Bathtime used to be a fun time. I remember the giggles and squeals that a bath used to elicit.
One of my favorite things to do with our kids when they were infants was to give them a bath. I loved it so much that we found out the hard way with our first born, that we didn't need to scrub him like he was a sweaty teenager when his skin resembled a raw naked mole rat when we were done. You learn that sort of thing along the way.
That is pretty much over with our three kids. Well, at least when it comes to playing in the bath. They LOVE that part. They love trying to get all of the water onto the bathroom floor, they love to pretend to wash the tub with their washcloths, and pretend they are deep sea divers.
But, when it comes to the time when I actually need to clean them so that my kid doesn't become the "stinky kid" they scream and cry and scream at me to "STOP IT!". While I realize that there is a fatal flaw with my family and its aversion to "water got in my eyes", my kids act like I am water boarding them when I am just trying to get the shampoo out of their hair.
Never mind the bath toys, I have tried just about everything to distract them. Bath crayons, squirter toys, cars that change color in cold or warm water, bath time body paints, even waterproof books, you name it, I have probably tried it. But, once the cup comes out for rinsing, bath time gets "real".
Squirter toys are just about the most disgusting thing I can think of which your kids will love due to the fact that water gets in but never really gets out. And then the mold that grows inside that warm, wet, contained piece of plastic will be shooting out spores instead a steady stream of tickling water. Throw these out often.
My wife used to use bathtime as a time killer. Sometimes when the witching hour approached, that time after dinner and before bedtime that my kids seem to ramp it up a notch when we would rather they bring it down, we would announce bath time and let them play. Now, we know better. Bath time has become a chore instead of fun.
I guess that this happens with lots of things when your kids are little. Dressing them used to be fun also up until they could gleefully run away yelling "I'm naked! I'm naked!" while you stress to them that you were supposed to be somewhere 10 minutes ago.
I try to get my girls clean but their ability to shriek and scream at ungodly decibels even has this former headbanger wincing. This of course is only amplified in an enclosed shower by at least tenfold, and your eardrums may be ringing for a bit afterward.
I miss that after bath time smell of a baby, I'm not going to lie.
There is nothing quite like that scent.
Instead I am dealing with skid marked underwear on the bathroom floor and kids peeing in the tub like R. Kelly taught them a new trick even though I said to go BEFORE they get in. Now my son is too tall to really fit in the bath with his sisters like he used to. He has graduated to the shower. Sigh.
I guess that for now, I can fondly look back at these pictures of my babies in the tub and remember their faces when they used to splash in the water or make bubble beards on their faces.