Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Brave YaYa ventures forth to the Frontier once again!

Yes, even with the harrowing scrape with the volcano last year, my mom came up to visit us again this spring!

Finally we had some nice weather,

 ...and the inevitable illness that strikes at least one member of the family during her visit waited until the last couple days, so it was almost the best visit yet. Mom even got to visit Esther at school:
 And eat lunch with her in the commons:

The only real issue of the visit was that we discovered, on the day before her arrival,  that we were hosting some other, albiet extremely unwelcome, guests:

LICE!

Ah, the joy of learning what it means to have a child in school! 

And since Esther and I are so close, well....
Yes, I had them too. I came about a centimeter away from shaving my head.

And, I guess, since she was seeing us all do this to each other, little miss mimic had to get in the act:  
My mom escaped the plague.  As did Iris. Thank goodness. 

Some folks may wonder, why on earth are you putting this on your blog? It's gross and embarassing!  Well, if some very helpful folks hadn't put a bunch of free information about lice on their blogs and websites, I think I would have lost my mind. I probably would have pulled out my hair in tufts!  SO I'm going to share some tips and the sites I got them from with you....

First of all, I used to laugh when my students told me they treated lice with mayonnaise. It sounded like a big, fat wive's tale. Hower, I found out that any oily substance really does work in that it suffocates the lice and makes it harder for them to elude the comb when you are trying to get them out. I learned this method from a funny and informative site called the 5-Step Battle PlanIt's got a really goofy video that is still really helpful and memorable. I am really grateful to the makers of the site (AND you can get a really great metal comb on the site -- the ones that come with the chemical kits are for crap, especially for those of us who have really thick hair).  

So, anyway, you have to leave the oil on for a substantial length of time, though, or it won't work, so most of the time it's reccommended that it's put on at night and covered with a shower cap -- hence Esther's cute washerwoman look:
Yes, it's messy, but man is it a relief to know that you're doing something that at the very least does not allow them to roam around your pillow at night. And it's non-toxic!  You know, even though I am more on the earthy side of things, I was totally willing to use the pesticide for lice removal once in our hair.  But then I realized when reading the instructions that the chemical does not kill the nits. The nits live on, happily, until you comb all of them out (nearly impossible, as they are SO tiny and blend in so well) or they hatch.  Therefore you would just have to keep using the chemical several times before it's totally killed -- and that's just gross to me, using a chemical over and over.  If you use the oil every 4 days, you'll catch and suffocate any lice who have hatched.

And here is a product that I'm excited to try (darn slow Postal service, it hasn't gotten here yet, but what it says on the website has me intrigued):  Happy Heads   They make a shampoo and other products that are made out of essential oils that supposedly dissolve lice exoskeletons.  And since they are natural, it's possible to use them preventively, once a week.  I like that idea since I doubt this will be our only run-in with lice during my girls' elementary school career. 

I also liked this site's take on the whole thing; it's some of the same info but a couple different suggestions: Ask Moxie  (You have to scroll down a ways to see the beginning of the article.)

Well, here's a sincere hope that you and yours never have to deal with such infestation!

2 comments:

Finnskimo said...

Eh, that's ok, I put things on my blog that make people squeam too! We had lice at least once every year or so, you can't escape it in a village.

But, thankfully for me, I have psoriasis (its a blessing in disguise maybe) on my scalp so the shampoo I use is sort of the same stuff so I can't get them!

I remember our house being super clean when we got them though! Crisco works too to suffocate them, but Mayonnaise leaves your hair SO BEAUTIFUL and soft, if you can stand the smell! hahah.

Good luck!

Ninny said...

I taught school for 25 years, and to this day I wonder how I ever avoided getting lice! Yes, oil does the trick, baby oil is good.

Liz from Oklahoma

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