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Gourmand Mice Swig Down Coffee

“Jerry, you’ll need to bring the traps up again.”

We had driven to our home here in beautiful Crestline on Wednesday morning so that I could wrap gifts, and make other Christmas preparations, assuring that when we come here from Havasu on the 23rd, there will be some semblance of order to our festivities. There’s still a small amount of snow on the ground from the last storm, and the temperatures have been low, so there is freezing every night. Our house is well insulated, and remains at a snug 50 degrees when its locked up and we’re gone, and we’ve come to understand that combination is quite appealing to the mice who vacation here in the San Bernardino mountains.

We’ve known for some time that the mice around here are brilliant, for our skirmishes with them before have quite proved that. Now it seems we are hosting a tribe of epicurean gourmands, for they have taken to nibbling (and no doubt brewing somewhere) expensive coffee beans. On checking our cupboards Wednesday, I found indications of their presence on one shelf only. Residing on that shelf are mostly canned goods, but as we prepared to leave after Thanksgiving a few weeks ago, I had also placed there a sealed plastic bag of gourmet coffee beans. Now I could see that into the slick coffee bag, two tiny holes had been drilled, presumably by mouse teeth, and that there were coffee beans scattered around on my cupboard shelves. Unbelievable. I know the little rascals probably live down in the basement around the water heater, and just come prowling upstairs when their provisions run low, but I had never thought of them brewing cups of coffee. They probably utilize miniature coffee pots and cups the size of my pinky fingernail when a caffeine urge strikes the little brown mice, and they’re probably snickering down there now at their successes in evading Jerry’s traps.

One of them isn’t. Jerry snagged him with white cream cheese on a trap setting smack among the coffee beans.


My devotional blog is here.

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The Best Paper Airplane in the World

One of the things that happens when we are in Crestline and our small grandchildren are visiting is that they fold and fly numerous paper airplanes. They know where the good-on-one-side stack of paper is kept beneath the printer and that they may take as much of it as they wish. Our house is built with a balcony and a railing that makes a perfect place to fly these planes. They dip and zoom, sometimes even landing in one of the living room chandelier bowls. I think a few days ago I heard Pappy telling one of them about the fire danger of such a landing spot. Anyway, by the time the youngsters are ready to go home, there is a paper fleet of airplanes scattered around the house–sometimes in hangers–usually not. 😦

(All the parents of my grandchildren are excellent about cleaning up and putting away toys at the end of the visit. That for sure is a blessing.)

I think my grandchildren are going to love these instructions I have found, for from my observations, their planes are not cutting-edge, nor world-class paper planes. Seem rather ordinary to me, and quite subjectBuild the best paper airplane in the world. to crash.

By: Michael O’Reilly

During the summer of 1950, on the outskirts of Harrisburg Pennsylvania U.S.A., my sister’s boyfriend “Skip” was sitting on the glider on the front porch of our house. He said to me – “Hey Mike… bring me a sheet of paper.” I answered why? and he responded with his make believe impatience “Just bring it!” I obeyed and he said that he was going to build the best paper airplane in the world. I was eight years old at the time and my meager knowledge of paper airplanes was the traditional flying wedge that spiraled into tight loops and fell head first to the ground.

When he started folding the paper, I knew this was something different, something special. He never explained how he did it but every move, every fold, every detail was burned into my memory. After he finished, we walked the porch handrail and he gently tossed it horizontally towards the street. It glided like no paper airplane I have ever seen before, it was acting like a REAL airplane. It gently curved into the slight breeze and began to rise vertically without moving forward. The craft then began to lower as if it were a helicopter and gently came to rest on the asphalt below.

Over the years, I have shown many eight year old children this paper plane. I don’t know if they will remember but I hope they pass the knowledge on.

What makes this paper airplane so special?


Assembly instructions
Printer friendly instructions
How to fly it

I can hear it now–some of you men will want to check this out and see if indeed a superior paper airplane is created. I suppose it’s okay, even if you don’t have any grandkids, but you must promise to give a report of your success–or 😦 failure.


My devotional blog is here.