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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Potty Training, Part 1

Potty Training.

It's almost been like a dirty word around my house because... to be honest, I've been scared. I had all the excuses: Harvey hasn't been motivated (like at all), I didn't want to train too close to when the baby would be born, we needed to adjust to Dad's new job, I needed to be getting more sleep at night so I'd have more patience during the process... etc.

While I did want to make sure Harvey was ready, I think we waited mostly because I wasn't ready. Plus, in the spirit of full disclosure... it's just so convenient when Harvey has a diaper on. We don't have to stop mid-grocery-trip to dash to the bathroom. I can send him to a play date without worrying that my mom friends will have to change an accident with the extra stash of clothing I had to pack.

But... it was time.

Harvey said he wanted to wear big boy underwear about three weeks ago, so I jumped on it. We didn't wear diapers during the day at all, and I bought juice, salty snacks and treats to get him excited. And it worked. (Harvey is a big fan of food). I put the "big treats" on the back of the toilet in a little basket as a visual.

If he went potty, he got to choose something out of the basket. My theory was that it would encourage him to drink fluids all day.. or eating something salty would make him want more fluids. (While this worked great for a couple days, I didn't want to continue it for fear that the junk would mess with his system.) More fluids = more chances for success on the potty.

Periodically throughout the day, I also asked him "Are you dry?" And if the answer was "Yes!" then he got a small candy - like two skittles or candy hearts. I read in Pottywise for Toddlers that it is important to reward the success of staying dry, not just going on the toilet. True potty training means that the kid is staying dry in his underwear... right?!

Anyway, then Avery went through a terrible sleeping phase, and I started getting NO sleep, and it seemed like Harvey refused to poop anywhere except in his underwear, so I gave up for a while. I put all the treats away, didn't mention his underwear, or make him go on the toilet if he didn't want to. (I know, reverting back to diapers is the number one thing I've heard not to do when potty training, but I was in survival mode.)

Then, last Saturday we were invited to a Potty Party by my friend Hannah. I hoped it would get both Harvey and I excited about the concept again.

Hannah made the cutest treats:
(seriously... aren't these little toilets adorable?)

(and these Oreo truffles were to die for...)

I whipped up a couple of labels for her:
We stuck them on with clear packing tape to help the drink become water resistant, but my labels were a smidge wider than the tape, so it didn't work as perfectly as I had hoped. Here are the labels if you'd like to print them for a party of your own (just cut the drink labels thinner than the tape so your drinks will really be water resistant!)

Here is an alternate link for downloading the file: Potty Party Printables

For all the details on Hannah's party, check out her blog.

As for us... Harvey is back in underwear, (so far) enjoying adding stickers to his Potty Progress Chart, and earning treats from the cute treat jar we got from the party. Wish us luck!!

Oh.. and any advice from the seasoned Potty Trainers out there??? I'm ALL EARS!


  1. Great Tiff! I am glad it went well. I LOVED your labels and am so glad we were able to finally collaborate. Do it again sometime? I'll add this link to my blog.

  2. Your so creative and fun! We did the same thing with Hunter {went back to diapers after it just wasn't working}...for him we waited a few months and then he asked for the underwear and we started again and it worked great! For Connor, I think he was sooo used to watching Hunter and wanting to do what Hunter did he just trained himself :) Yay-lucky me...
    If you find out some fabulous ways to get them to stay dry at night...we REALLY need help with CONNOR!!!! He wakes up ALL night long either being wet or having to go to the bathroom...we are totally lost and don't know what to do with him!?

  3. What great ideas! I hope it will continue to go well this time. I am sure it will "click"! Good luck!

  4. I never thought potty training could be so cute!!!

    Jessi from Hopes and Dreams

  5. Those toilets are so funny!! Just be patient!! And like you said, reward for being dry, not just going on the toilet!! And I'm sure you know, make him "go" before you leave the house!!

  6. just to cute! we are in the process of training our fifth....he just turned 2 in december. with all 5 of our kids it has been so different. our first was trained by 2, our second was 3 the twins were just over 2 and our youngest started going right before he turned two. the key to every single one of our kids....please dont' judge me..we let them run around with no diaper or underwear( we also lived in a place where we could do this and the age of our children made it possible..we had 5 in 5 years_) AFTER they had been going on the potty and were pretty close to being completely trained... each one started with a little timer...we got them on a schedule when the timer beeped it was time to go potty....at first we did 15 minutes then spaced it out. that worked really well for us. BUT each child is different and sooner or later they will get it.

    1. Actually.. I think the no underwear thing works great! I noticed that Harvey doesn't have an accident (or a really tiny one) when he's not wearing underwear. And I really like the timer idea, too. I'm staring to get scared that he will expect candy forever!

  7. these are all great ideas for potty training. Potty party sounds interesting.



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