My husband was checking my blog last night. “You seriously wrote a post about all the crap you buy at yard sales?” Ha. I was undeterred. “Guess what I am writing about tomorrow?” I asked smugly. He didn’t answer.
“Combing hair.” For reals.
Growing up my mother ran a daycare. I spent a lot of unenthusiastic time there after school. (A lot.) What seems to have come of the experience is a sort of blood oath ensuring that my children would never have hair that stood up in the back. Straw blonde hair in a packed nest on the back of the head is some kind a standard feature on daycare brats. I am against it. Unfortunately, that doesn’t magically make the problem go away. Something still has to be done. I used to chase the children around with a wet comb, or a comb and a cup of water. When I eventually saw my sister-in-law pull out a spray bottle I felt like an idiot. Duh. I’m sure you’ve thought of that already. Unfortunately, I’m not as smart as I look so it took longer. But even that adaption was not enough, and the system had to undergo a few upgrades. The spray bottle always seemed to be in the back of the cupboard and the comb was inevitably lurking under a couch cushion. I eventually decided to make the hair combing station a part of the decor and leave it out all the time. Where I could find it. I bought a $6 designer spray bottle at the beauty supply store along with some cute combs. Then I put it all together at the crossroads of our house. When I see varmints go by I practice my quick draw. Just like swatting flies. My other solution has been to buy piles of combs. These ones are $1 a piece and come in every possible color. I got this from my dad who was always ranting around the house looking for either clipper nails, combs, or beard scissors. He would invariably threaten, “Do you know what I’m going do? I’m going to buy truckloads of combs and I’m going to throw them around the house! Then maybe I can find one when I want one.” I endorse this philosophy. Except I try to keep the combs in one spot. I leave the children in the charge of dispersion. Come what may, there is usually one there when I need it. Usually.
Of course, you could always teach your children to comb their own hair. But really, they can’t be trusted. Some days, often on the way to church, I’ll holler up to my husband, “Can you comb the kids’ hair?” Without looking up from his book on the couch he’ll say something helpful like, “Retards! Comb your hair.” This is not the same thing. Plus, I like to listen to them scream. I always tell the boys that if anyone ever asks them why they’re so tough they can reply, “Because my mother combs my hair.” Character, one follicle at a time.