Just call me Oswald.

We have animal problems.

Nevermind the fact that today is Emma’s last day of school so I will inherit a whole new set of problems with the crazy monkeys in which I have produced. I can see it now, it will be called “the summer of fighting siblings.”

But there are unwanted animals in this house. It’s a problem.

Now, let it be known we have a heavily wooded backyard. There are so many trees, our yard is constantly shaded – which is great for summertime. We have a hammock hanging from two huge trees. We have a massive tree to the side of the house that grew into a very old barbed wire fence. The barbed wire is permanently sticking out of the base of the tree. The tree and barbed wire have got to be at least 60 years old. Every bedroom has a view of trees reaching far higher than the house. The backyard is one of my favorite parts of this house.

Oh, I wish I would have known the price of having a naturally beautiful backyard. The animals.

I put out a bird feeder as soon as we moved into the house. It attracts the most beautiful birds I’ve ever seen. Bluejays, cardinals, woodpeckers, hummingbirds (around flowers), robins, and that is the extent to the birds I know…yellow birds, grey birds, brown birds, black birds. The birds are now pretty fearless around us at this point. They are like amusement park birds but prettier. I guarantee I can pull off Snow White for halloween this year by having birds fly up to my hand. How ya like that trick, kids?

One day this past week, Scott and I woke up one morning to what sounded like scratching. After figuring out the dogs were not the problem, Scott pinpointed the sounds coming from behind a wall in our bathroom. The sound got louder, more scratching, banging and running. I could hear the thing chewing on the electrical wires behind my sink outlet.

My vote was to hire a professional to get the animal out. Scott disagreed and went all Clark Griswold on me and checked out the attic himself. He could hear the animal but not see it. I kept picturing him running down the stairs with a squirrel on his back. That evening, we pulled out a ladder from the garage. The neighbors came home while we were staring up at our roof, standing at the base of the ladder. They stared at us but did not ask what we were doing – good thing because I know I would felt bad for whispering “bend over and I’ll show ya.” Scott finally got himself on the roof to look for any openings a bird or small animal could fit through. I was ready and waiting with my camera for Scott to fall in the bushes.

Oh, don’t mind him.

We didn’t have any luck in finding the animal. But he did find an entrance through an open vent the birds ripped open. He pulled out a nest and 1 bird. Then screwed the vent shut. That wasn’t the problem, the noises kept happening but it stopped after a couple days. I’m sure the stench will start circulating soon and at that point, I WILL call a professional.

Oh but the problems don’t stop there. Our friend, “Woody” the woodpecker, has been waking us up bright and early by pecking on our gutters. I assure you, it is very, very loud. It’s also a daily occurrence. I tried to shoot it with the girls’ water guns one morning. The water wouldn’t reach. Woody is about to meet my new summer toy, the Super Soaker Hydro Cannon. Boom!

When Woody flies off around breakfast time, we have a lovely pair of cardinals joining us in the afternoon. The female cardinal has some serious mental issues. She’s obsessed with flinging herself into our kitchen window. I can hear her bony little head hitting the glass with some real force. It’s like a rock. I don’t know how she isn’t dead from suicide yet. I blame the male cardinal, who just sits and watches her go crazy. She can say hello to my little friend, too. Super Soaker Hydro Cannon. Boom!

It’s the first summer in this house and we’re already under attack by the birds. Don’t they know we have a bird-dog living here? Aren’t they scared of our loud, crazy children running and screaming all over the place? Scott is not as nice as me. Water guns? Pssh, Scott owns many guns and they are not water. He’s already about to throw out my bird feeder. If he does that, for sure they will retaliate crap all over his car.

This summer is already starting off with a bang. Off to Toys R Us.

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