charlotte’s babies spring a surprise attack

So, this whole furniture thing is breaking me in nicely.

It’s making me tough. As in, I-think-I-sprouted-a-chest-hair-even-though-I’ve-never-even-mowed-a-lawn-in-my-life-and-now-sport-an-anchor-tat, after-consuming-an-entire-plate-of-raw-spinach, don’t-mess-with-me-I-have-muscles, tough.

I have to move things. We don’t have “people” for that.

We are the literal mom and pop of the gig. Jamin brings it in from wherever we salvage it, because I’m usually with the kids. And there I am, when he arrives, wishing I had levitational abilities, or the strength of the incredible hulk, so I could magically lift these monstrocities out of their current holding place, while swatting at the billions of children we have who think its a fabulous idea to stand right in Mommy’s blind spot. Because it would be, you know, un-PC to squash one of them so they kind of need to stop doing that.

I think the neighbors drive by our house on a regular basis, just to see what we have going on in that garage of ours. They’re all, “there go the Clampetts again,” While they watch Jamin yell at me, as I wobble precariously with a piece twice the size that I am, threatening to break our current investment with my unabashed wimpiness.

All of that neardeathexperiencedrama so we can move it into our “working studio.” AKA our garage. AKA our KITCHEN in this awful heat. (the moolah isn’t worth a heat stroke, so in the meantime… {Don’t worry about that blue green yellow solidified mixture in your tomato soup, guys. It’s fiber! Lap it up!})

I’m suddenly resourceful. I’ve already endured quite a few bumps and bruises from the entire process, but they’re like medals of honor in the creative world. Jamin and I tend to walk around the house saying things like, “look at this one!” and “oh yeah, that’s BAAAAAAAAAD.” My mom asks where certain bruises came from, when she sees me, like she has the sneaking suspicion someone’s beating me up and taking my lunch money. I can’t ever remember how they occured. I’m like Bella on her honeymoon. Minus the whole private island pillow biter bit.

I’ve had this major fear of bugs in the past. Anything remotely creepy crawly, and I would throw something at it and run SCREAMING in the other direction. I was that girl. But then I had children, and I realized it was either the kids, or the bug. And by bug, I mean anything that looks creepy, has the remote possibility of owning a set of fangs and or stingers, and has bulging eyeballs with which to look at me the wrong way. (We have instated a Mills catch and release program with things like ladybugs and moths.) But this furniture…

I MUST preface all of this, before I deter any potential buyers, by letting you know, I take the brunt of the situation into my own hands before I pass the goods along. It’s called a shop vac. And I make Jamin do it, because otherwise, every time I feel so much as a hair on me after ridding myself of the little boogers, I do a spaz dance. It’s kind of mysterious, where some of these pieces come from. I shudder at the thought of bringing any type of egg sac into my home. Particularly roach egg sacs. ABSO. LUTELY. NOT. The one thing I can’t handle: roaches. No thank you, disease-carrying, worthless idiot creatures. So I haven’t come across any of those.

The problem we have, is the spiders. Oh. the spiders. No. 2 on my death-to-all list.

When we finished off the back porch, we hired a contractor to build the wall. And in the meantime, I scrubbed down our current outdoor furniture, and brought it in, so I could refinish it, and reupholster the seats with indoor fabric, etc. There. Were. Lots. of. Spiders. On our back porch I think because we have a giant tree named Bertha in our back yard. We got murderously happy with the whole pressure washer situation beforehand. The weekend we decided to paint, I was ready to bring it in. Cut to Jamin and myself, working furiously sans children into our Friday night, trying to get those stripes complete. The pieces were now piled into my living room, awaiting their placement.

For the entire night.

The next morning, I, feeling quite pleased with myself, decided that it was time for the ultimate reward in hard work: decorating (it sounds more important if I say implementing the design, but I won’t…) We propped the piece up on its side, and decided to move it back through the doorway, so it could return to its rightful place. Only, when we turned it at an angle, I could see underneath. And underneath, was a gigantic spider web, with a mommy and daddy spider. Mr. and Mrs. spider were sitting, quite pleased with themselves, as they were experiencing the glorious birth of millions upon millions of microscopic baby spiders, hatching from a gargantuan egg sac. They were all moving. They were…glistening.

At this point, I went into automatic freak mode. Jamin had his end of the couch in a secure grip, and I had mine, but I started screaming. And wobbling unnecessarily. And Jamin (high on paint fumes) was a bit slow to catch on.

“What?” he asked (a bit too relaxed at this point, if you ask me.)

“GET the VACUUM CLEANER. I’M SCARED. There’s an egg sac HATCHING underneath this THING! I can see all the little spiders!”

“What? Just smash it.”

It really wasn’t smart, for the man of my dreams, who knows me all too well, whom I decided to spend the rest of my life with, to ARGUE with me in the midst of baby spider CARNAGE.

“GET. THE. VACUUM CLEANER.” I sneered, through clenched teeth.

“Ashley. Just smash it.”

“ARE YOU SERIOUS RIGHT NOW?” My voice, and blood pressure were now elevated to seriously high levels, at the fact that Charlotte’s babies were about to spread their webs and break outta this joint. They were all, “goodbye, Wilbur,” already dispersing at alarming rates, in the middle of my LIVING ROOM, nonetheless, only to take up their new residences in my children’s bedrooms. If I hit the bulging sac with a shoe, I was sure to release pure spiderific mayhem into my home. I would check on my children in the middle of the night, only to find them engulfed in millions of little webs, stuck to the wall like something straight out of that Killer Clowns From Outer Space classic cult movie. (circa 1988, anyone?) The evil little things swinging from their nostrils and ears like trapeze artists.

And Jamin wanted to smash it. The. Nerve.

“GET THE FREAKING VAC. NOW.”

Jamin, begrudgingly, but ever so cautiously as he now realized I was experiencing a near epic panic attack, and if he wanted to stay married to me, should now oblige my furious request, fetched the vacuum cleaner.

I then ran out of the room and made him do it.

I had a few spaz attacks when the air conditioner came back on, and blew a thread against my leg. But we were safe. Crisis averted. I am a wimp.

When we placed the bench in its rightful place, and I peered down for one more safety check, Jamin then decided it would be quite funny to jump at me, screaming.

I nearly wet my pants, and screamed furiously as he managed to halfway dodge my multiple blows.

Just you wait, Jamin Mills. Frogs are a plenty, and revenge is sweet.


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