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It's Time For a Bath

Does anyone else go through this?

I send Elf and Emperor off for a bath. It's just time! On the tub wall just under the faucet handle, I've taped a laminated sheet with instructions on "how to take a bath." They include gems of advice such as "get clothes ready" and "use soap." Really.

After bathtime, Elf is the first to pop downstairs. But something juuuust doesn't seem right.

*sniff sniff* Did you really have a bath?

"Oh, yes!" Elf assures me. "See my shirt?" As in, I've even changed my clothes! Well, that's good, I guess. But something still doesn't seem right. Deodorant? Elf nods his head and gives the necessary mmm-hmm and angelic chubby face smile.

*sniff sniff* Did you wash your face? Your bottom? Your feet? Of course he did!

How about your hair?

"My hair?" he cocks his head sideways as if I asked him whether he bathed with five eels and a robotic pig. What a notion! I had to direct him back to the laminated paper that clearly states that shampoo ought be used... you know, like... on your hair?

Ohh. You mean my haiiir.

Sigh. His mom had to scrub his head in the kitchen sink with dish soap because Emperor needed the tub just then. Good enough. You can just smell the JOY in our house, which is better than "musty stinky foot" and whatever else he was smelling like before.

Emperor comes trampling down the stairs. He, too, still smells.

"Did you wash your hair?" Yes! Mrs. C is down to the chase now. Since Elf forgot this, I'm reasoning Emperor did, too.

Emperor washed his hair. His feet. His bottom. Yes, he put deodorant on. But Sherlock Holmes here discovered he's doing me a favour by saving money on my laundry bill . He has changed into the same clothes he had on before his bath! Isn't that helpful? I should be thanking him, especially since I didn't specify that he needed DIFFERENT clothes after his bath. I started the laminated sheet out with "get clothes ready" and "get towel ready," and ended it with "change into clothes." I never specified that he couldn't wear the SAME clothes he had on before.

Why aren't I grateful?


  1. Hmmmm.. sadly instruction sheets with words wouldn't work for Griffin! I or Stew stand over him and make sure he does it right! I might try pictures!
    No kid likes washing their own hair Mum!

  2. This just made me laugh. Chris is right. No kid likes to wash their hair. When my 11 year old niece goes to my Mom's to spend the night--Mom always makes her get right in the tub for a bath and shampoo. My sister and her older daughters all make fun, but Mom is of the firm belief that kids shouldn't stink. Imagine that?

    I loved this post. You obviously need to be more specific in your instructions and perhaps add pictures--Mother. ;-)

  3. The instruction sheet is a great idea. Think what the outcome may have been without it. :)
    We are blessed with one child who loves to bathe. Unfortunately the other one not so much.

  4. Our bath time directions have always been oral and sound a lot like Bill Cosby's wife in the story he told about an evening at home. "Go into the bathroom. Take off all your clothes. Turn on the water. Get under it. Wash. Use soap. Rinse. Turn off the water. Put on your pajamas and go to bed." This always produced a laugh from friends without children.

  5. What is it with boys and hair washing?!!! The rule around here is that when mom's (sensitive) nose starts smelling something akin to wet dog, the heads get washed.

    Thankfully, I still wash two of those heads myself. The other head has hardly a hair on it most of the time (thanks to the 3mm shaver), but somehow still ends up smelly. I'm always telling him to just keep lathering upward when he's washing his body. Who needs shampoo with such little hair, anyway?!!!

    I think you hit a nerve.

  6. Love this post! My boys do their best to avoid cleaning of any kinds (themselves, the house, etc.) I have marched them back for NOT washing their hair. Same with not really brushing teeth.

    My eldest used to say that he had a 'secret weapon' to keep girls at school away by not brushing his teeth. Completely unacceptable weapon in my book, though!

    And, don't get me started on how many days they'll wear certain garments.....

  7. Jeffrey used to stand in the bathroom with the shower running!!

    then he got interested in girls and he took 4 showers a day - towels everywhere, he needed one for his hair, one for his face and one for his body
    and one on the floor on top of the bath mat

    moms just can't win :)

  8. haha! That's hilarious! I will have a whole ton of clothes hanging in the closet yet my boys will continually pick clothes out of the dirt hamper. Why is that??? Argh. I tell them, geesh guys, I washed clothes for you. You have like 80 shirts hanging up but they are just so happy with a dirty one.

  9. I can't figure out how to get to Bonnie's blog! I had it and then now I can't find it. Must look. She's a sweet gal and I love keeping in touch with both you guys.

  10. This post brought back such wonderful memories hehehe. Giving baths to the boys till they were old enough to become shy....... then it got easier. I would stand outside the shower curtain and threaten to come in. They would scrub extra well then hehehe.

    Teens are great !

  11. oh, yes, my friend. this happens in my house also.

  12. Hilarious! Kids are such a joy!
    I can relate. Fortunately these shananigans no longer go on here, as my 12 year old has become a neat freak and a germaphobe, but oh back in the day!!

  13. The girls are only now learning to be okay with water near their face... so washing hair is still a less-than-frequent event.

    I don't what it is, but screams and failing just aren't worth it most nights...


  14. cute! going green, i see...literally!


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