THE STORY OF THE SALT DOUGH: And Other Instances of Gross Negligence

8:02 AM

I want to tell you the story of the salt dough, and how I tried to be a Pinterest Mom.

Spoiler alert: George single-handedly thwarted me.

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THE STORY OF THE SALT DOUGH: And Other Instances of Gross Negligence
By: Jennifer Hodges

Once upon a time - or like, Sunday, whatever -- I was randomly googling toddler gifts. Not gifts for a toddler because trust me I've already gone way overboard in that department. Rather gifts a toddler can cutely give give. Crafts galore, right? But my toddler is really more artistically destructive than creative in this present month, so I had simple things in mind. Nothing fancy.

Salt dough. Well perfect! It's traditional. It lasts for just about forever. Easy to make and I already have all the whatnot needed. Done. Great.

So on Sunday afternoon, with Home Alone playing in the background, and my beautiful son running from room to room yelling "uhhh uhhhh uhhh" and casually stopping at the coffee table to toss the remote on the floor, I started measuring my salt and flour and water.

My ears perked up when I heard some grunting coming from the living room. I've somehow managed to already teach my baby shame, or dignity, whichever, so I found him crouched behind  a chair, purple faced, enjoying a private little poop. He smiled up at me.

We did the obvious thing. I took him upstairs for a diaper change and when we came back, I discovered George had eaten my salt dough. The whole damn thing, and folks, this stuff is literally salt and flour. It's sick.

Now backing up a hot minute, George is already in trouble for having recently learned to open the baby locks on our cabinets and indulging in late night garbage buffets. And also chewing up several fire starters. And routinely taking food off my counter. So when I found that he'd eaten my salt dough, I was pretty pissed. I parked that ding dong in his crate and said those words -- "wait 'til your Dad gets home. Juuuuuuust wait!" I also slammed the door for effect because I like a little drama.

Side note - George doesn't care about being in his crate. He hangs in there with the door wide friggin' open and treats it like his 4x8 luxury suite. Kind of annoying that it's not more punishing, but it keeps him out of my way so I pretend it's this great and effective discipline technique.

Here's the thing. He ate a lot of salt dough. Here's another thing, I was more mad than cognitive about him eating all that salt, so I didn't even consider what he'd eaten. I stuffed him in that crate without water for a few hours and spoiler alert - salt is lethal to dogs! I'll wrap this up quickly and say that he is fine now, but we had an unexpected party on our hands and a night of being worried about him.

Moving on, Sunday is over and my time is already spoken for. I started over on a Wednesday and this is where the gross negligence comes back in. This time we got a little further in our journey and we got to the part where we bake it. Then I painted it. Then I left it on the counter. Then I fell asleep. George snacked it again. Paint covered, not tasty salt dough. Much smaller quantity this time, so no damage or illness. I was just pissed all over again -- this time at both of us. All the while, Duke has no idea that he's not giving a single gift this year, so he's still spending his days in happy oblivion, doing the "uhhhhh uhhhh" running. He also randomly throws himself on the floor and laughs hysterically.

The story has a happy ending. I stayed up late on Thursday, duplicating all of my efforts and finally learned my lesson well enough to remember to just leave the damn dough in the oven.

We have a house full now though for Christmas. Ryan's parents arrived last night and they don't know that A.) George is not trustworthy and B.) He's pretty tall when he stands on his hind legs. The back of the counter is not out of reach. So I woke up to find he'd treated himself to THREE bags of popcorn last night.

Jesus, take the wheel and please, man the kitchen.



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Ry and I are hosting Christmas this year and like I briefly mentioned, family started piling in last night. And luckily, George hasn't figured out how to get into a bottle of wine, so there's no real threat on the table. Happy Christmas, you guys. I truly hope it's the best ever.

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