Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Blondest Of All

I love my daughters. I know they are both mine, but sometimes, I have to wonder how I ended up with one of the stereotypically blondest children to ever walk the face of this earth. I realize that there must be a genetic link, after all, I have talked about my sister before, but in all honesty, The Big One does take top honors for blond moments sometimes.

Today was one of those times.

Let me start with just a bit of back story. The other day, The Big One was upstairs playing in her room with silly putty. Silly putty is of the devil, and I know that now. Had I known it then, I would have thrown it away immediately, but alas, I did not.
She came down upset because she had somehow managed to get a small section of hair matted with silly putty. There was about a half inch wide section of hair really stuck. She had made things worse by trying to get it out herself, and basically rolling the hair into a big cylindrical shape of putty and hair mess.

Somehow, with a lot of time, I managed to pull the hair out. She lost a lot of hair, but I was able to wash out the rest of the putty, and get her all cleaned up.

After that, I decreed that she was not to play with putty unsupervised or with her hair down any more. She has such long beautiful blond hair, I didn't want to have to go though that again.

Unfortunately, we did have to go through that again, only worse the second time around.

This afternoon, she was up in her room again, playing by herself for quite a while. At some point, I hear her coming downstairs, calling for me, in a panic. I ran to her, thinking something was wrong, and boy was it. The entire rest of the egg of putty was now matted into on of the font quarter of her hair, almost up to her scalp. I can not even explain adequately how terrible it was. There was just a huge knot of putty and hair.

I took one good look at it, and told her in all likely hood we would have to cut her hair, and she would have to get a boy cut. I really didn't think we would be able to salvage it. As I tried looking at it, the hair looked like a bet of interwoven hair, covered and intermixed with silly putty. When I lifted up the hair, there was even putty in her ear, down her ear canal. In her ear, people.

I have no idea how she did this. It wasn't like there was a little bit in her hair, it was nearly an entire egg. It was everywhere. There was so much hair. I kept asking how she did it, but the reply was the same, she didn't know. Eventually, she did say something about putting putty in her sleeve, but that was as far as we got.

I just can't fathom how a six year old child can do this, except, of course, that my child isn't like most kids. She is very intelligent, but she really lives on a different plane of awareness than the rest of us. Just like when she ran her Barbie Jeep into a massive tree, she just didn't notice it. So, she just isn't sure how the putty got into her hair.

It really didn't see a way to even start working on it.

So, I did what every parent in my position would do, if they are able; I called my mom to ask for help. Mom suggested peanut butter, since it works on gum.

I had no idea if it would work, but at least there was a start, and that was what I needed. So, I pulled out a new jar of peanut butter, and started rubbing it in. The Big One thought I was crazy. I had to explain about four times that I hoped some of the oils in the gooey stuff would start to break down the silly putty or help it slide out. I got her hair good and covered in peanut butter, and decided that some time marinating might help it. So, I took the new box of plastic cling wrap from a kitchen drawn, and opened it to wrap her her up. Of course, this being one of the most fantastic days of my life, I managed to cut my thumb open on the box in the process. After the bleeding stopped, and I got a Scooby Doo band aid, I wrapped her up and let her sit.

Let me tell you that peanut butter does nothing for silly putty in the hair. In fact, I would venture that it makes the situation worse. All it does is coat the hair in fatty oils so that any substance that actually would work, has a harder time.

When mom's advice fails, I turn to the next most logical place to look for solutions, the internet. Well, I facebooked it immediately, but got no instant comments. So, I turned to google, which rarely fails me. Yet again, Google came through. I found a ton of potential solutions to our problem. The most promising appeared to be hand sanitizer. The idea is that the alcohol cuts the silicon the putty is based in. Sounded smart enough for me to try it. The next idea was to use baby oil. I started searching for both.

From all of my trials and tribulations today, let me share the entire process that actually works for silly putty in hair.

1. Calm Down. You can't do this angry. Put your child's hair in plastic cling wrap so that nothing else gets matted in, then put them in time out for a while. Put your self there for a while, too, preferably with some chocolate. Dark chocolate works best in my case.
2. Rinse out anything you have already tried and failed with, like peanut butter. A kitchen spray device works best.
3. Try the foamy hand sanitizer that you carry in your purse. While it won't work best, it will start to barely break the putty down, and give you enough hope not to whack off the hair, or start drinking.
4. Search frantically for the old school gel hand sanitizer. If necessary, run out side in your slippers and pajamas, with your house bra on, or no bra if that is how you roll when at home, when you remember that you keep a small bottle in the car.
5. Take the gel hand sanitizer and start to work it into the matted hair. Ignore the burning and stinging from the small cut on your thumb. The gel will being to loosen the knot of putty.
6. Put half the bottle into the hair, and keep working it in. Realize that you need a band aid, and go get one.
7. Try to loosen the strand, and start combing through the hair, working in the smallest section possible, and coming the bottom out first, then working your way up.
8. Put more sanitizer in as needed to loosen the putty.
9. Give up on keeping the band aid on and just learn to ignore the burning.
10. Rinse the hair often, to try and keep the alcohol from damaging her hair. Then replace gel in only the section needed.
11. One you have most of it combed out, or at least to where it looks like hair, rinse thoroughly.
12. Switch to baby oil. The baby oil will begin to remove the rest of the residue. Coat hair liberally with baby oil, or baby oil gel in this case.
13. Comb through. Rinse putty mess off comb and repeat until the comb no longer comes out coated with putty.
14. Wash child and hair. Be sure to condition bad part thoroughly.
15. Put child to bed no matter what time it is, or park in front of TV, which ever is your preference, and take second time out for yourself.

That should get you though most of it. The optional part, an option I plan on exercising shortly, will be to leave the kids in the capable hands of someone who did not have to experience the whole mess, like a grandparent, and go out for coffee. In addition, pick up something bad for dinner, since you won't want to cook, as your back is going to be killing you from the hours of standing at the kitchen sink.

I hope no one else ever has to do this, but if you do, you should take heart in the fact that there is a way to get through it, someone else has done it, and they really are only young once. While mine may always be blond, she won't always be calling me for help. Eventually, someone else will have to take care of it, be it a room mate, husband, or whom ever. One day, I'm going to be the mom who gets the call, and I will be ready, with both advice and a story.

That I look forward to.


Brewhaha. said...

I have just explained to Annie what happened and that she is never to put it near her hair or ears (she was sitting here playing with some putty while I was reading!).
I am glad I am not the only one who has a "house bra".