Friday, August 29, 2014

Bad Bugs

Brown-Eyed Boy wandered into the kitchen with a little brown bug on his finger.

"Look, Mommy, a beetle."

We often find strange bugs in our house, so I thought nothing of it. "Take it outside," was all I said.

"But I want to play with it."

"Take it outside," I ordered, and he grumbled but obeyed.

A few minutes later, Mr. Brown Eyes hollered my name in a worried tone of voice I don't often hear from him. He held Brown-Eyed Boys' beetle up on his finger, and then showed me a picture on his phone.

A picture of a bed bug.

My heart sank. My worst nightmare had come true.

We tore our house apart. Seriously, it was a disaster. Tools, toys, and cleaning supplies everywhere. Furniture upheaved and pushed aside. Clean laundry piled the dining room table and dirty laundry overflowed the laundry room.

Mr. Brown Eyes took the beds apart piece by piece. We threw everything--toys, books, clothes, blankets, shoes, stuffed animals--into plastic bags and and piled them outside in the hot sun. We bought expensive bed bug-proof bags for our mattresses, box springs, and pillows. Then we sprayed and scrubbed and vacuumed, then sprayed and scrubbed and vacuumed again.

But the next morning we still woke up with bites, so we did it all over again.

Something I didn't know about bed bugs until I watched Animal Planet's "Infested" (I love that show. Disgusting and yet so morbidly fascinating. I know, I'm weird), is that they don't just live in your bed. They can seriously hide anywhere. And you won't know they're there until they crawl out while you're deeply asleep and drink your blood.

*shudder*

Needless to say, I have been paranoid for the last week. We haven't gotten any new bites since that first night of cleaning, and we're staying on top of vacuuming and spraying. But I find myself going crazy, thinking of all the places they could still be lurking. Electrical outlets. Baseboards. Cracks in the walls of our log cabin. Mr. Brown Eyes told me they have even been known to crawl between the frame and glass of a picture frame.

He's so good at calming my fears.

In an effort to not lose my mind, I put together a list of things we could still be grateful for, even though there are blood-sucking parasites hiding in our house:

1. Arizona is hot. Heat = death to bed bugs.
2. Our dryer gets super hot. Again, heat = death to bed bugs.
3. At least we're not infested with spiders.
4. Or cockroaches. *shudder*
5. Bed bug bites are not fatal.
6. At least our house is clean now.
7. Mr. Brown Eyes being suspicious about that "beetle." Good thinking on his part.
8. It could be much, much worse.

Although we suspect Mr. Brown Eyes brought the bed bugs home from work, I have resolved to never, ever, ever, ever, ever, stay in a hotel again.

You just never know.

I overheard Brown-Eyed Boy talking to his cousin about the bed bugs the other day, and he called them "bad bugs."

I did not correct him.

Still shuddering,
The Brown-Eyed Girl

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Pretty

Every time we go to Oregon, my awesomely talented sister-in-law gives me a haircut.
 
This year, since she knew Mr. Brown Eyes and I were going on a date that night, she wanted to do my makeup, too.
 
I think my beautiful sisters-in-law cringe at how low-maintenance I am.
 
I've just never been one of those girls who piles the makeup on. I never learned how, I don't like the way it feels, and I'm not really interested in forking out the money to buy it.
 
Although you can't really see it in these pictures, my makeup is piled on.
 




I look pretty from a distance. But up close, it's all fake.

My sister-in-law was hoping to knock Mr. Brown Eyes' socks off when he saw me. But what she doesn't know is that a few weeks before our wedding, when my friends were slathering my makeup on in practice for the big day, I went to Mr. Brown Eyes' house wearing an inch of foundation and heavy black mascara.

My future husband looked at me as if he didn't recognize me. "Is that how they're going to do your makeup for the wedding?"

I laughed. "No. They're just practicing."

Later that night he brought it up again. "Please don't let them put too much makeup on you, " he begged. "You're so pretty without it. You don't need it."

That's when I knew I was marrying the right man.


So, while Mr. Brown Eyes thought I looked pretty that night in Oregon, he thought I looked just as pretty after our date, when I took my makeup off. 

That, and he could finally kiss me without tasting concealer.

Pretty happy,
The Brown-Eyed Girl

Friday, August 15, 2014

Oregon 2014

We just finished a two week vacation at one of my favorite places in the world.


Meaning Oregon, not Sushi Town, though that is one of my favorite things about going to Oregon.


This year, Brown-Eyed Boy joined us on our crabbing trip. He loved it.


We ate cheese at Tillamook...
 
 
Froze at the beach...



Played at Jones Creek...


And ate lunch with ghosts.

This year was the first time we've ever driven to Oregon. Can I just say that sitting in the front seat during a twenty hour drive, mediating arguments between children, doling out snacks, and occasionally checking the map felt like a rite of passage? I feel like I can finally call myself an adult now.

Well, sort of.

 
I have fond memories of road trips from my childhood. Long days stuck in the car with my siblings, listening to the radio and telling stories, eating fast food and drinking soda, playing with my favorite cousins, and seeing new places. I want my children to have the same experiences.
 
Except they'll never know what's it like to drive without watching movies or playing games on the tablet for hours.
 
They have it rough, I tell you.



 
We had so much fun playing with Mr. Brown Eyes' family.
 
I married into an awesome bunch of people.
 
Later,
The Brown-Eyed Girl

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Truth About Mormon Temples

I recently read a blog post bashing Mormon temples.

The temple is a sacred, cherished place to me, so reading that blog post hurt. In fact, I couldn't even read past the first page.


San Diego California Temple

Days later, it still bothered me. Not because I thought that any of the disparaging remarks were true, but that anyone believed those remarks at all. How could a place so wondrous and holy to me be so hateful to someone else?

So, to clear the air, I decided to post the truth about Mormon temples.

I am a Mormon, I was married in a Mormon temple, and I visit Mormon temples on a regular basis, so I think I'm a pretty good resource.

I also quote from Boyd K. Packer's book, The Holy Temple. It is an awesome reference for anyone who has questions about temples.

Nauvoo Illinois Temple

The truth is, our temples are sacred to us, not secret. There is a difference. Everyone is invited to come to our temples. Yes, you do have to be an active, worthy member of our church. But guess what? Anyone can become an active, worthy member of our church. As The Book of Mormon teaches, “[T]he Lord…doeth that which is good among the children of men…and he inviteth them all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female…” (2 Nephi 26:33)

President Packer says, “Temple ceremonies are not something that we try to limit to a restricted number of people. With great effort we urge every soul to qualify and prepare for the temple experience. Everyone who comes within the influence of the gospel is urged to prepare to go to the temple and participate fully in the sacred ordinances which are available there” (25).

And when I say worthy, I am not inferring that everyone else is a "lesser-worthy," or less loved by God. Attending the temple and understanding the things that are taught there requires preparation. Someone attending the temple unprepared would be like trying to take a college-level class before taking the prerequisites; it would only cause confusion and resentment. The Lord doesn’t work that way. His house is a “house of order.” And since it is His house, it only makes sense that “He directs the conditions under which it may be used” (35).

Washington DC Temple

The temple is like a school where we are taught the things of God. In order to learn properly, we need the Spirit of God to guide us.

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

But God has revealed them unto us by his Spirit; for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? Even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God...

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Corinthians 2:9-11, 14).

Says President Packer, “Without the spiritual atmosphere of the temple itself, and without the worthiness and preparation required of those who go there, the temple ceremonies would not be quickly understood and might be quite misunderstood” (36).

Salt Lake City Utah Temple

As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-dsy Saints, I testify that the temple is a holy place, the house of God. It is not a place that divides families. It is a place that brings them together eternally. If the temple divides us, it is because of our choices.

Please go to Mormon.org to learn more.

Love,
The Brown-Eyed Girl

Birthdays

I love birthdays. What could be better than a day entirely devoted to celebrating you?
 
That sounds really selfish, doesn't it?
 
But, seriously, what could be better?
 
Here are some pictures of our recent birthday celebrations.
 













 
 
So to all you people with birthdays out there, happy birthday!
 
Never stop celebrating.
 
Still five years old at heart,
The Brown-Eyed Girl
 


Sunday, June 15, 2014

Rocky Point

Between beautiful beaches, warm ocean water you can actually swim in, and all the Mexican food I can eat, I think I've found a new favorite vacation spot. 
 



 
My husband has been dropping hints for years that we should buy a camper. After three days at an RV Park on the beach , I think I actually want one more than he does.
 
He couldn't be happier.
 
Me gusto mucho,
The Brown-Eyed Girl


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Showing Off

I remember the days, back before I was married, and even after I was married but before we had babies, when I was very annoyed by people who seemed unable to talk about anything but their children.
 
"Don't they have any other interests?" I would ask myself. "Don't they realize that not everyone wants to talk about their kids all the time?"
 
And then I had kids, and I became one of those annoying people.
 
 
I try not to be. I don't walk into work and tell the girl sitting next to me all about my son's latest bowel movement or my daughter's new tooth. But when conversation turns to our weekend plans, I inevitably start talking about my kids.
 
Because, well, my plans kind of revolve around them. They are a huge part of my life.
 

 
I try not to go on and on about them when talking to people who don't have kids because I remember what it felt like when people did that to me. I would think, "Great, your kid's wonderful, now can we please talk about something I can relate to?"
 
But sometimes it's really hard not to go on and on about them.
 


I understand now how kids take over your life.

They astound you and frustrate you, overwhelm you and amaze you.

They make you laugh and cry and beam with pride.

And it's really hard not to share that with everyone around you, even people who you know, in your heart, don't really care.


So, because I am amazed and astounded by my children everytime I look at them...

 
because it's almost Mother's Day...
 
 

and because I am one of those annoying mothers...
 


 
I wanted to show off my precious babies.
 
I'll refrain from telling you about their bowel movements.
 
Happy Mother's Day,
The Brown-Eyed Girl