16 February 2011

Potty Training 101 {for me}

Yep, that's right... this post isn't as much for Carter as it is for me. I need your help.

This weekend we took the big step of buying Carter his very own potty. We went with this one......and let me tell ya- he LOVES it. He loves to play with it. He loves to sit on it. And he loves to follow me to the bathroom just to hang out with it.

Do you think he actually loves to pee in it?

Not so much.

In all fairness, we haven't really started yet. We're simply pre-training him now {which is apparently a very important step of potty training!} We just got the potty this weekend, so it's been all about getting him excited to be around it. He's already copying what I'm doing and he even went as far as to pull his pants down to sit on it last night.

So now the training begins. And like I said... I need your help.

What have you found that works and/or doesn't work with potty training?

I have a few potty books in my Amazon cart right now {including The Potty Train, The Potty Book {for boys} and Dinosaur vs. the Potty} and a potty movie {Elmo's Potty Time} all of which I plan to order tonight. We will also use the incentive/reward system {this boy will do just about anything for an M&M... I wonder where he gets that from?}

I'm also buying him potty training underwear because I've found after researching, that kids tend to learn faster when they can feel that they're wet/had an accident. Things like Pull-Ups and other diaper-like products tend to delay the process because they're much more absorbent. Apparently, cloth is the way to go once we start. Who knew? {I do plan to use Pull-Ups at night until he really gets the hang of it.}

I understand that this is a lot of work and takes a lot of reminding on our part. I think we will start with the 30-minute reminder option throughout the day and use a timer. I also recently downloaded the {free} "iGo Potty" app, which looks adorable! It has a timer, progress chart, and reward system and also allows you to personalize it with names and pictures. You can also choose the song that plays when the timer goes off {and I think Carter would respond way better to "Like a G6 Cheese Stick" than "I'm a Big Kid Now"... I'm just sayin.}

Obviously, this will be a little more difficult because both Bob and I work full-time. I plan to have a "Potty Party" on a Saturday morning and officially start from that point on; dedicating the entire weekend to potty training. We are so lucky that our mothers watch the kids and that they are both fully on board with our efforts once we start. Consistency is key.

So during this pre-training phase, I want to take him shopping to pick out some rewards that he can earn once he goes on the big boy potty. We'll start with a few M&M's after every successful potty trip and then work our way on to little prizes {for full successful days} and possibly go to a bigger prize {for full successful weeks.}

Am I on the right track here? Again, please let me know what worked/didn't work for you!

I need your help.

a.k.a "a mom that's about to enter potty training hell."

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Olivia's Mommy said...

Welcome to my world! We have the same potty. We got this one because it flushes and she's obsessed. She's so ready to do it, but she just won't. It's so frustrating. We have kind of stopped the process but are going to go back next week to try back at it. We are also lucky our Day care provider is fully on board and wants to train us for her. She keeps talking about it to her. We have everything to start. I might just start putting big girl panties on her and telling her she has to tell me. I am sort of like not sure what to try next. I guess it's just patience!!!! Can't wait to hear the feedback you get.

Unknown said...

My son was potty trained one month before he turned three. We had tried earlier and it was unsuccessful. We just waited until he was ready and it was SO easy. He just did it....when he was ready. I did use M & Ms as a treat for about the first week because he will also do anything for an M & M. I went straight to underware and made a big deal about how diapers are only for babies and he is a big boy. I let him pick out fun underwear. He loves Cars and Mickey Mouse so thats what he got. About the potty.....its too late becase you already bought it, but I always heard you want to stay away from things like that because they think its a toy and only want to play with it, not go to the bathroom on it. Anyway, my two cents is if its not working don't force it and just wait.

molly said...

Good for you! I'm not an expert by any means. But I strongly recommend that you never force him to go potty. Just constantly mention it or point it out. Have him watch you potty and talk about it.

I agree with the whole wet/dry thing. That's why we just went straight to the underwear. And he surprised us and just started going! It's not perfect. We still have trouble with #2 (he goes and THEN tells us he has to go poop) but I know he'll get it eventually.

Just be patient AND be consistent!

kacy said...

this sounds like a nightmare. after reading this post you have made me incredibly happy that i do not have children yet.

Coach Kari said...

Sounds like you've done your research! I haven't potty trained a boy, yet, but when we potty trained our daughter we filled her with liquids and sat her on the potty every 15 mins for 5 mins at a time. Those 5 mins were spent playing with specialy toys that she only got to play with during her time on the potty, so she looked forward to playing with them. Eventually she'd go 'potty' and we'd have a HUGE party! She also got to call her favorite Disney Princess, Cinderella (aka, my BFF) to talk with her whenever she went potty (thank gawd my BFF was totally cool with this cause they were on the phone a lot!). When she wasn't on the potty she spent the day without bottoms on (we had tile floor at the time, and it was summer!) so she would be fully aware of when she had an accident. Took about a week and she was potty trained. Not fully, but enough to call it a success! Good luck! Can't wait to read how it goes, especially with a boy (my son is 4 months old, so we've got some time, lol!).

Shelby said...

We have been working with my son for awhile (he is a month younger than Carter) and we came to the conclusion that he just isn't ready. He will go pee on the potty anytime we put him there but will not tell us he has to go. He also tells us about poop after the fact. We use a reward system too (mini oreos) and sometimes he tells us he has to go just for the cookie. We have the same potty you do and an insert for the toilet. He was playing on the smile potty a little bit and we found that sitting on the big potty was just like mommy and daddy so he took it more seriously. I will say that even though I don't think he is ready I am taking him and working with him anyway. Since I am at home it is just as easy to do that than change a dirty diaper. Everybody tells us that when he is ready it will just click. I would also suggest letting him pick out his underwear too. If he loves them he won't want to mess them up :) Good luck this weekend.

Erica said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mrs.M said...

No potty training advice yet but I'll be watching and learing through you!

Erica said...

We didn't buy any books/movies/fancy potty (just the very basic one) or try any formal scheme or plan. I didn't read a thing about it -- we just followed DS's cues (starting just after he turned 2) and he was fully potty trained (both day and night) by the time he was 2 1/2. We did have a simple sticker chart and small prizes, but nothing too elaborate.

Christina said...

No advice, just make sure he is ready. i don't understand people who potty train for a year with accidents galore. Clearly the kid is not ready. From what I read, boys are not ready until at least 2.5 years old. And some aren't ready until 3.
Colin is 2 months younger than Carter and we have been doing "pre-training" since he was 2. He has a potty and underwear. He knows what they are for. At night, he takes off his diaper and sits on the potty. Then he makes a "hissing" noise for pee and runs away. It is hysterical and it just shows me that he is totally not ready. its a game to him.
I plan on training once he tells us he has to go. Right now he tells us AFTER he goes. Not so helpful.
luckily he is in the potty training class at daycare, so he sees his friends on the potty.

Good luck!

Jill said...

Thanks for posting this! You've given me lots of ideas; I especially like the potty party! As for advice, my cousin said she put Cheerios in the toilet to give her little boy something to aim at when he was learning to pee pee standing up. Just make it clear that these are NOT Cheerios for eating. :) Good luck!

Larissa: said...

Hey! Good luck!! Brock totally took to training way quicker than I expected! I just did a blog post earlier this week and since then i would say he is about 99% potty trained. Today was the 1st time in a few days he woke up with a wet diaper and it was my fault because he cried at 4am and when I should have taken him to pee, I made him go back to bed. Its a learning process for us all! Anyhow, here's what has worked for us:


Katie said...

First off...I love your blog. Your sense of humor reminds me of my own! I have never commented before..but i had to chime in on this one. Let me preface that I thought that my pediatrician was NUTS when she told me this scheme after I had trouble potty training my daughter. Here goes....
There is a big pool under everyones house where all the pee and poop go to party. Everyone's house has one, at home, at grandparents..just everyone has this pool. The pee pee and poop LOVE to go to the pool and have a party, but the only way that they can get there is through the potty. Right now..Carter's doesnt get to party because it just goes out with the trash man in his diapers.So-he really needs to let his start partying!!
I told you...you probably think I'm as nuts as I thought my pediatrician was. But it worked. Beautifully. After she went in the potty-we called EVERYONE to celebrate. we called everyone from grandma to her babysitter and the next door neighbors. Everyone just was so excited and that made her really excited. Make a HUGE production out of it!! Good luck!!
And I'm really not nutso...I swear!! :) taylorsmom927@msn.com if you have any questions!!!!

staci said...

Just let him do it on his own time. No rush. He's not even three yet but it's great you're getting started!

With Aidan we found the train chart for stickers was a great incentive and better than the m&m's because he could see his progress and got happy when it was filled up. That's when he'd get a bigger prize. Pee=1 sticker, poop=2.

Kelli said...

I haven't potty trained a boy but Hanna started on her own when she was 1 and a half. We brought the potty out and she filled it with toys. Sometimes she'd fill it with toys then sit on it. But she would never go. Then 1 day she wanted to go. Now she goes on her own on the big potty.

Hanna still wears a pull up for her nap and for bedtime. I am going to attempt to stop that in the next month or two.

Good luck! He'll do it when he is ready.

Audrey said...

I only know what worked for us so here ya go:
-keep the potty in a convenient place (we actually have 2 for the bathrooms he uses and pull out one to the tile floor in the kitchen it was always in site.
-wear undies at home. sometimes @ the gym daycare I do a pull up with undies over it bc Ty is obsessed with character undies and it's more for convenience for me not having to clean him up in a public place w/ a 9 month old in tow too
-pullups at night-Ty is like clock-work. he wakes up at 5am bc he wet his pull up and wants it off.
-being with older potty trained kids is great peer pressure
Wow, thats a book! Good luck. Accidents happen, but it's very nice when the GET IT!

Real Housewife said...

I'm just glad Eva is far away from this stage. I do not look forward to it!

Jenna said...

My son is just a few days older than Brynn - so I've got plenty of time. But I've never been around boys, so I will be following you closely to see how it goes! Good Luck! :-)

Valarie said...

I don't have personal experience, but I used to work in a Day Care that worked on potty training and have listened to many friends who have potty trained. One suggestion is to put underwear on him UNDER his pull up. It gives him the same wet sensation, but keeps everything much cleaner.

My son is just 13 months so I'm looking forward to hearing about your adventure before I have to start my own! Good luck!

Mama Bruin said...

We just completed the 3 day potty training method (www.3daypottytraining.com) with our 2-year-old son and it worked really well. It was a ROUGH 3 days, but he's been out of diapers completely since then (even at daycare and at night) with only a few accidents.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I have a Carter who's also 2 1/2....he's been trained (except nights) since June. No poop accidents since July and only a few pee accidents here & there.....

He showed interest back then and we were all over that interest....some things that helped us along:

1. Modeling how exciting it is when mom & dad went potty and he bought into it.

2. Not asking "do you have to use potty?" but rather "it's time to use the potty" and developing a little routine w/it - first thing in the morn, after meals, etc. We really got to know his "schedule." We never forced him, but worded options carefully!

3. Special books & toys reserved just for potty time

4. Fun undies that he took pride in, "babies wear diapers."

5. Lots and lots of positive praise - we never did "treats" b/c we didn't want dependency on that.

We also had great consistency with grandparents (as his daycare), just like you - really helpful & SO grateful, how lucky are we?!?

Good luck, I think every kid is so different and responds to different stuff. BTW your sister is hilarious! And she's right, potty training is definitely an interesting aspect of parenthood.....

Kimberly said...

You definitely have the right idea! When I potty trained my oldest son I used the same techniques...

I introduced him to it first before I REALLY started training him.

When the time came I use the training underwear, and I only used pull-ups for nap/bed time. I agree that if they can feel that they're wet it impacts them more.

I also put him on the potty every 20-30 minutes, whether he said he had to go or not.

I kept on him like this and in a few days he really knew what he was doing! Keep in mind that pooping on the potty typically takes a longer training period!

Good luck mama!

Helen@baby shoes said...

That looks like the "Ferrari" of the potty world to me. I can see why any child would love it! I have never seen a potty look quite as exciting as that one!

Mrs. H said...

I am typically a lurker, but had amazing success in potty training my little guy at 16 months. We bought a cookie sheet and a pack of car magnets (he was really into cars at the time). The magnets stick to the cookie sheet and he was only allowed to play with the magnets while sitting on the potty. It encouraged him to go in there on his own b/c he really loved those magnets and they were easy to stor under the sink.

jenni from the blog said...

WOW... you guys are AWESOME!!! Thank you so much for all of this wonderful advice, I'm reading every word and taking notes!!!

Please, keep it coming!!

Tracy Eyles said...

There is a great Elmo video about going to the potty that both my kids loved. I just went into real underwear. Yeah, it was messy for a while but they got the hang of it alot faster than if they were wearing a pull-up which is, in my opinion, a glorified diaper. Also, when you're out and need to use a pull-up what I found helped was putting a pair of underwear on before putting on the pull-up. That way they feel the wet and uncomfortable sensation but you keep away the mess. I found that the potty training underwear got very messy if they had a BM...but that's just me;)

Unknown said...

O was pretty easy to train...we started about 2 months before he turned 3...and he caught on right away. We also started on a weekend...and it helped a ton. We let him pick out big boy underwear (Thomas the train of course) and went from there. He got 1 m&m everytime he tried, 2 everytime he went pee and 4 everytime he went poop. Pee was way easy...no issues except he HATED the little potty...and refused to sit. Pooping...was a different issue all together....but he eventually got the hang of it. The worst part...is when you have to go places...you are a nervous wreck...the trick..potty before you leave the house, as soon as you get to your destination, and when you leave your destination. I could tell you exactly where every bathroom is in every Target, CVS, Toys R Us, & Kohls! Lots & lots of praise for the good days!! Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I've potty trained both a boy and a girl, and it was drastically different.

My girl, at 2 years and 4 months or so, appeared ready. I did the whole "only undies" thing, like most people say works in a few days. Nope. She started peeing in hiding places and wouldn't tell me and would just walk around wet. GROSS. A few months later, at 2 years and 8 months, I just let her wear undies for a couple hours at a time for a few evenings. After a day or two, I started in the mornings because she was really liking the undies. She had very few accidents because she was finally "ready" and loved every second of it. I used diapers at night for awhile until she could do all the potty stuff herself and then we moved to pullups (because she can do that herself. She can't do a diaper by herself). She still wears pullups overnights and she is now almost 4.

My son just started potty training about 3 weeks ago and it went the same way as my daughter. I let him wear his undies for a few hours, then when he was doing pretty well letting me know he needed to "go," I started him in the morning, too. He did "little pees" a lot and so I changed his undies a LOT in the first few days, but then, he just figured it out. He's 2 and 3 months right now. He has been amazing for these past 3 weeks telling me when he needs to go. It's amazing.

Every kid is different. Do what's best for you guys!

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