A (not so) Brief Note

December 10, 2012 | By Brent Almond | DESIGN STUFF, LESSONS LEARNED, THINGS DAD DIGS

We’re currently trudging towards the epic milestone of bowel autonomy. JJ had one rapturous success, got derailed (understandably so) by our trip to Italy, and has yet to regain his commode momentum. We’ve employed several potty training tools, which so far have produced squat in the way of results. But I thought I’d share them with you since I think they’re fun. And who knows — hopefully they’ll work for someone else in the same, um… poodicament*.


DC Super Friends in POTTY TIME POWER!

This book is all kinds of awesome — each page features a different DC superhero explaining some aspect of potty training (Superman blows away a giant stack of diapers! Plastic Man shows how much toilet paper is the right amount! Flash warns to give yourself enough time to get to the can!) Many of the pages have flaps for your child to reveal more fun and action, and there are 2 full pages of stickers! The book is nice and thick and well-laminated to avoid any bathroom mishaps or accidental drops in the tub/sink/commode. ($8.99 on Amazon)

And oh yeah, my man Aquaman gives a lesson (kind of) on the importance of washing up afterwards!

So far the book hasn’t “worked,” but its repeated use has helped JJ’s spelling. And the fact that it’s chock full o’ heroes makes it a wee bit more bearable for me to read over and over and over.

Potty Power chart

This is Daddy being crafty and whipping up a companion progress poster to the aforementioned book. It’s taped to the back of the bathroom door and has columns for the date of the deed, the “number” performed (1 or 2), and a big space for 1, 2 or 3 stickers, depending on which number (or numbers) is done. But so far, so stickerless…

The built-in potty seat

Where was I when this ingenious invention came into being?!? It’s an all-in-one potty seat, where the toddler seat sits up in the lid (via magnet) and pops down for training sessions. Granted it doesn’t have the nifty deflector shield for wayward wee-wees learning to aim. But it’s certainly a more convenient solution that a separate seat or a mini “bowl” to clean up. Bonus points for not being hot pink and plastered with Doras. Plus it makes JJ feel like he’s on the big boy potty. ($39.97 at Home Depot)


Superhero underwear

I know, I know — more superheroes. And while fun, today’s options will never compare to the greatness of Underoos. (DC Super Friends, $5.73 for a 3-pack; Marvel Superhero Squad, $10.00 for a 3-pack)


Bear in Underwear

I happened upon this book in an airport and burst out laughing at the cuteness/silliness/weirdness of it all. This is less a motivator for potty training and more an advocate of the tighty-whitey (the bear’s drawers on the cover even feel like briefs). It’s the timeless tale of hide-and-seek gone awry, stealing a mysterious backpack that when opened explodes underwear, trying on said undies in front of all your woodland buddies, and the inner peace that comes from finding the perfect pair. Already a classic in our home. ($10.39 on Amazon)


My Underwear app

This “app” has few actual applications to potty training (yes, even less than Bear in Underwear). But it’s by the awesome Todd Parr (of The Family Book and The Adoption Book fame) so it’s just plain (or polka dotted or frilly or striped) fun! A memory/matching game, dress animals in undergarments (it’s okay to put it on their heads), and even design and color your own underwear! ($.99 cents on iTunes)


So fellow parents (and other expert potty trainers), what has worked for you? Seriously, I want to know.

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*What? You would have preferred shituation?

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4 responses to “A (not so) Brief Note”

  1. Two out of two potty-trained kids is amazing. I even celebrated this milestone (happened last month) by getting rid of my diaper bag and getting a backpack. It’s not as convenient to carry a backpack, but I had to celebrate somehow…

    I don’t know if there’s direct cause-and-effect here, but my boy was done with diapers the day after watching the Elmo Potty Time video, and my girl also watched it very intently when it was her turn. It’s more “Trying and failing is OK” than a poop-how-to-guide, and maybe that’s what kids need.

    It will happen in the end. My girl, who will be 3 in March, a month after being potty-trained, slammed the bathroom door in my face yesterday, saying, “I need privacy!”

    • Brent M. Almond says:

      I’ll have to give Elmo’s video a try. Besides, I’m sure Kevin Clash could use some residuals to cover all his inevitable court costs. 😛


  2. Michael says:

    So, have you tried the naked method? My sister did that with all four of her boys and they were all potty trained in like one day.

  3. Oh, and of course my kids were naked. It didn’t take a day, but they only had the ambition to really try after they saw pee on the floor and didn’t like it…

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