Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Potty Training Chart

Since I'm up, I thought I may as well write about nighttime potty training. Last night Andrew remarked that it had been a while since I'd written anything new. I was like, "Yeah, not since...yesterday?!" *Gasp!* Anyway...

It might be a little early to announce anything, but I certainly think we're on the right track.

Rachel ran into my room this morning at 6:20 AM, bringing along her blankey, accomplice in nearly everything, with her.

"Hi, Mommy!" she said, crashing into my side of the bed, "Happy girl!"

"Hi, Rachel!" I squinted at the clock, "It's early. *sigh* Did you go pee-pee in your diaper?"

"Noooo!" she chirped, "Stiter!"

"Let's go check your diaper and then if you really are dry, you can have another sticker," I agreed.

My friend Lindsey left behind a whole bunch of stickers, including a few packages of Dora the Explorer stickers. My friend Sara (who's not gone yet, not gone yet, not gone yet...*sniff*) left behind a whole bunch of fancy paper. This could only mean one thing--the potty training chart of the century.

So, on Tuesday I whipped up a little chart for Rachel. We gave her a preliminary sticker, just so that she understood what a "Dora sticker" was and get excited about getting one. I let her put it up at the top of the chart where it says, "Rachel can stay dry!" Then we explained that every time she wakes up from a nap or sleeping through the night with a dry bum, she'd get to choose another Dora sticker to put on her chart.

We put her down for a nap that day and she wet the bed. That was really weird. We only had her earning stickers for nap time dryness because she's already nap time potty trained (hasn't had an accident in weeks and weeks and sleeps in her underwear, even) and we thought it would keep her motivated to stay dry through the night if she at least earning stickers through the day.

She was so upset about not getting a sticker. She kept asking and asking and crying and crying. But we were mean and kept explaining that she went pee pee in her bed so she doesn't get a sticker.

That night we put her to bed and reminded her about getting stickers. The next morning? Dry as a...I'm really not coming up with anything here...bone! (That's probably what I was going for in the first place; I was like, desert? No. New sponge? No. Ummm...)

She wanted a sticker immediately upon waking. We put it on her chart and she was so excited about it. She stayed dry through her nap and earned another sticker, equally excited.

All yesterday afternoon she would run out to me, presumably after admiring her chart, and yell,


"Two what?" I'd ask.


"Wahoo!" I'd say, "How did you get those?"


"Right on! Give me a five!"

This morning she chose to put her sticker on her hand, which was really difficult for me, as a perfectionist.

"What about the chart?!" something inside of me was screaming.

I had to focus on not cringing when I put it on her hand instead. I also have to focus on not cringing when she colors on my drawings. I realize that she's not even two and when we're coloring "together" I should expect her to invade my territory. After all, I'm so much better at coloring than she is, so of course she'd want to color right where I was coloring. That way I can help make her look cool. Still, deep down inside, it bothers me that she is coloring on my artwork.

They're crayons for crying out loud! What's my problem?

I'm a perfectionist and she, so far, doesn't seem to be. She doesn't see anything wrong with scribbling large black circles over my beautiful butterfly until there is nothing left of my drawing at all (at which point she usually announces "All gone" or "Hiding!") or putting a sticker on her hand instead of on her chart.

So she has a sticker on her hand and not on her chart. So what?

I just have to remember to either put the sticker on the chart later or mark it off somehow. Every 5 squares she gets a "prize." I haven't figured out what the prize will be. Probably something lame (but exciting enough for Rachel) like a sucker or something. We inherited some DumDums from the Penrods and the Masons when they left, so we've got a decent stash of those.

I'm really, really hoping that she's completely night time potty trained by her 2nd birthday. That seems like plenty enough time to me to be in diapers and I'd really like a break from washing cloth diapers before the next baby comes. As convenient and earth-friendly as I find cloth diapers, washing them does get old after a while. And we only use 7 (if that) a week so I never get a full load of "just diapers" anymore, which is kind of frustrating. So I have to wash them with the clothes (because they can only sit for a few days before they stink of a storm, which means I only have 2 or 3 to wash at a time), which means I can't use fabric softener (because you can't use fabric softener with BumGenius), and we line-dry everything so it means that everything is extra-crunchy when its dry.

As you can see I really, really am hoping that she jumps on the bandwagon sooner rather than later. Come on, Rachel, everyone else is doing it! It's the cool thing to do!


While I was writing this, Rachel went and stuck the sticker on the chart. She really doesn't actually like stickers. She complains that they're "sticky." Well, duh...they're stick-ers. I was pretty shocked when she asked to put it on her hand in the first place. Usually she cries when I put stickers on her!

I guess she only thought it was cool for a little while and sneaked off and stuck it right in the middle of her chart. *Cringe!*

Luckily, some of the stickiness had worn off from being on her hand and it was easy to peel off and put on the third square. *Phew!*


  1. Wahoo for nighttime potty training. We're just excited about daytime, but I'm sure we'll reach nighttime pretty soon. Good luck with your sticker chart! ;)

  2. You are not a perfectionist, you are a precisionist, just like Elizabeth and Grandma. Precision, not perfection. Because, after all, to someone else, perfection is being able to stick that sticker any old place you want to stick it! :o)