Sunday, May 29, 2011

Cloth Diapers: I'm now vested

Alright, I'm invested! I've put my money where my mouth is and purchased some cloth diapers! After lots of searching and lots of bidding and getting outbid a ton (sad!) I finally won a couple Ebay auctions for Fuzzi Bunz cloth diapers. They were both from the same seller so I got combined shipping also and when she found out I was new to CD (cloth diapering) she got excited and offered to throw in anything else she finds that'll be helpful along with some Rockin Green Detergent and a diaper sprayer for free! It retails for $45 on Amazon. Talk about a Godsend and blessing. And a friend offered to send me a sampler of some different brands of diapers since she's done diapering (can you believe it?). Thank you Steph! Feels like Christmas, I'm seriously so excited to get all this. Like I mentioned in the other posts, I really can't do laundry every day, so that means I need enough diapers to last at least 2 or 3 days. After the Ebay auctions I'm up to 15 diapers, so I bought the smallest set on which will give me another 12 diapers (and it's only $60 for 12 diapers and 12 inserts!). I should be at about 30 diapers total now and that'll give me some laundry leeway :) I was told and it's SO true that you have to change diapers more often when you cloth diaper. They actually feel wet so you can't just leave them in the same diaper for 6 hours (I mean, who does that anyway, right? Oh. Me. Whoops!).

The cost of cloth diapers can vary greatly. If you want to spend $1,000 on cloth diapers, it would be pretty easy to do so. BUT, you can take your time and search and wait and bid and find some really great deals. For 27 diapers, a diaper sprayer, about 50 inserts, 1 wet bag, 2 waterproof diaper pail liners, 1 overnight diaper cover, and detergent I'm only in it for $240. Amazing! Yes, it's an investment up front, but I am going to save at least $400 with just Evie and more if we have more kids.

If you go to Ebay and just search 'cloth diapers' you'll see there are tons available. Type in specific brands and you'll weed it down quite a bit. So far I'm deciding what the top dollar is I'll pay for a specific diaper (usually $5 or less) and then going that route. Some have free shipping, if not I have to factor that in to the $5 max.

Alright, that's all for now. It's almost 10pm and I haven't had dinner yet. I'm starving!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Cloth Diapers: How it's going...

Evie has been in cloth diapers for 2 1/2 full days now...other than 1 disposable this morning. I've done diaper laundry 2x, but if I go full fledged cloth diapering I'm hoping to have enough to only wash every 3ish days.

I have to say, I'm actually enjoying the cloth diapers. Her already chubby hiney is just bigger and even more round :) I feel like I'm doing something good for her every time I put a cloth diaper on her. I love that I'm not putting any chemicals on her. It just feels so natural- good for her, good for the environment. Washing the diapers is easy enough. Sort of a pain needing to rinse first and then wash because it means an extra trip downstairs, but not bad and Craig has been helping. If (or probably more just when) I go to cloth diapers I'll need a few things; wet bag for the diaper bag, hanging wet bag/diaper pail/bucket/etc for the nursery, Country Save/Rockin Green/etc (cloth diaper friendly detergent)....what am I missing???

So far my favorite diapers are the Fuzzi Bunz. They are pretty incredible. SO easy and her skin feels nice when I take the diaper off. She hasn't leaked or blown out in these either. The Good Mama diapers are really nice also, but they need a waterproof cover and I'm not sure I want to do that full time. I do like the idea of that for night thought since the GM's are very absorbent, thick, and comfy. Maybe someone will just have a few they want to sell me....???

I know on Tuesday I said I liked the Thirsties fitteds best, but I believe the size S ones are too little for Evie because we kept having leakage/blowout issues. That made me not like them anymore, but the Good Mama's are a fitted and I do like them, so I'm still open to it. I'm thinking I'll go the pocket diaper route at this point. My friends were right and they do dry faster than All in Ones. They also absorb better than fitteds. Gee I have good friends, they are so right!

I'm pretty much sold, just still trying them out, looking for good deals, etc :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

My first foray into cloth diapers!

I have been thinking/pondering/wondering about cloth diapering for quite some time now. I had thought about it when I was pregnant with Evie but with our septic literally leaking into our yard, it just wouldn't have been good to add any more laundry into the situation. Then we moved and it seemed doable again and then WHAM we became a family of 5. There's been A LOT going on and I'm running around like with a chicken without a head dealing with it. Financially things have been...interesting. My husband works his tail off to provide for us and is gone by 5 or 6am every day and works til 4pm without a lunch and then often works late (sometimes only til 6, sometimes til midnight or later). And then when he is not at work his phone is ringing all the time with people needing him and he frequently has to leave to go to random jobs and/or lock and unlock buildings for subcontractors. He works A LOT and only gets paid for 40 hours a week, nothing more. Days go by without us having more than 5 minutes of conversation. I know that sounds exaggerated, but I'm totally serious. When he is here we are entertaining chatty Charles, a 2 year old and an almost 6 month old- along with trying to keep the grass mowed, laundry done, veggies attended to, kids fed, house clean, etc. Craig and I haven't had any time together without kids fully needing us for 6 months. It's been hard and I'm feeling it. We are so happy and grateful to have Jacob living with us. We feel it was God that brought this opportunity and we wouldn't change it. However, feeding 4 people is different than 3. As is the amount of laundry, cleaning, neediness, etc. I'm reeling dealing.

SO, cloth diapers. I believe there a gazillion reasons why someone might cloth diaper and for each person it's a different main reason. For me, it comes down to a few reasons:

1) Financial. I would love to have more kids if God provides the babies and a way to pay a midwife. Spending some money up front now and being able to diaper a few more kids with one set of diapers would be fabulous! We spend about $30-$45 a month on diapers for one baby currently.

2)Environmental. I don't love that diapers end up in landfills :(

3)My babies. Diapers are full of chemicals and toxins and those chemicals become 'live' when they are wet- our babies are sitting in diapers full of live chemicals! Gross and sad. I like the thought of them having natural fibers against their skin and no chemicals.

4)Cuteness. This is really a totally minor factor, more of a bonus :)

Cloth diapers can be pretty confusing for the first type cloth diaperer. I took a look at several months ago and it really freaked me out. TOO many choices and too many kinds of diapers. Yikes!!! I ran for the hills. So let me see if I can break it down a bit-

Their are 4 major cloth diaper types - Prefolds, All In One's and All In Two's, Pockets, & Fitteds.

Prefolds- These are the cloth diapers most people picture when you talk about cloth diapering. It's a rectangle piece of layered material that you fold in 3 to use as the absorbent part of a diaper with a cover (can be with snaps, velcro, pins, etc).

All in One's/All in Two's- AIO's are pretty slick. These have everything you need all in one piece. They are typically snaps or velcro and have the absorbent piece built in. It's as easy to put on as a disposable diaper and just as easy to take off.

Pockets- These are almost the exact same thing as an AIO except they have a pocket that you put the absorbent stuffer in. This allows you to adjust the amount of absorbency to your child's needs. They also dry faster since you take the stuffer out to wash and dry. These are waterproof and do not need a cover, same as the AIO's.

Fitteds- These look just like a AIO or Pocket, but they do not have a waterproof cover built in. They are typically a tighter, slimmer fit and close with velcro or snaps. You need to put a waterproof cover over them, so they are a 2 piece diaper (or more if you add additional absorbency pieces inside).

A wonderful and generous friend has kindly loaned me some of her stash to try different kinds out and see what I like. For fit I'm liking the Fitteds with a cover. They fit closer to her body and aren't so bulky. I also think it's handy to just open the cover and change the fitted. The brand I'm trying is Thirsties. And you reuse the cover for a while unless it's got poo on it or something, so that is nice as far as laundry goes. I haven't tried the AIO's or pockets yet, but I'm pretty sure I'll like the pockets a lot. These particular ones are Fuzzibunz and they are so nice. Very soft fabric and very easy to use. I like that you can adjust the amount of absorbency based on how many inserts you put in and that they dry faster.

I put Evie in her first cloth diaper today and was surprised by how easy it was. We took off to run errands in Silverdale and I put two cloth dipes in the diaper bag and had the wet bag along, too. The wet bag is a cloth zippered bag that is waterproof on the inside. This one has a fabric piece sewn to the inside so you can put lavender oil or something yummy smelling on it so your diaper bag doesn't reek when you open it during the day :) Genius! Upon arriving in Silverdale and parking at the first store I realized she had done the poop of the century! Apparently she felt very relaxed in her new hippy, crunchy (that means 'natural') diapers. Ha! I cleaned it up and put her in a new diaper. The first diaper she was in was a prefold. I may not have folded it all that well because her poo did leak. After that one I put her in a fitted with a cover. I changed the fitted 2 more times during the day and then before bed put her in a GoodMama fitted (which is thicker and has two built in extra layers of absorbency) and cover for nighttime. Pretty simple! I am running a load of diapers right now because I didn't want to nasty poo one sitting around. Laundry will honestly have to be a whole different post since it's a lot to talk about and I'm JUST getting started. But this is the basics (thanks Katie):
1. Cold pre rinse cycle

2. Hot wash then cold rinse with 1 tablespoon of soap. It has to be free of fragrance/dyes/enzymes/brighteners

3. Extra rinse

4. Tumble dry or hang to dry

This is a great chart for what laundry soaps to use or not to use- .

Right now I'm feeling like I'm going to have a meltdown about some $$$ things and so that being said cloth diapering is looking very attractive. It appears that you can cloth diaper if you have $50 or $5000. Whatever you have to spend on diapers, you can and you will :) BUT you don't have to spend a ton. A friend showed me Sun Baby Diapers and they are super cute! 12 pocket diapers and 12 inserts is only $60 and of course you can get more and spend more.

TheGoodMama diapers are super nice, but spendy. They start at $29 just for the fitted inside part and then an additional $16 and up for the cover.

I'm finding a lot on Ebay and Craigslist, so that is also a good option for buying if you don't mind used. I personally couldn't care less. If they are washed, who cares! It's just baby poop :)

Let's think about it this way...when I was a Personal Banker I often had to help people judge whether a mortgage refinance was beneficial. One way to do this was to see how much the refi would cost and then how long it would take them to recoup the cost. Ie. If a refi cost $4k and they would save $300 a month, it would take them 13.3 months to be ahead- meaning they better plan on being in that home longer than 14 months to make it work it. I think we can apply this principle to diapers. I currently pay $30-$45 a month in diapers. I'm finding some great Fuzzibunz diaper lots online and if I can get an adequate stash for $100, it'll only take me less than 3 months to make it profitable! Evie is about 6 months old so we have 18 months or more of diapering left which means I would save $450 just in diapering her (based on a $30 a month cost)! And if we use the diapers for other children we'll just keep saving. Of course if I spend more on buying diapers, and I might have to, then our savings would be a little less. Interesting, huh? Many websites will tell you that you'll save $2k-$4k by cloth diapering and that just makes me want to say, "where the heck are you buying your diapers? You're getting ripped off!" BUT, it can still be cost efficient to cloth diaper and it's obviously better for your child's skin and our nation's landfills.

More to come on this topic, but so far I'm liking the thought of cloth diapering. Last week I posted on Facebook, "I'm not totally sure how it happened, but somehow I turned into a homebirthing, veggie growing, amber teething necklace wearing, breastfeeding, baby-wearing, sometimes co-sleeping, limited vaxing, semi(and more by the year)-crunchy mom ♥" What was missing from that??? CLOTH DIAPERING! lol

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Chewbeads Giveaway!

Hey mamas and mamas to be...a few days ago I found Chewbeads online and my first thought was, "OMGosh I want one!" I don't have an extra $30 lying around at the moment so I haven't been able to order one, but I found this blog that is doing a Chewbeads giveaway. Woop woop!

What are chewbeads? Check them out here. And now *drumroll please*'s the giveaway: CLICK HERE (Pink Holidaze Blog).

You can also like Chewbeads on Facebook to find out about products and other giveaways.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I'm back!

Yay, blogger is back! The site was down for me for a couple days and I got irritated trying to access it so I gave up on blogging for a little while. But I'm back!

The days are flying by in a crazy whirlwind. I'm still exhausted most days because even though she is happy, chubby, and just plain jolly- little miss Evie is not a huge sleeper and prefers to sleep ON ME. :)

Jacob has been here 3 weeks already, can you believe it? He's made some great friendships and I'm already feeling sad that he'll have to leave these when he goes back to his mom's. He goes to Sunday School and Royal Rangers with them and will also go to VBS in June with them. What a blessing that my friends have boys his age! He LOVES spending time with them.

We are 1 1/2 weeks into potty training with Eliana. She typically does really well during the day. Sunday was our first day of no accidents but then she woke up with a stomach bug Monday morning and that understandably set us back. But by Thursday we were back on track and she was accident free Thurs and Fri. Today was another story. Two stinky accidents (SO disgusting) and one pee pee accident. She gets busy playing and forgets and honestly has only pooped in the toilet a couple times so we're still working on that! She wears a pull-up at night and I don't think she's ready for undies at night yet. Each child is different and if yours can do more power to ya, but Elly just isn't there yet and I'm ok with that. If she if day-trained for now that is great. Her pediatrician said it's typical to wear pull-ups at night for at least 6 months if not longer once they are day-trained.

I joined Amazon's free mom club and then ordered pull-ups on there. They were 23 cents each which is a very good price, and free shipping, too. As far as Evie goes I'm still open to cloth diapers but at this point the sudden change from a 4 person family to 5 has left my head spinning most days, so cloth diapers are LOW priority. They are also an investment up front and let me tell you- 11 year old boys eat a that's where the money is going these days. And apparently our attorney sort of shafted us when drawing up the parenting plan because there's no clause for us to not pay child support when he is here. So yes, he is here for 9 weeks and we have to pay his mom child support every week :( Makes me mad if I think about it too much. Or even if I think about it a little. Ok, moving on.

We almost have our garden all the way planted now. I'm doing everything from seeds this year as it's so much cheaper and you get so many more plants. I'm using all Ed Hume seeds. Moms and More had a garden specialist come speak a couple months ago and he recommended Ed Hume seeds because they are grown in Everett and are cultivated so that the strongest of each crop becomes the seeds for the next one and so forth.

So far we have bush peas, pole peas, carrots, walla walla onions, 4 different lettuces, green beens, zucchini, cucumbers, and strawberries. I also have mint, rosemary, parsley, lavender, and chives. Just need to decide where to plant the corn. Jacob helped me plant the seeds and he was surprised that it's actually kind of fun! Eliana likes to plant the seeds also. I get irritated because I'm always fighting the clock trying to get work done before Evie flips out and needs me again (she's still very clingy to mama) so I get impatient with Eliana and then she cries. It's all very dramatic. And then I feel bad for being a mean, nasty mama only worrying about finishing it and not enjoying the process. That's me though, I like to get to the deadline and just DO IT. Having children is teaching me to enjoy the process....or try to enjoy the process :) So I sat down and let her sit on my lap, butt naked as she was since she peed in her pants and I didn't want to go all the way up to the house to get new undies (lol), and we planted green beans together one at a time. She is so super uber sweet and I need to remember to cultivate her sensitivity and not crush it.

Alright, nothing profound to post right now. Lots brewing in my mindgrapes, but I just don't have the energy to go there right now.

Peace out

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The price of being a one income family

Sometimes there is a price to being a one income family. Today is the kind of day we feel that price.

We have an '01 Durango with two rows. You would think it could hold 5 people, but once you put two carseats in the backseat, good luck. My sister can fit in between the carseats but she is long and lean with narrow hips. I definitely can't fit back there and neither can my mom or Craig.

With Jacob being here we have been borrowing my parent's 1988 Suburban. I learned to drive in it and although it's missing luxuries like key FOB's and a cd player, it works...Well sort of. It was always very reliable 15 years ago when my parents drove it all the time. But for us it has been unreliable. It'll start but then not stay running. 1 1/2 weeks ago I was actually driving it when it stopped working. I was going 25 mph and had to pull it off to the side of the road quickly. And I was by myself with 3 kids. Not a good feeling.

Last weekend we had a get together to be at, the weekend before that was when Jacob flew in and then I was in the Easter production at church all day and the weekend before that I was crazy busy putting on the Moms and More Rummage Sale. And the weekend before that? Yup, Craig worked the WHOLE weekend. I was looking forward to and dreaming of this weekend for the whole last month. We woke up and the sun was shining and we got all ready to go to the Poulsbo Farmer's Market. We were loaded up in the car at 10:10am. Yay! BUT, the car wouldn't stay running. Craig would get it going and within 5 seconds it would die. This happened over and over. He went and bought a new distributor cap and rotor but that didn't fix it. 2 hours later I told him to please just take a break and spend time with his kids that he hardly sees. Such a frustrating day. It's just been one thing after another lately, you know lots of little things that all combined make you want to crawl in bed and just cry. But I have a  breastfeeding 5 month old and potty training 2 year old. No crawling in bed and crying for this mama!

At this point we are stranded at home. And no that's not the end of the world as this is a great house and we have a big yard. I just haven't left this house since last Monday (seriously) and I was really looking forward to getting out of the house and going to the Farmer's Market.

This is the cost of being a single income family. We can't afford to just go buy another car that will fit all of us. I see a lot of my working mom friends driving around in new or almost brand new cars, but we can't do that. I wouldn't trade the car situation for being home- definitely not- but that doesn't mean it's not frustrating sometimes. Craig's truck is paid for, we paid cash for it back when I was working. The Durango has a loan and we owe too much on it to do anything. Liberty Bay Auto offered a Kia Minivan with an almost $400 monthly payment. Uh, NO.

And it's true that we're only going to be squished and tight for another 6 weeks, but what happens when we want to have another baby? I will just have to take it one day at a time and trust God to provide a vehicle when He provides a baby.

I will find a way to get over this helpless feeling today and we'll try to make the best of our day! Right?

And Happy Mother's Day.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Potty Training Day 2 and 3

I had been warned by several moms about how terrible potty training can be. I read the blogs and Dr. Sears articles and I quite frankly feared it! However I'm learning there is not much a paper towel and lysol wipe can't remedy. Potty training is not the end of the world! :)

Yesterday's count was:Accidents-3, Successes-21

Today's count was:Accidents- 3 1/2, Successes-13

The biggest issue right now is that Eliana is afraid to go poop in the toilet. Apparently this is usually the biggest hurdle in potty training and a normal fear with children. When she was in diapers (oh my gosh *tears*...she's in undies now, what a big girl!) she would go off and find a corner to do her business. Like a mama cat she wanted to be alone with no one looking at her or pressuring her. I'm hoping that if we can get her to go poo at least once in the toilet we can just make it a circus in here celebrating how awesome she is and then she'll always want to do it in there. I fed her high fiber oatmeal for breakfast, strawberries for snack, lentil and spinach soup for about Fiber and still nothing! It's bound to happen eventually and I'm trying to not make it a big deal in the meantime. Last night we spent almost 2 hours trying to get her to go poop and she kept crying and saying "buns owie!" But she clenched that little hiney and didn't let anything out. Now she's probably backed up :( this blog really about POOP? What has my life come to??? ha!

She's been doing very well and I'm so proud of her. Half of the time she forgets about the jelly beans and so that's nice, too. Her little best friend just potty trained also. They are 6 weeks apart and totally different personalities. But we mothers will make them friends gosh darn it! Eliana is touchy-feely. She loves to hug and snuggle, hold hands, share everything, and be 'buddies'. Alivia is more independent and much less touchy-feely- this is where the conflict happens. My little touchy girl is holding on for dear life for a hug and kiss and poor Alivia is trying to escape the little clingy hands! It's funny to watch and we know someday we'll just laugh about it and they'll be walking off hand in hand to play. Alivia has mastered poo and pee on the toilet so hopefully Eliana isn't too far behind :)

Eliana stayed about 98% dry during yesterday's super short 30 minute nap and then amazingly stayed dry all night, too. Incredible. Granted she was up before 7am (NOOO!!!), but staying dry was awesome. Today she napped for about 2 hours and her pull up was wet, but I was really grateful for the nap. I decided to go with pull ups or 'special undies' as we call them for night time so I wouldn't be changing sheets 2x a day. We'll see how it goes. I also have waterproof diaper covers (just the thin plastic undies from Walmart) that I can use over undies if needed. That way they still have that icky wet underwear feeling but the sheets aren't a wreck. I'm not positive that she's developmentally able to hold her pee all night every night so we'll just see how it goes. I think I will also talk to the pediatrician about it next week when we go in to check on the girl's ears.

Today she drove me a little crazy by sitting on the toilet and insisting she needed to go pee but then not actually peeing. It was like I was watching the minutes of the day go down the toilet instead of her pee. Frustrating. I realize now that it's not that big of a deal and I just need to breathe and give her grace. She's only 2 1/2 and learning something new. Take a chill pill Diana! Sometimes life overwhelms me (lots going on, not just the potty training!) and I become Debbie Downer. In those moments I'm grateful for friends.

I will say that Potty Training is fairly exhausting. As a mama you have to be on high alert at all times to watch for cues. In a diaper Elly could go off and play for an hour and I didn't even think twice. Now it's like, "uh-oh, where is she? Elly, do you need to go potty!" PANIC! My house is 98% carpet- light beige carpet, too.
Overall, potty training has not been something to fear. It's a huge milestone in development and something we will continue to work through in the weeks and months to come. I am so proud of her :)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Here's a thought:

If our bodies don't work the way we think they will and they give us a heck of a time just trying to can we trust them to do birth like they are supposed to?

I just read a question similar to this on a birth page and it made me stop and go "hmmmm. I NEVER thought of that before but it totally makes sense!"

We started actively trying to get pregnant in August 2006 (meaning trying with docs and everything because just being off birth control wasn't doing jack). We didn't conceive until almost March of 2008. It was agonizing. And I know many many people would think that is a cake walk as they've been trying for much longer. I empathize and I ache for you. All I can speak about is my own pain and what it felt like for us. My body did fail me. I am a woman. I am supposed to have eggs and I am supposed to ovulate. After ovulation I am supposed to menstrate. Other than already having eggs (we're born with our life supply) my body did NONE of those things. I felt like a failure and like "what kind of woman am I?" We conceived on 200mg of Clomid which is about the highest dose an OB will let you take. It was also cycle 6 which is usually the last cycle they'll let you take before you need a break or they suggest IUI or IVF. Every month was emotionally painful and sex was a stressful chore. When I got pregnant I continued to see the OB that helped us with the fertility problems. I didn't appreciate her underhanded jabs about my weight but didn't really understand I could transfer care. Looking back it's appalling to me that I went home in tears 2x after she slyly called me fat! I already knew I was overweight and the 30lbs I gained during the stressful years of infertility weren't helping anything :( Anyway, I trusted the 'system' that got me pregnant to help me have a beautiful labor and delivery. FAIL.

So anyway, I could write all night but I think I'll let this one simmer......I think on some level the way my first labor and delivery played out have something to do with me not trusting my body that couldn't even get pregnant on it's own. Sad and clearly not God's plan for me. My 2nd labor and delivery were completely different and totally healing because I learned to trust my body and God's plan for childbirth.

Potty training: Day 1

Today was a momentous occasion in the Frazier household! My oldest child, sweet 2 1/2 year old Eliana, started potty training! Can you believe it? She drinks from a real cup, eats whatever we're eating, wears undies...what's next? College?

I had wanted to start potty training a couple weeks ago but decided to hold off with Jacob just getting here and all the change that brings. But yesterday I walked in on her in the bathroom trying to get her diaper off to sit on the toilet- 2x! So, off to Walmart we went last night to buy lots of undies and a potty seat to go on the toilet. This morning when she got out of bed she immediately remembered it was time for "new undies". We said bye-bye to her diapers first. I took the diaper caddy and emptied the contents into a box and we said goodbye and kissed a diaper farewell. I will put them in the basement for baby sissy to grow into but as far as Eliana knows, there are NO diapers for her anymore! Then we put on her new undies, Dora was her choice, a short dress and went to the bathroom to try and go potty. Nothing came out so we headed downstairs for breakfast. During this time I reminded her "we want to keep our new undies nice and dry, pee pee goes in the potty, ok?" For breakfast she had high fiber oatmeal because I wanted to make sure she had to go #2 today. Then I gave her a glass of milk and a sippy with 1/4 white grape juice and 3/4 water. The idea is to flood the child with liquids so they get LOTS of practice going potty. After breakfast I tried her on the potty again and still nothing. Then within 10 minutes there was a huge puddle on the floor, seat, and her clothes :( I said, "uh-oh! Pee-pee goes in the potty, ok? We want to keep our undies nice and dry and go pee pee in the big toilet just like mommy." I said it casually and made sure it wasn't a reprimand. Then we went on with playing. Over the next hour or so there were a few more attempts on the toilet with no success and 2 more accidents :( I was starting to feel nervous, honestly. But, then she started peeing and caught herself and said, "uh oh, pee pee!!!" We ran to the toilet and she finished on the potty. That was pretty much her last accident of the day other than just tiny leaks here and there. The rest of the day she went in the toilet a whopping 25 more times! And yes, we pretty much lived in the bathroom. I realized I couldn't be distracted at all and really had to watch her for any signs of needing to go. In a big house like this it was a bit of a challenge. I had to be with her at all times, with a cranky 5 month old on my hip. Sometimes she initiated and sometimes I had to remind her. She loves going on the toilet though! When she goes we say, "yay Elly, you did it!!!! " We do a cheer and clap for her. Then she "wipes her pee pee", pulls up her undies, and flushes the toilet.  There were a few times she wanted to be alone and she'd say, "bye bye mama!". I walked away but still within earshot to hear the tinkle.

For every success she gets 1 jelly belly and 2 for a #2. I was waiting all day for that #2 and gosh darn it I was washing dishes and didn't notice her grunting! We got her on the toilet right after but missed the boat on that one. Hopefully tomorrow we'll get it. She seems to really understand that pee pee goes in the potty and she does not like having wet undies. All of my friends that suggested having a lot of underwear were totally right! I bought 3 packages at Walmart and we'll return what we end up not needing. Today we used a lot though.

A generous friend brought us a cute froggy potty seat today. We were playing outside when she came and Eliana promptly christened the seat- 2 different times! ha! I am really glad that Elly is going potty on the normal toilet inside the house, but having a potty chair will be SO helpful if we're out playing on our property and for car rides. A wise friend told me that when they have to go, they HAVE to go. A car ride from Poulsbo to Bremerton is way too long for a 2 year old that has to pee (hey, it's pretty much too long for me!) and unloading 3 kids and trying to get in a store before she pees is just unrealistic. If I have a potty seat in the back of the car she can just go real quick without me unloading the other kids. Genius! It will also be wonderful for camping this summer :)

As far as nap time goes, it didn't really happen. I put her down in just undies and 20 minutes later I thought I heard her say "poo poo" on the monitor. I RAN up there and we tried on the toilet but it was a false alarm. I put her back down but within 10 minutes heard, "this is a big pee pee. I'm gonna take my undies off." LOL. So back upstairs I went. She had done a small pee so we changed her and let her finish on the toilet. I decided nap was a lost cause at that point. She is now in bed in just jammies and undies (yikes!), so we'll see how it goes. Worst case I wash her jammies and bedding. Craig made her crib so there's a sheet, then waterproof cover, then another sheet in case I need to change it in the middle of the night. I'm not at all expecting her to wake up totally dry, but I want to give her a try and see what she's ready for. To be honest, I wet the bed occasionally until I was 5 or 6 I think. This is a part of development that can't be rushed. Some kids sleep very deeply and don't get the signal to wake up for pee. I'm hoping she doesn't struggle with it like I did since I remember being embarrassed at sleep overs, but either way she'll be ok. I did buy a small pack of Pull Ups and am not afraid to use them if need be, but I just thought we'd try and see what happens :) I'd rather her body tell me it's not ready than me tell her body it's not ready.

So far it appears that my gut was right and she was really ready to potty train. There's no going back now and that's kind of surreal. She is my little Elly but yet she's so quickly transitioning out of toddler hood! The next thing to go will be her crib, which is another issue at night. If she does wake up to pee I'll have to hear her on the monitor since she can't just go in and go potty by herself.

Wish us luck and pray for us for tomorrow and the following days! Potty training is a little challenging with an 11 year old and 5 month old needing me also, but we're doing it :)

Today's count: 4 accidents and 26 successes!

Keys to success:

Stay home. Don't go anywhere for a few days!

Quit diapers cold turkey. Have a big stash of undies at the ready.

Load them up with water, juice, and milk. The more they drink the more 'practice' they'll get.

Pay attention to your child for any cues of needing to go and prompt them to go.

Reward them! Stickers, jelly beans, chocolate chips, M & M's, etc.

NEVER berate them for an accident. Be kind and encouraging at all times.

Have stools near the toilets so they can get up to the seat by themselves. The little seats that go on the toilet are nice and even better is the 2-in-1 seat for adults and toddlers. It's amazing and $30 at Walmart. We could only afford 1 but I'd put them on every toilet if I could.

Be positive and cheerful during the day. Make your child feel special!

And yes, I am an authority on this subject after 1 day of potty :)