Bound for Antarctica

Cause I’m pretty sure down there you don’t have to worry about snakes, and scorpions, centipedes, black widows or tarantula hawks. Ugh!

Yes, we had a run in today with a rattle snake. Well, to be more specific, MYLES had a run in with a rattler. At least he’s the one who spotted it. It was just a small one. So young, in fact, that it didn’t have ‘rattles’ to make noise with. However, that does not mean that it isn’t dangerous. On the contrary the smaller the rattler, the more potent it’s venom. It’s making my skin crawl just thinking about it.

God is so good. And I really do believe that our children have guardian angels. That little snake, as far as we can figure, was lounging in the nice cool shade that the slide from the kid’s playset provided. We had some company over, and the boys suddenly decided to try to outdo each other in the “watch me climb UP the slide” category. Likely that’s when slithery came out looking for less raucous lodgings. Qade was done after one good climb up the slide, but Myles went for 2 or 3. Eventually he came down and I heard him say, “I see a lizard!” He seemed a bit more intense about it than usual, but lizards are a typical occurrence, and they usually watch the cat catch and devour at least one a day, so not out of the ordinary. Eventually though, he landed on the word “snake” and that did get the rest of our attention.

Stu’s cousin, Riley, was the first one to react and he went with Myles to see the snake. At that point he was able to tell that it was indeed a snake, not lizard, and it was also poisonous. The boys were quickly whisked away from the situation while Daddy got a shovel and quickly inflicted the Arizona version of the guillotine on the unsuspecting, and highly unwelcome intruder. The boys were, of course, fascinated by the whole scene and wanted to “see” the snake on the shovel after the deed was done. Yuck! We reinforced that you never never ever touch a snake and always always every time, right away tell mommy and daddy if you see one.

Obviously we live in an area where snakes are going to come around from time to time. I feel almost guilty that I’d been lulled into a false sense of security lately. We’ve got a fence around the yard, (not that I thought a chain link fence would keep out a snake, but still) we’ve been removing sage and Stu has been cleaning up the Junipers that are closer to the house to keep things open and unwelcoming for snakes. All of that, plus the fact that we hadn’t seen any snakes IN the yard area for a couple of years just kinda made me a little too comfy.

Now however, I’m on high alert. I will check around the fence and the play set before I let the kids roam around outside. They are going to encounter snakes in this life out here, but I don’t want it to be because I didn’t bother checking first. The boys have done well the few times that they have seen a snake, but they are 5 and 3. I shouldn’t be trusting their judgement of the situation completely at this point. And Ella… well, she just doesn’t need to run into any snakes right now.

The whole thing freaked me out quite a bit today. I had to remain calm on the outside because we had company and because I don’t like to get hysterical, but quite honestly I felt pretty sick to my stomach for awhile. God is good, and I know that He is keeping watch over my kids more than I ever could, even when I do check the whole yard for snakes. I keep coming back to that when I think about the whole event, and my mind starts to go to the “what if” parts of it. I remind myself that God took care of it, and I should not make myself crazy by worry about what did NOT happen.

We will learn from the lesson. Keep our eyes peeled for snakes EVEN in the yard. And we’re going to continue with precautions. We’ll pick up some snake repellant (betcha didn’t even know there was such a thing did you? ha!) and keep the grass/weeds and things cleared away from the fence.

Or…. we could move to Antarctica! 😉

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