Friday, September 13, 2013

Froggie Door?

We have a doggie door.  We have had one since we lived at Ft. Stewart, the second time.  It is in the storm door, and we move it with us.  David has to figure out how to get it installed at each house.  He does this with incredible skill, many trips to Lowe's, and some choice words.

I love this darn thing.  It makes life so easy.  I never worry about getting stuck somewhere and the dogs not being able to go out to the bathroom.  It does have a few drawbacks.  On occasion, Molly has been known to catch birds.  Sometimes she brings in dead birds.  Sometimes she brings in live birds.  On these days, I rethink the convenience of the doggie door.  I have made great strides in my dealing with unwanted creatures in the house, but things with skeletal systems are a problem for me.  Birds are new, since we got Molly.  But I have had to handle lizards and frogs when we were at Ft. Stewart, the first time.  (I may be using the word handle loosely.  In this case, it may mean screaming and crying like a 2 year old, trapping them under Tupperware, asking David to come home (from Iraq), and paying neighbor children to help.)

I don't like dealing with frogs or toads outside, and certainly not INSIDE.  So imagine my surprise panic, when my sweet boy came into my room after the whole house was in bed to report that there was a frog in the house.  He saw it in the kitchen when he went to get some water.  And he thinks it must have come in through the doggie door.  Oh. Crap.

I would love to tell you that I kept my cool.  And that I sprung into action.  Picture me calmly walking down the hall, telling Spencer about all of God's creatures being precious.  I lean down, I say, "Come here, little fella."  I carefully lift the sweet little frog up.  Spencer pets him on the head.  We smile, and share a moment.  Then Spencer opens the front door while I carry Freddie (because that's what we named him, of course) out into the front yard.  We put him down in the wet grass.  We wave to Freddie.  He starts to hop off, back to his froggie family.  Then he stops, looks over his shoulder back at us, his saviors.  And we could almost swear he winks at us as he hops out into the night.  I put my arm around Spencer.  He puts his arm around me.  And we walk back into the house together, basking in the glow of this precious moment in time.

That my friends in NOT what happened at our house tonight.  I immediately started freaking out and telling Spencer he is a boy.  Boys are supposed to handle things like this.  I had children so that I would not have to deal with this sort of thing.  A hundred years ago, my kids would have been working in the fields on our family farm.  Now, all I ask is that they take care of stray critters that wander into the house.  Dang it, I don't ask much!  Put your clothes in the hamper and catch frogs.  That's it!  You are letting me down, son.

So he and I are both talking fast and sweating.  We were relieved that the dogs were already in bed.  I closed my bedroom door to keep it that way.  Our first order of business was containing it.  See, neither one of us were willing to just pick up the little frog.  So while we formulated a plan, we needed to make sure he couldn't hop away where we couldn't see him.  How could we sleep with a rogue frog hopping around willy nilly?  So we cornered him with a framed picture, a card table, a box, and a poster.

So we needed to trap him.  A cup would be too small, and it would require precision.  I went for a bowl. 

And then we decided that we needed Jessa.  She is the toughest of the 3 of us.  She was already asleep.  So being the caring, amazing mom that I am, I let her keep sleeping I tiptoed in her room and woke her up.  Go ahead and give up ladies, Mom of the year, right here!

My daughter, who has caught frogs and begged to keep them, who is my tomboy wannabe, was not interested in helping.  She wouldn't even leave her room.

So Spencer is on one side of the dog gate.  He was not taking any chances on my barrier failing.  I offered him $10 to pick it up.  He said he would with gloves.  I said, "Really?  If I search and find gloves, you think you can pick it up for me?"  He thought for a minute and said, "No. I don't think so."  Thanks for your honesty son.

Then I offer to buy them a new game they have been wanting.  I was desperate people.  It was 10:30.  On a school night.  I needed to get this situation under control.  The time for drastic measures had arrived.  The frog has moved a couple times.  He was glaring at us with those shifty eyes.  He was planning something.  We needed to move.

Once the game was on the table, the kids were way more excited about helping.
Jessa changed clothes and put on gloves.

On of my shirts and gloves - frog germs, don't ya know?!
 She crept up behind the frog,

and she was able to toss the bowl on top of it.  Progress!

Then she scooted it over to the rug using the bowl, while it was trapped under.  Then I propped the front door open, risking 52 other frogs bum rushing the house.  And Jessa held the bowl down while Spencer pulled the rug closer to the front door.

Then they decided to try wrapping the rug around the bowl.  Then Jessa picked it up and hurried out to the front steps.  Then Spencer hollers from inside, "There's another one!"  So Jessa and I peek under the bowl.  It was NOT another one.  In the shuffle, they let him out.

So we are back to square one.
But Jessa REALLY wants that game.
Formulating Plan B?
So she tosses the bowl back on it.

But now the rug is not in play because it is still on the front porch.  Spencer wants to get another rug, but I convince them that we would risk him getting out.  The rug didn't work so well the first time.

 Then we used the broom to slide the bowl over toward the front door.  But the door jam stopped us.  Then Jessa lifted the bowl slowly. She pointed the open part toward the door.  Once she lifted the bowl, we all cheered and shook the broom to make sure he kept heading on OUT the door.
Go frog go!  See him on the door jam?? (Jessa fell asleep with wet hair, can you tell?)

He did!

And all of this only took like 40 minutes.
Impressive, no?
We high-fived each other and started down the hall to head back to bed.  Jessa said that she was going to write about this in her writing journal.  Spencer said he was going to choose "Work on Writing" as his first Daily 5 to write about the 2 frogs in the house.  (He was still pretty convinced there were 2 of them.)  I am thrilled to provide near death experiences for them to write about.  Not a near death experience, you say?  Did you see the size of that thing?  The cold look in his eye?  We are lucky to be alive, I tell you!

We hadn't made it 3 steps, when Jessa said, "Now, about that game you promised to buy..."
It will be worth every penny.

No comments: