Scary eyes and Stinky heads

26 04 2007

I got the bright idea the other day that it would be really cool to make some kind of magnetic board with magnetic letters/pictures for Ethan to play with. I found the magnetic board at IKEA for a very nice two bucks and the magnetic alphabet at Walmart for a whopping $0.88! Less than $3 is a pretty reasonable price for a toy that is fun and educational (it is fun- just ask Ethan how entertaining it is to steal the letters and hide them all around the house).

Then I decided that letters weren’t enough, and after a trip to Michael’s for some craft foam, googley eyes, and an adhesive magnetic sheet, and an hour of Family Craft Time today, we had some pretty cool faces. We made all the mouths, noses, etc., first- the very last thing I made was the eyes. I put them all up at once and said “Hey, Ethan, look what Mommy and Daddy made!” As soon as he saw the 6 pairs of frightening, beady, googley eyes, he burst into tears. Once we got him calmed down and explained to him that the freaky people weren’t really staring at his soul, he couragously approached the board, plucked all the eyes off and held them tightly in his fist for the next half hour, refusing to put them down.

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(I was creepily reminded of that movie The Gate, that I somehow managed to see when I was like 7, where Stephen Dorf is this cute little kid who accidentally opens a gate to hell (oopsy!), and the spirits or whatever start coming after him, and somehow something happens to make him have an eyeball in his hand (does it matter what happens? the eye is in his HAND)- VERY traumatizing.)

*****

The Selsun shampoos have become something we dread doing each night. Not because Ethan stages a protest at the injustice that is bathing daily, but because IT FREAKING STINKS. Luckily, my lower back has been bothering me lately and I haven’t had to be The Bather, Jeff has kindly taken the job. As a side effect, his hands now reek of Selsun Stench no matter how much he washes them. Also, Ethan’s head no longer smells like yummy Johnson & Johnson, but rather the sweaty head of a middle-aged man. Blech. Bordering on repulsive.

Plus, the rash isn’t any better. He’s got head funk and for what? We need a new plan…

After tonight’s Selsun session, Ethan got out of the tub and ran naked to his room. This is the part where I take over, wrangling him into my arms so I can dry him off and wrestling him to the ground so I can get his diaper on. But there’s something about being buck naked that he loves… and until he’s got that diaper on, he is impossible to catch. Each time it gets harder and harder for me to deal with him- he might be little, but he is strong! And determined. And wiggly and squirmy and he’s not afraid to kick and punch.

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So rather than use all my energy up on just trying to dry him off, my new thing is to let him air dry. I stand in the hallway and “coach” him, encouraging him to run around naked from room to room throughout the house until he’s dry. This way he gets to be free and naked while still drying off, I’ve still got the energy it takes to wrangle him into his diaper, and he’s tuckered out and ready to relax for a story and bed. Everyone wins.

Unless he poops or pees on the carpet while running the drying off marathon. Then only Ethan wins.


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