Parenting, Thing 3

Mother Of The Year Part 4,775,601.

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Lil’Girl is about to let the cat out of the bag.

My kids get their baths every other day. If Bath Day falls on a Saturday, however, it gets skipped because they ALWAYS get baths on Sundays. So, some weeks end up where they get their bath on Thursday, then Sunday. Putting 2 full days between baths. We don’t even worry about whether this is okay or not. It is just what works.

Unfortunately, since baths are not daily routines, sometimes they get forgotten. The kids were due for baths on Sunday. I gave NikkiZ hers while MrZ was driving out of town to pick up LilZ. By the time LilZ came home, we had limited time before family dinner and AndyZ’s bath? Got skipped. I never intentionally decided to skip it, time just got away and he stay dirty.

So – Monday? I thought Crap. It’s been since Thursday since he’s had a bath. I need to give him one tonight. This was fine since NikkiZ was due for her bath too. Well, Monday came…and went. No bath. We ended up running some late errands, dinner was late, kids and parents were tired, and everyone went to bed dirty. I simply forgot. AGAIN.

Last night? The kids finally got their baths. AndyZ had gone FIVE DAYS without a bath. And I’m not even that ashamed because seriously? There have been worse weeks. I won’t give you details, but lets just say there have been weeks where 5 days between baths? Would have been considered Excellent Parenting.

51 thoughts on “Mother Of The Year Part 4,775,601.”

  1. You just described us, with a 6 year old and 10 month old!!

    I don’t worry so much about the baby, he is inside all the time, never sweats, and we clean his important stuff with diaper changes. So five days? No big deal.

  2. Ummm, my kid regularly goes a week without a bath. He’s almost 2 and has his hands and face washed about 8 times a day (thanks, Daycare!) and his bits are cleaned during diaper changes.

    He’s got some excema and we live in WI, with no humidity at all, so a bath is often just not worth it.

    Don’t feel bad!

  3. Remember, frequent bathing dries out the skin of babies. Now don’t you feel better? Ha,ha.

    With a 6 year old and 6 month old, I totally understand though. You just can’t remember everything 24/7.

  4. My kids go without for several days. Winter in the midwest leaves dry skin. Their hands and faces are wiped regularly. Underwear/diapers changed. It’s all good.

  5. My husband used to get so irritated with me because I’d let our son go forever without a bath. (Forever = three days or so.) But, now that he’s 8 he usually gets one every day or every other. My daughter gets one every day cuz she’s got long hair and tends to get food in it all the time. Hate that!

    But, yeah, you aren’t a bad mom. Baths suck.

  6. M.P. inherited ridiculously dry skin from me (think scales). So she gets a bath every… 4-5 days. Usually.

    The only problem is that she has a LOT of hair and it does tend to get greasy (go figure), so I just brush it really well and hope that make it *look* clean.

  7. I LOVE showers. LOVE. But when you are responsible for lots of little ones? It is okay….I mean its not like you go months without bathing….or never.

  8. Have totally done that. Just recently I looked at my 7 yo and asked when she last had a shower or bath. The fact that she had to think about it convinced me to toss her in the shower right then. At least you have a schedule. I don’t even get that right!

  9. I’ve never understood parents who schedule the nightly bath in on a daily basis. Who the heck has time for that?? Hey my kids are in their teens now and my son sometimes takes 2 showers a day. You will not teach them to be slovenly by not bathing them nightly. Trust me.

    Besides, if this were Victorian England, all that unnecessary bathing would be considered grounds for institutionalizing you.

  10. Yay! I’m not the only one! πŸ™‚

    I bathe my 5 year old once a week, partly due to his excema and partly (mostly…) due to laziness. (Heck, they don’t get *that* dirty in the wintertime!) So you are way ahead of me, ma’am.

  11. Dude, do not even worry about that. I hardly ever give Will a bath. In our house we bathe on an as needed basis, which means the girls, who get stinky, and oily hair have to get a shower a minimum of every other day, or everyday. But Will? He’s still young enough he doesn’t get stinky. In the summer he gets sweaty and dirty, so he has baths often then. But in the winter? probably every 10 days. No lie.

  12. I never understood the rigid nightly scheduled bath routine. If they seemed dirty, they got a bath, otherwise, no need.

  13. You know, the Hubster and I were just having this conversation with friends of ours the other day. They give their kids baths every day. Us? Not so much.

    We do what you do, including the no bath on Saturday if it’s due, since they always get a bath on Sunday. Except when they don’t.

    My sister-in-law, who I always thought of as fastidious, recently told me that in the summer, when she and her kids are off from school, her MO is to pretty much just give them a bath if they can’t remember when they last had one.

  14. we ASK out 2year old if she WANTS to bathe (unless she absolutly MUST bathe because she got too dirty for a “wipes bath”). the nights she says “yes” she gets one. the nights she says “no” we skip it. Last night was the first night she wanted a bath since Friday, and I was even trying to talk her out of it b/c I was just so damn tired πŸ™‚

  15. I’m not actually sure when I last bathed my baby. I decide by the level of smelliness or spit-up-in-hair-cakediness. It’s a very scientific process!

  16. My 2 year old son gets a bath when he needs one which is almost every day in the summer and 2-3 times a week in the winter. Once he is completely potty trained and doing his own ‘cleanup’ down there I will make him have one at least every other day. My daughter is 6 and she takes a shower almost every night. At least 5 a week. If it’s late and she’s tired and not particularly dirty I’ll let her skip it. She’s very active so it’s usually better if she takes it. I’m always grossed out by the greasy haired smelly tweens I see at our extracurricular activities so I try to instill a sense of cleanliness by 6/7 while they still think I know everything πŸ™‚
    I’ll probably make them limit their teenage showering to once a day. I’m controlling and mean like that. Personally, I feel disgusting if I don’t shower each morning. I resist the urge to shower morning and night but I can’t justify it when I don’t get dirty or sweaty.

  17. My older kids shower every other day on school days. My little kids…once or twice weekly baths. They have dry skin and the pediatrician suggested this, and I like being able to use that as my sanctioned excuse for what I’d be doing anyway (when he suggested it, I was like, “Uh….”).

  18. Eh he’s six months old. It’s not like he’s out digging ditches. Now if it had been 5 days for LilZ then people might be judging you.

  19. When I was eight or so, I used to purposely only bathe one a week or once every two weeks. When I was suppose to be bathing, I would sit on the toilet reading a book and occasionally stick a hand in the bath water to make splashing noises. Does that make you feel better?

  20. I bring my 16 month old in the shower with me. But I only shower every other day.

    My 5 year old bathes like once a week. And I have to MAKE him.

  21. My boys request their nightly shower/bath, without prompting! It’s fun for them, they play, wash up, then get snuggles! Plus, my boys love the outdoors and I’m sorry but they get MAJOR stinky feet, so even through winter, they get daily showers/baths to rid us of the boy smell!

    But, it’s bad when on a Saturday afternoon after cleaning all day and getting ready for my own shower that my 3 year old walks up and tells me that “you’re stinky mommy”. Oh the horror, and the honesty of a 3 year old!

  22. I got that beat. Last night I gave my son a bath for the first time in… well let’s just say it had been awhile. And it’s only because I cut his hair and didn’t want him to be all itchy. It didn’t use to be so bad but then I got pregnant again and I end up going to bed at like 8:30, 0 o’clock.

    God forbid MrB do it. I told him once I get really fat, he has no exscuses

  23. This is why I read your blog to know that I am not alone… in all of my awsome parenting awards! I am sure when baby 2 gets here, it will be the same way!

  24. It’s better for their skin not to bathe so often. My six year old gets a bath twice a week unless he gets dirty. And I consider him clean. I do wipe his face at night and he obviously washes his hands, so I feel like it’s okay.

  25. No worries. You’re certainly not alone. My kids have really dry skin, particularly in winter, and bathing too often strips off too much moisture.

  26. My kids get baths when I think they need them, or at least once a week. Well, my toddler gets one at least once a week because she gets a bit funny smelling after too long and because I’m embarassed to send her to daycare on Tuesdays if she looks/smells unbathed. The baby? I try for once a week, but to be honest he can sometimes go a bit longer unless he has a diaper failure or gets himself covered with milk and/or cereal. That latter we only started a week ago though, so he hasn’t had a lot of opportunity to encrust himself with it yet.

    I only shower once every 2 or 3 days myself, and I don’t really think soaping up fully every day is that good for anyone, adult or child, especially in this dry winter air.

    My sister in-law bathes her kids every day with soap and uses diaper wipes on their hands and faces regularly, and they both have a lot of skin problems like eczema and rashes.

    Mind you, I have a friend who bathes her kids (full-on baths with soap) 2x per day. I think she is nuts, but her kids’ skin seems okay, so maybe it all depends on whether you’re already susceptible to dry skin?

  27. Maria, I used to do the same thing…filling the tub but not getting in! Oddly, now there’s nothing I enjoy more than a nice hot bath.

  28. Amen sista!
    I have never understood those parents that do the daily bath thing. I actually think that it is not all that great for people in general and I think you completely rock for being so open and honest about it.
    I have two boys 12 & 14 and a little girl 3. I gave up years ago trying to make sure my boys were washed!! Every once and a while I have to remember just to ask when was the last time you showered??!!!

    P.S. You are my blog idol, I love this page!!

  29. It seems that if my kids spend any amount of time outside they come in smelling like stinky puppies. Therefore we are frequent bathers. We will occasionally skip a day if time doesn’t permit or if there just isn’t time. DD6 gets to wash her hair about every 3rd day-as it looks not so clean it gets a ponytail! DS12 everyday-ew stinky prepubescent boys!!

  30. My kids–5yrs, 7 yrs and 17 yrs–all bathe daily. The younger ones sometimes skip Saturdays. When they were babies, it was sometimes every other day. I guess I’m in the minority here, but it’s not because of some anal behavior, it’s just in our routine. I think one reason is that I know how **I** feel after a day or two of no bathing and that is kinda ew, so we’re all every day bathers with my husband being a twice-a-day (sometimes 3 times) bather. In the end, it’s whatever works for you and your kids just like everything else. πŸ™‚

  31. My regular doctor and the kids’ dermatologist BOTH told us to bathe the kids once a week due to their mild eczema, especially in the winter. They get baths twice a week in the summer and once a week in the winter. Of course, they get one whenever they *need* it, but in general, you are way ahead of us in the bath department.

  32. My son gets bathed when things like homework, feeding and sanity don’t get in the way. This works out to about every other day… if I’m lucky! And that’s with ONE kidlett! I haven’t figured out how people take care of more than one! LOL!

    As a baby, he could not be bathed more than 2x a week, per the doc, due to his skin.

    I love your site! I just found it.

    Oh and there are a lot of hateful, mean people out there… ignore them.

  33. Hi,

    I just came across your site today, and I love it here! My kid only bathed a couple times a week, and now as a teen wants to shower daily. Excema as a child had the pedi telling us not to bathe anymore than necessary. And she was clean and smelled like a dream!

    And don’t pay any attention to the bitter and nasty types out there. It’s a desperate cry for attention, and it didn’t deserve to come down on you.

    Rock on!

  34. Our ped told us not to bathe our girls, adopted from China, more than once a week when they were little due to dry skin problems. They always wore immaculate clothes and got washcloth touchups whenever needed and I kept their hair short (I despise stringy, long, dirty hair on small children). They now shower 2x a week. Nobody has ever complained about their cleanliness, and I’ve posted 3,434 pictures of them on my site and I believe they look decent in each one of them. My 10 year old is finally old enough to care for her hair properly so she is allowed to grow it for the first time.

  35. I just want to let you know that I have done the same thing from time to time: wow! I forgot the bath tonight! Better remember tomorrow! Except tomorrow comes and we have company or a special trip or something…Not like kids get stinky in December! It’s okay! πŸ™‚

    Also – I have curly hair and I have been told my professionals to only wash it a few times a week.

    I am shocked by how judgemental people can be…I am a brand-new Zoot fan (got linked to your site from another blog…one that I will never read again but appreciate because it brought me to you!).

  36. As weird as it is that this entry has attracted so much criticism, I can’t let it go unmentioned. So, let me just warn anyone that I’ll delete any comment insulting anyone’s parenting choices. Before this entry only about a handful of people read this site and we have a nice community here where we support each other. If we disagree we do it kindly (like how angie did above) and I love that about my comment section. Any negative comments towards me or the other commenters who commiserated with me will be deleted. Thanks!

  37. I’d not give that *other* blog the time of day. She is in trouble with a couple of people she’s libeled, one in particular and she’s really grasping at straws right now. She’s going to learn very rapidly you can’t “disclaim” away everything.

    I think your blog and the pieces of day to day life you capture are wonderful. The entire bathing debacle was blown up and it’s more than obvious to ANYONE with more than a 5th grade education that she took selected posts of yours and took them completely out of context and put her own spin on things. It was little more than speculation and supposition on her part.

    She knows she’s going to get skewered if she goes after certain bloggers again — which in and of itself probably won’t be enough to shut her up and those who also write that blog. Although when asked about discrepancies in her writing style and obvious syntax differences she claims that she’s so ill that she dictates and others write. Yeah sure.

    She can’t prove how often you do or do not bathe or whether your parenting is above par or below based on the scribblings in a blog. She saw something she thought was golden, and ran with it. And if you’ve ever taken time to read through her posts and subsequent comments, you’d know that she is no where near as popular as she deludes herself into thinking she is. It might look like she has a lot of comments, but she doesn’t. They aren’t unique hits. Those who follow her are little more than vultures squawking amongst themselves waiting for roadkill carrion to swoop down on. It’s the same people commenting over and over again, or when the lone voice dares to offer a dissenting opinion, they all gang up on that person spewing nasty barbs, jabs and whatever other hate they have stored up inside that needs to be aimed somewhere.

    You have genuine talent and spirit. She is filled with hate, vitriol, animosity, and above all else, jealousy.

    Keep writing and I for one will keep reading.

  38. Don’t even give that person the time of day. She’s a bitter, hateful and miserable person. I always bathed my kids daily when they were babies because I was desperate for sleep, and the routine seemed to put them to sleep.

    Now they’re older, and on the weekends, we skip a bath now and then. I would rather focus on playing with them than worry if they are clean enough.

  39. The only time I insist on bathing is when Scout comes home from a sports practice or game. Often I might get, “but I’m not sweaty anymore.” Yeah, I’ve trained him well.

    Last night I was actually proud of myself for getting Lil’bug in the bath. She’s had dry skin and eczema since she was an infant so I’m more concerned about her skin getting washed too much and drying out. Her bathing schedule is quickly becoming more about washing her hair and getting the tangles out more than getting her clean. It’s so much easier to detangle her hair when it’s wet than when it’s dry.

  40. I’m jealous! I used to hate my nightly bath when I was a kid. Once I was in there and allowed to play with my toys, I was okay, but otherwise the whole scheduled task thing sucked!

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