January 26, 2011

potty training

Posted in mousie at 9:52 pm by Anonymouse

I was just looking through pictures from this month to see if I had anything noteworthy to post here.

As it turns out, I haven’t taken very many pictures.

There’s a reason for that.

One of my children has been running around with no pants for the last two weeks.

The internet doesn’t get to see that.

Now, I’ll be the first to say that there is nothing new under the sun and I don’t believe that I’ve done a single original, creative thing with potty training.

Also, potty training is definitely a “to-each-his-own” kind of thing and things that work for one kid at a certain point in time don’t necessarily work for another kid at a different  point in time.

That being said, I’m going to record what has been our methodology a bit, so that I can hopefully remember and use these notes in another couple of years with a certain sleepy, bumbo model.

I had heard of a few different methods – the ones that guarantee a potty-trained child in a day or a weekend seemed particularly appealing, and yet also not quite my style.

Please feel free to check out.  This is going to be boring for everyone – including me.

Here’s what has worked this time around for us:

  • Training pants panties versus thinner character panties.  If no one tells my kid that character panties exist, she doesn’t know what she’s missing and the thicker panties have prevented me from having to clean puddles on the floor more than once (but not every time).
  • Just using the potty – no potty chair, no potty seat.  This was something I was a little hard-headed about.  I think the little potties are gross and the potty seats are only slightly less gross and I didn’t want to train on one thing and then have to transition to the big potty.  Being so stubborn about this without a doubt did cost me some ease, but at the end of the day I’m still okay with that.  And, to everyone who told me she wouldn’t learn without a little potty: ha.
  • Setting small goals.  This was not something I planned, but something I stumbled across.  The first morning, we just worked on using the potty and obviously talking about it constantly.  I gave Baby Swiss juice to drink and I think that was a mistake.  The constant peeing on the floor and changing panties just wore us both out.  That afternoon, we just drank some water and used the timer and had some more success with that.  Once we were used to going on the potty a lot, I threw it back to her to start telling me when she needed to go instead of me badgering her all the time.  Etc. Etc.  Small goals and changing the game plan worked for us.
  • Not going anywhere.  I am someone who likes to be home, but when I HAD to be home all of a sudden, it was making me crazy.  Still, Baby Swiss didn’t go anywhere starting the Wednesday we started until Sunday for church.  Then nowhere the whole next week.  I did get out of the house for a few different things when Mr. Mouse was home.  Poor Baby Swiss didn’t though.
  • Calling pull-ups “panties”.  I don’t know what the deal is with this, but she does not treat a pull-up like a diaper like everyone always warns you about.  I don’t know how we lucked out here, but I’m not going to ask questions.
  • Counting to 10.  This is something I stumbled on later, but wish I’d thought of sooner.  When she says she has to go and then as soon as her little bottom hits the seat she says she’s done OR when I am asking her to “try” before nap or bed or something, I tell her just to try while I count to 10 and then she can be all done.  Without fail, this will get her to squeeze something out and often it is of the #2 variety.
  • Motivators: we give skittles.  At first it was one for #1 and two for #2, but then we just started getting crazy and really rewarding her for things that have been tough – for example her initiating a trip to the potty and then being successful versus me initiating the trip.  We also promised Chick-fil-A (which includes chocolate milk) for supper when she had a successful #2.  Along with Chick-fil-A, she would get “Girl” – a new little toy that was sitting on the counter in the bathroom the whole time just waiting for her to do it.
  • Talk.  Obviously we talk about keeping our panties dry all the time (like Mama) and we talk about where our pees and poops go and all of the people we know who put their pees and poops in the potty.  Blah.  Blah.  Blah.  We also really talk about how proud we are of her.  She responds really well to this.
  • Sticking to it.  Those first few days were not fun.  I totally see why a lot of people try for a day or two and quit to come back to it later.  We started on a Wednesday and I had told myself (and others: accountability!) that we would give it the good old college try until Saturday and then assess to see if it was worth sticking to it or if she wasn’t ready yet.
  • Reinforcements.  I didn’t plan this, but I was so glad that we started mid-week because by Friday (Mr. Mouse was off work) I was ready to have someone else around to help keep me sane.

Disclaimer: This is not to be taken as advice. Nor is it to be taken as a plea for advice.

Most boring blog post ever?

Yes, I think so.

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3 Comments »

  1. Kelly said,

    I think everything you have done is awesome. I also hate the little pottys as well, so gross.

    Someone gave me one of those “Potty train your child in a weekend” books, and I think it’s kind of crazy. Maybe it works for those late bloomers, who are 3 or something?

    Mea was about the same age as Baby Swiss, and we also used the Training Pants Panties, vs. cartoon panties. So much better.

  2. Rachel said,

    I have four kids, and have sucked at potty-training with all three of the older kids. They were all potty-trained at three. They all made me crazy. I hate it. My youngest will be two in March, so potty-training is once again on the horizon. I appreciated your post today, because, even though I’ve done it before, I wasn’t very good at it. I really liked your count to ten idea. I’m gonna use that. I also didn’t do the potty chair thing. So gross. 🙂 Good luck with the rest of the potty-training. Your girls are adorable, btw. 🙂

  3. HereWeGoAJen said,

    I’m glad to hear what worked for you. We are going on vacation in a few weeks, so I’ve been putting off potty training until we get back. I am so NOT taking a freshly potty trained toddler to Disney World. No, thank you, we’ll do diapers for an extra two months.


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