Potty Training (Take 3) – Day 2

I’m going to hope I don’t jinx us by saying this…but I’m pretty sure Nathan is officially potty trained!  IN TWO DAYS!!!!  What the heck?  Never would have thought our two year old stubborn boy would manage that.

After a long morning inside reinforcing what he learned yesterday, Nathan got to spend the afternoon outside.  It was during the bubble chasing festivities that he had his only real accident since we put on underwear yesterday morning.  We saw it coming, but couldn’t act fast enough.  Oh well.  One accident in two days isn’t too shabby!

After a quick trip to the potty the bubble chasing continued.  Alex had to join in on the fun.

The next FIVE times Nathan went potty, he told us he had to go.  He even stopped playing in the pool to tell us he needed a potty break!  Complete with a poop in the potty!  He’s got it down pat.  At home at least.  We’ll see how he does with his first outing tomorrow.

We ended our potty training “boot camp” with ice cream all around.  And now I can relax on the couch knowing I have only one kid in diapers.  You’re next, Alex!  🙂

Potty Training (Take 3) – Day 1

If you’ve followed my blog or my Facebook for any decent length of time, you’ll know this isn’t our first attempt at potty training our first born.  We first tried to potty train him a little less than a year ago.  He was showing most of the readiness signs and we were ready to get started.  However, I didn’t realize just how much of a commitment potty training is.  Especially potty training under the age of 2.  After a week he was catching on and was completely trained if he was naked.  But you know, you can’t go everywhere naked and I was sick and tired of fighting that battle.  So we put the diapers back on and called it quits.

A couple of months ago we haphazardly tried again.  I was thinking maybe he would just magically get it on his own.  When the first day came and went with NO successes and led to him holding his pee as long as possible, I gave up again.  I was thinking we were going to end up potty training a 4 year old.  And at that point I was okay with that.

Fast forward a few months.  Poops were getting NASTY and I was OVER diapers.  He’d poop and refuse to sit down until we changed him.  Pretty sure that’s a major readiness sign.  Couple that with the fact that our kids have been battling some major diaper rashes lately, when we ran out of diapers yesterday we decided today was the day.  I didn’t buy more diapers.  We showed Nathan the box and that there were no more diapers.  We put him to bed and told him that he was going to be a big boy and wear underwear all the time now.  He actually got really excited about it.

(Alex is a very supportive little sister.  That, or she was taking advantage of the opportunity to watch Finding Nemo again.)

Today was Day 1.  After some rough attempts at training in the past (that led to some fear of the potty on Nathan’s part) I didn’t expect today to go well.  But the diapers were gone and never to return, so we’re in this for the long haul.  And I can happily say that we had NO ACCIDENTS today.  Well, I guess not technically.  There was a little dribble in his first pair of underwear before I caught his dance.  But not even enough to have to clean up the floor!  He only used two pairs of underwear all day!  (We’re using pull ups for naps and bed simply because I think that would be too much for him at once.)  He even got to the point where by the end of the day he was telling us he needed to go!

(For the record: the guest bath is Kenya’s “space”.  She wasn’t really enthused about us invading her space all day.)

I’ve read the second day is the hardest though, so I’m not getting my hopes up yet.  But I’m glad we’re off to a much better start than before!

 

Messes

We walked in from the pool today and Nathan spoke words that just might embarrass any homemaker/stay-at-home mom.  Can you guess what they were?

“Nathan’s house!  Mess!”  And no, he was not prompted or previously taught to say such horrible words.  🙂

This is my biggest struggle as a stay-at-home mom: finding balance.  I tend to follow one of two paths at different times in our lives:

Path 1: The house stays spotless: laundry is caught up, dishes are done, floors are vacuumed, etc, etc etc.  But during this stage we tend to stay home every day and no fun happenings occur.

Path 2: We spent mornings at the pool, playing outside, or doing other fun and exciting toddler activities.  Then we all come home and crash.  The house doesn’t get clean.  In fact, it keeps getting messier and messier until I think I might explode.

So where’s the balance?  I haven’t found it yet.  I know it’s there, but it keeps escaping from my grasp.  And that’s my goal for this coming week: get a little closer to finding some balance.  I want the house to stay picked up enough that we can walk in without Nathan yelling “Nathan’s house!  Mess!”  But I also want our days to be magical for Nathan.  I want him to enjoy toddlerhood as much as possible.  And so the quest for merging the two begins.

Any tips out there for managing a home without your kids taking a backseat?

The Sweetest Brother Ever

Or, as Nathan says, “good brower” (brother).

I’m in the kitchen making dinner and Alex is in her swing in the living room.  This is the (one sided) conversation I hear coming from the living room.

“Big Bird, Agek?  Yeah? Yeah?  Swing swing Big Bird.  Swing swing Alex.

Nathan had put his Big Bird stuffed animal in the swing with Alex and was swinging them side to side.

And a little later:

“Agek paci.  Ereyago (there ya go).  Agek bunny wabbit.  Wub you bunny wabbit.  Wub you Agek.

He had found her paci and shoved it in her mouth.  With Big Bird still in her lap, he was kissing her bunny rabbit and telling it he loved it, and then making the rabbit kiss Alex and telling her he loved her.

These are the moments that make any day better.

And now he’s mad because Big Bird keeps falling out of the swing.  His sweetness is fleeting.  🙂

All Boy

There’s a little boy who has it in for his mommy.  It’s already been made clear that he is going to do everything possible (unintentionally, of course) to make sure she has multiple heart attacks before he graduates high school.  And he’s well on his way at the young age of 19 months.

And of course, that little boy happens to be mine.

Last night was my latest “heart attack”.  I call it that because I’m pretty sure my heart stops in my chest every time he hurts himself.  Let me make something clear – I’m not one of those moms who freaks out every time her child falls.  I’m the mom who says “Oh, stop whining and get up.  You’re okay.”  I don’t go running to him every time he scrapes his knee and cries.  But as all of you mothers know, there is one cry that will have you running EVERY time.  The cry that immediately tells you something is not right.  I heard that cry last night.  Thus, my “heart attack”.

We were at my mother-in-law’s house talking and Nathan and his cousin Ivalee were playing on the living room floor.  (By playing I mean running around, chasing each other, and giggling as loud as possible.  They’re so cute together.)  Anyway.  One of Nathan’s favorite things to do is play on the fireplace hearth.  He thinks it’s awesome to sit and “bounce” on it.  Well, he was running across the living room (to the fireplace, I assume) and tripped.  This is not an unusual occurrence.  The kid can’t keep up with his head – it’s in the 90th percentile and makes him top-heavy.  🙂  So he tripped.  And just happened to fall head first into the hearth.  His forehead caught the edge of the tiles and he immediately started wailing.  Craig jumped up and rescued him while I sat on the couch and sobbed (if I wasn’t holding Alex, I would have been the one to jump to his rescue.  Nobody’s faster than a Mommy who’s kiddo is hurt.)  He’s okay, but it took Craig a while to calm him down.  And he has a nice goose egg on his forehead.

It gets better.  This wasn’t his first major “owie”.

Just Monday night he was jumping on the couch (something we’ve told him not to do) and fell off.  He landed on the back of his head.  Once again Craig jumped to his rescue while I sat in the glider (feeding Alex) and sobbed.  He was fine – not even a knot to show – but my heart is gradually getting more and more bruised.

Let’s recap all of his “boy moments”

  • When he was a baby he fell out of his swing.  Our fault for not buckling him in.  This was the first “major owie” although he wasn’t even bothered by it.
  • At the park a few months ago he was running down the bridge and fell head first into a concrete slab.  Scraped up his eye and the side of his face.
  • Last week he fell down the brick steps outside our house and scraped up his eyebrow.
  • Monday he fell off the couch.
  • Yesterday he cracked his head on the fireplace.

I just hope he’s at least done with the little boy stunts for a week or two.  I need time to recuperate.

Her First Blowout

All of you mommies out there already know where this post is heading.  When you hear (or read) the word “blowout” you don’t think about a tire exploding on the road.  Your mind immediately goes to uncontained baby poop.  As it rightly should.  And, as all mommies do at times, I shall share a story with you that is probably only entertaining and enjoyable to me.  🙂

Alex hadn’t pooped all day and I was beginning to get concerned.  When Craig got home around dinner time I told him that if she still hadn’t pooped by morning I was calling the nurse.  He didn’t seem concerned and made some casual comment about a nasty poopy diaper in our near future.  He wasn’t far off.

I pumped milk tonight so that Craig could give Alex her bottle before bed.  Halfway through her bottle she stopped eating long enough to poop and then resumed her meal.  Except she apparently continued pooping unnoticed.

Let me pause and remind you how terribly runny breastmilk poop is.  It’s very runny and yellow and gross.  It has a really strange smell and is just.really.gross.  Now that you have this lovely image in your head go ahead and imagine having this disgusting poop all over you.

After she finished her bottle Craig picked Alex up and turned her around to burp her.  That’s when he discovered she had not only overflowed her diaper, she had BLOWN OUT of it.  From every angle.  The poor guy was covered in newborn poop.  His shorts.  His shirt.  The hand he used to pick her up.  And I just sat there and laughed at him.  I think I may have even snorted.

Eventually I took the baby so he could clean up.  The outfit was cut off the poor girl because I just couldn’t pull it over her head and smear her hair with poop.  She got sprayed off in the shower before being dunked and scrubbed in her baby tub.  It’s a good thing she doesn’t mind water.

I can laugh about this because I’m not the one who was covered in poop.  And I’ve learned my lesson – stick with cloth.  Blowouts are much fewer and further between and probably not quite so disastrous as disposables.

Mommy to Two

We’ve been a family of four for a week now.  A whole week. It’s hard to believe Alex has been a part of our family for that long.  It seems like just yesterday we were driving to the birth center at 3am wondering if today was the day.  In case you haven’t figured it out, it was.  And here I am, a week later, Mommy to two amazing kiddos.

A friend asked me the other day how I was adjusting to mothering two children.  To be honest, I haven’t really had time to reflect on it until now.  At times I don’t feel like I’m mothering two children.  There are moments (I’m ashamed to admit) that I’m so consumed with Alex that Nathan is “forgotten” about.  Then there are moments where Alex is asleep in her bouncer and I “forget” about her while playing with Nathan.  I guess that’s how it’s going to be for awhile.  When she’s awake she needs my (or Craig’s) full attention.  Especially when it’s time to eat.  This is when things get tricky.  We’re learning ways to occupy Nathan while I’m feeding Alex so that he usually doesn’t get too jealous.  Thankfully I have an amazing husband who is also an amazing Daddy and has taken on the responsibility of entertaining Nathan while I’m busy with Alex.  And he still manages to find time alone to bond with his little girl.

Then there are times, like this afternoon, where I wonder what I’ve gotten myself into having two kids so close in age.  We were in Best Buy this afternoon and Craig had to use the bathroom.  This left me alone with both kids for a short amount of time.  I won’t lie – it scared the heck out of me.  I had Alex in the sling and Nathan was running around the store trying to push every button in sight and pull all of the DVDs off the shelf.  Eeeek.  I’m sure you can picture me chasing him around grabbing everything he pulls off and putting it back on the shelf and trying to catch him before he pulls something else off.  All of this being done with one hand because I’m supporting Alex with the other since I’m halfway bent over to reach what Nathan can reach.  It was interesting.  And I learned my lesson:  bring the stroller. I think I succeeded in that mothering-two-children moment.  Ask the store associates.  They can probably tell you.

All in all, we’re adjusting well.  We’re finding a balance and routine to our days.  We’ve managed to keep the house clean liveable in the midst of diaper changes, feedings, playtimes, and the occasional nap.  Ask me again in a week how I’m doing and things might be different.  Craig goes back to work next week and I’ll have both kids on my own.  That’s when I just might lose it a bit.  We’ll see.  In the meantime I’m enjoying having him home all the time to help me spoil our little ones.  🙂

2 Days Old

Alex had her checkup yesterday with our pediatrician.  He said everything looks great.  He was a little concerned that she might be a tad jaundiced, so he ran a test that came out borderline.  We had to go back in this morning for more blood work to see if it’s going up or down.  We should have the results back sometime this afternoon.

The nurse from the Birth Place came out to check on us today.  She said she doesn’t think Alex looks jaundiced at all.  Hopefully she’s right!  She said we both look great.  Alex is an excellent nurser and my milk has already started to come in.  She was down to 7 pounds 10.5 ounces, but should start gaining now that my milk’s coming in.

Nathan’s having a bit of a time adjusting to the changes.  He’s GREAT with Alex and loves to “help”.  He was rocking her in her carseat this morning when she was fussy.  And he tried to shove her paci in her mouth backwards while she was sleeping.  🙂  He brings me her blanket when I ask for it and gets SOOOO excited when we tell him he’s being a great helper.  But he doesn’t understand why Mommy can’t pick him up (midwife’s orders for a week) and why I can’t give him all of my attention whenever he wants it.  Hopefully he’ll adjust soon.  It helps a lot that Craig is home and can give him a lot of attention and help with Alex so that I can sit with Nathan.  We sat in the rocker this morning and read his Bible for about 30 minutes while she napped.  We just have to make sure we keep making alone time for him.

All in all everyone’s doing great!  We’re just trying to make sure to stay somewhat caught up on sleep when we can.  Wish us luck with that.  🙂

To-Do and an update

Nathan is now 17 months old.  Crazy!  I’ll do a real post on this later.  If I remember.
I’m 34 (almost 35) weeks pregnant.  Any time after two weeks from Thursday Alex will be allowed to safely make an appearance.  Am I ready?  Physically?  Yes.  I’m miserable in case you missed that memo.  Emotionally?  Yes.  I’m ready to meet this little girl.  Is my house ready?  It’s getting there.
We’re getting oh-so-much closer to Alex’s arrival.  So I thought I’d take a look at the to-do list progress.  New items added to the list are in blue.

  • Make Christmas gifts for Thanksmas (our Christmas celebration with my in-laws on Thanksgiving)
  • Make Christmas gifts for Christmas
  • Make Christmas decorations
  • Decorate for Christmas
  • Take down decorations after Christmas (and before baby!)
  • Clean and organize laundry room
  • Get junk out of Craig’s game/workout room
  • Clean out guest bedroom/office/playroom
  • Organize, box up, and label Nathan’s old clothes
  • Wash and put away Alex’s clothes (Thanks, Rita, for the clothes!)
  • Make a cover for Alex’s moses basket
  • Discover a better cloth diapering setup (maybe in the bathroom?)
  • Stock freezer with meals for after Alex arrives (this is halfway crossed out because there are some meals in the freezer, but not as many as I would like)
  • Shop for baby supplies for Alex (cloth diapers, pacifiers, bottles, etc)
  • Make Alex’s crib bedding
  • Pack birth center bag for me and Alex
  • Pack Nathan’s overnight bag
  • Install infant car seat
  • Clear a space to park in the garage
  • Move bassinet upstairs and stock with night-time changing supplies

It’s probably not a good sign when you add as many things to your to-do list as you cross out.  At this rate, I may never get finished!