Thursday, April 1, 2010

Potty Eggs

Saving my life this week ... Potty Eggs.

Three different kids, three different potty experiences. Dora needed to do things in her own time. When I tried to push her too early, she told me, "I'll do it when I'm three!" and sure enough, shortly after her third birthday, she was done. Diapers to undies in two weeks, with no more than a sticker chart for motivation.

Theo believed in the long, slow, drawn out approach. He started using the potty at 18 months, but then took his own sweet, sweet time deciding whether he really wanted to commit to it. Finally, at 3.5, we had to give him a little kick in the butt and stepped up the motivation. He went pantsless for three days and had a small bag of toys as incentives, three successes earned him a toy. He QUICKLY figured out that he could do two drops, hop off, earn his sticker and say "Ooooh! I have to go again!" in rapid succession to earn his toy. Whatever, it cost me $20 in toys and finally got the kid into underpants.

I had been taking the no-hurry, hands-off, he'll-tell-me-when-he's-ready approach with Clark, but recently decided to step things up with him as well. We started on Monday with a new trick, inspired by the season: Potty Eggs. I gathered a little basket of goodie-filled plastic eggs and left them on the bathroom counter. We started out the morning in underwear and when we made our first trip to the bathroom, he spied them right away. "Oh! What are those?!" I gave him the rules (dry underpants, potty success, and he gets an egg) which he repeated back to me all day long. The eggs are filled with things that we already had around the house - stickers, tattoos, wrapped chocolates, small toys.

So far, so good. The eggs have been a big hit. We're four days in and doing well. I'm not quite ready to do my underpants dance (okay, that sounds way racier than it should) but we've made a lot of progress. Busy weekend ahead ... wish us luck.

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