Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tress Control

I've never been what one would call hair savvy. God knew this, which is why he gave me hair that resembles a Crimp 'n Curl Cabbage Patch Kid. You curl it around your finger and it stays. Stick a pencil in it, it stays (the boys who sat behind me in high school Physics had a field day with this experiment). Once you got past the shock of the sheer volume of it (no pun intended), the directions of what to do with my corkscrew curly hair were pretty freeing - don't blow dry; wash-and-go; finger comb it; and for the love of Vidal Sassoon, whatever you do, don't try to brush it out. Oh, and cut it, ahem, once or twice a year as the mood hits you. It grows out in corkscrew shapes, for heaven's sake, that takes a while. (That last piece of advice is my own lazy, too-cheap-to-pay-for-frequent-haircuts advice. I'm sure my stylist - if I had such a thing - would disagree).

But God has a sense of humor. Enter my beautiful daughter with striking blond so-straight-and-slick-you-can't-keep-a-barrette-in-it-without-the-assistance-of-duct-tape hair. Other than shaking my head every time I dropped another few dollars on yet another package of soon-to-disappear barrettes, I didn't think much about it. In fact, I thought nothing about her hair maintenance (other than shampooing it) until I won a free gift certificate for a child's haircut. And so, we went for a mother-daughter outing to get her hair cut for the first time. She was, ahem, three.

Funny thing about straight hair. It grows. Fast. So, now (cough) a year later, she was in desperate need of a cut, to the point where she's been asking for one. I had passed a book called How to Cut Your Own Hair (or Anyone Else's) by Marsha Heckman, Cathy Obiedo, and Claudia Allin one day at the library. So when it came back into circulation earlier this month, I grabbed it.

After the confidence that comes from reading two pages of hair-cutting instructions, I got down to business. We laid out my tools of the trade on top of a receiving blanket and wrapped another receiving blanket around Audrey's shoulders (so many uses for those receiving blankets). I squirted her hair with a spray bottle (an act she found funny and asked for again and again) and began to snip away a few inches. I'll be honest. I can't tell if it's straight or not, she never stands in one spot long enough to be sure. But the shorter cut suits her and her heart-shaped face. And, it's a good cut for dancing, which is what four-year-old hair is really about.

I thought that would be the end of our hair adventures for the week, until I cut open an avocado to find it less than guacamole-perfect. In the spirit of waste not, I decided to give it a second life. This week, I began reading Ashley English's Canning & Preserving. I discovered she has a blog, which has a link on it to this avocado hair mask. I didn't have sour cream in the house, but if there's one recipe for an avocado hair treatment online, surely there are two, right? So after a popping a few words into a Google search, I found a Revitalizing Avocado Hair Treatment that required an avocado and honey. Bingo. I combined my two ingredients and lathered the mixture into my wet hair. I combed it through, from scalp to ends, and wrapped my hair up into a shower cap. Then I set a timer for twenty minutes, cranked up some Tony Bennett (shush, I love him) and got to work on a project. Between Tony and the work at hand, I let the timer get away from me. It beeped and another twenty minutes went by. I was snapped back to the treatment at hand when honey began dripping down my neck. A quick rinse and the treatment was complete. My hair feels better today, although, it could use a cut - not that I'm ready to take that on myself. Yet.


  1. Wow...I'm very impressed! It looks great from the back! I can't wait to see it in person. And I'm impressed that you found a use for that avocado...I've tossed too many in the trash...

  2. You don't need to hide the fact that you love Tony. He's just a loveable guy!