Pete Gilbert">

Potty Party Road Trip

My cart was full. I had all the necessary supplies: a hot pink poster board, a massive pack of 1400 stickers, three bags of Dum Dum suckers, a bag of Laffy Taffy, three purple magic wands, 12 bottles of bubbles, enough Crystal Light packets to fill a keg, and finally, fifty brown paper bags. We were officially ready to potty train the Blonde Bomber. She’s turning three later this month, we had a two-day window of time with nothing planned, so we decided to just go for it.

The plan was to have an all day potty party. We’d done something similar before with our son, so we felt confident this would work. The plan was to have the Bomber help us stuff the brown paper bags with all the suckers and goodies all the while pumping her full of Crystal Light lemonade. Each time she put pee in the potty we would give her a goodie bag. She would also get a sucker every time there was a successful potty and to get the older siblings on our side during this whole thing, they would get a sucker every time she went potty as well. We would also put a sticker on the potty chart and keep track of her progress. The magic wands were for the holy grail of potty training- the p-double-o-p.

The first morning started off badly. She wanted nothing to do with peeing anywhere other than in a diaper. There were lots of tears from her and lots of cheers of encouragement from the rest of us. After a few hours, a couple accidents and several glasses of lemonade, we had our first successful urination celebration. From that moment on, we knew it might just work. The rest of her morning was more successful. There were many stickers put on the chart, suckers eaten, and goodie bags opened. At nap time we put her potty seat in her room not really thinking she would use it without calling us in first. A few minutes after nap, she shouted down to us, “Mom, Dad, I pooped.” Thinking I was about to be cleaning poop off the wall, I reluctantly walked upstairs with my wife, only to find her holding up her potty chair to show us the large brown package she’d delivered right into her froggy potty. It was unbelievable. Definitely worthy of a purple wand. After that, the rest of the day was pretty uneventful.

Day two, yes just twenty four hours after we started this whole potty training business, my wife temporarily lost her mind. As we ate breakfast that morning she said, “I really want to go to IKEA today. I think I’ll take the kids.” IKEA? In Cincinnati? Two hours away with a newly potty training child? It made no sense. At all. She did it though. She packed the frog potty, four extra outfits for BB, plenty of treat bags and potty suckers and off they went. Definitely a bold move for a first trip out of the house. Somehow they survived. Each time a potty stop was needed my wife would exit off the interstate, pull into a parking lot and let our daughter do her thing. Four times total in the trip. Not too bad. The saving grace of the whole ordeal is that IKEA offers one hour of free day care while you shop. Apparently if you go over the hour limit though your pager turns into a siren. Good to know.

Since then, potty training has gone remarkably well. We went out to eat the other night, and no joke, she took 13 trips to the bathroom during one meal. Other than a few really late nights of sugar buzzed kids, it’s going way better than I expected.

On to the next challenge…getting our daughter to stop describing her first poop in the potty to everyone she sees.

It’s always something.

-Pete

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