Tuesday, September 2, 2014

~Labour Day Weekend Recap 2014: Potty Training~

This certainly wasn't the most exciting weekend, never mind long weekend ever but it was a good a time as ever to potty train Audrey and get it done. She's been showing signs of being ready for awhile now but we weren't ready to tackle the job yet so wanted to make sure we could devote the time necessary to ensure success without multiple attempts.

We followed the 3 Day Potty Training Method which is intensive but worth it, I think. Basically you spend 3 days at home, stalking following your child around and constantly reminding them to "let me know if you have to use the potty" or "remember to keep your underwear dry." You don't ASK them if they need to go, so you put the control on them. The whole point is for them to learn how to recognize the need to go to the bathroom rather than constantly sticking them on the toilet in hopes that you get lucky.

I'm not going to lie- it's intensive, exhausting, messy and I highly recommend having chocolate and wine on hand, for you!!

As the method suggests, we did both day and night training at the same time. While it's frustrating (changing sheets is one of my least favourite chores, never mind in the middle of the night and several times a night), it makes sense to get rid of the "crutches aka diapers" and not have mixed signals.

Friday was Day 1. We woke up and after breakfast we went upstairs to change into big girl underwear and throw out her diapers. She threw them out. To be honest, I only had a few left in her drawer because I couldn't bear throwing away good diapers so I stashed half a box in Leo's room beforehand, for when he needs size 5s.

I started my mantras of ""let me know if you have to use the potty" or "remember to keep your underwear dry" and repeated them so many times I sounded like a broken record. I literally sat next to her most of the day, playing, reading, hanging out so that I could catch her if she had an accident.

Loading up on liquids
 We usually don't give Audrey juice, maybe for a special occasion but with this method you want them to drink way more than they usually do, so they can practice more often. Audrey wasn't too interested in drinking extra water so I gave her some watered down juice to help her consume more. It definitely helped since she peed many times, way more than usual.

Note the lack of pants
Mauling playing with her brother
She had many accidents. Some times she knew right away and ran to the bathroom and other times she would start peeing and I'd have to take her to the bathroom to finish it. Every time she finished on the potty she got a "treat" of her choice- candy or sticker. That definitely motivated her. She likes her chocolate like her mom! Chocolate covered raisins are her favourite.

She also prefers to use the toilet, without the toddler seat and just needs a stool to get on it. She tried a few times without the stool, lost her balance and fell in the toilet! She gets mad if you put the toddler seat on.

She did stay dry during her 2.5 hour nap so that was reassuring.

Night time was a different story. The book tells you to wake them an hour after they go to sleep and taking them to the potty. Well she was not impressed about that and refused to go. At midnight she woke up crying so I thought for sure she peed. She hadn't though, just wanted cuddles. Then after laying for 5-10 minutes, she did wet the bed. Looking back, she probably woke because she needed to go so we should have taken her to the toilet at the wake up.

Overall the first day was hard for me because I did not get a break, except for her nap. I was constantly on her, reminding her and couldn't leave her for a minute. I had to leave her for a few minutes in the morning to put Leo down for his nap and sure enough she had an accident. The mess itself wasn't too bad- I'm used to cleaning up after kids all the time.

So to reward myself for surviving Day 1, I had some ice cream and some of her treats on top!

Day Two was better, slightly. There were still accidents but she did seem to be catching on. It was also Saturday so hubby was home to help out with Leo and occasionally Audrey, although I was still the primary caregiver since the book recommended the same person do all 3 days of the training so as to not give mixed signals.

Also, when hubby was around, she had more accidents. He just wasn't as attentive the way you need to be.

She also stayed dry during her nap on Day 2, which was 2 hours long.

I celebrated with some Angry Orchard.

Night time on Day 2 was harder though. We decided to scrap the wake ups after 1 hour since it only made her mad and she didn't pee anyway. She woke up at 9:00pm and had wet the bed. Hubby changed the sheets and all was good. Then she woke up again at 3:30, wet again. She was all upset when hubby went to change the sheets. She cried for her diaper. Poor kid. Hubby almost threw in the towel and gave in but thankfully the diapers were all in the garbage. I went in to comfort her while he put her bed back together. Then I cuddled in bed with her for a bit more.

She also likes to drink water during the night so that's a habit we really need to stop. A little sip is fine but she will seriously chug a full sippy cup. So we've decided that if she wants water in the middle of the night she has to go pee and then she can have water.

Day 3 was better again. She still had accidents, meaning she would start to pee and we'd have to run her to the bathroom but she almost always finished on the toilet. She also ran to the bathroom on her own a few times so progress is being made.

Nap time she woke up dry after 4 hours!! She had an epic long nap! When she woke up she still didn't need to pee- she didn't go for 6 hours! Camel!!

Night time on Day 3 was the best so far. She stayed dry all night. She woke up at 9pm and called us. We asked her if she needed to go potty and she said yes and she did. She then woke again at 4:30am, asking for water. Hubby told her she needed to go potty before she could have some water. She wasn't very happy about that but went to the potty. She did not go and was quite upset. She had a bit of water.

So technically after Day 3 she is supposed to be potty trained. I wouldn't say she is, especially not at night time, but I think if we keep up the methods in the book she will be fully potty trained, with few accidents, quickly.

On Day 4 (Monday) we were going to venture out to the Zoo. I wanted to do our first outing with an extra set of hands, so I could really pay attention to Audrey and watch for her cues that she needed to go. Unfortunately, the whole family came down with colds (the kids on Friday) so we thought it was best to stay home, practice another day of potty training and rest up. I was a bit disappointed since I had major cabin fever from being in the house for 3 days straight but my head told me to stay home.

Instead, we decided to go for a walk and to the park nearby. It was such a gorgeous day that I didn't want to spend it inside.

Chasing butterflies

Leo's first time on a park swing!

And she stayed dry! She had a couple accidents throughout the day but she also ran on her own to the potty, without a reminder, several times. It's sticking!

She had a short nap and she stayed dry again.

She nervous to go #2 on the potty. She would dance around and I could tell she had to go but she didn't want to. I finally carried her over and distracted her with iPad. We have a Sesame Street interactive book on it about Elmo potty training Baby David so that helped ease her mind, I think. She got a book as a reward and we were ridiculously excited so hopefully there won't be too much resistance next time.

The dinner table seems to be the hardest place. We took away her booster seat so she can easily get up and down, in case she needs to run to the bathroom. Good and bad idea! She still seems to forget, even with constant reminders. Hopefully that passes soon!

Night #4 went really well. She woke up at midnight asking for water and to be tucked in but did not want to go to the potty. We didn't push it. She woke up in the morning dry again!!

So that was our long weekend! I'm sure you are all super envious of our activities ;) It's a responsibility of parenthood that I think every parent dreads!


  1. I'm tired for you and so not looking forward to that stage in parenting! Glad it mainly went well by the end though :)

  2. Sounds like a fun weekend. Ha ha :) We did the three day method with Topher last year and it worked really well, though it did take him a couple of weeks to actually be accident free for any length of time. His big reward was an ice cream cone at "Old MacDonald's" (his favourite restaurant, lol). I've already started with Ellie, just getting her to sit on the potty. I hope she catches on quickly!

  3. Good job Audrey and Mama!!! That does sound exhausting and I ahead boys are are harder... Joy... Haha. I'm glad you got to enjoy some nice weather!! Noah loved the park swing too, but I need to bring something too shove in behind him... Small fry! Hopefully the kiddos get better soon!! And that Audrey keeps up the good work!!

  4. Haha - this was our EXACT weekend three weekends ago (and the weekend after that)!! I sympathize with all of it. Man was it exhausting, especially factoring in that Rhys is also up at night now every 1.5-2 hrs for the past month. I'm about done...and yes, the three day potty training takes more than 3 days! We still have good and not so good days. Makes me nervous to take Skye anywhere but we can't stay in the house forever. Tomorrow will be out first long road trip with little potty in tow. Could be interesting! Good luck to you guys as well! :-) it's hilarious though when she asked my cousins husband and son if "their panties are dry" - haha

  5. That sounds exhausting, but good for you for sticking to the plan! Sounds like she is catching on. I really like the idea of getting it done all at once. Now you will know what to expect when it is Leo's turn! GOOD JOB, Audrey!!

  6. Oh man. This sounds exhausting!! Good for you and it sounds like she is catching on. I like the idea of this training method!

  7. Ugh. That doesn't sound like a fun weekend. Definitely not looking forward to that part but kind of hoping it comes sooner rather than later. I would like to get it over with.


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