Monday, May 04, 2009

Memory of Water

On Saturday we started 'toilet learning' (the right on expression used by our bible, 'What to Expect: the Toddler Years') with Olivia. She is now 27 months and for some time she has been very interested in what is in Grace's nappy, following Mummy to the toilet etc. but has not shown enormous interest in using the potty . While I am not into competitive parenting, the fact that several children her age at her toddler groups have been out of nappies for several months made me wonder whether we shouldn't try moving her along a little. Yesterday we got her some Disney Princess pull up nappy pants with flowers which vanish if she wees the nappy and encouraged her to tell us if she needed a wee.

She didn't seem to mind sitting on the potty and happily sat there while watching an episode of something special or reading a book with Mummy but didn't actually go to the toilet and would wait until you took her off the potty and then wee her nappy. This got a little frustrating and she was obviously picking up on our mood and so today we persevered in reading her potty related story books and have kept everything very low key, telling her that if she wanted to use the potty she could but that it didn't matter if she didn't want to.

Our plan was to leave it another week and try again. This afternoon we were sitting together when she suddenly said 'Mummy, I want to go to do a wee wee on potty'. We had put her in a nappy today as we were not expecting her to show any interest but we quickly stripped her off and popped her on the potty. After a few minutes of sitting there she stood up and said 'look Mummy' and had indeed done a wee wee. We gave her big cuddles and told her she had been very clever. We are still going to leave things pretty low key and see how it goes if we leave her to her own devices for a bit.

She also got to play in her Night Garden play tent, which we had brought her as an incentive to use the potty (she gets to play in it every time she successfully uses the potty). She wanted Grace to play in it with her and so here are the little monkeys.


  1. So cute!

    potty training: may the force be with you.
    Gage finally got it at 3 1/2. We still use "pull-ups" at night, but we've been using the potty during the day.
    It took a year & a half to get Gage potty trained. UGH!
    I hear that girls are easier though...

  2. I don't know whether this helps, but with my 3 I abandonned the idea of pull-ups as being not as helpfull as I thought they would be. Instead I went for the "straight to knickers/pants" approach, because of the fact that if they do have an accidental wee or worse, it has to be dealt with immediately! Something about the immediacy seems to embed the learning. Over Easter Gregory had a nasty tummy upset, but we didn't go back to nappies, and bless him he was excellent, running to the potty or toilet when he needed to. With the boys I also abandonned night nappies at the same time, because I thought that whilst being nappy free was still a novelty, that might be psychologically enough to motivate them to wake if they needed to wee in the night. Clara has always found the night-times harder, but if I put her in a night-nappy she will use it (subconscisouly she gives herself permisson to let go if she's wearing one), so even with her I let the washing machine take the strain, and just buy a packet of night nappies for camping trips. Every family is different, and there isn't a right way, and you can weigh up the pros and cons of pull-ups v washing machines and different families will find different options more convenient. But this is what worked best for me!
    lovely pics, and looking forward to seeing you soon now the nice weather has arrived!

  3. They are so cute! I love their eyes.