Our Imperfect Lives


P is for Potty

Another winter weekend in Massachusetts; another snow storm. While spending the day hiding from the cold and snow on this particular Sunday, we decided to be productive parents and we had a “potty training blitz” with Sport.

We were expecting the snow and we were fully stocked for the blitz including ‘big boy underpants,’ a froggy potty chair, lots of salty snacks including popcorn, crackers and tortilla chips, a doll that wets itself and a Sesame Street book about potty training. We were ready and it was “go time!”

potty blitz

We locked ourselves in the kitchen all morning long because the tile floor would make for an easier accident cleanup. While we were a little terrified about the idea of spending the whole day with both kids in the kitchen and only talking about going to the bathroom, Sport seemed pretty pumped about all of the attention from Mommy and Mama.

Now, we weren’t exactly starting this process form scratch, we’ve been having Sport sit on the potty for a couple months now. He was pretty consistent: we put him on the potty, he’d pee. Of course, he’d also pee in his diaper – a lot. And for some reason when he was at daycare, where they also had him sit on the potty, he rarely went; he usually sat for a minute and then just got a fresh diaper.

OK, so to the project at hand… Meg was the lead. She had read a book about the whole “potty training in a day” process. She explained the process to Sport using the doll. The doll went on the potty successfully, the doll wet her pants, and the doll practiced using the potty. Then it was Sport’s turn. We wrapped his big boy pants up like a present to make them seem even more special. He was pretty excited. They had sports balls on them, footballs, soccer balls, baseballs – all his favorites.

The blitz started off great. He used the potty a couple of times and threw back his strawberry lemonades. Then he had his first accident. And what an accident! Marcy and Sport were sitting on a blanket on the kitchen floor reading a book and at first we thought he had spilt his lemonade because there was so much liquid!

The blanket went immediately into the washer, but it wasn’t time just yet to turn it on. First, Sport had to practice racing to the potty in his wet pants and he was not a fan! Wet diapers never bothered him, but wet underwear and wet sweatpants did. The book says he should practice (go to where he was when he wet himself, rush to the potty, pull his pants down, sit on the potty, and pull his pants up) ten times. That seemed excessive to us. We had him practice five times. Then he had to clean up after himself, including using a sponge to clean up the pee that wasn’t soaked up by the blanket and taking off his wet clothes.


So, we had an accident, a very wet accident. He had a couple more accidents, thankfully not as nearly as wet, but the morning went really well. When nap time rolled around we tried to get Sport into a pair of pull-ups so we could save ourselves the hassle of having to wash all of his linens. He wanted nothing to do with the pull-ups! So we let him climb into his big boy bed with his big boy underpants and we just resigned ourselves to washing everything on his bed before bedtime.

Over three hours later, low and behold – dry pants! He also had a full froggy potty in the corner of his room. He woke up, peed in his potty, and crawled back into bed all on his own! We were proud Moms!

We of course knew it wasn’t done, but golly – what a start. Since he had such a successful nap we decided to let him escape the confines of the kitchen. He made it all the way until just before bath time that night before he had another accident. All in all a potty blitz win.

Day two of potty training was a “school day” so Sport went to daycare. He was excited to show his teacher, Mr. M, his new big boy pants. Thankfully Meg spoke with Sport’s teachers about our potty training plans and they were very supportive. We sent him to school with 4 pairs of extra pants and underwear. If he went through all of those it was on to the extra outfit that was already at school and pull-ups.

They had to change him once. Only once.

The rest of the week he had either no accidents or one accident at school, and well one of the accidents wasn’t really an accident. He peed on the potty but just didn’t get his pants far enough down and he peed in the potty and on his pants.

We’re sure accidents are still going to happen but the size five diapers in our house are now officially looking for a new home.