Tag Archives: potty training

what’s up / 03

Making: elaborate obstacle courses for my kids throughout our house because it’s currently -28 degrees outside and I just can’t even.

Drinking: coffee coffee coffee! (in the voice of Lorelai Gilmore)

Reading: weather updates, instagram updates from kaitlyn bristowe and jason tartick, my new Dining In cookbook, where the wild things are, and crazy rich asians. among other things.

Wanting: to find a good neck cream. yes, a NECK CREAM. i looked in the mirror the other day and realized that my neck is starting to look like slime that’s being pulled apart. i’m sorry for the nightmares. #33

Watching: the bachelor. (basic and proud!) and i also just finished watching the ted bundy tapes on netflix, which is equal parts interesting and horrifying.

Wishing: that i was back in portland. good gawd I miss it. especially when it’s -28 here and 50 there. just a casual 78 degree difference and yes i used a calculator. a friend of mine from portland posted a picture of herself wearing sandals outside yesterday and it made me want to punch a small bird.

Listening: to podcasts, nonstop!!! my favorite lately is the my favorite murder pod (don’t knock it til you try it). i also love off the vine, criminal and of course… the queen herself, soul sessions with oprah. (also my friend erin and i are thinking of starting a podcast about parenting and life and women and wine, would anyone listen???)

Enjoying: red bull. i used to work for red bull in college (yes, i drove the truck with the can and no, i didn’t just go into bars and sample it to drunk people it was more sophisticated than that OK!!???!!) and i OD’d on it for 4 years and then took a long hiatus… but for the past few months, i’ve been living for it.

Loving: my kids playing together! we’ve had a rough go of it lately with crosby and willa just screaming at each other nonstop. ever since willa found her words, she’s been USING THEM. and crosby was not prepared for her strong-willa’d-ness. it’s been stressful and frustrating… but i’m trying a new tactic where i put the responsibility on them. for instance, if they are playing together and start arguing (AKA screaming at the top of their lungs) I ferociously calmly tell them that if they can’t resolve their issue, then they can’t play together. and if they can’t, they have to separate. sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. but it’s wayyyyy better than me yelling at them to take breaks and then breathing into a paper bag while simultaneously pounding wine. i’m kidding. maybe.

Hoping: that my husband will pick up more paper bags and wine on his way home.

Needing: somebody to come to my house and change willa’s diaper because i can smell it from 20 yards away. better yet, i need somebody to come to my house and potty train her, because a toddler who eats the same things an adult eats has diapers that look and smell like burning garbage (AKA donald trump).

Feeling: cabin fever. although a part of me kind of likes the feeling of coziness and surrendering to just having a lazy movie marathon day.

Wearing: leggings and sports bras. i recently got certified as a bodypump instructor and have been working on certification as a ymca group instructor! (humble brag) that said, i’ve been at the gym a lot lately to train get free childcare for 2 hours.


how to train your dragon. i mean, your toddler.

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As a first-time mom of an 18-month-old, I find myself constantly conflicted over which way is the best way to raise my kid.  This wasn’t really an issue back in the early days of his life.  Back when we merely existed in the realm of “survival mode”, with each day passing in a blur of feed, burp, change, (attempt) sleep, swap out breast pads, repeat. As tough as those early days could be, there was very little to think about in regards to the discipline and education of my new baby. But the moment Crosby became a toddler, shit got real, real quick. Now each day brings a new challenge, a new discovery, a new phase, a new gray hair…  And with every teachable moment, I become more and more aware of the responsibility I have to, like, raise a decent human being. So, what’s the solution? What is the magical formula for raising a good kid? What is the right style, the best method, the correct approach?

There are endless theories about the best way to raise your kid… and it can all be so overwhelming. The vast amount of information out there makes me want to hurl myself into a vat of merlot. And I know I can’t be the only one feeling this way. I’ve talked at length with my mom friends about this very topic. So in order to save my fellow parents a great deal of time and energy, I’ve done all the research and come up with the very best way to parent your toddler.

Without further ado, here an easy step-by-step guide to train your toddler.

Don’t ever say “no” to your child, it will only teach them to say it back to you.
But definitely say “no” to your child whenever you need to, it builds character and teaches boundaries.

Speaking of boundaries, it’s best to establish firm rules as early as possible.
But give your child independence, they need their freedom to explore.

Establish the parent/child dynamic right away.  Your child needs to know that you’re the boss, always, otherwise they will become disobedient.
But it’s most important to be their friend, otherwise they will lie about everything for the rest of their lives.

Do point out positive traits in other children, such as sharing and using manners.
But do not ever compare your child to another child, it can cause stress for both you and your child. And it will emotionally scar them for life.

Keep your expectations of your child high, so that they learn to work hard and not to give up.
But also keep your expectations low, so that your child can actually meet them and experience the feeling of pride.
If you keep your expectations somewhere in the middle, your child will be boring. And you don’t want to have a boring child, because no one will like them. Including you.

Don’t fight with your partner in front of your little one, it can cause emotional damage and feelings of instability.
But arguing with your partner in front of your kids is good, because it demonstrates conflict resolution.
But only if you argue with a forced smile on your face.

Feed your child only organic homemade, and ideally homegrown food. No sugar or processed foods otherwise you’re setting them up for a lifetime of obesity.
But you don’t want them to crave sweets and unhealthy foods and get eating disorders later in life, so you should actually give them a good mix of food, no restrictions.*

Don’t ever force your child to eat! This can cause mealtime stress and resistance on their part. And pit stains on your part.
But you must make sure that your child is getting at least 5 or more servings of fruit and vegetables per day. If not, they will shrivel up and die. Don’t stress. Be casual!

When you toddler starts to tantrum, get down on their level and talk them through what’s bothering them. This is how they learn to recognize feelings! If you skip this very important step, your child will never know the difference between happy and sad and it will be all your fault.
But whatever you do, do not give your child any attention when they’re throwing a tantrum. You must absolutely ignore them at all costs. This tactic is especially relevant if your child tantrums while at the supermarket. For some reason. In this case, you must always drag them out out of the store kicking and screaming. Just leave your groceries behind, along with your sanity.

Definitely teach your child to share, otherwise they will become a big fat jerk.
But don’t actually force them to share because it undermines their ability to think for themselves.

Make sure your toddler is learning a new word every day, otherwise they will become a slow learner.
But don’t force them to speak before they’re ready, it could stunt their speech.

Introduce the potty as soon as possible! Your child needs to become comfortable with it before using it.
But do not introduce the potty at all until your child shows signs of readiness or they will have bowel issues.

Get excited about potty-training! Always give praise and celebrate the successes!
But DO NOT make a big deal out of the mishaps. In fact, you shouldn’t show any response at all. Potty-training should be serious.

Rewards for good behavior are a great reinforcement for children.
But don’t ever give rewards because then your child is destined to be a spoiled brat.

Any and all screen time is bad.
But educational, time-moderated screen time can be beneficial for building your child’s social skills.
But only if you’re coviewing. And only at certain times of the day. And only if it’s been at least 2 hours since your child last ate.

Don’t overstimulate your child.
But don’t let them get bored.
Both can cause acne.

Be the perfect parent.
But not too perfect, your child needs to see you mess up sometimes.
But not too much.
But not too little either.

So there you have it. You now have all the tools you need to raise the perfect toddler.  It’s easy, right?

(*thanks for the addition, Laura! :) )