The Summer Schedule….at least for now.

11 06 2009

One things about schedules is that they change.  So for now we have a schedule that will hopefully work for our family.  I am not a rigid schedule keeper in the summer, so this will be a little vague.  I LOVE summer and love that we have so many things we can do.

7 – 7:30 am Children wake up

7:30 breakfast, get dressed and chores

8:30 run any errands that need to be done

10 am Snack Time

10 am – 11:30 Free time ( swimming, park, outside time, etc.)

11:30 lunch time

12:00 ish til 3 ish Owen nap time (this has gotten earlier now that he runs so much energy off in the morning)

12-1 pm older two do School Skills Time (this is time to doing reading, math workbooks, mazes, handwriting, etc.  Pretty much anything I want them to keep up with over the summer)

1pm- 3 pm Grace nap time

1-2 pm Isaac rest time (he reads, does puzzles etc. laying on the couch)

2-3 pm Isaac video time (this is either T.V. time or Computer Time)

3 pm Snack Time

3-5 pm Free Time (again anything fun we can do in the summer)

5 pm Dinner Time

6 pm-8 pm (Outside things….Church, Tee-Ball, etc)

8 pm Bathtime/Showers, stories, P.J’s etc.

8:30 bedtime for Owen

9 pm bedtime for Grace and Isaac

Now this will change a little from day to day.  If we go to my parents home we will spend the whole day swimming etc, so things change.  In the summer we like to just enjoy doing lots of fun stuff.

Have a great Summer

Potty Training Questions Answered….

10 06 2009

I have gotten a few questions about potty training so I thought I would answer them here.

Our plastic pants leak….any ideas? 

First, let me say that plastic pants will leak.  They are just to help hold in a little pee (like when a child starts to go then stops themselves etc.).  To help with this problem make sure they are snug around the legs.  Sew them if you have to to make the legs tighter.  Use the Gerber training underwear with them.  This will help TONS!  They have a little more fabric to help hold in an accident.

What about going out?  Can you use pull-ups? Do you use them?

I am not anti pull ups.  I think they are great for lots of times when a child will not have a potty near by or when a child is still learning to give you a few minutes warning when they have to go.  After my children have been in underwear for a few weeks and know how to go, when they should go etc. we will use a pull up.  I use them on long car trips, when a potty may not be near, we use them at the grocery store (they always have to go when I am 10 mins. from the nearest potty).  I still take them to the potty, I just understand that developmentally they don’t understand that they need to tell me WAY in advance in these situations to make it on time.

I make sure I take them before we start a trip at the store and I take them again if I am near one.  I don’t wait for them to tell me. I also don’t ask, “Do you need to go pee pee?”  I say, ” Owen, we are going pee pee in the potty now, let’s go”.  This way they don’t have an opportunity to have a choice in the matter.

I use a portable potty seat.  This is amazing and I think all mommies need one!  I got ours at babies r us and have used it for many children and still use it for Grace because she doesn’t stand like Isaac does.  🙂  Ours is just a plain one, but I couldnt’ find a picture of it on-line so the link goes to a character one.

Also, my boys sometimes go on the side of the road if we need them to etc.  They are able to stand and go so we go in the grass if we really need to.  With a girl that is more tricky.

Potty Training…..

5 06 2009

I have been asked by many people to write about how we potty train in our home.  First let me say this is not for everyone.  You need to understand our parenting philosophy before I can write on this topic.  Our home is not a child centered home.  Our children do not pick their bedtimes, what they will eat, what their schedules will be etc.  We are currently moving towards a large family and feel that  a child centered home would not work for us etc.  We also have other reasons why, but that isn’t for this post. 

With that being said….our children don’t tell us when they are ready to potty train, we tell them.  Now, this is the complete opposite of the current worldview on potty training….they say….wait until your child can do these things etc., when your child is ready they will do it etc.  The more and more I see this happen the more and more I see very upset parents!  They don’t understand why potty training is taking weeks or even months, why they still can’t go out in public in underwear at sometimes 3 years of age etc….even older at times.  I feel that a young child that has too many choices will milk it for all it is worth….and this includes potty training.

Now, these are just my options, you may feel different on them and that is fine.  This has worked for us so we will continue with it.  Isaac ( now age 5) was potty trained at 22.5 months, Grace (now 4) was trained at 18.5 months, Owen (now 23 months) was trained 2 days ago.  Each child took between 2-7 days to train.  Isaac took a whole week, but I think it was because he didn’t have older siblings to watch.

We always start training before 24 months of age.  We do it when the child is capable of talking or signing and understands treats.  (which doesn’t take long now a days).  We have some simple rules….NO DIAPERS, NO PULL -UPS and NO GIVING UP for at least 4 days! 

The schedule is simple.  On day 1 you are teaching the child that pee and poo come out of them and that they control it.  On day 2 you are teaching them that it is to go in the potty (or whatever term you use).  On day 3 you are putting it all together to hopefully have a fully trained kid.

DAY 1.

Put your child in underwear (yes you read that right, no pull ups) and rubber pants if you would like.  I highly recommend these for the first few days and for outings after that until no longer needed etc.

Fill your child with as much fluid as you possibly can. (water, juice, milk etc.)

Take your child to the bathroom to pee every 8-10 mins.  Yup, that is right, you won’t being doing much else that day.  Set a timer and every time it goes off take your child.  Have them sit for a short story or song.  Your goal is to “catch” the pee coming out.  Once you catch the pee give them a treat.  A sticker, candy etc.  Make it small because you will be giving out lots over the next few days.  After about the 3rd catch of pee your child will start to realize what muscles it takes to get that pee out.

Now, we do this at a young age, so our children still nap.  At nap-time we lay them in their bed and put on a diaper. (This is the only time they are to wear one).  Once they awake from their nap you need to take that diaper off before leaving the bed and put on underwear right away).

Continue with every 8-10 mins. until dinner time.

DAY 2:

Now day 2 is almost the same as day 1 except you will take them about every 12-15 mins. all day long.  Remember to keep filling them with fluids!!!!  You want them peeing all day long…..this helps them learn the muscles that control their bladder and bowels.  Give a treat for each victory!  Have them call an adult they love etc. Make it lots of fun with lots of smiles!!!!

Day 3

Day 3 is the trial day.  Try to let the child tell you when they need to go, if they haven’t go in about 20-25 mins. then take them.  If they are telling you and having mostly victories then you can start to back off and taking them so much.  If they start to have accidents then take them!    Some children need an extra day or two to learn that muscle.

Day 4-7. 

Slowly start to back off on treats and back off on controlling when they go.  Let them try to tell you. 


You need to have definitions for this.  You can’t call a pen*s a pee pee and them tell them to pee pee in the potty.   You need one word per thing you are talking about….keep it simple.  Example: Isaac go pee pee in the potty.  Good job Isaac.  Etc.

Do not use pull ups even when out and about.  Use the old fashion rubber pants. (We bought Gerber ones).  This will save you the hassle from bring so many extra clothes, but allows your child to feel themselves get wet.

Only use diapers at bedtime.

Do not give up if your child doesn’t get it by day 1.  The first day is LONG and hard on everyone doing this.  But when you catch a few victories they will start to LOVE it!!!!

Involve older siblings if you have them.  In our home if an older child is helping (reading stories while they sit on the potty, reminding them to go, setting the timer, cheering when they go etc) they also get a treat!  This gives mom some extra hands in potty training!  Use those older siblings to your advantage.

Count the victories not the accidents.  Everyday the victory count will go up and the accident count will go down.  Don’t discourage yourself when at the end of day 1 you have 3 victories and 12 accidents.  Just count the victories!  It will make everyone happier.

Follow every step and start between 19-24 months.  We have found that 23 months is almost the perfect age for this!


I have had many parents follow this and many have had great success.  The ones that didn’t have success usually didn’t follow every step.  They picked and choose which step they wanted to do.  That won’t work with this way of potty training.

Update….long time needed

1 06 2009

Well, we are really needing a family update.  Let me start with….we are still finishing up homeschooling for this year, so we have been a little busy. 

I will start with Isaac.  He is doing awesome!  Reading has clicked with him and he is reading a lot of short sentences and stories etc.  His world is wide open now and he really likes that.  He is a typical 5 year old…trying to figure out social circles and friends.  He is still adjusting to our move and making friends is coming slowly.  This is not a bad thing….sometimes the slow moving friendships are the ones that last.  He is in Tee-Ball and loves it!  He has quite an arm on him and is getting much better at batting.  His hand and eye coordination has improved so much from last season.  We are really proud of him.

Isaac batting at his first game of the season.

Isaac batting at his first game of the season.


Isaac on Easter morning

Isaac on Easter morning

On mother's day with the mirror the kids made for me.

On mother's day with the mirror the kids made for me.

Grace is 4 years old today!  I can’t believe how fast she has grown.  She is becoming such a sweet child.  6 months ago we didn’t know if what we were doing as parents was working with her.  She cried a lot and was VERY sassy.  But by God’s grace she is really coming around to be such a wonderful little girl.  She loves babies and art.  She wants to do her hair, pick out her clothes and of course her shoes!  She really wants to do dance class so we will be getting her in a class in the fall.  What a great little girl….Happy Birthday Gracelyn, mommy and daddy love you so much!  We thank God that He choose to give you life and what a miracle you are.

Grace with her princess Easter eggs.

Grace with her princess Easter eggs.

Grace with her princess gear on.

Grace with her princess gear on.

MOmmy and Grace on mother's Day.

MOmmy and Grace on mother's Day.


Owen is growing up!  He is almost 23 months old and is one of the sweetest little boys when he isn’t trying to assert his own will.  He is in a twin bed now and will start potty training tomorrow morning.  It will be a long 3 days, so please pray for us, but God has always been faithful with this area for us and it has gone quick.  I pray it goes that way with him as well.  He LOVES baseball and cars.  He is such a funny little guy.  Now that he has had his new tubes in his years he is talking so much!  He is putting together words and sentences and dropping most of his signing.  He was doing about 60 signs, but now only uses them when needed!!!  That is awesome!  He is very happy to kiss my growing belly and sing to the baby when asked to.

Owen in his new bed!

Owen in his new bed!

Owen on Easter Morning.

Owen on Easter Morning.

Owen doing his eggs...look at that red hair.

Owen doing his eggs...look at that red hair.


Baby Champ is growing as well.  We are almost 27 weeks and moving along pretty well.  I am growing and finally really feeling this baby move.  Our placenta is in the front this time making the movements of the baby harder to feel.  But the baby is growing and is much stronger now so we are feeling it!  The kids love to talk to Champ and sing as well.  This baby will be well loved when it is welcomed into our home.

Here I am at almost 24 weeks.

Here I am at almost 24 weeks.


Now here at some pics of the kids…..

Owen playing baseball

Owen playing baseball

Picture 103

Grace with her Kentucky friends.  Grace, McKay, Jaden and Nathan

Grace with her Kentucky friends. Grace, McKay, Jaden and Nathan

Isaac with his Kentucky friends...Ballard, Dylon and Isaac

Isaac with his Kentucky friends...Ballard, Dylon and Isaac

Brody (cousin), Isaac, Mac (cousin) and Gracelyn eating ice cream.

Brody (cousin), Isaac, Mac (cousin) and Gracelyn eating ice cream.