Potty training in three days

May 14, 2017 at 3:35 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Unlike my first born, Violet has been incredibly receptive at an early age to using the potty. She dutifully sits every night before her bath. She loves reading books about toilet training, and she asks to watch her favorite video, Potty Power, at least once a day. “I have Potty Power!” she proudly exclaims. So when I read about this supposed three-day potty training, I thought who better to try this out on?

Coincidentally, the best three days I could cobble together were right after Violet’s 2nd birthday…and over Mother’s Day. A fully (or relatively) potty trained child would be the best mother’s day gift ever!

Everyone tells me girls are easier to potty train than boys, and judging from the past three days, I have to agree. Half the battle for Liam was getting him to stay on the potty more than 30 seconds at a time. Violet, on the other hand, is happy to sit for 10-15 minutes as long as I’m reading her book after book. In fact, it’s hard to get her to come off the potty unless she happens to go in it. This girl wants results!

Having been through this whole potty training thing with Liam, I laid out essential supplies. Cleaning implements within easy reach…


Baby gates to keep her confined to the first floor…


A potty on one side of the room…


And on the other…


and a toddler-friendly set up in the downstairs bathroom…


I laid out salty snacks and two water bottles to encourage her to drink more…


and I covered the couches and dining room chairs with bathroom towels to help lessen the mess. We are on the hook for the wear and tear on this furniture we’re borrowing, after all. This WHITE furniture…


I also rolled up all of the rugs. The weather was perfect — very warm, almost like summer. Perfect for potty training!

On Day 1, after Liam left for school, I stripped her down naked and told her we were having special naked day! Yeah! She was thrilled. I let her choose which potty to sit on, and she happily obliged as I read her book after book. After a dozen books and no results, I had to coax her back to playing, setting a timer for 30 minutes to try again later. We did that several times until naptime, with only a puddle on the floor to show for it. But she never complained when our timer went off, and she loved getting all of this extra reading time. It is seriously her very favorite thing to do.

I put her back in a diaper for nap, and she peed in that. Then, in the afternoon, after she sat and sat and sat and sat and sat like Prudence in Once Upon a Potty, she finally did it! Her expression was priceless — like, “Whoa, look what I did!” We made a big production of emptying it into the big potty, flushing, wiping, and washing our hands.

As most families can attest, Real Life has a way of ruining best laid plans, and though I wanted to stick closely to the regimen, Liam had an unavoidable doctor’s appointment that afternoon. I put Violet in underwear, then thought better of it and went with a Pull-Up because I also wanted to take the kids out to dinner afterward. At the end of the appointment, Violet told me she had peed in her diaper, but we sat on the potty at the doctor’s office anyway, just to give it a try. She had no qualms about it, even without a baby seat. Such an agreeable little thing!

Day 2 was a bit messier than Day 1. I put her on the potty every 30 minutes all morning long with no results. I had to drive Liam over to a play date at 10:30, so I put her in underwear, laid a towel in the car seat, and drove them both over there. Like a ticking time bomb! On the way home she complained about being wet and started tugging on the towel. Oh boy, our first public accident. But when we got home, her clothes and the towel were bone dry.

More naked time and potty sitting for the next couple of hours, still nothing. I started looking around the floor for puddles and asking if she’d peed anywhere. She insisted she hadn’t. I checked the chairs and cushions she’d been sitting on. Everything was dry. And then, like a torrent, literally as she stood right next to the potty, here it all came. Good thing I kept those cleaning supplies handy! I sat her down as quick as I could, and she managed to get a little in the potty. She considered that a win, exclaiming, “I did it!”

Desperate for bread and yogurt, and knowing the stores are closed Sundays, I thought this would be the best time to risk a trip to the store. She was very pleased to finally get to wear her underwear out of the house. I loaded her into the stroller and we walked to the corner store. We made it there and back with no accidents. Yay! Time for a nap!

Or so I thought. I put her back in a diaper just in case, but after lounging in her crib for an hour reading books to herself, singing songs, and kicking the slats, I finally gave up on that. Back to naked time and potty sitting! We listened to music. We watched Potty Power. We read book after book after book. And then, as she stood nowhere near a potty but very near to my feet, the flood gates opened. She was so surprised, she started to cry a little. Thankfully I was also standing right by the cleaning supplies, so I was able to mop her up, pick her up, and clean everything up lickity split. Poor thing was so disappointed, she insisted on sitting on all the potties in the house just to see if she could go again.

Day 3, Mother’s Day, started out with success. She actually would say she needed to poopy, then run to a potty. Eventually she peed in the potty, and we did a little happy dance. We were finally starting to get somewhere. But, again, life got in the way. I had to drive Liam to a birthday party at 4. She sat and sat and sat with nothing to show, so I finally decided to risk it. Resolved to fully commit to this potty training thing, I put her in her favorite Peppa Pig undies and a pair of jeggings. I figured I’d dash in, get Liam all settled, then dash back home. When we arrived, Violet sat down in the middle of the floor to remove her shoes, then made a beeline for the play room. I figured 10 minutes couldn’t hurt. I kept a watchful eye from the balcony as I visited with other parents I knew. After awhile, I decided I’d pressed my luck long enough, said my goodbyes, and walked over to get her. Amid the unmistakable smell, she looked up at me and said, “Mommy, I pooped!” Great.

Faced with the prospect of cleaning up a huge poopy mess in the bathroom of a family I had just met, I decided the disaster was contained enough to survive a trip back home. Violet didn’t seem to mind.

I texted a friend who had gone through potty training her girl months earlier — she said the first few days are full of accidents, and not to get discouraged. I have this vivid memory of Liam whizzing all over our recliner in the first few days we got serious about potty training him, so I was expecting things to get pretty messy at first. But she’s a smart girl, and even though she’s only just turned two, she seems to understand the concept and want to do it. I’m sure she’ll get the hang of it soon, if not in three days, then maybe a week. Not perfectly, mind you, but we’ll get there.



Violet turns 2!

May 11, 2017 at 12:38 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Oh, my girl is getting so big! I can hardly believe she’s already two. This little miss is all personality, and she gives me a run for my money in the talking department. Here’s what else she has been up to this month:

  • She’s been giving me great big hugs and saying, “I love you.” Melt. My. Heart. The other day I overheard her playing with a boy and a girl action figure — she had them hug each other and say, “I love you.”
  • Her love of Michael Jackson is almost as fanatical as her brother’s. Now she requests to hear Beat It, and at the beginning of Bad, I swear she sang, “Your butt is mine…” The also hops around singing, “Annie are you ok? Are you ok, Annie?” when Smooth Criminal enters our rotation. Perhaps I should get her a little white glove.
  • She’s getting better and better at recognizing colors, getting them right more like 80% of the time. And she’s recognizing almost all of the letters of the alphabet. I can ask her to bring me a letter from our magnets, and she usually gets it right. She’s also counting consecutively more often than not, though she doesn’t actually count objects correctly, unless by accident.
  • This girl can say anything. And I mean anything. She repeats complex sentences, though she still talks like a typical two-year-old with two or three-word sentences when she’s saying something on her own. You remember Pearl from Funny or Die? We could totally do this with Violet!
  • In preparation for potty training (we start tomorrow!!), I brought home an extra potty and some new underwear. She went totally bananas, stripping down to try on every pair, then sitting on the new potty while I read her books. I actually had a hard time getting her to come off the potty — we had to go pick up Liam at school. But I think this is a good sign that she will learn quickly. She struggles a bit taking down her pants, but she’s a tenacious little thing, so I’m sure she’ll get the hang of it soon.
  • James is out of town for her birthday, so instead of a party, we decided to just open presents with her brother and eat cake at home. I found these awesome cupcakes at a bakery in Halandri (thanks, Katy, for the recommendation!), and, honestly, I’m certain she was just as happy with this as she would have been with a bunch of toddlers and babies sitting around (and probably fighting) at a party. She’s a little social butterfly, but she’ll seriously throw down if someone takes one of her things. And EVERYTHING is hers.
  • After Violet opened her presents, she took one look at the pile of clothes she got and insisted on trying them all on…at the same time. This is a good look for her, I think.


Here are more photos from today. Enjoy!

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