Out, damn’d spot! out, I say!

If Lady Macbeth had been trying to remove a berry stain from the shirt of a preschooler who messily devoured a pint of raspberries when her back was turned, she would have been in luck.  There’s a recipe for removing stubborn berry stains that has saved many of the Maiden’s outfits in the two years I’ve been using it.  It’s just too good not to pass on.

I discovered this recipe during a frantic Internet search 2 years ago after I foolishly let the Maiden, then 13 months old, taste a raw cranberry.  Her adventurous side was still undeveloped, so she spit the cranberry in a masticated mess smack onto a brand new outfit.  The solution I read seemed too easy to be true, but it worked then and still does now:

1) Soak affected clothes, teddy bear, or other item in pure white vinegar.  It’ll smell nasty.  Don’t worry about it.

2) While it’s soaking (it doesn’t need to be for very long), put a kettle of water on to boil.  When it’s boiling, pour directly onto the vinegar-soaked clothes, and watch in amazement as the stain disappears.  It’s very cool.

I owe a great debt to whoever dreamed this one up.  In the past few years I’ve seen it work its magic on cranberries, blueberries, raspberries, watermelon, and strawberries, even when the stain wasn’t fresh.

Of course, there’s always another solution, maybe a little more proactive.

1) Remove child’s clothes and send her out to the middle of the backyard.  Hand her the piece of fruit and let her eat it however she wants.

2) Keep hose within reach.

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