Monday, December 13, 2010

How To Be The Parent I Want To Be?

So, I've been feeling for a while that I'm going about this parenting thing all wrong, but I don't know what to do about it. My dilemma is this: I want to parent all touchy-feely, taking my son's feelings into consideration, including him in solutions to our problems, making him feel like a valued and important part of our family. Instead, I'm treating him like I'm trying to break a wild horse.

I know compliance is important. It's not ok for my DS to run off, like he did at the zoo last week when he made it most of the way to the trains before I found him. He needs to know to stop when I tell him to stop, to stay with me, to follow directions. But I hate that the way to get him to do things is to punish. On the other hand, no punishing, no following rules. I don't feel like any of my discussions have any effect.

I'm going to muse on this some more. If there's anyone out there with an idea, please let me know!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Poop Stinks

Somehow, poop got into our washing machine. It could be that a grownup didn't realize there was poop in the short one's pants when we put them into the wash. It could be that the short one emptied his potty into the washing machine instead of the toilet. It could be that the short one didn't want us to know he had pooped in his pants so he put them into the washing machine with poop still in them.

However it happened, I didn't know about it until I had finished a load of laundry. I opened the door to put the clothes in the dryer, and said, what's this? I found a paper towel, picked up the soggy, squishy thing, and realized it was a turd. The rubber catcher in the front of my front-loader had a bunch more little turds. So I thought, these clothes need to be washed again, if they were washed with poop, so I put them through again. And again, when I opened the door, there was more poop in the rubber catcher thingie.

So, after I cleared out the rest of the (soggy, stinky) poop, I tried my favorite deodorizing strategy - I washed the clothes with vinegar. They still smelled like poop. So I washed them with my wimpy safe-for-the-environment bleach. Still stinky. At this point I've looked on line to find out how to deodorize my washing machine, and went out to get borax. I ran the machine with borax and hot water, and nothing else. At least I now knew the washing machine wasn't adding stink to clothes. I also ran my contaminated load with borax and detergent, to get the stink out.

When that didn't work, I soaked them overnight in a bathtub full of hot water and borax. Since I have a front loader, they can't soak very effectively inside the washing machine. In the morning, the water was black, my brand-new black top was less black, but at least the smell was less. So I ran them again through the washing machine, and this time even dried them.

At this point, I was smelling poop everywhere. It's like paranoia for the nose. I couldn't tell if I was imagining the smell on the clothes, since I thought I smelled poop in the living room, in the car, by my desk, just about everywhere. So I asked my hubby when he got home if he smelled poop. He did.

We researched more things we could try, including an enzyme solution found in pet stores. So I went to a pet store to get it. They suggested I use it twice in a row, which I did. When we pulled it out, my DH (that's Dear Husband) smelled some underpants and declared them poop free. He handed me a towel, and I agreed. So into the drier they went, except for my new shirt and a shirt of his. But when I sniffed my shirt, it smelled a little bit poopy.

Now, my DH pointed out that I had to sniff very hard to smell the poop, but what if it's like perfume, the scent gets stronger as your skin warms up? I could go for a walk and attract every dog in the neighborhood. But I don't know if there's anything else I can do. When the rain lets up, I might try to hang the shirt outside and let it air out, and hope the neighborhood pets leave it alone. Some day I hope to look back on this and laugh. Right now, I hope I don't have to throw away my brand new shirt.

BTW, when I asked my DS (Dear Son, aka The Short One) if he put the poop in the washing machine, he said no, a bad guy did it. I hope, after washing the same clothes eight times, six of them without poop, he realizes he shouldn't do it again. If, that is, he was the bad guy.

Hello, Blogspace!

Hello Blogspace!

I've decided that, since I'm spending so much time farting around on the internet, I should start my own blog. (Yes, you can change "farting" to "f******," but do you know how much asterisks are going for these days? Besides, since I had a kid, I've been cleaning up my language. Don't want my almost four year old to start spouting words like "f***." I'd have to pay for more asterisks.)

Why, you might ask, do I want a blog, when I have facebook? That's a good question. It's because, um, well you see, uh, I don't know. Oh, wait, that's it - if I post things you don't want to read on FB you might unfriend me. If I post things you don't want to read on a blog you don't know about, you can keep me as a friend and I can continue to believe I'm popular.

What will I write about? My almost four year old will probably figure prominently. And whatever detritus is in my head. My head is a scary place, and shouldn't be visited without a group of friends, so you, dear invisible and very likely non-existent readers, will be my posse, my troops, my backup. Wait, where are you going? I can also post things that might be vaguely interesting - storage ideas, makeup solutions, how to be a grownup without being a responsible adult, how to get poop smell out of clothes... but that's another post.