Eau de Toddler

Kittens –

I write to you today in a cry for help. Yours truly, KT, is stumped. Alas, I fear I am enabling possible germ warfare in my home. Who needs plutonium when they have eau de toddler.

Let me set the stage.

Darling daughter, like most in the toddler set, has a special blanket. In our house, we call it “Buggy,” a phrase coined by my oldest sister when she was a wee thing. Darling daughter’s buggy is near and dear to her heart. It is a pink soft blanket with the required satin trim and a small bunny attached to it. Here is the link if you are on the lookout for a good buggy: http://www.ohbabyaustin.com/Shop/Product.aspx?PID=1073

Being the clever mom that I am, I have not one but three buggy’s. KT’s friend, SelfMade Mom (www.selfmademom.net) has like 8 of these for her darling son (SMM also sent the original buggy, the very culprit of which I am speaking about today, to my DD as a gift for her arrival to this world). SMM and I, we are clever, we are always thinking ahead, we are ready for the ultimate disaster – the loss of the buggy, therefore we have an arsenal.

DD began sleeping with her buggy when she was about 4-5 months old. She liked having it next to her face and as she got older, when nap time or bed time approached, I could always count on watching her rub this buggy under her nose and her eyes roll back, as she floated off to her baby happy place, complete with the somewhat nasty buggy smell.

Now that she’s more verbal, she’ll tell me she wants to go “nigh night” and ask me for her “buggy,” and it’s really cute. But see, enter the problem.

Now that she’s older, she’s also much more attached to the buggy. And that’s fine by me, she only takes it to bed with her, but see, the buggy scent is what makes the buggy.

You got it. That sweet smell of drool and milk and dirt and sweat and who knows what else is what makes the buggy the real security blanket. And it is that very scent that is creating a problem. She will not go down with one of her other two buggy’s anymore. THEY are rejected because they are..gasp…CLEAN.

I tried one morning to trick her, I’d been keeping a second buggy in her crib so she could nuzzle against it as well and get it all good and stinky and then I could slip out the original buggy and put it in the wash. But no, that particular morning she stood up, tossed the less pungent one over the crib side and said “Buggy.”
I said, “you have your buggy, here is your buggy” and so innocently handed it back to her, feeling all clever.

And she took a whif again, tossed it again and said “No! Buggy!”

Apparently I’m really not that clever.

So off I went to retrieve the nasty one from her laundry basket, upon which she immediately sniffed it to determine its authenticity, then nestled down for a good nap.

OK then, I thought. I’ll worry about this later.

So more weeks have passed. I tried again to remove the foul buggy and leave her with only the one from the bench, but alas, she cried and cried and wouldn’t nap until the original buggy was returned to her.  Point 2 for toddler. Point 0 for mom.

And now, even more time has passed and this morning, one of the first things my husband said to me was this “You’ve got to wash her buggy, she smells nasty because of it.”

I replied “She does not smell nasty, maybe she needs to brush her teeth,” (all the while thinking maybe it’s him that smells nasty and he has two arms that he can use to wash the damn buggy as well but didn’t say.)

To which he retorted “No, it’s not her breath. It’s her hair that stinks from sleeping with that disgusting buggy all night.”

So kittens, alas, what is a mom to do? DD rejects the backup buggy’s. They are B list to her A list. If I wash it, she won’t want it. But I am preoccupied with the filth she is rubbing all over her face, the germs, the nastiness.

Seriously – what do I do? I know this is common – this is classic toddler behavior. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, right? But can I just go on for longer knowingly giving her such a foul blanket? How in the world do you convince a toddler that clean is good and still soothing?

How long can you turn a blind eye to knowingly giving your daughter a blanket that has turned from pink to black with filth – but it’s that filth that helps her sleep so well every day? What’s more important, cleanliness or sleep?

I am stumped.

2 Responses to Eau de Toddler
  1. Emma
    September 11, 2007 | 8:42 pm

    I too have more than one “lovey” that DS sleeps with. He is totally attached to his lovey and snuggles profusely with it at naptimes and bedtime. I guess I’ve got it a little easier, because I started washing it when he started sleeping with it. I don’t think he really knows the difference between a clean or not so clean one, because I wash it about every 2 or 3 days. Good luck with the yucky buggy!

  2. Devra
    September 12, 2007 | 3:32 am

    Son Two has an “inky.” This his word for “Blanky.” (Yes, we did have early intervention speech therapy, but still…) Inky gets washed. When Son Two was a member of the toddler set, we washed Inky while he slept and returned Inky immediately to his crib after Inky was no longer a stinky inky.

    We were matter of fact about it as he got older. Now he knows to expect that Inky, once stinky, will get washed. We just dont’ have to sneak washing inky anymore, our son understands. Damn if that kid didn’t wake the Huz up to get inky out of the dryer at 3AM because he got up to use the bathroom and realized Inky wasn’t in his bed.

    So I guess my only suggestion would be to either sneak Buggy into the wash when your child is asleep, or let your child participate in washing buggy too. Maybe buggy and your daughter could take a bath together? Might be worth a try? I dunno.
    It is quite possible my expertise is only good for stinky inky’s.

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