Sunday, February 12, 2012


When I was asked to babysit for a friend's new grandson  I thought for a moment, then agreed.  It would be sweet to have a new baby around. For a few hours.  Every once in a while...

Introducing Carmelo

I should have thought twice when his grandfather changed the little guys diaper for the first time.   At this stage a little history is necessary.  Grandpa spent his entire career responding to societies physical emergencies, first as a firefighter/EMT and inspector, then as a fire chief for ten years.  Nothing phase's him.    Or so we thought.

Grandpa is even prepared on the road, for someone elses emergency....

At the first sign of an encroaching odor cloud during the day in question The Son beat it for the basement with me fast on his heels.   Once down there we heaved a collective heavy sigh of relief.  Until,,,,  we heard,    "HEY, HELP  THERE'S POOP EVERYWHERE!!"     huh?    The Son and I stared at each other in horror.   Of course I immediately assessed the situation and said, " You  go.  It will have less of an emasculating effect on him if another guy is helping."    "Oh no,'  The Son says, ' YOU  have much more experience."  I could see this was going nowhere fast so I caved and crawled upstairs.    It was horrible, and truly everywhere.  Apparently diaper manufacturers think babies poop in nice neat little packets that will stay in place until attended to.  They are so wrong on so many levels. 

What I didn't realize was the kid would turn into a continual HAZ-MAT CONDITION.
The kid is a human poop factory.  The first time I saw the look on that sweet little face I had the normal reaction.  "Aw."  Much like the 'smile' that is really gas, you gotta admit is an adorable little look on newborns.    One almost feels sorry for them during the course of their first really difficult function in life.

It's that look of sheer concentration that puts fear in the hearts of the bravest.

Well, that normally adorable little boy is now six months old, and ever since that first adorable little face indicating he was manufacturing a load in his thankfully disposable diapers, he has the capability of emptying the entire house at the first indication a haz-mat event is in progress.  The Son is the first one to flee the scene.

I've never experienced anything like it. I've had two children who were naturally, once babies.  I was, at first, so confused I called friends who had children.  "Hey, is it just me, or is up to four square feet of oft-times runny baby poop abnormal? Do yah think it's specific to formula-fed babies?  I don't ever remember the odor being this bad."    I grew weary of hysterical laughter on the other end of the line just before the "You asked for it," and the ensuing dial tone.   So much for empathy.

Occasionally he throws a curve ball and just emits enough gas to run a small power plant.  He smiles in his little bouncy chair surrounded by the cloud of  (nearly visible)  stench he himself alone has created, and beams.   

It's when the cloud has hung around for a while and the kid begins to scream adults start running for cover and I get out the haz-mat equipment.  Yet even with all the appropriate equipment set up in advance, much like his grandfather before me,  I was ending up with poop everywhere.

OK, I'm ready, bring it on....

When I discovered normal containment means were not viable options, especially since he has started rolling around while being changed, I needed to re-invent a wheel that would save four loads of laundry every time I babysit. 

Deep in my frontal lobe was the faint memory of an adorable baby quilt I had squirrelled away the pattern for, just because it looked too cute hanging over the side of a crib.  Thought someday just because it was so odd I would try it, though simply due to the nature of the thing it would not be sensible for a baby.

It's constructed of layers of square flannel, cut on the bias to promote fraying along edges.  The more it is washed, the more the edges fray, hence the floofier and cuter it looks.  But it is made to chronically shed so I would not recommend it for an actual crib quilt.   My ingenuous idea was that with all the nooks and cranny's and floof the thing would serve as a Poop-Containment-Pad   (P.C.P)
by failing to allow the hazardous waste to flow outside it's boundaries.

Would yah just look at that terrain...

Luckily I had plenty of flannel fabric leftovers from pajamas I have made over the years.  And soooooo....   I began cutting and sewing.   By hand.  My sewing machine is still M.I.A. from the last move.   At last, I finished  just in the nick of time.  My next assignment is today.  He is teething...  as parents we all know what that brings with it......

His grandfather has him appropriately equipped with the fireman jammies and dalmation.

'Melo' and his totally gorgeous Mom.  (She had the phone surgically removed from her hand shortly after this photo was taken...   :}   )

Well, today is the day for the trial run of the P.C.P.

And not a moment too soon, he's got that look not 15 minutes in.



  1. Awwww.... how fragrant he is. Can't help being cute, either. Good thing, since it sounds like he's quite the handful (sorry, I couldn't resist). :-)

  2. This brings too many memories of the unpleasant kind. We can cross our fingers and hope that he graduates into a firmer stage.

  3. I can't imagine how it was done before disposable diapers. I know, but I just don't want to imagine it.

  4. Heehehehehe, I'm dyin' here. I've diapered two kids and eight grandkiddos and have never ran into this problem.

    You are a hoot sister!!!

    God bless ya, grab a clothes pin and have a wonderful Valentine's Day sweetie!!!