Tis the Season…To Potty Train


potty training

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…to potty train your child. My children all have birthdays later in the year (December 2014 and October 2016) and were two years old and showing interest in the toilet before the holiday season. Santa Claus himself was crucial to our potty training success. He very thoughtfully left underwear in each of their stockings.

There are a thousand factors that go into the decision to begin potty training your child. You have to decide whether your child is ready, then you have to decide whether YOU are ready. If the stars align for you as they did for me at the end of the year, then tis’ the season to start potty training.

I find the holiday season to be incredibly busy. I currently have events popping up mid-week and every weekend is fully booked. Then comes the big day – we celebrate Christmas and once we head home from friends that night the madness ends. School is closed for a week or more, playgroups and library classes are on break, malls, play places, and public activities can be overcrowded germ-fests; cue the perfect time to hole up inside the house with your child and their new underwear. In both of my potty training experiences it became the perfect week to create a potty training routine and stick to it.

By January 2 you can safely emerge from your house with your child, a portable potty seat, maybe even a portable potty for the car (I highly recommend it), stacks of extra clothes, a wet bag and the hopes that the routine you set into place means that this year Santa brought you a new diaper free lifestyle. 

Fairfield County Moms Blog provides a comprehensive list of tips for potty training, and after reading I’m not sure I could add much to it. Here are my top tips for potty training success:

  1. Begin introducing the potty early. My twins have always been clingy so we have spent many hours together in the bathroom. I use the potty seat rings that fit on top of the toilet seat. Around 18 months I begin letting them sit on the potty before they go into the bath each night – it’s always a fun surprise for them if something coincidentally comes out!
  2. Timing is everything – choose a time when you and your child are ready. Look for signs they are ready. They may be dry between diaper changes, ask to use the potty, or are uncomfortable in soiled diapers. Be prepared to follow through with this choice, and it’s not always a fun one to follow through with. Pick a long weekend or holiday break when you will be home more or when other activities are cancelled. 
  3. Have your supplies. Buy potty seats or small toilets for the bathrooms in your house, a foldable travel seat for your diaper bag, a portable toilet for your car, tons of extra underwear for accidents, and dress your child in elastic waistband pants that easily pull up and down.
  4. Go straight to underwear. Pull-ups are great, and for certain situations totally necessary (I would never risk taking my kids in the car seat without one until I knew they were trained), but they are essentially diapers. Surprise your child with new underwear in their favorite color or character before you begin. Use pull-ups at night so if they wake up to go potty you don’t have to struggle with a diaper. 
  5. Choose a reward that works for your child. What will motivate them – candy, toys, stickers? My twins received an M & M after every #1 and a miniature candy after every #2. My oldest was rewarded with stickers on a chart to earn Danial Tiger character figurines.  
  6. Be prepared to spend every hour in the bathroom whether at home or in public. In the early stages of potty training I found that none of my children went more than an hour and a half at a time without using the potty or having an accident. When you are brave enough to take your child out in underwear have them use the potty before leaving the house and also when you get to your destination. That will hopefully get you some dry time on the clock.  

Happy Holidays and Happy Potty Training to you all!

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Jamie is a mom to a daughter (2014) and boy/girl twins (2016). She was born and raised in Westchester County, NY and together with her husband (married in 2011), made Danbury, CT their hometown. Jamie is a real estate agent with William Raveis Real Estate. In the present day, more than ever before, “home” is an essential and safe place in an ever-changing world. Helping clients achieve their homeownership goals, searching for the home that’s “just right,” or helping them move on from a home that no longer serves them drives Jamie in her real estate career. Home for Jamie is Northern Fairfield County, and she never gets tired of spending time in the community with her family, visiting her favorite parks, and exploring local shops and restaurants. Jamie can be found on the Peloton leaderboard at 6:30 every morning, which fuels her long days of work and momming. Morning workouts are as athletic as she gets, and her favorite thing is tucking her children in at night and catching up on whatever show she is streaming. As much as she loves staying in, she doesn’t pass up a night out with her childhood girlfriends or a date night with her hubby. 


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