'Shading with Wood Stain' technique by Sawdust and Embryos

Conquering a Crippling Fear

I’ve talked about my crippling fear of crickets here on the blog before. It had gotten to the point where I would despise summertime and look forward to winter just to be able to breathe easy and not constantly fear coming upon a cricket.

You guys made me feel a lot better when I wrote that post by sharing your own irrational fears in the comments. Isn’t it crazy how our minds can take over all logical thought?


I’m completely aware of the fact that crickets are harmless and couldn’t hurt me if they wanted to. I’m aware that my fear is unwarranted.

Here’s an excerpt from my previous post so you can understand the gravity of this sitch:

I’m irrationally terrified of crickets.

It’s pretty bad. I’ve actually considered seeing a therapist. When I see a cricket, I totally lose my mind. And it’s embarrassing, cause I’m a country girl. Spiders and rodents and snakes don’t bother me AT ALL. I’m pretty chill in general. But something about crickets makes my blood run cold.

I googled it, and it’s a legit phobia. Orthopterophobia to be exact. Does this make me feel like my fear is validated? NO.

And I know that this fear is completely foolish and inconsequential. I mean, it’s not like they can hurt me. And, after all, I’m about 100,000 times larger than they are.

But I just can’t help it. It’s a serious problem.

It’s gotten worse over the years, and it’s starting to interfere with my ability/desire to go out to the garage to work on furniture. I try to get as much done as possible during the day while the girls are napping. Because for some reason, they’re more numerous in the evenings.

Something about how shiny and black and crunchy they are, and the fact that they are so unpredictable. They can (and will) jump in any direction without warning. This makes me terrified to even try to quickly step on them. Chances are, I’ll miss, and the little critter could go anywhere… including ON ME.

So now that we have a little background info… let’s talk about how a parent’s fears can (and WILL) rub off on the children

A personal experience on conquering a crippling fear {Sawdust and Embryos}

These girls are country through and through. Sure, they love to dress up and have tea parties… but they are rough and tumble tomboys that aren’t afraid of getting dirty either. And they loooooove animals.

So cute when kids LOVE animals! {Sawdust and Embryos}

Because I’m VERY AWARE of how a fear can affect you, I’ve made a special point to be super careful how I react when there are any type of bugs around. Starting from the time they were very little, I would act excited when I saw an ant or a spider …or any other insect… and say ‘LOOK GIRLS! What a cute bug!’

Because I KNOW they take their cues from us.

And because of this, they get excited EVERY TIME THEY SEE A BUG.

sept14 186

My ploy was more than successful. They LOVE bugs. ‘Mommy look at this giant spider! Heyyyyy little buddy! Awwwww, I’m going to name you ****.

There have even been times where they fight over bugs.


Overcoming a fear of bugs {Sawdust and Embryos}

Helping your child get over their fear of bugs {Sawdust and Embryos}

But I’m incapable of forcing myself to react ‘warmly’ when I see a cricket. My blood runs cold, and it’s all I can do not to lose my ever-loving mind.

Even with me making ‘all this progress’ with my fear, the girls have been picking up on it. And I would say it turned into a legit phobia comparable to mine. We’re talking SHEER TERROR when they see a cricket.

And they wake up multiple times at night because they’re dreaming there are crickets in their bed. (admittedly a terrifying dream) …What have I done to my children?!

Helping kids (and ourselves) overcome a fear of bugs {Sawdust and Embryos}

If there’s one thing I’ve learned as a parent, it’s that I can do ANYTHING if it’s for my kids.

And I set out to stay calm when crickets are present.

It didn’t happen overnight, but over the course of a month or two, I was able to literally have NO outward reaction to seeing a cricket. I could keep my composure and just ‘take care of it’.

This was HUGE for me.

I can DO it!

When the girls would see a cricket and freak out, I would stay calm and say ‘ehhhh he doesn’t look that scary, does he? He’s kinda cute (***NOTTT***)

This wasn’t really working because I had already instilled a blood-curdling fear of crickets in them.

So we started a game.

Girls! Let’s count how many crickets we see today! Do you think we can get to 5? ***shudder***


They went from being stricken with terror at the sight of a cricket to being kind of excited to add another checkmark to their imaginary checklist of crickets.

The craziest thing about all of this is that it’s helped me conquer MY OWN fear of crickets.


Don’t get me wrong, my heart still skips a beat every time I see one… but the fear factor has been reduced. A lot. Forcing myself to react positively to a negative situation changes my whole outlook.

And do you see the parallels of how this works in everyday life? Choose your words and actions wisely, because they will determine your attitude toward it. Speak positive things into your life, as well as those around you!

This has been a huuuuuge breakthrough for me… and is my motivational message for this week. Happy Friday! 😉

Beth @ Sawdust and Embryos

Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest to keep up with all our happenings!



Helping kids (and ourselves) overcome a fear  {Sawdust and Embryos}

Shading with Stain on Dining Table {Succulents}

'Shading with Wood Stain' technique by Sawdust and Embryos

So lately I’ve been keeping my eye out for old tables at yard sales. The only stipulations I have is that they be sturdy, solid wood, and dirt cheap. This 90’s honey oak pedestal table fell into that category at $20 buckeroos. First order of business was to strip the top surface. I used the same techniques from my stripping tutorial to completely remove the finish down to the raw wood grain. It’s a messy job, but somebody’s gotta do it! The beauty about this is that it also removes … [Read More...]

Upholstered Ottoman (Diamond Tufting}


There’s just something about posting ‘After pics’ in the Part 1 post that takes all the fun out of writing the Part 2 post. I need to quit doing that! You already know how awesome our Leather Tufted Storage Ottoman turned out… and I have a sneaking suspicion that some of you are actually going to build one of these for yourselves… so I must persevere and  knock out this Part 2! *Deep Breaths* Now that we taught you how to make the base, let’s talk about the tufting of that cushy … [Read More...]

DIY Leather Upholstered Storage Ottoman


When you have a smallish living room like ours, every piece of furniture has to serve a function other than just being pretty. Trust me, the monstrosity of an Exersauser (baby entertainment play-thing) isn’t my favorite feature of our main living space right now, but it serves a very important purpose… so it stays. At least for a few more months. Anyway! We’ve been using that hexagon end table (that we made over a few years back with the white and gold swirls) as a coffee table… … [Read More...]

Embroidery Hoop Pendant Lights


Mondayyyyyy! Wait don’t leave! I’m only so chipper because I’ve had many MANY cups of coffee already. Cypress thinks it’s super fun to get a jumpstart on each day by ‘rising’ bright and early (AKA 4:30am… give or take 5 seconds). It’s not a huge deal because Nick and I are early risers anyway, but 4:30 is pushing it, dear friends. But! The good news is that I have a fun new project that I finally finished and photographed. Oh yes that’s right… just because a project is ‘finished’ doesn’t mean … [Read More...]

Once-a-Month Groceries / Meal Planning


I mentioned in passing on our Facebook page that I hadn’t been shopping for 6 weeks. Well the truth is, we were out of town quite a bit this summer (thus not eating as much food at home)... so it was a little misleading. We typically hit the grocery store every 4 weeks or so. But after inquiries from lots of curious readers and friends, I thought I would share some details anyway! When we moved to our farmhouse in the sticks 7 years ago, it was a bit of shock in many ways. I’ve never lived … [Read More...]

Haven Conference Recap 2015

Sawdust & Embryos

A few weeks back, we left the twins in my sister’s capable hands, hopped on an airplane (with Cypress!), and flew to Atlanta to attend our fave blogging conference... Haven! I was more than a little nervous about how Cypress would do on the airplane. There’s something about being confined with limited space, and being in close quarters with dozens of strangers... and not knowing exactly how your baby is going to feel about it all. For 2 hours. There were a few moments where she got … [Read More...]

Strawberry Graham Icebox Cake Recipe

Strawberry Icebox Cake ...super simple recipe! {Sawdust and Embryos}

Hey!! Its Meghan from Cupcakes with Sprinkles! We have spent this summer in Austin, TX for an internship my husband has and it is hot here! So hot! SO I've taken to making more desserts that don't require heating up the oven. This Strawberry Icebox Cake is so simple and tastes delicious. Its sweet, crisp, and creamy. Perfect for hot summer days! Let get our ingredients... We'll start by hulling and slice our strawberries. Then in a large bowl whip the heavy cream until soft … [Read More...]

DIY Playhouse / Swing Set Update {Part 2}


A few weeks ago, we shared the slow but steady... ok fine, JUST SLOW... progress of the playhouse we’re building from scratch for our girls. As usual (at least for us), it’s turned into one of those things that’s taking 3 times as long as we originally planned. How is it August already? It feels like summer’s gone by like a time-lapse. We’ve found time here and there to put a few hours in on this sucker. And by ‘we’ ... I mostly mean Nick since it’s his design/vision. And, somebody has … [Read More...]

DIY Newborn Photography Prop {Moon Prop}

Newborn Photography Moon Prop Tutorial DIY {Sawdust and Embryos}

A few weeks ago, I was talking to Molly (at Molly Long Photography) about photography props and how expensive they could be, and she mentioned that she really wanted a wooden moon with a place to put a newborn. This got my wheels turning, and I saw an opportunity to play with power tools and use up some scrap wood! This is KIND OF a tutorial. But not super thorough... because I’m sure there aren’t a ton of you that have been dying to make a big wooden moon. But maybe it’ll get your … [Read More...]