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Utility outages force parents to bathe kids in giant seafood boiler

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How do you like your children cooked?

Despite significant damages following extreme winter weather, a family in Louisiana has managed to survive the storm by tossing their kids in a giant stockpot outside their home — for bathing, of course.

The Harper family has found themselves without water since Wednesday as rolling power outages caused by ice and snow have impacted local water-pumping stations in Shreveport, where Marie and Marshall live with their five young children. Marie, a pediatrician, told The Post it’s down to “a trickle” at the moment.

As a result, some locals have turned to harvesting snow in lieu of turning on the tap. Shreveport residents also remain under a boil advisory until Friday.

That’s where the family’s giant stockpot came in handy — for something other than boiling seafood.

“A very staple item for people to have around here is this giant crawfish pot,” said Marie, 36, who began using their boiler apparatus to warm large amounts of water for bathing and other uses. She said she and her husband, 38, were “bored and laughing” at the thought of dunking their small children in the pots for their daily baths.

“We did it to send [pictures] to our friends and family as a joke,” Marie told The Post. “To get them clean but also recognized it was kind of funny,” which prompted them to share the shots on social media.

“This is the most Louisiana thing I have ever seen,” one friend joked on the February 18 Facebook post, along with a video of the silly survival stunt.

Marshall Harper lights the propane burner beneath the pot.
Marshall Harper lights the propane burner beneath the pot.
Courtesy of Marie Elise

Well-versed in how to boil liquids in giant stockpots, the daring parents didn’t need a thermometer to assure a safe temperature. They simply warmed the pot until the melted snow was “hot to the touch” then transferred the tub to a snowy surface to cool down the “scalding” bottom while four of their children, excluding their infant, took turns washing up.

“If they were inside, they’d be sharing baths anyway,” said Marie of the children, all of whom are no older than 6 years old.

Their après-ski-meets-crawfish-boil-inspired hot tub experience was discontinued after one night in favor of a more sauna-like setting — in the shower where the pot has since been relocated. “So the kids weren’t freezing their naked butts off” anymore, she said.

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