Friday, October 17, 2014

Back tracking. . . Bed Bugs (pictures, so read at your own risk)

Here is a post detailing what else went on during the rest of the summer. . . Some things that were less than ideal.  It had been the perfect summer and then one day while watching Owen and Mark at swim lessons I found what I thought to be the perfect set of couches to fit in our new house.  We were on the look out for some added seating and I saw what appeared to be the perfect set up.  They were on a Facebook buy, sale, or trade site and looked to be what appeared in good condition.  The owner said they were just too big for the apartment they were in.  So after deliberating with Mark, we decided to buy the couch, loveseat, and recliner for what seemed like a steal of a deal.

Now before I go any further you must know that almost everything we owned was either a wedding gift or is a used item.  We rarely by anything just brand new, and are always on the lookout for a good deal.  We kinda go by the same motto as the Duggars, "buy used and save the difference!"  In fact that is what I kept repeating to Mark as we drove to go and pick up our "new" furniture.  I was so proud of us for finding a good deal and saving money!  Upon arriving we inspected the furniture, looked at it, smelled it, everything (or so we thought), paid and headed on our way.  Everything fit perfectly and we began to thoroughly enjoy what seemed like the best buy we had found lately.

Aren't they just the perfect size and all?  Seriously they were great!
Then I started getting what I at first thought was poison ivy.  It was raised and bubbled and in clusters like poison ivy, but didn't quite look like it.  Plus I hadn't gone outside really anywhere where it could be due to the fact I am allergic to bug bites and mosquitos were everywhere!  When it didn't look like poison ivy but stuck around and appeared to get worse I assumed Mark had gotten chiggers when he was clearing brush in our back yard and had brought them in the house somewhere.  We searched our bed and found nothing. . . By now whatever "it" was has spread all over me.  My ankles, the bottom of my back, shoulder, hands, fingers, and up my legs.  I was miserable.  This pregnancy has messed with my histamine reaction so not only was I  incredibly itchy, I was also swelling in the places the where "it" was most concentrated.

How it started out. . .
Finally, exhausted by what was going on I told Mark that I decided to sleep on the coach, because even though we didn't see anything, he had to have brought chiggers into our bed somehow.  I said "if I wake up and there is nothing new then we know what it is and where."  In the middle of a movie I went and got my pillows and threw them on the coach and then settled back in on the loveseat to finish whatever we were watching.  When it was over we flipped the light on and I moved my pillow to where I was going to sleep and saw "it".  "It" happened to be a bug of some sort sitting on my pillow!  When I moved the other pillow there was another bug!  I about LOST IT!!!!!! I starting screaming to Mark "This is it!  This is the culprit!!!!  It's the couches!!!!!  What is it!??!!?!?!"  After some initial investigation (i.e. google) we determined they were BED BUGS!!!!!!!!!  And not tiny ones, but huge (by bed bug standards) ones.  Remember earlier when I said I was allergic to bug bites, well apparently I am HIGHLY allergic to bed bugs!  We quickly turned the couches upside down and pulled up the upholstery to only discover more in each piece of furniture!  I wanted to throw up.  "Out!" I said, "I want them out of my house!!!"  Mark and I proceeded to move said couch and love seat out onto the front porch, and then began to clean up in and around the living room where they had been sitting.  After that we RAN to our room, undid and flipped our mattresses and luckily saw nothing.

I couldn't believe it, and I was so mad.  I didn't sleep a wink that night, kept feeling like things were biting me, even if they weren't.  Finally I got up around 4:30 and went to get in the shower.  At 8 AM sharp I called the exterminator who said he could come that afternoon.  However it was not over yet.  You see not only where those couches great for sitting, it was also where I folded laundry during nap time!!!!  So I had folded and PUT AWAY everything just the previous day!  I am talking the boys laundry, Mark's and my laundry, towels and sheets, EVERYTHING.  Feeling completely overwhelmed and panicky I went around and got everything out!  Everything out of the linen closet, everything out of the boys' drawers, everything out of mine and Mark's drawers, all the dirty clothes, bedding, everything.  I loaded up what I could fit in the back of our car and with the help of my grandmother (after a huge cry fest on the way to her house.  Pregnancy, no sleep, and the overwhelming pile of every article of fabric in your car needing to be washed will do that to you.) and headed to town to a Laundry Mat where we spent 3 hours washing, drying, and folding everything.  With both boys might I add.

Once we left town and went back to Ballou's house both boys went down for a nap and I headed back out to meet the exterminator.  After looking at the couches he said we had an infestation in there.   I made him come and inspect every room in the house and all beds.  I asked him "Were they in the house first or the couches, because we just bought this house!"  He said no they were in the couches to begin with and weren't anywhere else in the house.  I asked him to spray everywhere just in case, and we left it at that.  This was all on a Wednesday.  Did I mention Mark's brother Blake was coming in on Thursday night to stay the weekend with us.  And that on Saturday his whole family would be there to eat together/see the house?  No?  Well they were, so anything that needed to be done on Wednesday to prepare for that was unable to be done.  It was a mess.  The next day after taking care of kiddos and doing the usual Mark and I cleaned the entire house (again) and finished at 11 right before Blake and Whitney arrived that night.  Seriously I don't know if I have ever been more exhausted.  Mark who never says a week is bad said "This has been the worst week I've had in a long time, maybe ever."

About 3 weeks later, they were starting to heal.
Just so you know, it burns constantly and feels like fire if you scratch it.  
I wish that was the end of the story but 3 weeks later I got bit again.  Even though the couches were out of the house (we burned those suckers) apparently we hadn't gotten every bed bug.  Did you know they are NOTORIOUSLY hard to get rid of, almost impossible really?  No?  Well they are, that is why they are such a big deal  After spending countless nights on the internet looking up what to do and paying more money to get supplies, we took more action.  We took apart our california king size bed, put mattress covers on it and the box springs, moved the mattresses out, and steamed the carpets.  We proceeded to do that to EVERY ROOM with carpets in the ENTIRE HOUSE!!!!!!  We also bought and spread dichotomous earth, a substance that isn't harmful to pets or humans, but will kill bugs, all over the carpet in each room.    We tried to contact the lady and she wouldn't respond via message and when we called she hung up on us and then blocked our  number.  All in all we learned a very important lesson.  Do not buy used furniture unless you know the person personally!  Also by the time we paid for the couches, exterminator, mattress and pillow bags, a steamer, and the dichotomous earth we could have easily bought new couches. . . Oh well you live and you learn

Picture Mark sent me of the couches going up in flames. . . He was so happy to get rid of them.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yep, never ever buy used furniture. It just creeps me out . Save up for it, do whatever you have to, just never ever buy used furniture. I get weirded out when people say they bought used furniture, for this reason. Ick.