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Silly Putty

November 19, 2009

A few months ago, I made plans to stay with my friend, Brandy,  for two weeks in November.  She was expecting her third child on October 31, but they scheduled her C-section for October 30. I was excited about the trip because I was honored that she asked me to be her nanny.  Brandy was very close with her mom who had passed away shortly after the birth of Brandy’s second child. She contemplated not having more children because she didn’t want to have a child that could not meet her mother.  Her mom had been there to help her with her first two pregnancies, so when she asked me to come stay with her, I knew I had some huge shoes to fill.

Well, babies have a mind of their own, and they come when they are ready.  Little miss Kendal decided she was ready 18 days early!  I got a message at 5 am saying that Brandy was experiencing premature labor; at 7 I talked to her and her water had broken. At 9 am a C-section was performed, and they had a new baby girl. I couldn’t wait to meet her!  One week after her birth, I was in MD fully prepared to take  on my new little charge!

Between the sleepless nights, diaper changings, and many feedings, there were still two other children to care for.  One of these children was a blond-haired energetic 4 year old boy.  JJ is the proudest big brother I have ever seen, concerned only with taking care of his baby sister.  The transition was a difficult one for him, but he never complained.

Amidst the chaos, JJ accidentally fell asleep with his glob of silly putty.  The first I saw of the incident was midweek at about 8 am.  JJ came out of the bedroom with his beloved blankie, walked over to the trash can, and threw away his blankie.  He said, ” My blankie is ruined.  It can’t be fixed. Just leave it there, and don’t tell Mommy.”  As soon as he asked that I not tell his mom, I knew there was a bigger problem.  Later in the day, I mentioned to Brandy that JJ threw his blankie in the trash, and she called him over.  It was then that she saw the huge, sticky mess melted across the front of his new Transformers t-shirt.  I saw her eyes light up, and she brought down the sheet from the bed.  It was sporting a green translucent spot about the size of  an egg.  She also had a white towel in her hand that had spots on it and explained that she saw the spot on the sheet, didn’t know what it was, so she covered it up with the towel and went to sleep. What a mess! JJ must have had the silly putty in his hand and fallen asleep on his belly with that hand beneath him.  The heat from his body caused it to melt and ooze all over anything he came in contact with.  It is amazing how far one little piece of silly putty can spread! It wasn’t even all of the silly putty that came in the case.  It was only about half, and when it was hard it was only about the size of two marbles!

I asked my friend for the bottle of non-toxic cleaner that I used to take out candle wax. (If you haven’t read about that, it is in my blog entitled “Candle Wax.”)  I set up shop in the laundry room and got to work.  I started with the blankie.  There were tiny little pieces of melted silly putty all over it.  I started at one corner and worked my way around pouring a drop of cleaner on the putty then rubbing it with a sponge.  The silly putty dissolved beneath my sponge.  Once I finished the blankie, I moved on to the t-shirt.  I was so impressed, I took before, during and after pictures! Here, too, the putty simply rubbed off with the cleaner.  At this point, I was completely shocked, so when I moved on to the sheet, I decided I needed a video.  I poured a capful of cleaner on the spot on the sheet.  I let it set for about 5 seconds and then scraped my fingernail through it.  The putty came sliding off the fabric in a goopy glob on my fingernail.  I scraped much of it off then used the sponge to rub off the rest.  Finally, I put a few drops on the spots on the towel, and I had removed all of the silly putty stains!  We threw the items in the laundry, and when they came out, there wasn’t even a grease stain!

My friend and I couldn’t stop talking about how surprised we were!  JJ was excited because he wasn’t in trouble.  We also realized that my friend and her husband would no longer have to cut chunks out of their carpet when silly putty got melted to it.  From now on they can simply pour some cleaner on it and it will come off easily!  The thing that gets me the most is knowing that this powerful cleaner is non-toxic and environmentally friendly.  I only used a total of about half an ounce of cleaner.  How can something that is made from all natural substances be so effective?  It blows my mind.

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