Posts Tagged "poison ivy"

Poison Oak Attacks Suburban Mom! and What We Can Learn from Nature

Dear Kid,

It turns out we have poison vines in our backyard. I’m pretty sure it’s not poison ivy (unless it is) and it might be poison oak (unless it isn’t), but whatever its name official might be we can clearly call it the “gives mom itchy bumps” vine. From hell.

I am not including a photo of me because A) I pretty much never include a photo of me, B) there is nothing attractive at all about Poison Vine Bumps, and C) Dad says I look funny with white stuff on my face—not a look I care to immortalize.

Despite having been recently attacked by the Vine of Death and Destruction, Dad and I did some more work outside today.

Now, you know how I feel about wildlife (it belongs in the wild) and how I feel about legs (up to four is quite a sufficient number and anything with more than for is showing off and icky). But I can appreciate when Mother Nature does something cool. Especially if it doesn’t crawl on me.

When you get right down to it, ants creep me out (too many legs). So here are some pretty flowers. At the bottom of the stem (not shown) is one small ant, minding his own business. DearKidLoveMom.comSo there we were, weeding away (complete with Puppy supervision), far from the area where we encountered the vine of torture wielding poisons. I grabbed a piece of dead tree stump to move it—and it moved (amazing, I know). Which is to say part of it moved, revealing a nest of little black picnic ants.

After an obligatory squawk of surprise, I took a good look. I’d uncovered the nursery. Little neonatal ants (I could tell because of their badges and uniforms) were scurrying to move their little charges to safer territory. No one had to yell, no one had to use a bullhorn, no one worried about budgets, no one formed a committee to discuss the best way to recover from the natural disaster (me). They just worked together to get the job that obviously needed to be done, done.

I’m also pretty sure they didn’t develop a post-emergency power point presentation.

Sometimes I think people can learn a lot from nature. Especially when it stays outside where it belongs.

Love, Mom

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News from the Neighborhood 7:03am

Dear Kid,

While most of the neighborhood was still sleeping, the Puppy and I went for a walk this morning.

You may ask, “What the heck were you doing up at an hour when everyone was sleeping?” Good question since I’d told Dad he couldn’t wake me until 9am (which I thought was a Very Generous Compromise).

The answer is I have no freakin’ idea.

My eyelids sprang open of their own accord this morning. I tried to close them; they refused. I tried to go back to sleep with my eyes open; it didn’t really work.

So I got up.

This pleased the Puppy greatly and we agreed that—after a cuddle—we should go for our morning meander.

The big white dog who rules his side of the fence with an iron bark was still inside (and presumably asleep because we didn’t hear him).

Cobra’s family was up (we could tell because the garage door was open) but even after several minutes of puppy whining Cobra himself was nowhere to be seen.

Roxie’s family was getting ready for another garage sale. They’ve been helping a woman they know clean out her house after her husband died. Roxie’s dad says he feels like he’s in a TV commercial. Every time he thinks he’s done, the woman calls and says, “But wait, there’s more!” and gives him enough stuff for 7 more garage sales. I think he’s truly happy to help but truly done with garage-sale-ness. Roxie was inside, so the Puppy settled for sniffing everything within leash range and graciously allowing (and by “allowing” I mean insisting) that people scratch him.

The big activity this morning is that we are going to have a Vexit. That is, the vine (I'm guessing poison oak) that has now caused poison-ivy-like welts on my face for two summers in a row is being evicted. Well, murdered is more like it. We plan to spray it so it dies down to its roots. DearKidLoveMom.comThe big activity this morning is that we are going to have a Vexit. That is, the vine (I’m guessing poison oak) that has now caused poison-ivy-like welts on my face for two summers in a row is being evicted. Well, murdered is more like it. We plan to spray it so it dies down to its roots. (And as I say “we” and not “me” you are correct to infer that your father is actually helping to spray something dead. Shocking but true. I think it has something to do with the threats I made and the constant whining about the itch. And perhaps looking at a wife with face-bumps.)

Hope you have a great day today!

Love, Mom

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Poison Ivy (Part III) | 10 Reasons to Avoid Poison Ivy

Dear Kid,

In case you haven’t been paying attention, I have poison ivy. On my face.

Dear Mom,

My poison ivy is getting much better. No need to worry. Really.

Love, Me

It is not the Most Fun Thing I’ve Ever Done. Thank heavens for prednisone. To be fair, it’s not the worst, but it definitely ranks among Things I’d Prefer Not To Do Again.

In case you were contemplating something involving our three-leaf friend, I’ve put together a list of 10 reasons to change your mind. I’m just that kind of a mom.

10 Reasons Not to Play with Poison Ivy

  1. It itches. A lot.
  2. Poison ivy bumps and blisters are not attractive. To anyone.
  3. Batman will come after you.
  4. Urushiol, which is the oil in poison ivy that causes all those lovely bumps and blisters, is extremely stable and can stay active for years. Many years.
  5. Airborne poison ivy is extremely dangerous (it doesn’t exactly fly, but can go through the air with the greatest of ease with a little help from a lawn mower, weed wacker, or just from falling vines).
  6. 50% of the urushiol that hits your skin will be absorbed in 10 minutes.
  7. Once urushiol is absorbed into your skin, you can wash all you like but it won’t help at all.
  8. Some people don’t have a reaction to poison ivy; you’re probably not one of them.
  9. People who know how to do it correctly can harvest the sap from poison ivy and turn it into a beautiful lacquer finishing agent. You’re not one of those people either.
  10. It itches. A lot. A whole lot.

Love, Mom

Just in case you missed the beginning…

Poison Ivy (Part I) | More Than a Batman Character

Poison Ivy (Part II) Take Your Face to Work Day

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Poison Ivy (Part II) | Take Your Blistered Face to Work Day

Dear Kid,

I took my poison ivied face to work yesterday.

CoWorker 1: What the…
CoWorker 2: Shut up
CoWorker 1: But did you see her face?
CoWorker 2: She has poison ivy. You knew that. Shut. Up.
CoWorker 1: It looks like her face is falling off.
CoWorker 2: You’re on your own. I warned you.

CoWorker 3: We should take photos
Me: No
CoWorker 3: Seriously. We could probably sell them to National Geographic
Me: I can and will kill you
CoWorker 3: They’ve probably never seen anything like this before
Me: I can and will break your camera equipment
CoWorker 3: Just lift your chin a little. That is your chin, isn’t it?
Me: Grrrr
CoWorker 3: She gets nasty when she has poison ivy

CoWorker 4: You definitely look worse than yesterday
CoWorker 5: I feel bad for you
CoWorker 4: You really look worse than yesterday
CoWorker 6: I think she can turn people to stone with that stare
CoWorker 2: I’m telling you. It’s time for a new subject

CoWorker 1: We’re going to have to change the presentation
CoWorker 5: Really? I think it’s fine
CoWorker 1: The presentation itself is fine
CoWorker 5: So What’s the problem?
CoWorker 1: Well, we can’t let her present. She’ll scare people away!
CoWorker 5: That’s true. I feel bad, but it’s true.

CoWorker 1: Don’t mention the poison ivy
CoWorker 7: What poison ivy?
CoWorker 1: On her face. Don’t mention it. We’re not talking about it
CoWorker 7: You have poison ivy?
Me: Yes
CoWorker 7: I’ve been talking to you for an hour. I didn’t notice
CoWorker 3: You didn’t notice? How could you not notice?
Me: I’m not sure which is worse, the noticing or the not noticing

Love, Mom

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Poison Ivy | More Than a Batman Character

Dear Kid,

I, your mother, have poison ivy.

On my face.

On. My. Face.

I washed my hands carefully. Which explains why it is obviously hubby's fault I have poison ivy on my face. DearKidLoveMom.comIt is not the Worst Case of Poison Ivy Ever. I know this because My Friend the Internet kindly provided photos of some of the Worst Cases and they are Not attractive. At all.

So far, no one has run screaming from my face. At least, not more than usual.

Still, I am not going to include a photo of my face because A. I don’t like having my photo taken in the best of times and B. This is not the Best of Times.

Also, I am too busy to take a photo. I am busy trying Not To Scratch and there are lots of things in the world that are easier–like not thinking about pink buffalo (made you think about them).

Here’s what happened. I was weeding (as I told you). The puppy was napping in the sun.

Dad: Want gloves?
Me: Go away
Dad: Okey Dokey

Dad: You’re getting munched by mosquitoes
Me: Go away
Dad: Okey Dokey

Me: This vine I just pulled out kinda looks like poison ivy
Me: But it has 5 leaves over there
Me: The rest of it has 3 leaves. In an alternating pattern
Me: But there are 5 leaves over there so it CAN’T be poison ivy
Me: I’ll wash my hands really carefully anyway

So you can see that it is obviously Dad’s fault.

When you have P.I. on your face you put the goopy anti-itch stuff on your face. Which then dries and feels good. And then starts to crack and peel which doesn’t feel good and looks like your face is falling off. Again, not attractive.

I itch. Which is making me grumpy. Clearly Dad’s fault.

Love, Mom

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