Monday, July 12, 2010

Pre potty training to trained at 26 months!

Yes, this is a little late (the boys are now almost 29 months) and yes, I have not blogged in TWO months! That is my new record! BUT, I do have a ton of excuses! I will share them in my next post...whenever that happens! :)

I will start with a little background information. I began cloth diapering Ashton and Ayden when they were 9 months old. A few months later I first learned about Elimination Control (EC). This is in short potty training a baby from birth using their natural patterns and being in tune with their bodily cues. I thought it was a great idea and I could at least use some of the ideas on my now one year olds. We bought them their first potty around their birthday and started sitting them on it by 15 months. We did have several occasions of using the potty as well! Our long and drawn out moving process started when the boys were 18 months and we did not offer them a potty to sit on too often. Their language skills were still a little behind so they were not verbalizing in any way that they needed to go to the bathroom at this time.

Since I wasn't able to do EC like I really would have like with staying with my parents and Jeff's parents and not having a place for our potty or a big potty just for them, I made due. I decided I would do what I called "pre potty training". I was not strict about this, I did not push them, I did not offer any rewards. I didn't even use Pull-ups or training pants! What I did do: I gave them a sign for going pee pee (ASL sign), I discussed most diaper changes including what was in the diaper. Ashton and Ayden both started peeing as soon as they stepped foot in the bathtub around this 18 month mark. I stated "You're going pee pee! Pee pee goes in the potty." every time they peed in the bathtub. While saying this I also did the sign for pee. I continued to use cloth diapers, except overnight. A lot of cloth diapered babies potty train earlier because they can usually feel the wetness more so than with the supersoaker disposable diapers of today. Around 24 months I began getting out the one potty we had with us at my in laws house. As the weeks passed I starting offering them the potty more often until by 25 months they were sitting on it at every diaper change. Now, don't get me wrong! They were NOT actually DOING anything on the potty except maybe 25% of the time. But, this slowly increased over the next couple of weeks until before I knew it they were dry nearly every diaper change and peed on the potty when I took them. They even started telling me when they needed to pee. Pooping was going slower, just a few random occurrences. When they DID pee I sang a song I had made up that celebrated this victory. Because of the tight quarters the boys usually had peed on the potty in their room or the living room so the pot had to be carried to the big potty to be dumped. The boys loved to "help" me carry the pot to the bathroom and dump the pee. This was their "reward" I suppose! By the end of June (26 months) they were staying dry even when we left the house to go to the store, park, or out to eat. It was not fun to take a side snapping cloth diaper off of a toddler in a bathroom stall, have him pee and then try to put the diaper back on said STANDING toddlers because they hate public changing tables!
The end of June I also bought our first package of underwear from BabyGap. They were so cute! But, they really meant nothing to the boys! Before the underwear was purchased Ashton was doing better about staying dry than Ayden. After the purchase, Ayden started doing better and Ashton had a slight relapse due to a pooping incident on the toilet that got him a little scared. We started to put the underwear on around the house or go naked and had very few accidents. If they did start to pee they would stop it and let us know and were then able to hold it until we made it to the potty.
We went to a park around this same time that had a family bathroom with a toddler size potty in it. The boys were not sure what to think and both refused to sit on it. I then went to plan B and had them each stand to pee like big boys and wa-la!...they went! They loved standing like big boys and have hardly looked back since! I now have to hold them over our big potty at home to pee since they are still too short to actually stand at the toilet! Glad we only bought one potty for $1 at the tmoms garage sale!
When we were outside to play and they told me they had to go I just pulled down their pants and let them go. After the first time I did this, Ashton later went in the house and said pee pee and got ready to do it right there on the floor! I decided I had to set some boundaries! After that we only went pee under the tree. Ashton does not pee as often as Ayden and would often not go in the morning before we would leave for our morning outing. This would freak me out that he was going to have an accident so anytime he wouldn't pee before we left I offered for him to pee when we got outside to get in the car. Of course, this worked every time! No, I don't want my child requesting to pee outside and he no longer does. But, I needed him to go and there was a new novelty to peeing outside and it got us through that phase!
My mother in law decided to get us a package of Pull Ups after I told her that they seemed ready to go without a diaper in public but that I was a little nervous. We used the first Pull-Up the weekend of the 4th of July. When we got home they were dry. We haven't used them since except for a couple rides in the car that were over an hour. We have not used diapers, expect for nap and night time, since that first week in July. We have had only a hand full of accidents in the 2.5 months since they have been fully trained. Pooping is occurring on the potty more often, especially for Ashton. Ashton and Ayden have always done their pooping while in their crib when they wake up in the morning and when they wake up from nap. Since they still wear a diaper to bed and they are still sleeping in their cribs I am not going to push this. They don't poop in their underwear so it's not too big of a concern! I think this is morning of a timing issue than an inability issue.
The boys love their "unders" and always remind me "no pee pee in unders" when we put them on. I do have a complaint about them though! It is hard to find underwear in a size 2! :) Going out has not been quite as big of a deal as I had imagined. Or, maybe it's just that I have gotten use to it! We now have to visit EVERY public bathroom we pass! Did I mention I hate public restrooms?! One time we went out to eat with Nana and Papa and each boy visited the bathroom no less than 5 times in the hour or so we were there! Most outings aren't that bad, but we do have to go at least once almost everywhere we go. Sometimes they see a door to the employee area or an emergency exit and say they need to go!

I wanted to write about our potty training journey for me to remember in the years to come and also for the boys to read about when they are older. But, I have had a lot of questions about how I got twin boys potty trained so early and thought something we did may help others! Since over two months have passed I am sure I forgot some facts but hopefully something in here can help someone!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Daddy's Boys

As much as I hate to admit it my boys are growing up. I guess a part of that includes being much more attached to their Daddy! Trust me, I am not complaining! It is really nice, although a little sad too.
The other day I left the boys (all 3 of them), just before lunch. As I kissed Ayden he just waved and sad "Bye, bye". Ashton kissed me and just watched me as if to say "Are you really leaving...or are we just playing a game?!" In the end, there was not one tear shed and Daddy fed them lunch and put them down for a nap all on his own. I didn't get home until after nap. Then, I was only home for about an hour before I left again to go out with some other moms. Daddy then took care of dinner, baths and bedtime all on this own! AND, to top it off...this was the first night that they boys have gone to bed without having any "Mommy's milk"! This was a huge deal at our house! BUT, you better not think for a moment that this continued the following nights! ;)
Other new trends include crying for Daddy when he leaves, wanting to sit or cuddle with Daddy, wanting Daddy to take them to the bathroom and requesting Daddy to read a story before bedtime. I guess the strong preference for Mommy would have to end at some point, but I love watching the boys interact with their Daddy.