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    Potty Training a Two-year-old

    It’s been about a week since we started this journey, but we really started back in December. The idea of potty training sounded scary to me. The last thing I wanted was to find poop on my couch and have to clean up watery “accidents”. The first time around was hard because Calvin wasn’t able to really identify when he wanted to go, he didn’t want to wear any undies and would fight us to sit on the potty. Our busy schedules kept us from being consistent and then life hit us and pull up’s seemed easier at the time.  So here we are again, but this time we’re ready!! Here are a few things I found helpful for my 2-year-old.


    Asking for Tips

    As a first-time mom and still learning how to navigate through it, I leaned on my Instagram mamas for some help. I got a lot of tips from different parents and it was very helpful.

    I also read different articles on potty training and looked up a few books. One book I came across was called Oh Crap! Potty Training,

    Many parents suggested it but reading a book was just not something I had time for, but if you love reading definitely check out this book.

    These are some of the articles I found helpful:

    1. Potty Training: How to get started
    2. Potty Training 101

    Methods? – This was on “Today’s Parents” 

    I had no idea there were different methods to potty training. Back in December we definitely were doing the “slow and steady” method. I wasn’t in a rush and I didn’t want to push him if he was still showing signs of not knowing when to go. This second round we definitely aimed for the “three-day method and “rewards.” Calvin showed all the signs of being ready and by day three he was fully going to the bathroom. This method also worked since we’re stuck at home during quarantine.

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    Is he or she ready? 

    Here are a few signs that told me Calvin’s was ready to be potty trained:

    • He started to take off his diaper and was uncomfortable being wet.
    • He would make fascial expressions when he had to pee or poop.
    • He could stay dry for at least two hours and his diapers during nap time were usually dry.
    • He enjoyed watching me sit on the toilet and flushing.
    • He could sometimes tell when he had to pee.

    Potty Training 101 
    Things we did to prepare ourselves for this process:
    •  Creating a habit takes time and sacrifice, we mentally prepared ourselves for adjusting our schedules at home and cleaning up “accidents”.
    • We bought tons of undies of his favorite characters. (This really helped motivate him)
    • The Potty Chart has been the game-changer in this process. You can create one or get one from Pinterest. Kids love stickers and rewards.
    • We were gifted a potty to have around the house but also got a potty seat for the toilet. I think having both is worth it because it can help you identify which one makes your child feel more comfortable. Calvin chooses the potty seat.
    • Setting a timer to remind Calvin every 20-30 mins to use the potty. We did this for the first two days. ( As the days go by, extend the reminder time) 
    • Since we’re not going anywhere, being home has helped train him. I would advise that you stay home three days while potty training your toddler.
    • Be patient and have a celebrating attitude. The accidents can be annoying, especially if they pee two minutes after you asked him or her if they needed to go. ha!
    • Every child is different, some kids can do it in three days and others take a week to be potty trained. Enjoy the process, this is a big milestone for your child.

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    Our Potty Training Day to Day 

    Day 1: Went 5 times to the potty, no poop, no accidents.

    • The day before we read a book on potty training with him. ( Disney Pull Up’s book)
    • Set up the bathroom area with wipes, undies, and hanged “Potty Chart” and stickers.
    • Took him to the bathroom once he got up and changed from Pull up’s to Undies.
    • Introduced him to the chart and wipes.
    • Taught him how to clean himself.
    • Let him choose which undies he wanted to wear throughout the day.
    • Asked him if he wanted to go potty every 30 minutes.
    • I paid attention to his facial and body movements in order to help him identify when he had to go.
    • Celebrated him loudly and many high fives. ( MUST DO!)
    • Got a sticker every time he went to the potty and when he hits the yellow spots he got a cookie. ( This is great for teaching positive reinforcement and also learning he can’t get something every time he does something well.)
    • He had no accidents.
    • Napped and went to bed in Pull up’s.

    Day 2:  Went 4 times to the potty, no poop, 1 accident.

    • Took him to the potty once he got up and changed into undies.
    • Reminded him every 1 hour, this increased the times he told us on his own.
    • He showed a lot more excitement to use the potty.
    • Continue celebrating him together in the bathroom.
    • Got a sticker for each time he went and a cookie on the yellow spot.
    • Napped and went to bed with Pull up’s.

    Day 3: Went 6 times, Pooped twice, and 2 accidents. 

    • Same morning routine
    • Officially says when he has to go pee and poop.
    • Pooped for the first time in the toilet.
    • I continued celebrating and giving stickers.
    • Napped and went to bed with Pull up’s.

    Day 4: Went 5 times, pooped, and no accidents. 

    • Same morning routine
    • No reminders, he stated when he had to go.
    • We continued celebrating and giving stickers.
    • Finished the first chart and earn a prize, a monster truck.
    • Napped and went to bed with Pull up’s.

    Day 5: Went 5 times, pooped, and no accidents. 

    • Same morning routine
    • Created a second chart, this chart has less yellow spots. ( Teaching him to enjoy going to the potty, not for a treat)
    • No reminders, he stated when he had to go.
    • We continued celebrating and giving stickers.
    • Used undies during nap and woke up dry.
    • I took him to the bathroom right after nap time.
    • We went for a walk with undies for about 15 mins.
    • Went to bed with Pull up’ s

    Day 6: Went 5 times, pooped, and no accidents. 

    • Same morning routine
    • No reminders, he stated when he had to go.
    • We continued celebrating and giving stickers.
    • Used undies during nap time and woke up dry.
    • Took him to the potty right after nap time.
    • Went to bed with Pull up’ s

    Day 7: 

    • Same morning routine
    • No reminders, he stated when he had to go.
    • We continued celebrating and giving stickers.
    • Used undies during nap time and woke up dry.
    • Took him to the potty right after nap time.
    • Went to bed with Pull up’ s

    *As you can see, progress was made as the days went by. 

    *The latest update is that he’s been waking up at 4 am to use the bathroom, I heard this is a good sign to removing diapers at night. However, he still has a wet diaper.


    Potty Set Up

    Being consistent with your set up is also key in my opinion. It helps your toddler recognize his or her area and also gives them the independence to go when they want. If you’re using a portable potty, place it somewhere in the house that they can see it. Have some wipes and undies next to it, it might encourage them to go on their own. 

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    Our Set -up: Wipes, Potty seat (should always remain on the toilet), Stool for getting up, and “potty chart” hanging on the wall. 


    Potty Training Items 

    Here are some items I found to be essential for potty training our son. You may find them helpful too if you’re wondering what to get for your toddler during this milestone.

     

    1. Potty Book: We used another book but this book is pretty cute. Many parents recommended reading a “potty” book when starting this process. Also, Youtube has tons of videos. ( Here’s our favorite)
    2. Portable Potty: Many toddlers enjoy portable potty’s and parents find it easier to have around the house instead of running to the bathroom always.
    3. Potty Seat: While other toddlers enjoy the portable potty, some don’t. Calvin didn’t. So the potty seat was perfect for him and it’s way softer on his butt.
    4. Potty Chart: We created our and just filled it with Calvin’s face stickers. You can find on on Pinterest.
    5. Favorite Undies: Calvin is loving “Lighting McQueen” so we got him a few undies or McQueen and his other favorites of “Toy Story.”
    6. Stool: The stool is for helping them sit independently on the toilet. Some toilet potty’s come with steps already attached.
    7. Travel Potty Seat: These are definitely needed when traveling with a toddler elsewhere. If your boy toddler can pee standing up, no need but may need it to poop. Need a potty seat for a road trip? Here’s one.

    Out and about with a potty training toddler? 

    • Pack extra clothes and undies.
    • Bring your travel potty seat.
    • Use the potty as soon as you get to where you have to go.
    • Be patient with the accidents.

     

    Reviews

    Baby needs a Car seat? Say what? (Review)

           As a city mom without a car, I’ve never really cared about a car seat. It’s one of those things that for someone without a car just doesn’t seem necessary. I travel by bus and train with Calvin, it’s our main line of transportation. However, the downside to that sometimes we take an Uber to get somewhere faster. I’ll admit, a car seat isn’t present most of the times and I’m always playing the worst scenarios in my head. What if a car hits this Uber? Or maybe another car cuts him off and he brakes really hard? Will I be fast enough to protect Calvin? The reality is, I won’t be. That’s the problem with not having a car seat. I always ask other moms how they travel with their baby if they don’t own a car or need to take a cab somewhere, they all said the same thing ” sometimes we have a car seat and other times we don’t”. So what car seat do you know is fit for you and which one does your toddler use? What about the safety laws in place for car seats in the city? Well, I did a little research with the help of Chicco and they sent us over one of their best car seats NextFit Zip Max Convertible Car Seat.

          My first thought about the Nextfit Zip Max Convertible car seat was, ” wow, it’s super padded and comfy looking”. That’s the first thing I loved about it. I also loved that it’s a convertible car seat, which means you can use it from birth all the way until your toddler is 65 pounds. How amazing is that? Way to save yourself the trouble of buying multiple car seats. The NextFit Zip Max is designed for children between 4-50 pounds in rear-facing mode, 22-65 pounds in forward-facing mode, and up to 49 inches tall. Here are a few other things you should know about it:

    1. 25% more legroom* in rear-facing mode and extended calf support in forward-facing mode
    2. 9-position ReclineSure leveling system ( IT RECLINES! Which means babies head can always lay flat during sleep) 
    3. SuperCinch LATCH tightener
    4. LockSure seat belt locking system
    5. DuoGuard side-impact protection
    6. Dual-density foam padding
    7. Steel-reinforced frame
    8. Removable, full-body newborn positioner
    9. Zip-and-wash seat pad and breathable 3D AirMesh backrest
    10. 9-position easy-adjust headrest
    11. 2 dishwasher-safe CupFolders
    12. No-rethread harness w/ one-pull tightener
    13. ComfortFlex waist belt

         The car seat was so easy to install during some trips we’ve taken with friends and it was very comfortable for Calvin. As a toddler, he hates sitting down for a long period of time but with the car seat is managed to stay put with the help of some entertainment and sleep. I love how you can position the headrest to fit perfectly between the baby’s head and keep him or her safe in case of a car accident. The features of this car seat allow you to safely place baby in a car and also have some peace of mind. You’ll notice in one of the pictures that the seat has a scale which lets you know whether the seat is properly in place, how cool is that? This is a car seat you definitely want to invest in if you have a car. It’s perfect for any growing baby.

    So now to my research on car safety in New York City, “The Empire State, under its NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law, requires children to be in an applicable child restraint system until age 8, specifically:”

    • Rear-facing car seat – required for children under age 2, unless the child reaches the maximum height and weight requirements of the seat;
    • Forward-facing car seat – required for children under age 4 and under 40 pounds;
    • Booster seat – required for children ages 4 to 8 or children under 4 and over 40 pounds;
    • Vehicle’s seat belt system – for children ages 8 through 16.

    Starting in November 2019,  the law states that all children under the age of 2 must use a rear-facing car seat. There are 2 types of rear-facing car seats: Infant Seats and Convertible/All-in-One Seats.

     According to “Child Passenger Safety for Parents” It is recommended that infants and toddlers ride in a rear-facing seat until they reach the weight or height limit of the seat. Most children will outgrow a rear-facing infant seat before reaching their 2nd birthday. If the child has outgrown an infant seat, it is recommended that a larger, rear-facing Convertible or All-in-One car seat with higher rear-facing height and weight limits be used. These seats should be installed in the rear-facing position until the child reaches the rear-facing weight or height limit set by the car seat manufacturer.

    I gained much-needed information on safely transporting Calvin thanks to Chicco, I’m so glad they gave me the opportunity to review their NextFit Zip Max Convertible Car Seat.   

    Below I’ve shared some safety tips for you to keep in mind and here is a glimpse of Calvin in his new car seat!

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    Here are some tips I learned:

    • Tips for Parents/Caregivers:
      • Be sure your children are properly and safely restrained for every car ride, every time.
      • Get your car seat(s) inspected at a local fitting station or check event. Bring your child with you so that a certified technician can ensure that the car seat is appropriate and fitted correctly for your child.
      • Avoid buying used child safety seats. There is no guarantee for safety when purchasing a used car seat at a garage sale, flea market, or thrift store. These seats may be expired, have missing parts, be damaged, or may have been recalled. There is no way of knowing if these seats have been in a crash and if they had received damage that can’t be seen with the naked eye.
      • Stay focused on the road and your surroundings. Never drive distracted and never use your cell phone or any electronic device while driving. If there is an emergency, safely pull off the road or into a “Texting Zone” before using your device(s).
      • Drive sober. Never drive impaired by alcohol or drugs and discourage others from doing so.

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    Fun Fact: Did you know that car seats actually expire!

    So make sure to check the expiration date on your car seat.

    Love,

     Transparent City Mama