Potty Training - Part 1

October 29, 2015

I have been dreading this moment since becoming a parent. I watched my sisters going through this with their kids and it didn't look/sound all too pleasant (constant wet beds, peeing in the car, poop found on the floor, etc).  Erin turned two about 2 months ago and she was showing most of the signs for readiness. She was going longer periods of time with a dry diaper, she was showing interest in the potty, she has consistent poo poo diaper times, and she would occasionally let us know before going poo poo.

Some things we purchased to prepare for the training:
1. Potty. We bought the babybjorn one.
2. Books. We bought two books about potty training. 1. Potty book and 2. Big Girl Panties book. She really enjoys reading both of them.
3. Underwear. I'd suggest getting some that your kid finds interesting. Nothing expensive or anything. We bought some frozen themed underwear and she gets excited putting them on.

Prepping for the training: I noticed that sometimes Erin would go for quite a while before letting us know she had a poo poo diaper, so that would lead to her having an "owwie" (getting a rash). I thought that that would be a good starting point, a way to sell potty training. My little motto to her was "No diaper, no owwie!". I'd tell Erin to keep repeating it, letting her know that having a dirty diaper will cause an owwie. It was cute because she'd chant the motto with her fist in the air. To further prepare Erin, Ken and I would read the potty books with her explaining that big girls wear underwear and that babies wear diapers, emphasizing that Erin was now a big girl.

First Attempt: The first real attempt at potty training was roughly a month after a second birthday. Being pregnant, I don't have the energy to devote a whole weekend, so I thought I'd start off slow with just a few hours after dinner. I put some underwear on her and left her pants off. I pointed to the potty and told her that she should only go pee and poo in there and not in her underwear. She'd nod yes. I asked her if she had to use the potty every 10 or so minutes. We loaded her up with lots of liquids and was sure she'd have to go pee soon. About an hour into it, no pee or poo. I thought it'd be ok for me to take a little break and shower, so I left Ken to it. After my shower, I asked Ken if Erin had used the potty and he just kind of stared at me. Apparently, shortly after leaving to shower, Erin had peed in her underwear while playing. I tried talking to Erin and asking her about what happened. I told her that she should've used the potty and that she should've told daddy if she had to go pee pee. She just sort of stared at me, not quite understanding it all. No scolding, just gave her a hug. First attempt: Fail.

Second Attempt: I attempted to potty train her again on a Sunday morning. I took her diaper off and put some Olaf underwear on her (kept her pants off). I pulled the potty out and placed it in a very convenient location. I told her that she shouldn't go pee pee or poo poo in her underwear, but should only go in the potty. She'd nod yes. I would say I asked her if she had to go potty every 15 minutes. She didn't go potty once. I gave her plenty of liquids too and it was after breakfast, so I had high hopes. She'd just sit there a few minutes and "pretend" to do something and tell me she was "all done". At one point, I just had her sit there for a while and told her she couldn't leave till she went pee pee. I busted out the m&m's and told her that if mommy sees pee pee in the potty, she'd get an m&m. It didn't work. Unfortunately, we had to leave for church shortly after so we had to stop the training. It was only roughly an hour and a half, but I was exhausted. Hah. It takes a lot of energy to potty train! Second attempt: Fail. 

Third Attempt: We didn't attempt potty training again till after a few weeks. This second time around wasn't an intentionally planned training, but one evening while eating dinner, Erin looked at me and said "poo poo". I immediately asked her if she had to poo and she didn't really respond, but I checked her diaper and there wasn't any poo poo yet, so I put her on the potty. I gave her a toy to keep her busy and told her to just sit there and play with her toy till she went poo poo. It was cute because she listened and didn't really take notice to being on the potty. After about 5 minutes, Erin said she was "all done" and we checked the potty and sure enough, she went poo poo in the potty. Both Ken and I were ecstatic and showed her much praise. We told her how proud we were and how she was a big girl for using the potty. She was definitely pleased and kept telling us she was a big girl. We rewarded her with a few m&ms as well. Third attempt: Success.

I won't gross you guys out with pics of her poop or her on the potty. Here are some pics from afterwards. She had her babies go to the potty and poop, just like she did (she's wearing her awesome climbing shoes).

I've definitely taken a more relaxed approach to potty training. Won't be attempting the hardcore 3-day training approach (I've heard many success stories with this approach though). It has a lot to do with being pregnant and not having the energy and I just don't have the time to dedicate 3 solid days to it (hopefully I can find time to train for at least a full day). I'm not in an extreme rush and I think Erin will respond better to a more gradual approach, just sorta following her cues. But, I've set the goal of having Erin at least day trained before the end of the year. Not sure how many parts of this training there will be, but stay tuned. I'll be posting a Part 2 soon!

Pumpkin Patch 2015

October 23, 2015

We stopped by the pumpkin festival at Cal State Pomona this past weekend. We've been wanting to take Erin to Tanaka Farms in Irvine, but it's just way too far so Pomona was our second choice. They charged at the door this year, so we might just make our way down to Irvine starting next year.

Erin wasn't really in a pumpkin patch kind of mood. We had to force her to come out of the stroller and walk around. Had some lovely meltdowns, but nothing a popsicle couldn't cure. She finally started warming up towards the end of our time there.  

Erin has been talking so much. We aren't sure where she's picking it all up, but it's pretty darn cute. Here are some of my current favs:

"Hey! Don't do that!"
"Oh my goodness!"
"Dada is working"
"Car is coming, scary"
"Hey, who did that?"
"Oh my, oh my"
"Oh, wow!"
"The sun's not out, rain is out"

Bump Update - 2nd Trimester Recap

October 16, 2015

The second trimester is my favorite time (for the most part). I'm over the being/feeling sick phase and I'm not all that big yet. I'm able to eat food again and there isn't much of a dramatic weight gain during this time so I can still do pretty much everything. Like my first pregnancy, this second pregnancy had a very positive second trimester.

The only real complaints I have during this time are due to the following:
  1. I like to call this period my "awkward looking weeks (weeks 12-25 to be exact)". I remember I hated wearing clothes during this phase with Erin and I feel the same with this pregnancy. During the second trimester, I'm bigger so I don't quite fit into my regular clothes anymore, but I'm also not quite big enough to fit nicely into maternity clothes. Maternity clothes run so big, so it's been such a challenge finding reasonably priced pieces that actually fit. A lot of women turn to dresses and skirts during their pregnancy, but I'm not really a dress kind of girl to begin with, so that was another struggle in itself. I also need to wear professional work attire during the week, so that has also been a challenge trying to find work clothes that look nice and fit well. 
  2. Charley Horse: These things are so painful! I rarely get them when I'm not pregnant (can't remember the last time I got one before being pregnant), but I get them maybe a handful of times while pregnant and it'll usually start around my second trimester. Not kool. It'll happen in the middle of the night and sometimes they're so painful, I'm sore for a few days. I definitely do not enjoy it in any way.
I'm 26 weeks along now and I'll be entering the 3rd trimester soon. My belly is definitely growing and I'm slowly filling up my maternity clothes. yay! Little Ava is moving around all the time, kicking and having hiccups. I told myself I'd take a belly photo every week, but of course I haven't been doing that. I'm so bad at documenting my growing bell. Oh well, maybe for the next one!

A few photos of life lately:

(She has officially transitioned to her toddler bed. No regressions for over 5 weeks. Big girl. Oh and sleeping through the night!)

Family Photos 2015

October 8, 2015

We took family photos this past weekend. We thought it was challenging last year, but Erin is a lot less patient and isn't the best listener, so it made photo taking this year a bit difficult.

Some details from the shoot:
Photographer: We had the lovely Candice Benjamin take our photos (she's almost as tall as Ken, so it really makes a difference with angles!). 
Location: Trabuco Canyon, CA  - Thomas F. Riley Wilderness Park
Erin's dress and shoes: Zara
My dress: Free people
Ken's shirt (If anyone cares): Hugo
Color palate this year:
A little tip for taking somewhat more successful photos with an active toddler: bring treats. We brought some m&ms for Erin. She has never had them before, so she was definitely excited about getting the opportunity to eat them. We used these as an incentive and hoped that she'd stay still or smile on cue. To be honest, the m&ms didn't work 100%. Erin was still running away, showing her underwear, not smiling, and etc. But if we didn't have any treat to give her at all, we probably wouldn't have had any decent photos of her. There were a few of Erin smiling with chocolate teeth, but at least she was smiling! Here a few photos of the chaos (Though Erin wasn't listening, I liked these candid shots. It really captures the true essence of toddler-hood and parenting):

Baby Registry the 2nd Time Around

October 2, 2015

My baby registry this time around only consists of two items. It helps that we're having another girl because we basically have everything else already. We're definitely saving some money, at least for the time being.
1. Double stroller
These dang double strollers are expensive! I wish I could just get my stroller right now and tape it to another one. I've done some research on double strollers and I think I'm leaning towards the Britax B-Agile or the Baby Jogger City Mini (we have the baby jogger city mini single stroller right now and I love it). These strollers are pretty similar. They've got a similar look/style, are on the lighter side, easy to maneuver and fold, and are quite spacious (After doing research on double strollers, I realized I'm not a big fan of the tandem strollers).

2. Manual Breast Pump
This was something I realized I needed when I had Erin, but never got around to buying. I'm definitely getting this one this time around. I left my double breast pump at work because I pumped the most there. I rarely took it home because it was such a pain taking it back and forth. I had some desperate moments of needing to pump and not having a pump.

**Diapers and wipes are not on my list because it's pretty obvious they are a must! Will always be needing diapers and wipes, so can't have too much of them! Hopefully Erin will be potty trained by the time the baby is here so we won't have to buy double the diapers/wipes.

I'll have to wait till the baby arrives to see if there are still some things I forgot about and actually need. Less than 4 months to go! Can't wait to meet baby Ava. =)

I leave you with this..Erin's becoming such a character.


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