3 Oct

There’s a live mouse in our house. I am hiding from it whilst there is a lot of shouting and herding of cats in a desperate attempt to get them to remove it. Because one of them brought it in. But none of them are admitting it. I think mice are more scary than spiders.

We played with a niddy noddy yesterday. Very interesting but we couldn’t decide if it should be waxed or not.

And Calum has applied for a place at Foxes Academy. That’s the place in Minehead we took him to the other day. Absolutely brilliant place where the aim is to help young people with learning disabilities become as independent as they possibly can. They learn about different aspects of running a real hotel and restaurant, live in student houses and the students we met were the happiest people ever. Cal particularly liked the houses, but was a bit more circumspect about whether he did or didn’t like the idea of working in a hotel. Wise boy.

So, as one of what we hope will be a growing list of options, he’s put his hat in the ring. Why isn’t there a UCAS equivalent for people with learning difficulties with all the options for them. Eh?



18 Responses to “Hiding”

  1. Rose Mayerling October 3, 2011 at 8:40 pm #

    Hi jo, good to get your post not been able to look at last 2 on my lap top , but could read them on my phone !!!! I am not very good with all this tecno , You all sound as if you are doing really well ,
    The School for Cal sounds brill , last week I had a picture in my head of him hovering all day long , he sounds so grown up , ……. love Rose xxxx

  2. Dollydimple October 3, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

    I have now got a vision of your cats pacing up and down, twiddling their paws and avoiding eye contact – nope, not me!
    What is a ‘niddy noddy’? My mind boggles. So can’t enlighten you on the waxed question.
    I am so glad that you are fining lovely opportunities for Calum x

  3. Trudy Robertson October 3, 2011 at 9:34 pm #

    Jo,we also said what is a ” niddy noddy”? Glad Calum likes the houses.Thats the main thing he needs to like is where he will be staying.I wonder what job in a hotel would suit Cal.As for mice yuck,Why do cats do that and bring them home perhaps its a way of saying they don’t like the cat food you get them.

  4. Jonquil October 3, 2011 at 9:39 pm #

    Herding cats – that takes me back – we used to get this video at management meetings – maybe you introduced it to us?

    I’m all right with any rodent except rats, as our cat makes us regular presents both dead and alive, but spiders – no way. Our new(ish) dog eats daddy-long-legs!

    Hope the hunt for a good place for Calum works out.


  5. Deborah Morgenstern October 3, 2011 at 10:54 pm #

    I’m really good at catching mice. No, really! I’ve been trained by a great hunter – Fiddle (the tabby). He taught both myself and Scampi Fry to hunt, by bringing mice into the house for us to catch (much like his mother did for him). He’s such a great parent to me!. I’m pretty fast now. Fiddle, of course, is the Master.

    Mice are CUTE, not scary. I usually leave mine by the compost (still alive, please note) with some stern advice about taking up residence further down the street where my two can’t find them.

    Really glad Cal’s put in for Foxes – it did sound fab.

    Niddy noddy? I’m with the others – never heard of it. Asked the God of Google and found this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orwh8cIePRE if it helps. Why are you using one at all?

  6. katie October 4, 2011 at 12:44 am #

    Prehaps Cal could give me some cooking tips before I go to Austria and attempt to be a good chalet girl… Sounds like he’d be a dam sight better than me! Xx

  7. jill Clayton October 4, 2011 at 5:32 am #

    Hi Jo, If I see a mouse, I scream. If I even hear the word “rat” my toes curl up. I hate them. We have 2 cats which should keep us safe – but, as you say, they bring them in. Spiders are wonderful creatures which get rid of flies. I don’t really like picking them up in my fingers but I’m happy with a small shield of kitchen towel.
    Great news about Calum.

  8. margaret crisp October 4, 2011 at 6:42 am #

    Hi, great news to hear that you’ve decided on a place for Calum! He’ll enjoy being by the sea!

  9. celia butler October 4, 2011 at 7:41 am #

    Good morning Jo – hope by now your cats will have done what they should and you’ve been able to come out of hiding. (All I remember about the North of England conference in Bridlington ten or eleven years or so ago was the video of herding cats…)
    I had to look up niddy noddy too and am equally intrigued. More explanation needed or is the intention to keep us guessing? I thought at first you were talking about those nodding dogs that some people put in their cars!!
    It’s good news that you have one potential option for Calum identified by now. I know what you mean about the UCAS equivalent, it would make life a bit easier for families in one respect. Except that all of these young people have very individual needs, and it may be that a centralised system couldn’t ever be personalised enough. I know it’s usually a trying process but in my experience most families are happy with the eventual choice because of the level of prior research etc. Are there still specialist Connexions advisors for students with special needs?
    Wishing you a rodent free day. x

  10. Mike October 4, 2011 at 8:39 am #

    I, for one, think that a niddy noddy should always be waxed. It would be weird otherwise…

    • Lin October 4, 2011 at 11:51 am #

      I agree, Mike, seems counterproductive to me….and waxed would make sliding off sooo much easier……
      My cats are trying to train me to catch mice too…but I am a very slow kitten….they have taken to leaving bodyparts strategically placed to encourage me……yesterday I had a set of buttocks and back legs and seperate (detached..) tail, artisitically arranged…….
      I think mice are cute too but preferably not in the house, and ideally in one piece as opposed to neatly segmented
      I seem to have aquired some of Ro’s giant spiders……..the enormous one in the loo last nite gave me palpitations but had mercifully moved on by this morning……
      Hello Mic:)….the red squirrels sound lovely – they come a close second to otters for me…then red kites……
      Kilburns….am planning to call you later! :)))) xxx

  11. Susan Croft October 4, 2011 at 12:29 pm #

    Hope all goes well Callum and all the best to family x

  12. andy1952Andy Davidson October 4, 2011 at 2:31 pm #

    Hi Andrew ( Andy) from Scotland here. cant fathom out what a niddy noddy is????.

  13. Alison Croft October 4, 2011 at 3:27 pm #

    Hi Jo,
    Hope the cats eventually managed to catch the mouse for you – if not, I can always send ‘Mr Blue’ round to assist! He is very good at catching all kinds of creatures; including small lizards and large pidgeons! Not always a very pleasant sight outside our back door in the morning!
    Thank you so much for keeping the blog going and sharing all your high and low points with us all. Foxes Academy sounds a great place, and even better that it is by the sea πŸ™‚
    Lots of Love

  14. Pip Armstrong October 4, 2011 at 4:10 pm #

    Woosers, ask Mr A how to despatch mice next time you see him; he is particularly and actually worryingly talented with the back of a spade πŸ™‚
    Calum’s catering college looks just the business but it wouldn’t be a private college by any chance would it gasp shock horror?

  15. Claire October 4, 2011 at 5:30 pm #

    My cat only leaves mouse portions when he’s annoyed with us, & then it’s just the skull (well, face attached), nibbled off very neatly. Usually he brings shrews in to play in the bedroom at 3am, & having been woken by the horrible shrieks, and the thud of a stone of Maine Coone pouncing, it’s a frantic dive out of bed to catch the beast before it disappears down a crack in the floorboards. Often we fail, & then there’s a 48 hour lull before the smell starts. The only thing we can do is turn the central heating up to speed the process! A couple of weeks ago we were woken by an unusual noise, & eventually I said it sounded as is he was sliding across the floor using my clothes as a sledge. Disbelievingly we switched on the light & there was cat, doing just that, running across the room then sliding merrily. Further investigation revealed a very recently ex baby rabbit, which had presumably become less fun to chase. Remind me, why DO we have cats?
    However, i think myself lucky compared to a friend on the Isle of Man whose cats brought a seagull through the catflap. The vision of one pulling, one pushing becomes even more impressive when you hear it was sitting on the curtainrail, screeching, when Chris home.
    And seagull poo smells of fish.
    Hope yours has disappeared by now, but if not, try leaving chocolate in the middle of a room & the cats in, & go to bed with earplugs .

  16. Andrea Clarke October 4, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    My Mice story – relaxing at home on my own (on the settee) one summers eve (husband down the pub, where else??), broken ankle resting on a cushion, crutches nestling nearby. out of the corner of my eye i see something large scuttle across the floor and head out to the hallway. startled and in terror, cause if that was a spider that was one big mother, i spring to attention (well as much as you can with a broken ankle). the thing scuttles back in and i am relieved that it is a mouse not a spider. it heads under the settee opposite – i am on guard for the rest of the evening until Robin returns. i shall not dwell on how the mouse was despatched but bear in mind i was on crutches which may or may not have been utilised when all other attempts failed (i am a farmers daughter – we’re not sposed to be squeamish).

    a few days later another mouse is spotted!! puzzled, we’ve never had this problem before and it’s not like we live in a rural area! but ha ha, we’ve just had a delivery from the wine club, surely they must have a mouse problem at their warehouse and the little blighters have clearly secreted themselves among our tasty bottles. polite enquiring email sent. lovely letter and half case of delicious wine received in apology (even though they couldn’t find any evidence of a mice problem). it was only 5 mice later that it dawned on us that the builders we had in must have disturbed a nest nearby and the mice must have found their way in to our house! all i’m saying is that peanut butter strategically placed on the correct equipment works a treat. we were between cats at the time – not that they would have done anything useful – not based on the let’s chase this bird round the bathroom incident, if we keep going it just might get tired enough for us to catch it again. and don’t even ask about the pigeon incident – i’ve still got the psychological scars!!!

    hope things go well for Calum – good idea about the UCAS approach.

    hope all team kilburn are keeping well.


  17. Doug October 5, 2011 at 1:51 am #

    I’ll deal with mice over spiders any day. Our cats brought a lizzard in the house last week and turned it loose. Lucky for me, one of them was playing with it, caught it and I picked up the cat, lizzard in mouth and put the both outside.

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