Monday, September 08, 2008

Bug Chronicles

We had a Young Women Presidency meeting the other day, and one of the other gals was telling us how she had been weeding her garden and she found a huge tarantula as she pulled up a weed. And then she just screamed and screamed until her husband came to take care of it. I never knew that there were tarantulas in Cedar City, even though my husband tells me he used to catch them on the mountain behind his house when he was growing up in Provo, so why wouldn't they be here?

Now, I don't think there are tarantulas in my neighborhood (she lives a couple miles away and more on the mountain), but we sure have lots of black widows. Joel has found more of those in the house than I care to think of, especially since only one is way too many! We also had a hobo spider take up residence next to our front door (he was extremely agressive) and we have plenty of crickets, flies and roly-polies around to last us a lifetime.

When we lived in Arizona, I didn't see many spiders, but we definitely had our share of cockroaches and little black beetles. The little black beetles especially were everywhere, including Chloe's mouth (she was a crawling baby back then) and diaper. The cockroaches were seen less often, thankfully, but did make appearances in undesirable places like the cereal box.

I do not like bugs. Not even a little bit. Depending on what kind it is, I will probably scream. My girls have taken after me in this regard. I always hope that Joel is home when a bug needs to be killed, because I am pretty cowardly about the whole ordeal. Just the other day there was a (probably harmless) spider on the wall in the girls' room. Chloe ran out screaming (they all three take after me in this regard) and so I had to go do something about it. Since I wanted to stay as far away from the creature as possible, I decided to throw shoes at it. I smashed it good on my second try, but it was accompanied by a scream and I refused to clean up the smooshed spider guts off the wall and let Joel do that when he got home.

Now, here is where I have to giggle a little bit at my reactions, because there was a time in my life when bugs didn't really bother me much. That time was a year and a half spent in Romania while on my mission. All of the blocs we lived in were infested with cockroaches. I would go to get breakfast in the morning and hundreds (okay, more like 40 or 50) of them would scurry away as I walked into the kitchen, and more would hide as I opened the cupboards. They didn't even bother me one bit. Some of the homes we visited put the words "cockroach infestation" to shame. They had the kind of roaches that would just casually saunter around the house and not even try to hide from the light or the humans. I shudder to think of it now, but back then, I was unfazed. I like to say that I was given the gift of bugs as a missionary.

But it only lasted until the day I was released. If I see a cockroach nowadays, I will probably run the other way faster than it will.

And the whole reason that I bring this unsavory topic up at all is because Sophie's reaction when she sees a bug is truly hilarious. She puts me to shame with her histrionics.

The other morning, Bria was getting ready for school, and I was just outside her door in the hallway folding some laundry. Then a cricket came by and Bria freaked out, but only a little bit. Joel said he would come take care of it in a second and that was that. Or so we thought.

Turns out that Sophie had heard Bria talking about a bug, so she went into the kitchen and climbed to the top of the fridge to retrieve the fly swatter. She then brought it into Bria's room with every intention of killing that bug herself, because that is how Sophie is. I was still folding laundry, and so I sat and watched to see how this all played out.

As soon as Sophie saw the cricket, she screamed. Then she shot out of the room and ran past me as fast as she could, all the while crying hysterically. She continued running around the house screaming until Joel caught her and then it took us both several minutes to calm her down. That is how frightened she was of a little cricket.

Daddy saved the day in the end and killed the blasted thing and we all lived happily ever after.

Until we saw the next bug, that is.
Lara Neves
Lara Neves

Lara is mom to three daughters—two teens and a tween. She loves to share her parenting and homemaking triumphs and failures here at Overstuffed! She was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 2015 and has been fighting it ever since. When she isn't working on her mother of the year award, you can find her reading, singing, or taking photos.


  1. Guess you got it from me, I grew up with black widows everywhere in our cabana, I hate them, I hate spiders and I always was alone when there was a black widow in the house when you kids were growing up. So I took a squirt bottle got it wet and incapacitated it and then vaccummed it up. No guts, no mess. Try it!

  2. Okay, you're totally freaking me out...I just found your blog (love it, by the way), and I just moved to Cedar City from Iowa last month. DON'T tell me there are tarantulas!!! I have been freaking out by all of the little daddy long legs I keep finding in my house. And now I have to watch for black widows, hobo spiders, and tarantulas?!? Should I move back to Iowa???

    Oh, and my name is Erin. Nice to meet you!

  3. Really, do you WANT people to read your blog when you have posts like this?
    I'm not coming to visit you. :)

  4. I so do not mind spiders, I kill them with my fingers If I don't have my shoes on. It's mice I hate. I can't stand them. one time I called my husband home from work which was (30 min )away. To get it. He called our friend and she yes she came and got it. I hate mice.
    Give Sophie some points for at lest trying.

  5. So at our house, I am the bug killer, but what totally gets me are the rodents. If there is a mouse I loose it and Joseph totally has to save me.

    And those cucrachas must have had cousins in Bulgarian, because we had the same problem. We set a bug bomb off in our apt at least once a month and then would come home and have to clean up the was totally sick.

  6. Yikes, black widows???? Scary! When I lived in Colorado, our big worry was the brown recluse, which I suppose really is something to worry about (just the thought of them terrifies me), but here in WA we just have those gigantic yellow garden spiders everywhere. I'm starting to get used to them, because I know they're harmless and they're actually excellent things to have around (they kill all the bad and annoying bugs), but they still give me the heebie jeebies, even though their webs are gorgeous. They love to live on our garage, though, so every single time I open the door, they freak out and scurry around. You'd think they'd learn!

    Ugh. Roaches. We had silverfish and gigantic house centipedes in Minnesota. One crawled on me once when I was getting ready for bed, and I shrieked to high heaven and then started crying!

    I need to stop being such a girl!

  7. That's pretty funny! Sounds like our friends' daughter. She's four and once at the lake she got a teensy, tiny ant on her leg. Frozen, rooted to the ground, she screamed and screamed and SCREAMED at the top of her lungs until someone brushed the ant off her!

  8. Bugs!!! Oh my I am the BIGGEST CHICKEN there is! Unfortunately, I too spread my FEAR to my kids as well and it drives my dh nuts! He has to always be the big, bad, exterminator!!!! I have had to buck up a couple of times but not without serious drama and I would rather have my protector around!

  9. I, too, am a huge baby when it comes to bugs- roaches in particular. Just reading about your experience in Romania made me queasy.
    In general, I use your mom's method- the vacuum, because I can't stand the crunch sound and the bug guts. But for roaches that doesn't work because they are so dang smart and I'm convinced that they would figure out how to crawl out of the vacuum bag to freedom. For roaches I usually put a cup over it (with something heavy on the cup to hold it down), slide the cup to the corner of the room and wait for Jon to get home and kill it. (And then promptly throw the cup away of course.)
    We have those huge house centipedes here too. Super nasty, I would take a spider any day over those scary-looking things.
    All this thinking about bugs has made my skin feel all creepy-crawly.

  10. I'm usually pretty hardy when it comes to bugs, but my mom and little sister recently sent a picture of a spider that was hanging out on their back porch. It was 3 inches--just in the legs. They screamed while obliterating that thing.

    Ah! I just felt something on my thumb, and because I just read your post, I thought (of course) that it was a bug. It was only a stray fallen HAIR. :) Hahhaha....thanks for that.

  11. I don't particularly like spiders either but I will kill them. Mike really hates them though. That is too cute about Sophie. That makes me laugh.

  12. At least Joel will kill them for you!! I'm not scared of insects, though cockroaches totally gross me out, but I'm terrified of any type of arachnid and Ryan WON'T kill them for me. He thinks it's good for me to do it myself - something about confronting my fears. I don't really care if I'm afraid of spiders. I just want them dead.

  13. my skin is crawling just READING this.

    i am more afraid of bees than anything. but i love to work in the yard, so i am around them a lot. still, i embarass myself regularly with my leaps and my screams... my new neighbors must think i am crazy! lol.

  14. That is hilarious! It is so hard to imagine a 2 year old running around like that after seeing a bug that she was planning on swatting, but the thought of it just cracked me up!

    We don't have black widows out here on the east coast (that I've heard of). Thank goodness! When we traveled and camped out west a few years ago, my husband just had to remind me that there were tarantulas and black widows, etc. I cannot stand spiders!

  15. Bugs.

    I don't do bugs.

    Snakes, yes. I chop those up with my shovel.


  16. Yet another reason why we are friends. Bug haters unite!

    (Zoie also take after me in this. I hope I don't ruin Jonas too.)

  17. Oh, I hate bugs so much. Problem is that I have boys that are fascinated with them. In fact, when I run across a spider in the house, Kanoa grabs a tissue and flushes it for me. My little hero.

  18. UGH! I hate bugs. That's the worst part of AZ living. We have scorpions in our neighborhood and for some reason all the neighborhood wives think since Dustin works from home that he can run over in the middle of the day and kill their scorpions for them. Which he CANNOT! So usually I end up having to do it because I'm trying to pretend like I'm really brave. :D

    PS I LOVE your new header

  19. That is too funny. I've been thinking about posting a bug blog, myself. My house is infested with crickets. Even baby crickets! I refuse to pay someone to spray, though. I wish it wasn't so expensive, plus I'm not sure it really does any good.