Monday, March 29, 2010

A Toddler, a Tub and a Tur....

It rarely happens, but with Littles, there is an occasional... um accident... in the tub. In fact, it happened just this evening. So here are my steps to taking care of the situation:

  1. Get everybody OUT OF THE TUB! As quickly and calmly as possible. Please do avoid gagging, shrieking and general freak-out behaviors.
  2. Calm toddler, who is nearing hysterics at the horror he is experiencing over his accidental, um... deposit. Wrap in a towel and hold close while making "shushing" sounds.
  3. At the same time, calm seven year old who is nearing hysterics at the horror of being in the tub during the accidental pooping. Reassure him that nobody ever died from a little poo.
  4. Once everyone is relatively calm, put the toddler into a diaper and have the seven year old put on some undies. (Wait. Strike that. I was strictly informed this evening that boys do not wear "undies.") Decide that this is definitely blog-worthy.
  5. Get children involved in playing or looking at books. Go to kitchen to get paper towels and disposable shopping bag. Trust me. Do not skip this step. Consider whether to grab camera... blog posts are always better with photos, right. Decide against it. Probably too graphic.
  6. Return to bathroom. Assess damage. Procrastinate using one of the following strategies:
    1. Call husband (who is conveniently out for the evening)
    2. Tweet commentary on the incident (in 140 characters or less)
    3. Check email on iphone. Email friend about incident.
    4. Run out of "legitimate" reasons to avoid the bathtub.
  7. Steel yourself for what comes next. Submerge hand in water to pull the plug. Shudder. 
  8. Pull out toys and place in tub-toy keeper. (See WFMW for more on this.) Shudder again.
  9. Wait for water to finish draining. Briefly consider whether it might be easier to set tub on fire...  Scrap that idea on the grounds that the insurance agent would not likely understand.
  10. Use paper towels to pick up the... offensive deposit. NOTE: You will be tempted to use toilet paper, but I strongly urge you to use paper towels. The tub will be wet; the poo will be wet. Toilet paper does not hold up in very wet situations (unless it's that very thick, scratchy notebook-paper-type stuff they use in public school restrooms). Trust me. Use the paper towels. Place the um... waste... in the bag. Shudder again.
  11. Take bag out to garbage can; grab cleaning bucket on your way back to the bathroom.
  12. Check on children. 
  13. Return to bathroom knowing that the worst part is now behind you. Scrub (and I do mean scrub) contaminated bathtub with Scrubbing Bubbles, Kaboom! and bleach. Please be sure to rinse after each chemical so as not to fill your house with toxic fumes (even though you might wish for a little something to take the edge off right about now...)
  14. Repeat scrubbing. Seriously. It might not be necessary, but you'll feel better.
  15. Start shower, gather children and put them back in shower. Reassure toddler who is less than excited about returning to the scene of the crime.
  16. Give everyone a good scrubbing. (Ignore temptation to use bleach and steel wool.) This part should be quick and as happy as possible. Try singing a song.
  17. Remove children from shower - use clean towels to dry children. Don jammies and settle in for a bit of extra snuggling.
  18. Place children in bed. Pray, give kisses, turn lights out. Return to bathrrom. Realize that as long as you've got the cleaning bucket out you might as well give the whole bathroom a once over. 
  19. Gather all towels. Consider starting a bonfire in the back yard. Think better of it as the fire department would likely not understand. Start a load of towels (even though it's not towel day), being sure to use extra hot water and non-chlorine bleach if you've got it.
  20. Collapse into chair. Knit. Or read. Or blog about the entire experience in very graphic detail.
And since blog posts are, in fact, better with photos, I will share with you this photo I took this evening... post cleaning.
Shiny! (and completely poo-free!)


  1. LOL! At first I thought, a turtle? So I had to read everything (between laughing). That has happened here too, though I only have one child so it's easier. Hey, it's better in the tub than on the carpet, ;).

  2. You really need to write a book. This is a step by step detailed plan, that every mother must have laminated and attached to her bathroom door in case of such an emergency.

    LoL! I loved the part in particular where you called your husband, twittered, and photographed it for blogging purposes!! Thanks for the laugh. You funny purple lady, you!


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