So Elsa, my 18 month old ball of awesomeness, drew on the wall for the first time today. I had hoped we would be able to avoid this stage but apparently I am not going to be so lucky. I caught her pretty early into her masterpiece but it was already about the size of a regular sized sheet of paper. 

So after the initial shock of 'WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!' Elsa walked off started drawing on the paper that I taped to the coffee table for her. I then set about the task of trying to clean these pen marks off the wall. A damp washcloth took off some of the surface ink that had not dried yet but there was still an awful lot of it left on the wall. I then tried using a little soap and when that did little to take it off I rinsed the rag and switched to a dilution of bleach. That helped a little but not as much as I would have liked. Next I tried a little chunk of one of those Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. It worked, but dont be fooled. Its no where near as easy as they make it look on the commercials. After about 5 minutes or so of hard scrubbing the eraser was reduced to little white ribbons on the floor and the ink was almost completely gone. Maybe its just that I know what the spot looked like before that it bothers me that there are still some small black specks still on the wall, but maybe John wont notice it. This is why its so important to keep a little bit of paint in the garage, in case of emergencies, whenever you put up a new wall color. 

Now to see if the Magic Eraser will take pen marks off of little girls....

Side Note: Egg shell or semi-gloss paints are the best choice for interior paints when you have children. The less porous the surface is the easier it will be to clean. I do not recommend gloss, or high gloss finishes on interior walls because its ugly, despite being easiest to clean. If there is a particular spot on the wall that your child is fond of doodling on you might try buying black board paint, if the spot is convenient for doing so. Black board paint gives the wall the texture of a black board and allows for the use of chalk for decorative purposes...this pain comes in a couple different colors I believe, so you don't have to worry about being stuck with a black square on the wall. If you dont like the idea of letting your child doodle on the wall then you might try buying your child an easel or redirecting them to a coloring book. 
Stephanie
1/11/2012

Be careful with the Mr. Clean sponges! I have accidentally taken paint off of walls with those, so it helps to try a small hidden area first to make sure this won't happen to you. I now have a spot on my wall that is lighter than the rest.

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Veronica
1/12/2012

I was going to say the same thing. I used it in an apartment once and it took the paint off the walls. Crayola washable markers are our new best friends here, they have washable crayons too, they come off with just water.

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