Thursday, August 31, 2023

Last things first...

I have many stories to share about our week in Canada, but first I have to share what happened today with Miss Phoebe because we can't stop laughing about it.

She had an excellent week potty-training-wise in Canada. She was communicating her potty needs, waiting when she was asked to wait, going when it was time to go! It was great! 

She did less well on our way home. She would not communicate her needs, didn't go when she should, and filled multiple pull-ups. It was rather frustrating, but she was exhausted from a week of bouncing around from place to place and having to be "good" all the time. I know she's just a baby, so it...just was what it was. 

These problems continued today, however. She went through just about every pair of underwear she owns!

I began to suspect that she needed to do some poopies (because constipation can increase incidences of wetting accidents) but was becoming increasingly frustrated about the way she was having accident after accident after accident.

Our entire house is in shambles right now—a huge storm system came through on the 29th and our entire basement flooded with a half inch of water. Andrew didn't end up going to bed until around 5:00 in the morning because he was working all night to get things taken care of (Grandpa, Rachel, and Benjamin were huge helps as well, but we ended up calling in a restoration crew (which cost a pretty penny...but perhaps a slightly less pretty penny than the one we'll spend fixing everything that needs to be fixed)). 

That was kind of a bummer (and then I learned that my flight was delayed by five hours, which meant that we'd completely miss our connecting flight home, so while Andrew was calling all sorts of restoration work people, I was on hold with the airline trying to change our tickets so we could still get home). 

And then we had the full day of traveling. And then we arrived to a house that is, as I mentioned, in shambles (all the couches in the music room are piled high with books, etc. etc.). 

This is all to say that...things are a little chaotic around here...and we're all feeling a little frustrated (and honestly we have a number of things to do that we don't typically have to bother about restoring a basement).

Finally, I had the last straw with Phoebe and her asking to go potty but already being wet.

"For goodness' sake, Phoebe!" I said. "I don't understand! You are home. You know where your potty is. You know how to pull down your pants. If you need to go potty, can't you just take yourself potty?"

"Yeah," she said (which is her answer to nearly everything). 

I helped her finish her potty business and then sent her on her way to wreak havoc play elsewhere while I did some things in the kitchen. I walked into the dining room—literally minutes after having helped her go potty and change her underwear and pleading with her to just take herself potty—to find her sitting on her potty. 

"Phoebe!" I said. "You did it! You took yourself potty!"

She flashed me a brilliant smile. 

"Well done, Phoebe! Thank you! Everyone look—Phoebe has taken herself to the potty!"

Everyone came to praise her (because that's how we roll). 

Miriam sniffed and then peeked into the potty. 

"I think she's going poop," Miriam announced.

"Well, that's just wonderful!" I said. "Getting to the potty to do...oh...oh, no. Oh, dear..."

Upon closer inspection, Phoebe hadn't quite made it to the potty before pooping. Evidently she'd had an accident in her pants and had tried to clean it up a bit before sitting on the there was poop smeared on the floor and all over the seat of the potty and up and down her legs and all over her hands. 

"Oh, Phoebe!" I said. "You've had an accident. I think you need some help cleaning yourself up!"


"Are you all finished?"


"Let's stand up so we can wipe you off a bit..."

"Yeah," Phoebe said. 

I grabbed her under her arms to help her stand up so should wouldn't have to grab hold of anything (should she lose her balance or anything) and with her hands perfectly free and—evidently—an itch growing on her nose...she reached up to rub her face, smearing poop all over it in the process.

Should we have cleaned her hands off first? Maybe. But I think we were going to go for an all-hands-on-deck approach. Miriam had already turned on the tub. Rachel was fetching baby wipes. We were just going to quickly sponge her off and then pop her in the tub and scrub her down.

But now she had stinky poop all over her face. 

And that was simply way too much poop for her to handle. 

She gagged. 

She heaved. 

She vomited all over the floor. 

Then again...and again...and

"Oh," Andrew sighed. "I' glad you're home..." 

"Me, too!" I said with a wink and a smile. "So...uhhh...I'm going to put her in the tub. Do you...have this mess?"

"I've got this mess," he said, pulling out a handful of baby wipes.

So Andrew cleaned up throw up from the floors and poop from the potty, while I bathed a very stinky baby. When everything was clean, I asked Phoebe to find some fresh underwear while I hung up her towel. While I waited for her to return I went into Andrew's office and we laughed about the state of chaos our house was in (and took guesses about how much it would cost to put in the vapor barrier and drainage system the basement people said we needed (and, I mean, it's not like they're wrong—our basement has some serious issues)). 

Phoebe was taking a long time to return with her underwear but she likes to do random things (such as swing like a monkey on the slats of her bunkbed) so I wasn't too worried (though I was a little worried because sometimes her choice of activity is not an approved activity). 

Finally we heard her crashing her way towards us.

"Mommy?" she called.

"In Daddy's office!" I called back. 










I peeked my head into the hallway and saw Phoebe stumbling about with her head stuck in a sweater. She was crashing into walls left and right, diligently holding onto a pair of pants (though she had forgotten all about getting underwear).

What a little (chaos-rousing) sweetheart!

I helped her into her selected outfit, even though it's entirely impractical for the weather we're having in Georgia right now. 

Phoebe practically lived in her sweater while we were up in Canada, but it's far too warm for that down here (though, to be fair, we also are freezing because people don't use air conditioning as much as they do in the south—and Andrew had cranked our air conditioning to (a) help keep things cool inside during the heat wave we were having this past week and (b) to help dehumidify the basement—so we find being inside a little chilly sometimes).

At any rate, it's good to be home from our trip that Phoebe so thoughtfully bookended with...vomit.

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