Oh What A Day… It Was A Wild One!

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Today started out like they normally do, but within minutes I not only scared my neighbors with my wild screams, but I felt like we were in an episode of wild… and the animal takeover had just begun.

We live in a semi-rural area of San Diego. 

Meaning there is a Walmart about 10 minutes away (do you judge how out in the middle of nowhere someplace is by how far away from Walmart it is… or is that just me?) but our house is on over 4 acres of land and most people think we live way out in the country. I used to think the same thing before I moved here so I totally see where they are coming from.

Pete got up first and let the dog out and then came back upstairs. He looked out the window and said that the dog was way down in the grove. This would totally not be a problem except that he is over 12 years old and spends most of his days in the garage (his choice). He even cries for us to close it. In his younger days he would run up and down into the grove… but in the past couple years he has developed arthritis and when he does  this he’s pretty sore for the next few days. We both thought it was strange that he was down there because he seems to know how sore he will be and we haven’t had to go get him from down there in a long time.

I told Pete I’d go get him and as I was walking down the stairs Pete came running up to me telling me it was actually two really big coyotes that he saw. He said he was watching “our dog” when another dog walked up and then he realized it wasn’t our dog at all. 

We both went running outside. Pete went to the front yard to get our dog and get him to safety while I started screaming in a very unnatural way and waving my arms like a mad women.

My neighbors must LOVE me.

With our dog being older now, and with there being 2 coyotes we were both very concerned for his safety. Little dogs and cats go “missing” all the time here and it’s not uncommon for them to attack bigger animals too if they are hungry.

Thankfully our dog had already put himself back to bed in the garage and he looked at us like we were crazy. 

I wish that was the end of the animal adventures, but sadly it wasn’t. We had some late night fun too…


Pete and Ashley headed off to the last day of the Kids CrossFit gathering and Maddie, Emmy and I went out for more fun!

It was 100 degrees in the shade, so they stopped at every mister there was. And then we had Japanese food for lunch. The food was awesome… and so was the air conditioning. <— Just being honest. 


Em has been asking to go to Disneyland lately, but our next planned visit isn’t for a couple months so I did the next best thing. I took her to the Disney Store. Is this a parenting hack or a lazy parent move? You be the judge. Either way she was thrilled!


The rest of the time was spent finding and buying the perfect flower headband… 



And looking for the next hot toy item. Does anyone else love the Japanese store?




We made it home in time to be there when Pete and Ashley got home. It felt like we hadn’t seen them in weeks. The rest of the evening was boring if I do say so myself. I got some work done, straightened up the house and then it was time for bed. I fell asleep around midnight just to be woken up by Pete saying that the cats cornered something in our bedroom. 

They had a rat or a mouse.

Pete was cool going back to sleep and letting the cats take care of the situation. That’s how tired he was… me on the other hand couldn’t imagine closing my eyes knowing that there was a rodent on the loose… so I insisted we pick up everything off the floor, seal all the doors and flush it out from behind the furniture. Forty five minutes later we were ready to see what we were dealing with… and there was nothing there. 

Pete starts to think that maybe it was one of their pretend rats he saw or that maybe it was nothing at all? I mean it was in the middle of the night. We all go back to sleep. About 30 minutes later I wake up to my overly enthusiastic cat showing me something…. a half dead mouse. It was awesome! I wake Pete up and as soon as the cat sees Pete he drops it and rolls over on top of it. These two have issues with each other at times. I think it stems from the fact that the cat wants Pete’s side of the bed. So Pete didn’t believe me at first until I was able to get the cat to follow me to another room. Boom! A very nice now deceased mouse was laying there.

And that was our day! So… how do you deal with uninvited guests in your home?

Heather Reese
the authorHeather Reese
Heather Delaney Reese is the storyteller and photographer behind the lifestyle and family travel blog, It's a Lovely Life®! For the past decade, she has vacationed over 150 days a year with her family. She is a vegan, and loves being by the water, spending time with her children, husband, 2 Shih Tzus and Cat.


  • Wow, what a day. lol We had similar experiences to that we well. We looked out the window once and saw our dog standing at the edge of the woods. A few minutes later, a coyote appeared, and started leading the dog INTO the woods. That was so weird. I have lots of mice stories I could tell you about too. Thanks goodness for cats. Take care and thanks for sharing.

  • I grew up in the house that was over 100 years old and we had mice all the time. It was horrible. I mean live mice funning around, not just dead ones occasionally.

  • I don’t do mice. We had a mouse in our apartment once. I left while my husband caught it in a trap and disposed of it. We have an indoor cat now, and I don’t know if she’d understand what to do with a mouse! EEK!

  • We don’t have too many issues with rodents aor even bugs. I think having our living space on top of the garage and storage helps keep those things on ground level.

  • Wow, what a crazy day. We live in a semi rural area so we have trouble with coyotes and other wildlife too.

  • Wow It’s pretty crazy that coyotes are a regular thing out there! It’s hard to believe cats are so good at mouse hunting! My daughter’s cat moved in yesterday so hopefully it has similar instincts.

  • We live in Las Vegas and hear a lot of stories about scorpions, coyotes and more. Thankfully we have never had an actual issue ourselves but just the thought gives me the creeps!

  • What an eventful day. I always call my husband to deal with any unwanted critters while I stay inside the house.

  • I never knew what to do when we had uninvited guests I understand about not wanting to sleep until the problem is fixed. Glue traps usually worked with mice.

  • I can’t handle mice, we had a problem in the house last year and I just wanted to run away. That tempura on the other hand, I could handle that for sure!

  • My goodness, what a day! ha! It is so nice of your cat to deliver her find to you. I love your Disneyland stand-in too!

  • We’re in an apartment right now so it makes it less likely to have uninvited guests. However, we were living in a place before where it was so hard to keep the ants out!

  • Oh it is a nightly thing to listen to the coyotes crossing the field. Of course a deer walking up behind you while working in the garden is an experience.

  • That Japanese store looks like fun… I bet my daughters and I could spend hours in there just looking around.

  • Mice don’t really scare me. It is the rats that make me bloody scream! I know we have an unwanted nighttime visitor when our dog keeps running back and forth from the kitchen door to the living room. Mousetraps are immediately set up when this happens.

  • My mom always gets the nicest gifts from her cats. I’m so thankful to not have to deal with the dead mouse offering they bring her!

  • Wow that is quite the day you had. I can not imagine being able to sleep if i knew there was a rodent in the house lol. No mater how tired i was. I had a bat in the house once and we were up all night until mu Son finally caught it.

  • I live rural, so I get it. I am small town and we have some small towns around us. The larger cities are 30-45 min away. My closest wal mart is about 20 min away. What makes people laugh about my house is that I am rural, in between two small towns. One is a tourist trap for shopping and the other for German food. Despite being surrounded by corn fields and only having 1 neighbor, our house faces the main road that connects the towns. So, its loud. Busy. Semi trucks, school busses, travel busses, RVs, Motorcycles and everything else all day long. Its a work from home nightmare. LOL

  • What a crazy day! Loved your pictures! Since it’s summer and we can get outside, I would take uninvited guests to the playground or splash park.

  • Oh my gosh! Too much adventure for one day. Coyotes and a mouse? I couldn’t handle it. I’m worried about the occasional raccoon bothering our dog. lol

    Oh, I do the Disney store too. Sometimes we get away with a day at Downtown Disney to get the kids over their Disneyland fever. 🙂

  • I know those days where there are just too many things going on! Haha sounds like a whirlwind of a day! Good to know that your dog and the rest of the family are doing well.

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