Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Works for Me Wednesday: Plunging

Oh, let's get down and dirty. You know that those damn low flush toilets that are the law here in MA doesn't always work according to plan. We all have to deal with these toilets in order to save the earth. I'm OK with that because I'm pretty much a green type of person. But I hate plunging.

Some people can clean up vomit and poop. I am not one of those people. I'm the one who barfs on the barfer. And the poop... it makes me barf too. When the kids were babies, I could do the diapering just fine. But once that part of my life was over and done with, any human poop related accident I just could not handle. Fortunately, they were mostly few and far between, when the kids were sick.

But plunging? When the toilets backed up, guess who had to deal with them? Yup, that would be me. So I tried to figure out a way to get this horrid chore out of my life forever?

What to do? Teach the kids how to plunge. It seems like a natural life lesson, right? But in order to plunge you need to have the right kind of plunger, the kind that is easy for a kid to handle.

Most of us have this kind of plunger, your generic, red rubber number. It is too hard for young kids to use, because it doesn't have enough suction. Do not try to teach your child with this plunger.

Another popular plunger is the flange plunger. This one has much more suction, but it also has another problem. Live and learn, they say. I learned the hard way with this type of plunger. When you plunge with it, it picks up a large amount of toilet detrius in it's bulb, and when you life it out to see if the water is going down, it tends to pour all over everything, like your floor. UGH. Do not use this type of plunger either.

This is the gold standard of home plungers. This is what you want. It only takes a few up and down motions to get the clog out. It doesn't hold huge amounts of gross water. It's light weight and easy for a kid to handle. And it comes in nice bright colors! We have a red and a blue one. One for each bathroom.

Once you begin to teach your child about how the toilet works, make sure you show them how to shut off the water the second it starts building up. There are knobs behind the toilet on the wall. TURN THEM OFF. Then your toilet won't overflow.

Plunge, let the water go down, and make that chug noise, then turn the water back on. Clean off the plunger, and voila, you're done with absolutely NO mess.

Your kids can learn this very quickly on their own. Just make sure they tell you when they've plunged to you can check afterwards and make sure everything is OK.

It works for me!

Good luck!

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Anonymous Kelliqua said...

A bit of laundry detergent (powdered or liquid) poured into the bowl will decompose the poo. Let it sit for a while, no plunging necessary!

12/9/07 8:46 AM  
Blogger Family O'Foxes said...

I learned something...to turn the water off behind the toilet. Here in GREEN Oregon it isn't required to have low flow toilets...or it wasn't when bought our toilet a year and half ago.

I will have to look for that plunger!

12/9/07 8:56 AM  
Blogger Zen Master said...

Wow... I didn't realize there were choices in plungers. lol

I have the first one. Thankfully we don't have to use it much.

Thanks for sharing.

12/9/07 9:34 AM  
Blogger craziequeen said...

I'm very impresesd with the idea of colour coded plungers for each bathroom, Margalit! :-))

I have to say plunging is not a life-skill my mother taught me, so I am grateful for the quick masterclass here.....

Now I'm off to buy a plunger :-O


12/9/07 2:16 PM  
Blogger Trenting said...

My kids plunging..? They can barely whipe their own butts!

12/9/07 6:36 PM  
Blogger Reflekshins said...

oh lord, I just read a blogpost on plungers :p

12/9/07 9:15 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I didn't know there were cool plungers out there. We have the second one on your list, and it works great after The Kid With The Biggest Poos In The World uses the toilet, but I have learned to shake it out when I'm done using it. Gross!

13/9/07 11:05 PM  

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