Happy Weekend!

It is the first Friday or March and I couldn’t be more excited!

Reasons I love March…

  1. it is my birth month
  2. spring begins
  3. spring festivals and outdoor concerts begin again
  4. pretty flowers
  5. more outdoor fun with the family

Time for some of my favorites of the week!

For my mom friends with newborns and babies fighting sleep, this is for you….thoughts every sleep deprived mother has ever had according to Amy Poehler.

Would you let your baby nap outside in the cold or your elementary aged child take the subway on their own? Check out these intriguing  parenting trends from around the world  that haven’t caught in the U.S.

Kids say the funniest things! Do your kids have funny ways of mispronouncing words? My daughter is starting to say “jumping” correctly, but still slips up and says “gumping.” It’s especially funny to me when she’s reading Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed with me.

Enjoy your first weekend of March!

Potty Training Why Must You Do This to Me?

many thanks to gratisography for the photo

For many parents, the time to start potty training is filled with joy for the day that diapers will be no more. For myself, it’s a period I dread. I’ve been a part of the team supporting child and their parents through the potty training process more times than I can name. I’ve cleaned up countless children, wiped up MANY floors, and done innumerable loads of laundry  from “accidents” that may or may not have been an accident.  No matter how you go about this process with a child I know that much of this is inevitable. Over time my thoughts on potty training has ebbed and flowed.  

After watching many children succeed in learning to use the toilet and many have to go about it in their own way, I know that this process is not one size fits all. I’m also a firm believer that a child will not make the switch from diapers to the potty until they are good and ready. At times we can wonder if we’re crazy in what we’re thinking about on this parenting journey, but I really appreciated this post from Janet Lansbury affirming my inclination on why we shouldn’t potty train. I realize we can’t force a child to make the switch, but sometimes it’s hard to know when a child is good and ready. 

My husband doesn’t get my potty training/toilet learning dread, as he thinks this is a great next step for our daughter. I’ve tried to explain what’s in our future and why I’m not wanting to rush this next stage, but I think seeing is believing. For the last several months, VHP has been showing more and more signs of potty training readiness. I’m really trying to follow her lead so that things can go as quickly, smoothly, and painless many loads of laundry free as possible. 

Since thanksgiving, things have been even more potty focused in the Parker house.  Around 12:00 on Thanksgiving day, I took VHP upstairs for a diaper change and she demanded no diaper.  I asked if she needed to go potty, to which she responded yes.  Took her and she did in fact pee a fair amount (not the first time this has happened mind you). After that she REFUSED to put a diaper on, so big girl panties it was. She did great through thanksgiving lunch (an early meal due to my brother having to work), and went potty again before nap. I did put a diaper on for nap time (much to her dismay), but it was right back to being in panties after that. Difference this time was that she would NOT use the potty. Well, during snack she decided she HAD to come sit with me. As anyone can guess,  half way through snack she and I both had wet pants. We changed our clothes, finished snack and played for a bit. After snack we tried to potty again with no luck. Shortly thereafter my mom noticed VHP’s pants were wet AGAIN. Changed her clothes AGAIN which I know is normal for this process, but tiring nonetheless. Before long it was potty time again, VHP wouldn’t go, and not too long after that it was accident #3! I decided enough was enough, and back to the diapers she went (with much protestation)!

Over the next couple weeks VHP would use the potty some, but this past week it’s been different. She has started requesting to go potty, and really going more than usual. Saturday she used the potty more than soiling her diapers, and for that I was really excited. But then there was the after dinner diaper change incident in a public restroom. She was being cooperative through the diaper change, and all was well in our world. Then I asked if she needs to go potty, which is the normal diaper change question lately, and her response was yes. I’m getting ready to grab her and take her potty when I notice the changing pad is getting wet. She smiles. I tell her we don’t pee on the change on the changing table, to which she responds, “yeah, pee potty.” I affirm this and clean up the new mess on our hands. VHP keeps giggling and declares, “its’s funny!” 

Sigh, have I mentioned I dread potty training?!

I’m hoping this whole process goes well, but I’m feeling quite skeptical. Tips for what has worked for you? Guidance on what hasn’t worked? Stories to share on the challenges JOY of switching from diapers to using the potty?

The Challenge…

We all have different abilities. Some are great at math, some are great at fixing things, some are great cooks, and I’m none of those things. I do love learning languages and I’ve spent most of my life working with our youngest members of society from the ages of 0 to 18. I’m exceptionally fond of working with itsy bitsy babies, preschoolers, and teens.  On the flip side, in my years of working at a local preschool, I would generally try to avoid those between the ages 16 to 36 months. 

Those little people I like to avoid are also known as:

These little people are brilliant. They are little explorers, learning and discovering the world around  them. They are learning how to be people. They are learning how to be independent. They are also learning how to push the limits of our sanity. These little geniuses drive me absolutely MAD with their limit pushing. 

People, I’m going to be really honest with you.  But I’ll warn you that I’ve had friends look at me like I have three heads and fifty eyes for saying this.  I don’t really like toddlers, and I’m currently the mother to a toddler. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love and adore my toddler. But I don’t always like the behavior of this little person. Yeah I know toddlers are great in many ways! They’re growing and learning so much every day, and we ge to be a part of it as parents. It’s a privilege, and we get to watch them go through this process, but it’s also maddening along the way!

In recent months I stumbled upon this post about surviving the “terrible twos,” and now I’m love with the Danes.  They don’t refer to this period of time as the “terrible twos,” or anything like that but as the “boundary stage.” This couldn’t be more accurate, as these little people are constantly working to understand the what boundaries exist around them.  My precious toddler isn’t a psychopath, she’s just exploring another boundary!

Now don’t you dare think I’m healed of my toddler anxiety and frustration. I still have A LOT of work to do. I do plan to share with you more on how I’m managing this and resources I’ve found along the way.  And if you have great resources, please share them, as I could use them too! Please know you are not alone in this toddler struggle, I’m in the thick of it with you!