Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Epic Zinc Cream

My fourth-born is a grubby child. I'm not sure why, and she certainly doesn't let that stand in the way of dressing entirely in tutus, but she's the sort of child who goes into the bath one colour and comes out another. Every night she goes in a brunette and comes out a blonde. Also, whenever I put the laundry away, the pile for her is the size of all the other laundry put together. I could, and may, write an entire book on Lolly-related stain removal.

When she wandered by with a suspicious white substance in her hair, I assumed that someone had doused her in flour again. It's happened before. Giant bags of flour are like play sand to a certain age of child.

It was not flour. It was diaper cream. Zinc-based, oil product, impenetrable diaper cream. Brand name Desitin; you can get your own.

Do you have any idea how vile that stuff is to get off of anything? Anything! I can't get it off my hands effectively! I struggle to get it off of the change table! The change table has many aspects that make it easier to clean than a one-year-old. For example, it doesn't move. And it doesn't have hair. And it doesn't move. Or scream.

So I stood in the middle of the room, and asked the children calmly -- you could tell I was calm because I preceded my speech with "I'm staying very calm" -- who decided that the baby needed a head full of diaper cream. No one confessed.

On to bigger problems. It was time to dump the entire contents of the pantry on my one-year-old's head. I used shampoo, dawn, baking powder, lemon juice, joke, and Sunlight soap in various combinations. Since you're wondering, the magic combination is a paste of baking soda and coke, leave it in for at least twenty minutes, then lather with dawn detergent and rinse. This will turn a terrible zinc situation into a toddler who looks like she could really use her hair washed.

Hold tight to the child while you're doing this. She won't be impressed.

My husband didn't feel my pain on this. He asked whether I had to use the extra-fine comb to get the cream out. Clearly this is not a man who has spend a vast amount of time thinking about toddler-stain-removal, because no, of course I can't comb oil-based cream out of baby hair.

Later in the day I solved the mystery of the baby-dousing. The baby doused herself in diaper cream. I know this because she, in a failed attempt at stealth, screwed the top back on the Desitin. And when she did that, she was covered in diaper cream. So she left a perfect Lolly-shaped handprint on it. More fool you, baby! This is why cat burglars rarely douse themselves in zinc cream before going out of an evening.

On the plus side, the entire incident nearly erased the traumatic memory of having melted plasticine in the oven yesterday.

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