“What’s a stain?”

tl;dr liquid dish soap and warm water is your friend if your kid spills an entire smoothie on carpet. See before and after pics.
So I made smoothies this morning. You know, since yesterday the kids ate doritos, macaroni and cheese, and goldfish. Also that was totally on purpose because I’m just trying to have educational themes every day (processed food orange day!) I told my sweet, uncoordinated, three year old, “Be careful, the smoothie can stain your shirt.”

Poptart: “What’s a stain?”
Me: “It’s a mark that’s hard to get out in the wash. The berries in the smoothie made it a dark purple so if you spill some on your white shirt, you’ll get a purple mark on it.”
Poptart: “And wasps stain too!”
Me: [pausing to understand his thought process] “Ohh, no baby, ¬†wasps STING, they have stingers. A STAIN is something else. A stain is just a color mark.”

Moments later my adorable, uncoordinated, 3 year old drops his entire cup on our living room rug. Confession time. This was absolutely my fault for giving him a cup without a lid. Y’all, I don’t even know where all my lids wound up. Lately we just live life dangerously every day because none of the cups have lids. Second confession, our living room rug is not really a rug at all. It’s a piece of leftover carpet from when we got new carpet upstairs. Seriously though, why would I buy a rug when I know my precious angels are going to destroy it? #thriftylifehack

Me: “That. [pointing to floor] That is a stain.” *whispering through gritted teeth,* “I’m so glad we get to have this learning opportunity together, Poptart.”

I know the rug was essentially free, but I did NOT want it ruined. I was proud of that money saving hack! So I quickly googled what to do for berry stains.

This is the article I found.

If you scroll down to what to do for carpets here’s a basic summary:
1. remove excess solids using a dull knife or spoon
2. use a cloth to blot up as much of the rest as possible (blot do not rub)
3. mix one teaspoon of dish soap with 2 cups lukewarm water (I did a large squirt of dish soap and filled my 4 cup measuring cup with warm water since it was a large stain)
4. dip a cloth into the solution and blot the berry stain. Continue to dip and move to a clean area of the cloth, changing cloths when necessary.
5. Once the cloth isn’t pulling any more stain, repeat the last step but use fresh water instead of the soap solution.
6. Allow it to dry with no direct heat. (Don’t be pulling out your hair dryer to make things go faster).

I blotted it again with a dry cloth to try and remove excess water. Don’t skimp on your cloths. As soon as one is soaked, get another one. You don’t want to rub pigment back in. I used several for this stain (at least 5 hand towels), as it was pretty large. If you don’t have enough clean ones you can try paper towels or old t-shirts.

Here’s what is looked like after about 8 hours.

It actually worked! Who says I can’t housewife?

Have any tricks for getting out certain stains? Share them in the comments below.

May your soap be stronger than your kids’ messes,


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