20-23 October; A Mouse in the House, A Move to Pike Lake and Sun versus Rain

Today is Thursday, and it has been raining since about 0500, so a perfect day to snuggle up to the computer and cover the past few days.  Toby is taking a nap, so I should have enough time to knock this out.

When we arrived back at the Coach on Sunday afternoon, Terri and I both thought we saw something move across the floor, and we both immediately thought we may have a mouse in the house.  Finding no tell-tail evidence, we both brushed it off and went to bed.  The next morning, , we found the tell-tail evidence…tiny little mouse droppings on the cupboard and on the floor.  Time for a trip to the local hardware store, where we stocked up on mouse traps.  The lady at the store said that mouse traps have been her best seller since July for some reason.

Tech Tip:  Little critters like being warm just as much as we do when the weather turns cold.  Mice and squirrels are artists at breaking and entering and setting up residence.  I read about one poor chap that came up to his coach one afternoon, and saw a squirrel sunning himself on the dash-board, and when he got inside, the critter was using one seat for food storage, and the other for nesting material.  One thing you should do before you store for the winter, or are going to be operating in cooler climates, is to make sure you have sealed any openings that these critters may be able to get into.  Water hoses, electrical lines, plumbing, the firewall and hydraulic lines are all good “ports of entry” for the critters you do not want in your Rig.  Great foam works well to seal the small spots, and moth balls near any entry areas seems to work well.  I also place some on the tops of the tires when I park.  A lot of folks like to use poison that the critters will eat and then go off to die.  I prefer to use the good old fashioned traps, or the tacky traps.  I want to make sure I’ve “cured” the problem, and really don’t want a dead mouse carcass in my wall.

When we got back from the store, Terri put out two of the tacky traps, and I put one of the old-fashioned traps near the brake pedal by the fire wall, and was going to place one in the bay right below the driver’s side.  I noted before that if something can get in there, they can climb up a couple of hydraulic lines and jump the fire wall and be in the Coach.  As soon as I opened the door with the baited trap in hand, I found a nest.  The little bugger had stolen some of my insulation from the fire wall and created a rather nice nest on top of a pair of gloves that I use for refueling.  Game on!  Breaking and entering and petty theft are crimes that deserve the death sentence in rodent world.

After the traps were set, Terri and I took a drive around the Shawano area.  We stopped to get some fresh eggs from a local farmer, but he was out, so up the road we went.  We happened upon a high-end white tail hunting club.  These guys must have 100 or so trophy whitetail bucks ready for whomever is willing to pay the price.  Not really my kind of hunting, but was really neat to see so many trophy deer in one place.  We were not able to take pictures.  We spent some time shopping in Shawano, and got some more groceries, and it was time to head back to the coach and get ready for our move to Pike Lake on Tuesday.  Terri bet me 25 Cents that we would have the mouse when we got back to the Coach.  Unfortunately, I won the bet (and she still has not paid up by the way), so it was time to clean up the place, take showers and hit the rack.

Tuesday brought forth a gorgeous sunny day.  I checked the traps inside first thing, and still no luck.  We ate breakfast, then set about dumping tanks, filling tanks and everything else we need to do to get on the road.  I thought that while the tanks were draining would be a good time to check the trap in the bay.  Successful execution!  With no further evidence of these critters, we packed the traps away, but I am still using the moth balls.

It didn’t take us too long at all to get done getting ready to roll, and we were on the road by 1000.

Tech Tip: After we are all packed up, the slides are in and the Coach is up and running and ready to go, I set the brake and go out for one last walk around to triple check everything.  I’m so happy I got into this practice, as I noticed that the TV antennae was only 1/4 of the way down.  I lowered it earlier in the day (so I thought) but it did not go all the way down.  I went back in and raised it all the way up, then it lowered properly…whew…that could have been an expensive mess.

The short trip to Pike Lake was uneventful.  We stopped in Hatley to top off the tank, as I knew I would be using the Hydronic Heat, and wanted to make sure I was full.  We are parked in the driveway of a Vacation Rental By Owner that is owned by some friends of ours on Pike Lake in Hatley, Wisconsin.  This place is awesome, and we have stayed here before.  When we were here in February of this past year, we booked it for this week so our family could be together for our Nephew Seth’s wedding to Lindy.  If you are ever in this neck of the woods, do yourself a favor and stay here!  Jenny and Steve are the best hosts you cold ever have, and they have done a wonderful job on the lake house.  Here is a link to this great place: www.vrbo.com/486713

it took us no time to set up, and we even have 30 Amp service, thanks to Steve!  We were able to get some real good shots of the lake with the sun out, and I’ll only share the one below…if my iPhone keeps taking pictures like this, Terri will never get me a camera!

Priceless!  Taken from the back yard of the VRBO looking over Pike Lake.

Priceless! Taken from the back yard of the VRBO looking over Pike Lake.

Since it was such a gorgeous day, we decided to head out to our land.  As I’ve stated before, we really need to determine where we will eventually put a slab for the RV, and hopefully later a house.  After having it logged last year, it is much more open.  I wish I had been here earlier in the year, because there are tons of tops that need to be made into fire wood.



View from one of our nephews tree stands.

View from one of our nephews tree stands.

Nice little buck rub.

Nice little buck rub.

Terri and I each spent some time in a tree stand.  I saw two nice does, but could not get a good picture of them.  We walked the perimeter, then found where we think we will want the driveway and slab initially.

When we got back to the Coach, Jenny and Steve were home, and we got to catch up with them for a bit.  After that we ate, did some laundry and hit the rack, as we wanted a good nights sleep because Mandi and Justin, Ashley and Toby will arrive early Wed afternoon.

We awoke to another sunny day.  Terri went to get some groceries for the clan, and I got some work done.  When Terri got back, she made a huge batch of Calico Beans (my favorite!) and a recipe from Terri’s sister.  Has all kinds of beans, hamburger and Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Bacon in it.  I’ve had it for three meals so far!  The kids arrived around 1:00 or so.  After all of our hello’s, we got them settled in, and decided to head to Rib Mountain State Park in Wausau.  Terri and I spent a lot of time at the park in our youth, and it is where we went on our first “official date”.  A lot has changed, and they have 5 times more ski runs then they did when we were younger, but the views and some of our favorite trails are still there.

The big lookout tower still stands.  It was built in the late 50's.  On a clear day you can see almost all of the way to the town I grew up in. Ashley, Toby, Mandi and Justin are looking down.  Cannot quite see Justin, as he is a s "phobic" around heights as I am.

The big lookout tower still stands. It was built in the late 50’s. On a clear day you can see almost all of the way to the town I grew up in. Ashley, Toby, Mandi and Justin are looking down. Cannot quite see Justin, as he is as “phobic” around heights as I am.

View overlooking the Wisconsin River Valley

View overlooking the Wisconsin River Valley

Terri, Mandi, Ashley, Toby and Justin.  We are hitting the trails.

Terri, Mandi, Ashley, Toby and Justin. We are hitting the trails.

We stayed until it was almost dark, then we HAD to head to a store so Toby could get a new hat “like Grampa” as the one he had is too small.

Putting away some Calico Beans in his new hat.

Putting away some Calico Beans in his new hat.

Later that evening, Seth came over for a visit.  Terri made some awesome encrusted chicken breasts, and we hung out for a while, then hit the bed early.

We woke as mentioned previously to rain rain rain.  We went to my Aunt Dorothy’s house for a visit this morning, and Terri’s mom came with us.  We were happy to finally meet two of her three great-grandchildren, Anders and Calvin.  Kyle and Betsy were there as well, and it has been way too long since we have seen them.  My cousin is apparently putting together a Packer party for Sunday night, so we will be able to see the rest of the clan then.  Now I am just looking out the window at the rain, and hoping it clears soon.  The next few days are supposed to be sunny.  Tonight we hope to go deer shining, and we are looking forward to Garreck, Emma and Eli’s arrival tomorrow.  Toby got to get up close and personal with one of Aunt Dorothy’s calf’s:

He licked me!!

She licked me Grampa!!

Terri is off visiting with one of her friends from her years here, and I think I am ready for a nap!


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