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I’ve totally had it in my head that we would wait to start potty training until around two and a half for my girl. It will be summer, we won’t be in the car so much for school and meetings and she can wear dresses all the time for easier potty trips. Summer would be so perfect, right? Well, Emaline has different ideas. She turned two in February and much to my dismay, has started showing some signs of potty training readiness.
In our potty training preparations, the first thing we do is look for signs of readiness. These could include:
- Follows you to the bathroom. This may or may not be a clear sign, since both my tiny humans started following me into the bathroom as soon as they were mobile. Emaline often asks me, “Mama, you going potty?” when she follows me to the toilet.
- Begins to pull dirty diapers off. This sign is the fun one. And when I say fun, I mean the worst. In the past couple weeks, my girl has pulled her dirty diapers off several times. It was poopy more than once. Let’s just say I did some googling on removing poop from a microfiber sofa.
- Verbally communicates other sensations, such as tired or hungry. Emaline is really good about this one, she always tells me when she is tired and grabs her blanket. Basically everyone within earshot will know when she’s hungry. She also verbalizes when she has pooped and tells me when she is going to go pee, even if it’s the second she starts to pee before she hops into the tubby.
- Able to pull her clothes off. Emaline is getting really good at undressing, even if it’s in the middle of a restaurant. She can’t take things off when they have buttons, zippers, or snaps, but most everything else she can succeed at taking off if she puts her mind to it.
- Has dry spells of at least 3 hours. This is kind of hard to gauge, since I don’t change her diaper every 3 hours, but I’m starting to check it more often to see if it’s wet.
- Imitates sitting on the toilet. Emaline asks to sit on the potty a couple times a week. She doesn’t go every single time, but it’s a start. She spotted a small potty at a playdate this week and immediately wanted to sit on it and try to go.
Once she is displaying signs of potty training readiness, then we start the potty training talk. This includes talking about wiping and how big girls go on the potty and don’t need to wear diapers anymore. I also have pointed out when other girls around her age are wearing underpants and using the potty. We read special potty books, we even have one that flushes!
Next, we make a special trip to pick up some potty training essentials! We went to Walmart and found the Pull-Ups® Learning Designs® Disney’s Doc McStuffins in the baby department near the back of our store. The Pull-Ups® were on the end of the diaper aisle, for only $8.97. (I used a $2.00 off coupon from the Pull-Ups® website for even better savings!)
Pull-Ups® are essential to the potty training process for us, because I like to be proactive about potty accidents. Our other essentials include: flushable wipes, fun stickers for the potty chart, toddler approved underpants, a potty seat, and a stool.
We keep all of our essentials in a special “potty corner.” I let Emaline pick which bathroom she wanted her “potty corner” in and keep all of the essentials in a small basket on top of the toilet, so everything is easily accessible. I keep a little chair in that bathroom as well, so I can sit down next to her if I need to. We put her special potty chart on the wall with some cute washi tape, which she picked out. My girl is girlie through and through and wanted a purple potty chart and purple tape.
I like using a potty chart to track progress, because it makes it a little more fun. My girl loves her some stickers so I created this potty chart for her. You can download my free potty chart printable to use in your own potty training journey.
She gets to put a sticker on her chart, in the appropriate spot, for the different parts of using the potty. When she gets to the end of a row, she will get a small toy or a candy. Food is a great incentive for my children.
If you want to save paper and reuse the chart, you could stick the printable in an 8×10 frame and use a dry erase marker. Just trim the printer paper down to fit.
The Pull-Ups® Learning Designs® not only have Disney’s Doc McStuffins on them, which my girl loves, but they have a more coverage and more stretch for a great fit and protection. They’re stretchy enough that Emaline can pull them down without tearing them, and can pull them mostly up on her own. The wetness indicator on the front is helpful for mamas, because then you can glance at the little design to see if your toddler stayed dry between potty breaks. Your toddler will then be able to add another sticker to her potty chart when she does stay dry!
Emaline adores her new Pull-Ups®. She loves to check them out whenever she has them on. You can find out which Potty Training Personality your tiny human fits over on the Pull-Ups® website. My girl is a bear: she is regular and predictable, but can also be flexible.
Finally, you just have to be patient, and let your toddler take the lead. We wear Pull-Ups® Learning Designs® some days. We wear underpants some days. I’m a firm believer in waiting until toddlers are ready. So, we are just talking about it each day and getting ready to start the potty training journey, but I know it’s going to happen soon.
Is your tiny human showing signs of readiness for potty training? Check out Walmart’s Pull-Ups® Learning Designs® page for some more helpful tips and learn what type of Potty Training Personality your child is.
When did you start potty training your toddler? Which Potty Training Personality is your toddler? What did you find to be successful? Tell me in the comments, I’ll take any advice we can get.