Funniest moment of our Sunday trip to Crosby Beach, Liverpool.
“Look!! His tail!!”
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Although many people advise to try and potty train over the summer we always thought this summer would be too soon. She turns 2 at the end of September and hasn’t been showing any interest really. Until one evening a few weeks ago when our friends visited for the weekend. They arrived at the tiddler’s bedtime when she has naked time to dry off after the bath. We’d used this time to introduce her to sitting on the potty, but she had never done anything in it. Our friends asked to borrow a potty for their similar aged tiddler who generally does a poo on the potty before bed. Our tiddler overheard this conversation, ran to get “my potty”, sat on it and did a big wee!! We gave her lots of praise and after that continued to produce the potty whenever we were in the house and most of the time she would do a wee and then one evening did her first poo too!
A few days later we decided she seemed ready to try officially ‘potty training’ and as it was the start of our 2 week holiday it was perfect timing. That was the start of this 14 day series.
You can’t always time potty training over the summer but it does make life easier. Today we enjoyed the morning with good friends in our garden and the tiddlers were able to play in the paddling pool. Letting them run around naked is great for the early days of potty training. The hardest part is going out wearing clothes!
This afternoon we had fun kicking a ball around the park, saying hello to the ducks, climbing on branches and stopped off at the Urban Beach for a brief play in the sandpit before going home for tea. I didn’t want to carry the potty so we just headed for the toilets and the tiddler didn’t mind sitting on the normal toilet!! She did the same before we left which is massive progress seeing as she hated sitting on the big toilet a few days ago.
When we got home she played around putting her trainer seat on the toilet. We’re yet to do a wee at home on the toilet but she really wanted to empty her potty into the toilet this morning so she’s getting the idea. Can’t wait for poos to go straight down the loo to save wiping out a dirty potty!
There’s always anxiety associated with potty training during an event. What if we get an urgent “wee wee potty” cry during a quiet part of the wedding service? What if she wets her dress..her spare clothes arn’t as pretty! Noone wants an accident to happen at a crucial moment.
As the tiddler seems to be much more reliant at bladder control when she’s naked on her lower half we decided she should be commando under her dress at the wedding! This worked pretty well with no accidents, although I still lead toileting times as I didn’t trust her to tell me in time with all the excitement.
In the morning we’d spent some time down by the river… again commando under her skirt and although she didn’t tell us in words she showed us signs.
Her main 2 signs are:
– suddenly stopping and clutching between her legs.
– running on the spot, or the ‘potty dance’ as I call it.
These signs gave us enough warning to carry her to a nearby bush or get the potty out. I’m hoping in time there’ll be less urgency and she’ll start to recognise the signs herself to be able to verbalise to us that she needs a wee or poo.
Today the sun is shining again and we’re off to the Isle of Arran. From Ayrshire you catch the car ferry from Ardrossan to Broddick. Was great having the car to explore the Island.
First stop was a half rocky, half sandy beach called Whiting Bay, apparently good for the rock pooling. The tiddler did enjoy counting shells into her bucket with her “spoon” (aka spade) but we didn’t actually see any exciting wildlife.
We had our picnic and set about making sandcastles and I enjoyed a little snooze while the tiddler ran up and down the beach with the hubbie. We then all ran into the sea and she squealed and ran away everytime a wave came in which was so funny!
Then we heard “a pay-ground!!” Sure enough there was a swing and top of a slide visible from the beach. We lugged our stuff up for a quick play before nap time.
Nap time for us involved a stunning road trip along with beautiful coastal scenery as well as the mountains. We stopped the car every now and again to take in the views and snap some pics.
When the tiddler woke up we enjoyed a little paddle at a beautiful beach. Beach trips when it’s warm and sunny are perfect for potty training tiddlers!
We’ve had quite a few long drives and busy trips this week so today we chilled out on the caravan site and in the local town of Ardrossan.
This morning showed some progress with the tiddler’s potty training as she was able to take herself to the potty with PJ bottoms on rather than being naked! She can now take down her PJs and did the same with her leggings when we went out for brekkie (there’s no shame or embarrassment being a toddler and dropping your pants in a café!!)
I’ve not put ‘big girl’ knickers on yet, partly because it’s just one more layer to remove in a quick “I need a wee NOW!” situation and partly because when I tried the other day she majorly resisted. One thing I don’t want to do whilst potty training is force anything and create any negative associations. I did buy some Frozen knickers today so when we decide it’s the right time, we’ll produce them as an excitable present.
On the walk back to the caravan I caught her grabbing between her legs and trying to get the potty out. Without knowing how urgent it was I didn’t risk making it to the caravan and just sat her on the potty by the roadside.
A few more times today she’s not told us she needed to go but I’ve seen her grabbing between her legs and that’s given enough of a warning to either make it to the nearest toilet (thankfully there was one nearby for the evening poo!!!) or at least manage the ‘hook-squat-lift’ in a nearby bush! At least that’s what I call it. This toiletting technique was taught by the tiddler’s Godmother and you basically drop their trousers and lift them up from behind with your arms hooked under their thighs. This makes them go into the squat position. You then close your eyes and pray it’s just a wee!!
I’ll keep today’s post short as I realise they’re getting longer and longer!
Number of daytime nappies: zero
Number of accidents: 1 in the soft play
She still seems to only be able to take herself to the potty when she’s naked on the bottom half so trips out involve potty trip timings and she’s very good at happily sitting down and doing a wee straight away. If the weather was warmer she could probably go commando in a skirt! We’ve been lugging the potty around in a little carrier bag and we usually just take it into the nearest toilet, or failing that find a corner and empty it into a bush nearby! She’s getting a bit better at pulling her trousers up and down but still needs help.
Our trip out from the caravan today was a visit to Heads of Ayr Farm Park just south of Ayr, Scotland. This was free for the tiddler and £10.50 per adult. I was joking that the tiddler would get more fun out of it than us… I was wrong!
As well as the usual farm animals, there were also monkeys, racoons, meerkats, to name just a few. The playground was in a sandpit and had little and large pirate climbing boats with slides, a plank, nets, wobbly bridges. There were lots of trampolines, 3 huge bouncing ‘pillows’, little and large go karting tracks, a water tyre ride.
The main highlights for the tiddler were the tunnels in the huge ‘castle’ (which also had a climbing wall, slide and stunning views over to the sea) and ‘Digger Land’. Some of the diggers had slides coming off, and the little manual diggers could be operated to pick up sand.
We then found more slides coming down a little hill with views across the sea and an adrenaline rush tyre ride for bigger kids (and adults!!) There was a welly throw, a newly opened indoor soft play and sensory area next to the slide park. This had wavy slides, sack rides and big drop adrenaline slides.
Sorry I said this wasn’t going to be too long today but I’ve got to tell you about the toddler soft play. There was a farm theme with a mini animal roundabout, an air pressured ball shoot where you put the balls in the mouth of a cow ‘ ‘feed me’ and they shoot through the tubes in the cow and come out the ‘poo’ hole! I had fun with air jets to hover the balls from the ball pit and the tiddler enjoyed the usual climbing frames and slides.
I’ve not even mentioned the other activities indoors like the electric diggers, combine harvester climbing frame with a tube slide and tunnels and pet animal area. All in all more than enough to fill a fantastic day out to entertain a wide variety of ages (even adults!) indoors and outdoors!
The sun has finally come out in Scotland!!! We drove up to Balloch, by Loch Lomond this morning and took our picnic onto the Loch cruise. This was a 45 minute round trip with a commentary telling us about the landmarks we could see on the water edge.
There was much more to do than I thought there would be and we easily filled a whole day. The Balloch visitor centre seemed very modernised with excellent baby and toddler facilties including a large toilet to fit a pushchair, low down sinks and toilets for smaller children and the usual baby changing facilities. This was attached to a shopping centre which we bypassed to go to the playground.
We then spotted a mini ‘train’ ride which was a massive hit with the tiddler and at only £1.50 per person (under 2’s free) it took us on a short tour around the Balloch end of the Loch, through some woodland and the jolly train driver stopped a couple of times to explain where we were. We got off half way to explore ‘Maid of the Loch’, an old steam liner which was being restored after vandals caused it to sink. This was free entry and the tiddler loved exploring it and we then relaxed in the café on the boat until the train came back to pick us up.
We parked up at Balloch Castle and walked down to the edge of the Loch where there was a modern playground split in 2; a toddler playground and a second for 4-14 year olds. The toddler playground had a train shaped climbing frame with slide, a sandpit with wendy house and interactive clock and abacus toys, rocking camel and horse, a roundabout and swings. We didn’t venture into the older playground but from what I could see there was a trampoline, a rope swing roundabout, and climbing nets.
After spending some time enjoying the Loch shore throwing stones and taking in the scenic view, we drove round to have a pub lunch in a gorgeous beer garden. From there we made the most of the rare Scottish sunshine by having a short walk along the river before the drive back to the caravan.
We followed pretty much the same potty training routine as yesterday and only had 1 accident! This happened because I put her on the potty too soon after our afternoon drink and snack. By the time the drink had ‘gone through’ we were walking by the lake and she clutched her crotch. I asked her if she wanted the potty but she said “no”… then she did it again but I brushed off the signs thinking she’d been not long ago and then she ran off and weed. I now know the sign for “I need a wee”!
Number of nappies used: zero!
Number of accidents: 1. I completely forgot she wasn’t wearing a nappy until I heard “wee wee, wee wee!!!” in the middle of Tesco this morning.
Number of changes of trousers: 1. See above.
Number of panic moments: 2. In the middle of Tesco and when she fell asleep in the car seat with no nappy. Fortunately she woke 1.5 hours later dry!
We had a lovely and mostly dry day (I’m talking about the weather now!) Visited Dean Castle Country Park which I would highly recommend for anyone, especially with children as you can have a short woodland walk whilst spotting deer, owls, a river, bridge and some little waterfalls. By the castle there’s also a small farm with pigs, chickens, goats, rabbits, guinea pigs, doves and other birds as well as a duck pond. There are 2 playgrounds, 1 for older children with a zip wire and climbing frames and one for the younger ones.
The visitor centre offered a reasonably priced lunch box for kids and a wide variety of sandwiches, wraps, paninis, toasties and jacket potatoes.
The tiddler then napped (nappy free!) in the car en route to Dundonald Castle. In fact we all slept for an hour and a half in the car park when we arrived then headed into the café for a drink. The path up to the castle was quite steep but the views across to the sea and the Isle of Arran were beautiful. The castle itself was tiny so we didn’t fork out the entrance fee and headed back down to the playground.
Although she only had the one accident all day, each potty run was lead by us as she doesn’t always seem to be able to identify when she needs to go unless we’re in the house. We tended to time potty runs roughly 15mins after drinking, before car journeys and straight after her nap. This seems to be working at the moment and hopefully we’ll progress to her being able to tell us when she needs to go.
It’s August, it’s ‘summer’ holiday season, it’s raining… RAINING. On and off but today there was torrential, tarmac bouncing rain and wind for the best part of 3 hours in the middle of the day. This wouldn’t be so bad if hadn’t been raining for the past fortnight. I’d optimistically been saying “it’s just getting the rain out of its system before our holiday!” Sadly it’s STILL wet.
It seemed quite nice this morning, from inside the caravan. We headed out to explore the beach and the tiddler excitedly grabbed her bucket, spade… and coat. Her WINTER coat! The wind was so cold we played on the beach in typical British style with our coats and bravely bared feet to paddle. We forced an optimism through pure grit and determination that the pants weather wasn’t going to ruin our fun. After all, what better place to potty train a tiddler than on a beach where she’s already getting wet.
We headed to the pool in the afternoon which was another fantastic place to visit with a potty training tiddler! In fact the only time we needed to put a nappy on was for her nap but she did a wee before and after and the nappy stayed dry!
This morning was the first time she asked to do a wee wee when out and about. It ended up with me crouched with a potty in the gents toilets after she’d ran away during breakfast, opened a toilet door and shouted “mummy wee wee!”. Now as there’s usually not much warning I just ran after her with the potty. It wasn’t until she was sat on it that I looked around and realised I was surrounded by urinals! It’s a good job it was deserted!
The rest of the day brought a few accidents when we were out but inside the caravan she continued to take herself to the potty.
Tomorrow I vow not to moan about the weather.
We’re in Britain after all.
It happens every year.
The tiddler is still having a ball!
After holidaying from home for the last couple of days today we’re off to spend the next week in a caravan park in Ayrshire, Scotland. After seeing the tiddlers excitement at playing in the sand in the park I’m really looking forward to seeing her reaction to the beach which is 5 minutes walk away from our caravan. There’s also an indoor swimming pool, playground and children’s entertainment on site!
Potty training is on hold for the 5 hour car journey. I don’t fancy scrubbing a urine soaked car seat. For future journeys I’ve ordered a Car Seat Protector that also fits the pram.
Arriving at the caravan park was met with squeals of excitement as the tiddler explored her new home for the next week. We showed her the bedroom with her cot in as bedtime always seems to go well when she’s already explored!
The long nap on the car journey enabled us to stay up a bit later and make the most of our first night out in the complex. Thankfully even after the excitement of the children’s entertainment, dancing and being in a new place she went straight into her cot without a fuss and only woke once for her covers to be put back over. Great start despite the torrential rain!