Five boys, one husband, and one wife with a sensitive nose make for one house rule for this family living less than 4 degrees North of the equator.
We sweat. A lot. We smell. A lot. So the rule is this: Everyone must bathe daily.
Right now, there is an FTO volunteer living with us, so out of respect for her, this rule is non-negotiable. At least once daily - everyone must bathe. Showers are preferred but bucket baths are sometimes required. Our water access is sometimes challenging, but even with trickling faucets dripping drop by drop - everyone must creatively figure out a way to clean themselves.
Strangely, last night when our eight year old came out from the bathroom after his shower, I noticed a pungent odor. Hmmm...
Me: Honey, did you shower?
Me: Did you wash everything? Your hair, your legs, your arms, etc...?
Me: Come here. Let me smell your hair.
B steps closer. I nuzzle my nose into his tufts, take a deep breath and - no joke - nearly pass out! I controlled the gag reflex, turn my head away to take in some air, and then responded...
Me: Ummmm, B, are you sure you washed your hair? It doesn't smell like it.
Me: Let me smell the rest of you.
B comes close again and I catch whiffs of a boy who doesn't smell like he has showered.
Me: B, I'm not sure you are telling the truth. You do not smell clean to me. Tell me exactly how did you shower.
B: Well, Mom, I know we don't have much water so I was trying to conserve it. See, I filled up my water gun and squirted myself all over. Then I filled up the gun with soapy water and squirted all over myself to get clean. AND THEN, I filled up the water gun with clean water to rinse off. I even washed my hair with the soapy water!
B is looking at me like it was the greatest idea in the world. His eyes say, "Aren't you proud of me? Look how much water I saved!"
I laughed out loud at his creativity. He is one resourceful fella. What could I say? He was being very considerate of our family needs.
However, his water conservation methods failed this time. After his immediate second cleaning episode from a shower head flowing water, I figured his bathing cost us an extra three water guns of water. No water was saved with the water gun method. (Boys out there, do not try this at home. You will not save water and your mother will still be able to smell you.)
Oh, the joy of boys. After 15 years of raising five boys, there are still times I shake my head and wonder where they come up with things like this????
Lord give us clean hands...and clean boys...
4 weeks ago