole from the outside of the house in, and plugged it with steel wool. Plain old steel wool. I think it’s like mouse-kryptonite. And there hasn’t been a little critter in these parts since!!

  • annabelvita - When we had mice I read that putting peppermint essential oil in with your normal counter spray will keep them at bay because they hate it. Don’t know if it’s true but we didn’t see another one after that!

  • Alice H - You need to invest in a cat!! I hate mice. Yuck! Actually I hate all kinds of insects and furry rodents. Besides cats and dogs.

  • Seriously Sassy Mama - We lived by a field at our old house, and the mice who show up all the time. I have never jumped and screamed so much in my life. I hate mice!

  • Sam Y - I’m not afraid of many things but mice terrify me! I hope that’s the last of them. Oh and you guys are adorable!

  • Rachel - Oh my! I can totally relate! Every year when the temperature starts to cool we unwillingly play host to a few mice. We are now fully prepared with mouse traps set and ready behind the stove and refrigerator (sad but necessary) Last year however, we were not so prepared and they decided to live in our brand new stove! I suppose if I were cooking more regularly they would have stayed away, shame on me lol I recommend checking your broiler drawer and under the burners for “presents”, I found that and a dog bone they had been eating eww! Good luck πŸ™‚

  • Jenny - Several years ago we had a mouse in our house and we could not catch it. It figured out how to avoid all traps we set. One night, late, I made a batch of sugar cookies for something we had going on the next day. I didn’t clean up the mixing bowl when I was done, I simply filled it up with water in the sink to soak and figured I would take care of it the next morning. Sometime around 4am my son who at the time was an infant woke up for a bottle. I went out to the kitchen and was standing by the sink, I looked down and noticed a strange shadow in the bowl of water in the sink. I turned on the light and wouldn’t you know, that little mouse fell for a trap I didn’t intend to set, he drowned in the sugar cookie mixing bowl.

  • Jess - Hahahahah!!! Now where’s the video!?

  • Julie B - It must be the change in weather because yesterday one scurried in front of me in the garage. We have a refrigerator out there and I had gone out to get some milk for breakfast. Eeek! Terrifies me that it would scurry over my feet. I hope you are the only ones there now!!!

  • Anna Joy - I knew having a son would come in handy one day! πŸ˜‰ Don’t worry about being tough against mice…they’re too yucky! I can barely kill a waterbug without wanting to pass out. There’s just something about those icky gross creatures that I cannot get over. Glad husband was able to save the day!

  • Jen - Great story – so funny! That would be me too – up on the counter. But I have no boys to try get the mouse – my girls would be up on the counter with me!

  • emily - This post is hilarious…I would have been on that counter with you! Yikes!

  • KaraM - I love how your oldest son seeks to protect you!

  • Emily - I have a complete phobia about these little horrors. And unforunately have had a few run ins in my life. My advice would be to figure out where they are coming in. Block that, then you should be good to go!

  • emmybrown - hahahahaha!!! LOVE that you captured all this on camera! πŸ˜€

  • Angela Swenson - Sick! I am so grossed out. I hate mice. Shiver.

  • Jamin Garoutte - I’m getting looks from the other customers at Starbucks right now for laughing so much while reading this post. Thanks for the entertaining morning!

  • Allison - Oh my gosh, that is too funny!!!

  • Molly - I am with you on the counter! We had a mouse in our house a couple of winters ago after much to do our cat caught it and then carried it upstairs and let it go…to play with it I guess….then my husband caught it and put it outside! lots of excitement!!

  • Carrie - Hilarious! I was laughing so hard I read the post to the rest of my family. My girls had great sympathy for you and my engineering husband was quite impressed with the mice eradication invention. I do hope you’ve seen the last of these tenants …..although….more mice would make for more hilarious posts…..

  • donna - What you need is a “Cat”, if you get one you will never see a mouse again.

  • VΓ©nusia - I so understand you. Even if I am not afraid of spider, mud, bugs… mice AaaaaaaaaH ! I get crazy. My husband just catch the 5th one in one week ! I am so scared every time I ear a little noise that can be related to mouse ! I still consider you as a tough girl !

  • Nichole - Oh this made me laugh! What a brave boy you have! We had a mice problem a few months ago. I hate to say this, but there are probably more. We started with one…then two. At the end of three weeks we killed TWENTY NINE! No exaggeration.

  • Lisa Pummel - Oh Ashley, I just adore your blog. You’re smart and funny, serious and kind. You write my absolute favorite blog! Keep it up lady.

  • Amy - Oh my gosh, this so too funny. Love the shots of you on the counter with your socks showing! I would have done the same!!

  • nicole @ deliajude - so funny. i am giggling. love the trap system.

  • andy - just got finished visiting the blog eighteen25 and saw your guest post. love it.

  • Melinda - I’m probably one of the only females on the planet who is not scared of mice! I grew up on a big farm and before I was old enough to drive tractors, my job was to set spring traps in every shed (we had 12 machine sheds) and catch the mice and rats. I got paid 50 cents for a mouse and a dollar for a rat. It was actually pretty good money for a pre-teen πŸ™‚ I never learned to be scared of them- or the possums, coons and skunks that sometimes accidentally got caught, too! They say that for every mouse you see, there are 10 more that you don’t. Good luck!!!

  • Melissa Evans - AHH!!! great photos to capture the chaos in your kitchen. We have mice at work….we never see them, but there are a few for sure. They are also, not welcome….wish they would find somewhere else to live….where their welcome.

  • Emily Lusk - That is so funny!!! I think mice are the worst because you never know when you are rid of all of them!!! We have had them in our house and it is no fun!! However it looks like you made a good memory out of it with your kids! πŸ™‚

  • beth - we sucked our mice up in the central vac one time.
    it’s actually the perfect way to get them….who knew πŸ™‚

  • Paulina J! - In our last house we also had unwanted visitors! You have to find how they are getting into the house and block it. Ours were livign in the garage and were coming in through a gap between the door frame and concrete. We also set out glue traps and got rid of them this way. The funniest thing tt happen to us though that a squirrel decided to live in our garage for two weeks. It took us two hours to get it out.

  • Catherine - I don’t know what tickles me more…the “mouse trap” drama, or the fact that you have your camera for everything! That’s AWESOME! I’m the mom who NEVER remembers the camera…used to be I never remembered the film, now I forget to charge the batteries. Anyway! Great post, made me smile and reminded me of my boys saving me from a tiny baby bunny in our basement. To this day I don’t know how it got in there!

  • Rebekah - BEST. POST. EVER!!!!!!!!!!!

    I loved it! The views from the counter with your socks and boots were perfect. Exactly like the rest of us would see it if it were our own kitchens. It’s so precious that your oldest was ready and willing to save his mama and siblings. It shows that you and your honey have raised him well. πŸ™‚

  • Catherine - I don’t know what tickles me more…the mouse trap drama or the fact that you have your camera for everything!That’s AWESOME! I’m the mom who NEVER remembers the camera…used to be I never remembered the film now I forget to charge the batteries.Anyway!Great post, made me smile and reminded me of my boys saving me from a tiny baby bunny in our basement.To this day I don’t know how it got in there!

  • Brooke Whitis - HAHAHAHA! The same thing happened to me with two of them that were hanging out under the stove and would run under the dishwasher. I was on the counter too. My little dog attacked it. The beagle. It was quite entertaining. Disturbing, but entertaining! Glad your knight could take care of them!!

  • amber - Oh mice. Yuck. When I was a teacher, I had them in my classroom:/. The solution in Texas schools for mice are those sticky traps. Double yuck & extra creepy. Thankfully it was unsuccessful & the mouse moved out. What, please tell me, was I supposed to do if I walked in & found a mouse on that thing??!! Geez. Anyway. Glad you had an awesome hero to save you. And, glad your house is mouse free. Yucky, yucky, yucky.

  • valerie - we did this (totally unsuccessfully) in Thailand with a RAT that was in my wardrobe—it brushed up against me when I was getting clothes out after a shower…video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TbefSyDXCm0

    We think it climbed up the shower drain pipe (5 stories up!)

  • Elizabeth - That’s hilarious! And what creative children you have!

  • Elizabeth - That’s hilarious! And what creative children you have πŸ™‚

  • Natalie - Okay, very rough…now imagine SNAKES! We moved into and out of a rental home this time last year (after just two months) when we found 2 snakes inside. EEK!

  • Natalie - Forgot to mention- one slithered across my BARE FOOT!

  • Janine - Some helpful tips about mouse catching and preventing. First, seal up your house. My brother in law suggested this and I have not had another mouse – get the spray foam insulation stuff in a can and spray it around the seam of the base of your house. In my case the underside where the basement meets the first floor. It sealed up a bunch of gaps where they were getting in. Next get the humane traps from walmart. They are called “mice cube”. They were cheap – like $2.00 each. Put some peanut butter in them (they can’t resist peanut butter) And within an hour or so you’ll have your mouse. Then bring it outside and turn the case over and the mouse can run away. They say you can clean them and reuse them once the mouse is gone but for 2 bucks and nasty mice germs they got thrown out. I couldn’t bring myself to kill them anymore. I haven’t had a mouse in several years. Hope I’m not jinxing myself! Good luck. And I think it is so adorable that your son came to the rescue.

  • Kristin S - I so needed to read that at the end of a very long day.

    I love that you grabbed your camera to document it all too.

  • Debbie C - This was so funny! Love the striped socks (on the counter)! When I lived at home with my parents back in the day, I came downstairs to my room and found a small black mouse in the middle of the carpet. I screamed bloody murder, which made my dad come down right away to make sure I was okay. After that incident we found and trapped more mice. Ugh…the worst is when you set up a mousetrap and then you hear it catch one!

  • Kelli - Tough when you have to be. This time you were giving your boys a chance to protect out mom. πŸ™‚ I’ve never been freaked about spiders, they’ve just been something I’ve always dealt with and last summer I gained a weird fear of them. I was freaking out whenever we spoted a large one. Then I’d feel so foolish about the whole thing because why was I suddenly upset by this? I’ve decided it’s because my man was around and with three little men to handle the spider I could all of sudden be a little prissy about the whole thing.

  • Catherine at Design Editor - Heebie jeebies!!

  • sandi - Oh so funny! I love your posts!

  • karen - my husband and i were laughing at this!! we get field mice every fall to winter…i hate it. but they seem to stay in the basement.
    sorry to say this..but where there are some there are usually many. i would set traps. good luck!!

  • Pam K - THEY CREEP ME OUT! There was one in our house that had ingested DeCon and it was upstairs where my then 3 or 4 and he touched it. Ahhhhh! So I swept it down the stairs where it flopped, creeping me out more and then I tried getting it over the door lift (not sure that’s what it’s called) to get it outdoors. In the meantime it got a burst of energy and made it under the couch. I was screaming, standing on the other chair arm, my son on the step and my other son trying to assist me (he is the oldest too) and at the same time calling my dad 2 hours away because my husband was at work and wouldn’t come home. I finally got it out the door and beat it flat with the broom and then threw the broom away. The next morning the evidence was gone and I was happy. Well after that I went through the house spraying that foam up stuff in every opening that looked like another one could get in. I haven’t seen another one since.

  • Kaye - Been there. . . so I laughed out loud about your experience. I love the photos from the top of the cabinet. We had a mouse that taunted me for several nights as I sat alone at my computer. One night I went over the edge and sat on the floor with my son’s BB gun. . . waiting. I took a couple of shots at the little guy but I missed. It sure brought my husband running, though! Luckily my son is an excellent rodent eradicator.

  • Shelby - That photo of your son that says “eating cheese” above his head made me laugh out loud!

  • Tori - Rodents are allergic to peppermint. You can get the oil from Henry’s, Sprouts, Jimbo’s, Whole Foods or another natural food store and all you have to do is place some cotton balls around where you think they are and they will high tail it out of your place pretty quick— no nasty clean up.

  • Liene - Oh no, no mice please. Hope the invasion has ended. Your story and photos made me giggle.

  • Julie Mentor - Our neighbouring apartment block is under construction and apparantly they had a rodent problem. Now all the little mousie families have relocated to surrounding apartment blocks, including mine! We’re trying everything to get them out and have removed all their food sources. Two days ago I sniffed a terrible smell in our kitchen and got my husband to pull out all our appliances only to find a DECOMPOSING MOUSE under our washing machine! Gross delux, I tell you! And what a stink!

  • Megan - Love the cheese eater! That is great πŸ™‚

  • Lesli - I can so relate to this! Just this week we were enjoying watching T.V. as a family and my husband see’s something scurry out of the corner of his eye and he looks at me calmly, knowing I would freak if he got excited, and says I think I just saw a mouse. My 5 kids jump up and immedialty start looking for it. I grab a broom ready to protect myself from this very scary thing. It lived in our living room for 2 days before the mouse trap got it, while I was home alone no less I heard a snap and thought someone kicked the door in and then realized it was the mouse trap! Crisis averted, for now! haha

  • Tina I. - EEEEEEK!!!! This might be one instance where the “do-it-yourselfer” in you might want to call in the professionals. Was told that 2 mice can make 400 mice in less than a month. Love the pics, though:-)

  • amy jupin - eeeeek!!
    check out your pantry too.
    we had a couple of visitors a while back and turns out they were in my pantry longer than i thought.
    little holes chewed in the corners of every plastic bag and lots of droppings too.
    double yuck.

  • Brooke - So funny! Thanks for the visuals, both in pictures and in your words. When I was a kid, we kept the corn for our sheep in the garage and that winter, my Papa caught over 50 mice in the house! We could hear them running across the ceiling and down the walls. It was so disgusting. πŸ™‚

  • Leanne - ahahaha best thing I’ve read all day! I too hate mice and scream!

  • Kahli - OMG! I would have died if I had all those mice in my place! I hate mice with a passion and will jump on high surfaces to escape them. I live in a basement apartment and I decided to leave my bedroom window cracked on night for some fresh air! Super bad idea because one unknowingly crawled in during the morning. Thankfully I have a cat and he was on it with 5 minutes! Did freak me out when I thought he was just playing with a toy, until I saw the little critter moving. He gave it a few good wacks against the wall and I grabbed my rain boots, covered the mouse with some napkins and stomped on it… RIP. YUCK.

  • Janet - We live in the country and have had mice yuck. Besides sealing up holes this works great. For $20 get 2 sound plug things for rodents plug them into your outlets mice run away from the noise. Works wonders!