Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sour Or Sweet, Smell My Feet

For the first time, Audrey's rocking some open-toes sandals this summer.

I know that this isn't a big deal for other kids who are seemingly in flip-flops from the moment they can walk, but I've never gone this route for Audrey because 1) she can barely walk in them let alone do her constant running, jumping, skipping, flapping, spazzing in them, and 2) I can't deal with the princess-and-the-pea crap of her needing a wood chip, pebble, or grain of sand shaken out of them every two steps.

So far things have gone pretty well on both of those counts with her new sandals.  The third downside of them that I hadn't anticipated is her having free and easy access to her toes.  For smelling.  She is now constantly running her fingers through her toes and smelling them.  Adorable.

Audrey's nasty "pedicare", as she calls it.
 Painted fingernails are called, you guessed it, Medicare.

I'm futilely trying to convince her that feet smell BAD and that she shouldn't want to smell them, but it seems that's a battle that I'm never going to win.  I was trying to associate stinky feet with other bad smells like rotten eggs and stinky cheese, but those both sounded great to her.

This also backfired on me when she started declaring "My feet smell like robin's eggs!"  And then at the checkout in Target, "My feet smell like Martian's eggs!"  Now I'm down to teaching her what the word "rotten" means, and...oh just forget it.

I know that for her it is sensory-seeking and that she smells things that are pleasant with the same intensity as things that are...not...but I'm trying to make her discern the difference between good vs. bad smelling things.

Here is one of my completely un-ABA-approved attempts:

"Do flowers smell good or bad?"

"Baking brownies?"


"Bubble bath?"

"Noni's armpits?"

"Stinky cheese?"
"Good!"  (I will allow it.)

"Christmas trees?"

"Hot chocolate?"




  1. Is there a smell she does not like? If so, is there a spray version of the scent you could spray on her feet as a deterrent? Just a thought...

  2. my son considers his feet to be "private". this means that if the doctor has to examine his genitals it's fine but he has a fit if he has to take off his socks.

  3. Ewww! Although, I love the smell of AJ's feet, so I am disgusting, too.

  4. This is so funny! Her sandals are actually quite cute. Our kids are exactly opposite in this way - my son has no sense of smell whatsoever. He could be standing in the local dump at 80 degrees and 100 % humidity outside and be completely unfazed by the experience. (you make me grateful for that right now!)

  5. My son seems to be sensitive to smell, and reacts badly to it.

    He almost pukes feeding the cat (can't even have canned cat food in the house).

    But if HE is generating the stench, he doesn't seem to notice it...and I already suspect when I pick him up from camp tomorrow, I will knocked over from the killer smell of BO (because, to him, deodorant is only applied after direct nagging by me).

  6. hahahaaa She's a riot!!!

    Tommy acts.. SCARED to use his nose. He's SOOOOO dramatic when you ask him to smell something (which i do a LOT lol) Yesterday, I was tossing out some old yogurt.. He was walking over to the garbage can to put it in for me, and decided to smell it WITHOUT prompting! hahaa I was going to stop him.. but decided to wait for the reaction.. He screamed then barfed. I LOVE sensory issues! hahaaa Was pretty neat to see him do it himself though! Progress is progress! lol

  7. Maybe, like me, her feet actually smell wonderful.

  8. Does she like YOUR feet too?

  9. Tinkerbell licks/bites her toes. She and Audrey could totally hang out!

  10. My daughter has recently gotten into enjoying bad smells! She loves smelling her feet and my armpits and other weird, yucky things.

    I try not to give it too much energy. I might make a comment like, "Gross!" but that's it! She knows it's weird, but she enjoys it. As long as she's not public or too obsessive about it, I ignore it.

  11. Well, at least her toes are cute and look rocking in those sandals. Does she smell other people's feet or just her own? Is she conducting some top secret research project? Or do her feet really just smell good?

  12. Oh my gosh! Little Miss is a foot smeller too! LOL. We've finally gotten her to understand that feet smell bad, but that doesn't seem to stop her. Now she takes off each sock in turn, takes a giant sniff, says "P-U!" and smiles with contentment.

    We also have some lovely pictures of her with her socks on her hands (like mittens) smelling those.

  13. Well pedicare makes sooo much more sense than pedicure, if you think about it. It reminds me that my daughter use to call gymnastics "gym actions".

  14. "I will allow it." Awesome.

    As I type this, Jelly is holding a graham cracker with her toes and she is bending over to take bites out of it. Some battles just cannot be won.

  15. @Alisha: I don't think that she has met a smell that she doesn't like, but that's a good idea!


    @Anonymous: Wow. That is an extreme aversion. Does he enjoy their smell?

    @Karen: Or maybe he can smell but just has no aversion to it. At least he's not seeking it...Audrey would probably be rolling in the garbage.

    @JFC: Well there are certainly a lot of different spins on this whole smelling thing. I actually think isn't that atypical for a man :)

    @Rhonda: Gross!!!

    @BD @Bethany: For the record, her feet do not smell good. They don't smell horribly bad, but not something that a typical person would seek out. It's like she knows they smell bad, but she likes the smell. Ew.

    @Melissa: She has never smelled my feet, but she has been known to put her fingers up into my armpits and smell them. Yes, I just typed that.

    @A&A: They might be too embarrassed to do it in front of each other. Nah.

    @Cheryl: Yeah, just today Audrey got mad at me for telling her not to, so I'm letting it go. I would be interested to see if she's doing it at school...I haven't heard that she is.

    @Mom2LittleMiss: Exactly! They know it's a bad smell but they still seek it.

    @DeeAnn: I keep thinking of PediaCare whenever she says it.

    @JennieB: HA! On the bright side, she has awesome motor skills.

  16. My 4 yr old is enjoying her new "between the toe" shoes, and proud she just now overcame her fear of them (ex. the massive freak out in the sandal section of Old Navy when we tried them on in the past and she realized it meant her toes would have to be touched AND pried apart from their normally clenched position). Now she goes around telling everyone about her "between the toe" shoes, and commenting on everyone else who is wearing the same. Luckily she is 4, so we can still fly under the radar with all this weird stuff.

  17. I'm laughing with you. Really.

  18. Sticking your finger between your toes and smelling it, is almost as good as sticking your finger in your belly button and smelling it. Seriously.

  19. Caleb's been doing the same dang thing!! Except he sticks his not-so-fresh-from-the-sandals nastiness in my face. If I try to wipe them off, he yells, "Noooo! Don't wipe off the stinky!! I want my feet stinky!" So he knows they stink...and likes it. I have a long span of teenage boy years ahead of me. Sigh.

  20. **awwww** Her feet look so pretty in those shoes!!! I'm convinced that prettiness offsets any negativity from the feet smelling. :)

  21. I wonder if her feet smell as good as ellie's boogies taste. I think i'll be pretty okay always wondering. On both counts.

  22. Lately, my son has been sniffing people a lot. He LOVES to smell other people's feet and it delights him when they stink.

    He also (along with his sister) thinks boogers are yummy.

    I honestly don't know where I got these kids.

    I blame their father.

  23. Well, all 3 of my kids 'check' thier toes all.the.time. First thing in the morning and the last thing at night. And numerous times throughout the day. It's a fun, fun thing. The best is when they FIND something -- oh how happy they are!

  24. GL's favorite lullaby from his toddler years to the present:

    (In my best George Harrison voice)

    Do you want to know a secret?,
    Do you promise not to tell?, whoa oh, oh.

    Let me whisper in your ear,
    Say the words you long to hear,
    You have stinky feet!

  25. Okay I know I'm like 8 months late commenting on this, but yay for un-ABA-approved attempts :) I'm thinking just saying "no" to poo-poo is a win right there!