...all the time.
It was also exhausting and emotionally draining. Being stuck with your kids 24/7, not leaving the house, to train them to do something like this is so intense because of its all-consuming nature. I think we're all sick of each other. It sort of reminded me of the early days of twins where my days were dictated by their feeding schedule (is someone hungry? yes, always. all the time.), but replace "do they need to eat?" with "let's go sit on the potty!". (Being fake-excited about going to sit on the potty for the 347th time in a row: ALSO EMOTIONALLY EXHAUSTING.) Thank the Lord that Nana and Papa stopped by last night to offer some relief in the child-wrangling department, and, more importantly: dinner.
Caden's reaction when the potty chairs arrived in the mail on Friday and we opened the box: "Oh. my. GOSH." Then we immediately took them to the bathroom where the above happened. No Caden is not wearing any pants. He had both pants and diaper stripped off before he even got to the bathroom.
Which should have been my first clue as to how things were going to go down over the weekend.
So...how did it go?
(Quick synopsis: we didn't use any particular "method" but through my quick scan of the internets went with essentially a "3-day" or potty-training bootcamp-type style. (Which: isn't all potty training basically a bootcamp for the first few days?) We kept them only in underwear (which they had picked out last week) (Thomas the Train ("choo choos!") for Caden, Frozen for Brooklyn ("so-man!"), no pants, kept water and juice boxes always within arms reach, and set a timer to run them to the potty every 15-20 minutes or so. No leaving the house. We did go outside the second day but brought the potties out with us. They also got an M&M as a reward every time they went in the potty.) (Parentheses!!!)
Whoever said that boys are harder to potty train than girls is a lying LIAR. Caden is basically potty trained already. He went immediately the first time he sat on the potty Saturday morning, and has gone every single time that he's sat on the potty afterwards. He has had almost no accidents. By late Saturday morning he was already telling us when he had to go, even while in the middle of playing. By Saturday afternoon I was pretty sure that he was milking us for all the M&Ms we were worth, because he was going potty about every 10 minutes whether we prompted him to or not, mostly just a few drops. Then he would triumphantly proclaim "Nem-en-em!".
Brooklyn on the other hand...
She's been stubborn. And a little bit scared. And even though she loves reading her potty book, and gets really excited every time she DOES go on the potty ("yay ME!!!") and shows every other sign of potty-training readiness that Caden exhibits, is just not completely there yet. The first day was mostly a failure. The second day went a lot better. Now today she seems to have taken a step back again. *facepalm* If she was the only potty-training child, I might back off and try again in a month or two, (and maybe I still will), but Caden is so THERE, and I'm hoping that his continued success will encourage her more. Right now she seems content in the role of cheerleader, though, and is happy to clap for Caden and even help him "pick" his M&M without minding that she doesn't get one of her own. Might have to try a different track of motivation for her. I even tried bribing her with books and backrubs and toenail polish to get her to sit on the potty longer, but, usually...nothing. Girl apparently has a bladder made of steel.
Caden is SUCH a rule-following lover of routine, so in many ways it doesn't surprise me that he caught on immediately. He was so excited for his "choo choo" underwear and potty just his size, and has wholeheartedly embraced the routine of pee-dump-flush-wash hands-M&M. (Especially the hand washing part. "What are you going to do with the money you save on diapers?" people have asked me (which isn't actually all that much since we mostly cloth diaper). Oh gee, I would just love to spend it on my water bill...)
Above: Potty ROCK STAR. Keep up the good work.
Below: the only one I want to keep diapering.
Go, Brooklyn, go.