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8 Things I’ve Learned From Motherhood

I’ve partnered with Poise as part of the Mom It Forward Blogger Network to tell you 8 Things I’ve Learned From Motherhood.

Things I've Learned From Motherhood

Motherhood is incredible.  It won’t all be a bed of roses (some nights you will barely see your bed!) but the good will overpower the bad and your life will take on a completely different meaning. You will become a hero in someones eyes and that someone will be calling you mommy.  Your life will never be the same!  Here are 8 lessons I’ve learned from my short few years of motherhood.

  • – “Twinkle, Twinkle” and the alphabet song are the same tune.  My 3 year old pointed that out to me.  Light bulb moment!  How did I live this long without noticing that?
  • – One reason that parents are so sleep deprived (even though their kids sleep through the night!) is because we want to cram in as much as we can between the kid’s bedtime and ours.  Maybe I’m the only one but I often find myself at midnight, or 1 a.m., just getting to bed, because I had to do the dishes, prepare for tomorrow, fit in a little exercise, watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer (loving watching this again on Netflix!), read a bit of a book, and do this…write a little bit on my blog.
  • – When your kids are behaving in a way that makes you least want to give them affection and attention, that is usually when they need it the most.  When life gets crazy put down the phones, block out the distractions, connect and engage and life will be better for all.
  • – Your patience will be tested.  Before having kids I thought I was a patient person.  I didn’t grumble about a long line in the grocery store (which is good because I always happen to chose the slowest lines lol), I didn’t care if I made a wrong turn, and even though I liked being punctual I knew it wasn’t the end of the world to show up somewhere 5 minutes late.  After having kids I realize how impatient and selfish I can be.  It’s not pretty and something I have to remind myself of many times a day.
  • – Don’t worry what other people think of you.  You will be judged, sometimes harshly.  Don’t give a lot of thought to those opinions that are outside of your immediate family.  People will judge the number of kids you have, how far they are spaced, the way you gave birth, the names you chose, breastfeed or bottle fed, cloth diaper or disposable, sleep training or attachment parenting, homemade baby food or store bought, and on and on and on and on and on.  Research your heart out.  Choose what works for your family and stand confident in that even if it’s not what everyone else is doing.
  • – Keep a small vase handy at all times.  Flowers from children are a gift to be cherished.  Last weekend my mother-in-law told me a story about when her kids were younger and they picked flowers from a neighbor’s yard.  When she found out she apologized to her neighbor and what that neighbor said stuck in my mother-in-law’s mind all these years.  “I never mind when children pick my flowers because I know they’ll always give them to their mother.”  That makes me heart smile.
  • – Simple is almost always better.  Cardboard boxes are better than the latest toys (Appliance boxes are the best!! We’re currently enjoying a dishwasher “house” in our living room now).  An evening playing board games and talking with family is far better than another activity the kids need to be shuffled off to.  Family time is indispensable.
  • – Research what to expect after birth.  I read pregnancy book after book.  I read about the first week and month with a newborn.  I read and read and read but never once did I read what would happen to my body.  I figured that they would tell me at the hospital and didn’t give it much thought.  To my surprise a lot about my body changed…and I’m not just talking about how my stomach didn’t go back to it’s previous shape right away.  For one, if you’re not planning on breastfeeding you need a tight sports bra right away.  The cheap ones from Walmart won’t do, trust me.  Get the good ones! …and buy a few in case your baby is a spitter.  One more thing is to have some Poise pads on hand.  No one told me my bladder control would be out the window after birth.  Sneezing, running, laughing too hard, and even being startled will cause it.  Ugh!  No wonder no one told me about it, it’s embarrassing to admit!  We shouldn’t be so ashamed to talk about it though because statistics say that 1 in 3 women have light bladder leakage (LBL).
  • Poise pads
  • The Poise brand has teamed up Brooke Burke-Charvet to help educate women about LBL and empower them to seize their Poise moment.  That moment being the point where they stop letting leaks interrupt their lives and reach for products, like Poise Thin-Shape Light Absorbency pads.  The new Poise Thin-Shape Light Absorbency pads are the thinnest pads for LBL.   You can grab a sample at Poise.com.   They are thin-shaped pads, offer 3-in-1 protection, are designed to move with you and are 40% thinner than the original, but they stay 3 times dryer.  Those were two of the biggest after-birth surprises but there are a few others so if you’re pregnant, go google it.

Motherhood is one of the best things that could happen to a person.  It changes the way you see the world.  You care about another person more than you ever thought possible.  You get the joy of celebrating their successes and encouraging them through their struggles.  Motherhood is a wonderful, wonderful gift and it has taught me so much.  These 8 things I’ve listed don’t even scratch the surface.  What things has motherhood taught you?

Life Lately – 5 Things About My Week

Affiliate links are included.

Here’s a quick update of the things going on in my life this week.  Nothing too deep or life-transforming,  just a sneak peek into what’s on my mind today.

  • 1. – I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to buy a pre-lit Christmas tree.  I just want a tree with sparse branches and 5,000 Christmas lights.  Is that too much to ask?  ha.  I love Christmas lights. 🙂
  • 2. – I feel a little guilty that my daughter has forgotten about her Halloween candy stash that I’m still enjoying.
  • 3. – The Stride Rite in my local mall is closing and everything is 50% off!  We stocked up on shoes for my daughter for next year but they were sold out of shoes for my son. (I just got an email that select Stride Rite boots are only $19 online though!)

A photo posted by Ashley (@embracingbeauty) on

  • 4. – I entered to win a Christmas gift tag contest where 5 winners’ artwork will be displayed on tags at Gap this holiday season….I entered before I knew it was a voting competition.  Sigh.  I hate voting contests.  If you like my design, I would appreciate your vote here. Thank you!
  • 5. – I just noticed that the picture on the bottom of this blog is so old.  Six years, maybe?  Man, have I really been blogging that long?  I need to update that picture soon!

What’s going on in your life this week?

5 Things About My Week – Life Lately #FacebookDown

Facebook Down

  • 1. Today when Facebook was down, I felt lost.  Abandoned.  Lonely.  ha.  Okay, it wasn’t that extreme but it did make me stop and think about how many relationships I hold on Facebook.  I went to converse with a blogging friend in a Facebook group we share when I noticed it was down.  I went to message my husband on Facebook to see if it was down for him.  Yea, not so smart.  I message him on google hangout while I headed back to Facebook to check in another group I’m in and see if Facebook is down for them too.  It was shocking to see how quickly I turned to Facebook and how I didn’t know what to do when it was gone.  What did I do?  I went to Twitter to make sure it wasn’t just my account.  I tweeted my “Is #Facebookdown for everyone or just me?” tweet.  #Facebookdown wasn’t trending yet but after a quick hashtag search I found I wasn’t alone….and that I wasn’t the first one to use the hashtag #Facebook down.  Maybe one day I’ll start my own hashtag but today isn’t that day.  Hopefully Facebook will come back soon but in the mean time, I’ll continue to share with you 5 things about my week.  1 down, 4 to go.

My son

  •   2. My daughter was going to sing in church on Sunday so we brought our son with us to hear his big sister before we took him back to nursery.  I snapped a quick pic before it started because I can’t believe how big he has grown.  Seeing him sitting there with his daddy looking all grown up gave me waves of different emotions.  Oh, how I do wish I could slow down time sometimes.

Kid's Choir

  • 3. I didn’t manage to get a good picture but my daughter sang beautifully.  : )  What can I say?  I’m a proud mom.  I’m thankful that she has much more confidence than I did at her age.  It would have taken a lot of coaxing and prep work for me to be on a stage when I was her age but she found out yesterday that she would be singing an hour later.

Things Throw Away

  • 4.  One of my posts over at Embracing Homemaking has gone viral.  The post 200 Things to Throw Away has had upwards of 45,000 visitors a day.  A day!  That’s very humbling.  Humbling that that many people want to read my words.  Well, some of them have left nasty comments but still, many people enjoyed reading an article that I wrote.  I really don’t have the words to describe my appreciation and gratitude for that opportunity.

Playground

  • 5.  We had a fun time this past week playing at the playground together.  My daughter asked if she could go “play at the ground” and it took me a minute to figure out what she was asking. 🙂  It was a beautiful day and a great idea.  We had a blast playing at the ground. 🙂

I hope you had a wonderful week and relaxing weekend!  What do you have planned for this week?

Life Lately – 5 Things

This post contains affiliate links.

My mind is so full of cluttery thoughts, to-do lists, and mental reminders all circling and dancing around in my head.  So much so that I want to slow down and share with you a little bit of what’s going on in my life now.  I used to do this much more before I divided my sites…not that I regret that, but I’d like to start writing occasionally about myself again and this is the site that started it all and where I feel most at home. 🙂  Ya’ll are great readers, really, you are!  Every little comment, like, and email mean so much to me.  Thank you!  I truly appreciate you, every one of you!

My 5 Things!

eos visibly soft coconut milk

1.  I am in love with this eos visibly soft lip balm, made with coconut milk.  I’ve tried a few of them before and none of them compare to the lusciousness of this one.  Plus, the design of the sphere is adorable!

More Treasure in Books

2.  I started selling Usborne books because I LOVE their books for kids.  I love literacy and instilling a love of reading in my children.  However, I’m torn because the more Facebook parties I host the less time I have to spend blogging and that is my true love.  I’m struggling to find a good balance.  Sigh.  All of life is a balancing act, isn’t it?  Maybe I should just stick to blogging and write about their books occasionally?  Hmm. I’m not sure.

3.  I’m moving soon…I hope!  We’ve bought a new house and we’re fixing up the place so we can hopefully move in at the end of this month.  Which means I’m packing like a mad woman and purging a LOT of our things.  I’m constantly asking myself, “Why do we own this?” and “Where did this come from?”

4.  I just finished watching the series finale of Drop Dead Diva on Netflix and I can’t stop wondering what the next season would be like if it came back for a seventh season.  I put off watching the sixth season because I liked having more of the story left to see and now it’s gone.  Bring it back, Lifetime!

Crayola Oil Pastels

5.  I’ve recently discovered oil pastels!  I feel like I’ve lived in a cave.  How did I not hear of these before?!  They are incredible!  They are what I always wished crayons were.  They’re soft, give a rich color, are blendable and yea, I just love using them to create colorful masterpieces with my daughter.  I bought the 28 pack of the Crayola brand for under $5 shipped from Amazon.  Love them!

I may make this a regular thing, listing 5 things I love.  What do you think?  Is it worth reading or should I just write it out for myself then erase it?  🙂  Either way, have a good day!

Rained Out Party and #UnscriptedBeauty

I participated in a Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for AVEENO. I received product samples as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

As a blogger and a parent, I can admit that I’ve spent far too much time posing my kids for the best possible picture…which portrays them (and me!) in the best possible light.  Isn’t that silly?  I catch myself doing it often and I have to stop myself.  I don’t want to look back on my photo albums (or online albums) in ten years and see picture after picture of a perfect family that I don’t recognize.  No, I don’t want to intentionally take pictures of our dirty laundry but a little toy clutter in the background won’t hurt anything.  It’s real life and real life is beautiful.

Amazed

This is a picture of my daughter as she watched her first storm come closer and closer.  It’s not a great picture but to me it’s perfect.

Real life, sincere moments, authentic relationships are beautiful.  Unscripted beauty.  I love to be able to capture those in photos.  Moments where my husband and daughter take a walk together holding hands.  Moments where my son tightly hugs his teddy bear with his eyes closed.  Moments where I catch my daughter giving her brother a kiss.  Those are the moments I want to cherish and hold with me forever.

My family on Father's Day

This is a picture of our Father’s Day dinner.  It sure isn’t perfect but I think it captured the moment well.  My daughter didn’t want to smile and my husband kept telling my son to look at the camera by pointing to it.  My son followed his Dad’s lead and pointed to the camera.  It wasn’t like most of the polished photos I saw on Facebook yesterday but I think it captured my husband’s kindness and patience with his children…a quality that I absolutely adore in him.

AVEENO agrees that natural, candid beauty is best and they’re creating an #UnscriptedBeauty Movement which encourages parents to embrace the natural beauty around them. …even when life doesn’t go as planned.  

On Saturday, my daughter’s outdoor Candy Land birthday party had a brief rain shower towards the end of it.  Everyone raced inside carrying as much as they could.  While in the panic I couldn’t help but pause to notice the kids laughing and squealing.  They were happy.  Genuinely giddy with joy.  It was beautiful.  I wish I had a picture of that chaotic moment but I was busy trying to tell my husband to grab my camera to get it out of the rain.

Life isn’t perfect and it rarely goes as planned but I think that’s a good thing.  Beautiful even.

Contest!

AVEENO is encouraging people to capture authentic Unscripted Beauty in their lives throughout the month of June.  One winner will be selected in July to receive a photo-shoot from acclaimed photographer, Danielle Guenther, as well as AVEENO products!

  • – To enter, simply upload a photo of your favorite Unscripted Beauty moment to Instagram and include #UnscriptedBeauty, #AVEENO, and #Contest
  • – The winner will receive a photo shoot with acclaimed photographer, Danielle Guenther!
  • – Visit the AVEENO Facebook page to see other moments of #UnscriptedBeauty

Taking Time to Play

This conversation is sponsored by Pop Secret and the Linqia Community.

Take Time To Play

Life is busy right now around here.  Busy, beautiful, and messy.  Both literally and figuratively messy.  I’m hosting both a party and company this weekend, we have something to do every night this week, and I need to bake 50 brownies before Sunday night.  Oh, and have a breakfast casserole ready to go Sunday morning!  Chaotic, right?

One of my mama goals is to purposefully slow down when life gets a busy.  When my to-do list is longer than I can keep track of in my mind I need to take a moment to breathe, reprioritize, and then make a plan to tackle that list.  I don’t always succeed but I’m trying to do better.

This morning, during breakfast, I made a few lists which helped me organize my thoughts.  Then I went and played with my daughter.  Instead of choosing to do something I wanted to do and getting annoyed at her interruptions I spent quality time with her.  You know what?  We had a blast!  My to-do list will be there tonight and I can get to work then.  Maybe tomorrow she can help me stuff goodie bags for the party.  But today we played!

Fort

We grabbed some dining room chairs and a big blanket and build an impromptu fort.  To tell you the truth, I got a little choked up while building it.  When I was girl my grandparents built forts like this for my cousin and I.  It was an extra special bonding time with them that I’ll never forget.  I can still remember the blankets we used and exactly what the chairs looked like.  I hope my daughter will look back with such fondness of the times that we spend together.

Sleeping in a tentFirst things first; she wanted to pretend to take a nap in her fort.  After she grabbed her blankets, pillows, popcorn, flashlight, and guitar, she proceeded to take a pretend little snooze.

Kid SunglassesNext up on the agenda was a fashion show.  Check out those shades.

Pop Secret SnackThen it was time for a snack.  No fort experience is complete without a little popcorn.

Pop Secret Sea SaltPop Secret’s Sea Salt is my favorite!!  {I thought sea salt was just another food fad but no, this stuff is remarkably different.  It’s delicious!}

StorytimeStorytime!  She can’t read just yet but she’s memorized a few books and she likes to pretend that she can read. : )

Candy LandCandy Land!  We usually play this as a family so it was a nice treat to play with just each other.

Chores will always need tending to, schedules will always be busy, errands will always need to be ran, but these little people that God has entrusted me with are growing up fast.  Much too fast!  I cannot believe that my son will be one soon!  It seems like yesterday I was planning his arrival.  I want to be intentional about pouring myself, my time, and my love into them.

I don’t want to be the mom who is too busy on the phone to play at the play ground.  I want to be the kind of mom who goes down the slide, who jumps in mud puddles, and who builds forts in the middle of the day just because.

I do hope you’ll join me in embracing childhood…while it’s still here to enjoy.  Need some fuel for imaginative play?  Head over here for a $1-off coupon for Pop Secret. {Try the Sea Salt kind!  Trust me.}  If you send Pop Secret your pillow fort pictures on Facebook they might have a special treat to share with you. You can upload them right to the Pop Secret timeline and tag them #PopSecretForts.

Life Lately

Chalk Drawing - Dandilions

This past week, has been full of fun.  My kiddos and I went on a few shopping outings, made some beautiful artwork with chalk, and had a blast creating silly photos to enter in an online contest.  We’ve been enjoying the slightly cooler weather and we’re excited about fall coming.  My husband is ready to watch some football {UGA plays their first game today!} and I’m excited about breaking out my fall decorations and attempting to create the best apple pie there is.  I hope you have a wonderful Labor Day weekend and I’ll be back here on Tuesday morning!

Here are a few random thoughts bouncing around in my brain tonight…if you care to know…

Canon EOS 70D Digital SLR

The newest item on my wish list is this Canon EOS 70D Digital SLR Camera.  It’s a hard to justify the expense but I’d love to have it.  Well, maybe I’ll settle for a new lens for the camera I have now (Cannon T1i).

Little Giraffe

My son’s lovie bit the dust, or more accurately, was beheaded during a recent run through the washer and I’ve been in search of a sweet looking, super soft security blanket/lovie.  Do you have a favorite that you would recommend?  I’m looking for something along the lines of a grey, deep navy, latte, or mocha colored lovie.  I’ve been checking out the Little Giraffe line of lovies but there are so many options that all sound great!

Baby's First Tooth

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you!!!  My littlest one got his first tooth, said “mama”, and a few days later said “dada.”  He said my name first -Woot!  I win!

Have a great weekend, ya’ll!

Easy Back-to-School Lunches with Del Monte

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Del Monte, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #DelMonteBTS http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

First Day of School

As I opened my eyes this morning, the realization that my daughter is starting school this year gripped my heart.  Of course I worry what she’ll study, how she’ll socialize, and a million little things but what really has me troubled is that my little girl is growing up.  My baby.  My daughter who just learned how to sit up on her own yesterday…or so it seems.  While writing this I see a carousel of photographs twirling in my mind.  This gallery of memories brings burning tears to my eyes.  I can’t believe she’s growing up so fast!  Cherish each day.  That’s this mama’s motto.

While I can’t slow her down, and I don’t want to {entirely}, I can do my best to make sure she gets all that she needs to succeed.  Starting today, I’m going to be more purposeful in working with her.  We’ll have a set time to study and have structured play.  Not only will I get to help her learn but I’m excited about this one on one quality time with her.

In addition to purposeful activities I’m going to be more intentional with the meals I provide.  Before now it’s been easy to eat leftovers for lunch and throw together a bowl of cereal for breakfast.  I want to take the time to provide more nutritious meals for her.  I’ve been wanting to do this for a while actually and back-to-school time seems like a great time to reevaluate and make changes.  I’m thinking of a dozen different ways to make crock pot oatmeal for busy mornings and a handful of different fruit combinations for lunch.

Bento Ideas

While at Walmart the other day I noticed these fruit cups were on sale on the end cap of the aisle.  I love a sale and fruit cups happen to hold a tiny space in my heart.  Every single time I eat them I’m reminded of eating canned fruit with my dad.  It was a special childhood memory that I look back on fondly.  It seemed that all the back-to-school shoppers had flooded Walmart at once so I ventured down the aisle to browse the fruit cups without the fear of being trampled.  There I found something pretty amazing!  No really, amazing!  Fruit Burst Squeezers by Del Monte have a pack with fruit AND vegetables inside.

Del Monte Fruit Burst Squezers

These are great for on the go, a quick snack when Mommy has her hands full with the baby, and for back-to-school lunches!  There. are. vegetables. hidden. inside.  This is every mom’s dream come true.  {Okay, maybe mom’s that need to get out more – myself included.}

Girl With Fruit Squeezer

She gave them her seal of approval – Success!!

Del Monte Coupon

Right now, while supplies last, you can get a free back-to-school photo offer from select Walmart Super Store Print Shops with purchase from August 1 – September 13 while supplies last. If your store is offering the promo, and if you participate in the free back-to-school photo they offer you’ll receive $1 off the purchase of (2) Del Monte 4-pack Fruit Cups or (2) Fruit Burst Squeezers.

Easy Back to School Lunches

Are you having back-to-school woes like me? Do you have any coping techniques or back-to-school lunch wisdom you’d like to share? I’d love to hear it if you do!

My Daughter Met a Princess #PromPrincess

#PromPrincess

Every little girl dreams of being a princess and twirling around in a beautiful glistening gown without a care in the world.  Today, while having dinner at Qdoba {kids eat free Saturdays – yea!} my daughter about leaped out of her booster seat to point out a “princess” to me.  My heart melted into a gooey puddle.  It melted watching her face light up at the sight of, what in here eyes was, a real princess.  A princess that she had only dreamed about.  A princess that she has read about and pretends to be while dancing in the living room in her pjs.

Dancing in PJs

She doesn’t have a prince charming of her own to dance with and when mine is busy she’ll dance with her wooden duck.  {Technically, it’s my wooden duck decor but as much as she dances, pets, and feeds it it might as well be hers!}

Prince Charming in a Parking Lot #PromPrincess

She not only met a beautiful princess tonight but she also met “Prince Charming.”  This sweet couple was more than willing to take a picture with my little princess and it meant the world to her.  I know she won’t soon forget it!

{By the way, did you notice how clear the prom pictures were compared to the one in my living room.  That’s the difference a phone with 20 megapixels will make.  I love my Nokia Lumia Icon that Verizon fave me! #VZWLife}

Potty Training Tips – How My Toddler Was Trained in Three Days!

This post is sponsored by Cottonelle, but my love for their flushable cleansing cloths is all my own!

I eagerly started potty training my daughter at 18 months because I wanted her to be trained by age 2.  As you may have guessed, that didn’t happen!  She sat on the potty and peed right away.  Yay, right?  Wrong.  She immediately started screaming because it scared her. *big sigh*

I tried again a few months after her second birthday.  This time I had a spiffy potty seat and was ready to dedicate three full days to potty training with the naked method.  I was pregnant and getting bigger by the day so I didn’t want to have to chase her all over the house dripping pee {or worse!} so we confined ourselves to our small office to play, color, and sing.  She wore a tank top and that was it.  We had fun but she never peed.  I had an alarm go off every 15 minutes and I would get really excited that it was time to sit on the potty chair.  I thought the potty chair would be quieter than peeing in the big potty and perhaps less scary.  She complied and we had a good day….but she never peed.  Not once.  All day.  Seriously, the kid held her bladder for 6 straight hours and she drank A LOT!  As soon as I gave up that evening and put a diaper on her she peed.

Day two of naked potty training didn’t go as planned either.  We did the same thing as day one but I upped her drinking even more.  For lunch we had watery foods, I kept her favorite Minnie Mouse cup full, and she could have all the smoothie drinks she wanted {which are usually reserved as special treat}.  We sat the timer over and over but she never peed on the potty.  …then out of no where she starts wailing!  She peed a tiny bit and she was screaming that she was dirty.  It took quite a while to console her and I decided that she wasn’t ready.  Maybe if I kept at it she would have been potty trained sooner but sitting on the floor playing and putting her on the potty over and over again was too much for this pregnant nauseous mama.  So I waited.

I waited till she asked me to sit on the potty…and then I made her wait some more.  That’s right, she was asking to sit on the potty and I told her not right now.  You see, I have had friends who have potty trained and I’ve heard them talk about running them to the bathroom and cleaning up messes…several times a day.  I couldn’t do that near the end of my pregnancy.  Kudos to the moms who do but I couldn’t take on that task.  I kept talking about the potty regularly and she would usually go in the bathroom with me.

Now, I have a successful potty trained two and a half year old who has had so few accidents that I can count them on one hand.  After two days of potty training with zero accidents we tried letting her go through the night with panties on and she did great.  She was practically potty trained in three days!!  How did I do it?  A lot of prayer!  Besides prayer, I really don’t think I have a super formula but I want to share what worked for my little girl in case it will help encourage someone else.

We Talked About Going to the Potty

We talked about going to the potty a lot.  Every time one of us went we made a point to announce where we were going.  Toddlers love to imitate their parents and I had hoped that if I made a big deal when I went that she would want to as well.

We Invited Her Friends Over Who Were Potty Trained 

We spent time with other toddlers who were potty trained or at least further along in the process of training.  Seeing her friends sit on the big potty made it the cool thing to do.

Mister Rogers Going to the Potty

We Bought Her a Book About Going to The Potty

She LOVES Mister Rogers!  Not only is it her favorite show but it’s the only show she’ll watch {with the occasional animated Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood which was based off of Mister Roger’s Neighborhood}.  When I found a potty training book that Fred Rogers wrote I knew it would be good.  I ordered it from Amazon and I was very pleased with it.  Mister Rogers has a way of addressing complicated issues in such a simple, straight-forward way.  I love how he never down-played children’s emotions and talked to them pretty much as adults.  I could go on and on about my love for his work but I’ll save that for another post.

Potty Seat

We Bought Her a Seat to Set on the Potty

Feeling secure on the potty without Mommy or Daddy holding her was important in helping her relax and get the job done.  After she peed with the seat for a few weeks she is comfortable with us holding her on there without the seat but it was handy {maybe even necessary} in the beginning.  We still use the potty seat downstairs where we are most of the time but we didn’t buy a potty seat for every bathroom in our house.

Cottonelle Fresh Care

We Use Cottonelle Fresh Clean Wipes

They make a fabulous transition from wipes to toilet paper.  A clean bum has never been easier!  Plus, they’re great for temporarily cleaning up accidents until you can give them a bath.  They’re moist, soft, flushable, and with their new packaging they are also super convenient.

 

We Reward With Treats

Early on in potty training it was so tempting to give her a treat for setting on the potty and trying but I held firm and waited until she peed.  Now she gets a chocolate treat of an M&M, or a frozen blueberry, or a craisin.  She doesn’t get to pick which one, we just alternate what we offer.

Travel Potty Seat

We Bought a Handy Travel Potty Seat

This little guy folds up nicely to fit in my diaper bag.  It even came in it’s own plastic bag that I’ve continued to put it in.  This gives me peace of mind when venturing out of the house.  I hate dirty bathrooms but when a kid’s gotta go, they’ve gotta go.

Princess Panties

We Bought Her Princess Panties

Her daddy made a BIG deal about her wearing princess panties when she peed in the potty.  After one day of a dry diaper we went to Walmart together and bought princess panties.  I didn’t know if they had them or not but after we promised them I sure had my fingers crossed.  Walmart came through for us but I was very surprised how expensive little girl’s panties are…and how rough the material is.  {As a side note, the ones I bought on clearance at Crazy 8 are much nicer if you’re wanting to spend the money or wait for a sale.}

When Daddy was telling her all about her princess panties she could get he also mentioned to her that she’s growing up so fast and pretty soon she’ll be starting school, she’ll have to get a backpack, etc, etc.  She clung to the fact that she would be getting a backpack.  After it was clear that she wouldn’t forget about it we said that if she kept her princesses dry for a week she could have a backpack.  Thankfully, I found a soft and small Winnie the Pooh backpack at a local consignment sale!

That’s about it, I don’t know why it worked but I just know that it did. As much as it bugged me hearing people say that “you just have to wait till they’re ready” and “you’ll just know when they are ready”…it’s true.  Waiting really paid off for me.  I would much rather have a potty trained kid almost instantly than six months of rushing them to the potty.  Having her communicate with me that she has to go is much nicer than me trying to know her potty schedule and remembering to take her.  I can’t promise you’ll have the results I did if you do everything like me because all kids are different but I want to encourage you that it will happen.  Your kid will eventually be potty trained!