Wednesday, June 18, 2014

...What's That Saying About Good Intentions...

Two words.  Potty Training.  Let's make it three words.  Potty Training Twins.

Are you laughing at me yet?  If not, you will be after I describe Take 1 (yeah, there will be multiple takes of this...multiples seem to be our thing):

Scott and I have been reading up about different ways to potty train toddlers, especially ways to potty train toddler twins.  It seems that there are basically two schools of thought on potty training.  You're either going to take your time and ease your children into using the potty or you're going to be hard-core and get it done between 1-3 days (depending on the level of insanity that you're willing to impose on your children).  As far as the differences between singletons and twins, everything that we read said to avoid doing anything that will visualize their differences, like sticker charts.

So, Scott and I decided to try the three day potty training method.  On day 1 you are supposed to remove their diaper as soon as they wake up, refrain from putting pants on them, and basically stalk them with a potty waiting for them to pee or poop.  No pants, no diapers (except for naps and night time), no leaving the house.  Every time they get something in the potty it counts as a hit.  After around 12 hits they should understand the purpose of the potty.  Day two is the same, but you should plan a one-hour outing for the kids.  Have them use the potty before leaving the house, and put loose bottoms on them.  Day three is the same, but you should have two one-hour outings.  From then on, the kids shouldn't wear underwear for approximately three months, since they feel similar to diapers.

Here's how day 1 went:

Neil and Lizzie woke up around 8:00.  I went in, removed diapers, and had them both sit on the potty.  Nothing.  Scott and I put shirts on them, rolled up the rug in the living room, and took them and their potties downstairs.  Scott grabbed towels and cleaning supplies.  We gave the kids breakfast, and stared at them.  Nothing.  I gave them a second drink, and they ran around and played while we continued to stare at them and stalk them with their potties.  Nothing.  We kept asking them if they wanted to sit on the potty, or would put them on the potty, but still...nothing.

So here we are, stressing about rogue pee-ers.  Scott is so nervous that he's either pacing, or walking two inches behind a kid with a potty aimed at butt-level.  I'm trying to reman calm, but I keep asking the poor kids if they need to pee, or want to sit on the potty.  If someone was doing that to me, I'd probably knock them out!  Poor kids.

At 9:30 Lizzie peed a little bit... on the floor.  Scott swore, and put her on the potty.  Nothing.  As he grabbed a towel to clean up Neil the corner of the fireplace.  Thank goodness we didn't have anything in there!  About ten minutes later they both peed...on opposite ends of the dining room.  That time, I swore.  We kept trying to get them to get a hit in the potty.  Lizzie did get one hit, but I'm pretty sure that it was from the pee running down her leg.  Around 10:30 Neil sat on the potty for about 5 minutes, then got up and peed on the baby gate by the kitchen.  I put them both on the potty, and Neil actually peed in his!  Lizzie screamed "Ouch!  Ouch!  Ouch!" while literally no one was touching her.  At this point, I'm getting flustered, sweaty, and I realize that I need to pee!  As I tried to calm Lizzie down Neil got off of the potty, walked over to play with his cars and pooped on the floor.  We both swore at that one, cleaned him up, and he ran over to the exact same spot and did it again.

So here we are, not even three hours into this, and we're dealing with Lizzie, who is flat out refusing to sit on the potty, and Neil, who has diarrhea.  Now you can see why I called this Take 1.

Back to diapers for a few days...

RMH 6/18/14

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Here's a typical conversation with Lizzie:
Me:  Hi Lizzie!
Lizzie: 'Lo
Me:  What's going on?
Lizzie:  (Giggles, runs away for a few minutes, then comes back over)  Ticka-ticka-ticka-ticka-ticka-soog-soog-soog-cookie.
Me: want a cookie?
Lizzie:  Okay!

Did she really want a cookie?  No.  But she said the word cookie, and I repeated it to her, so NOW she wants a cookie.

Here's a typical conversation with Neil:
Neil:  A...B...C...
Me:  (repeating letters)
Neil:  ...D...E...F...G...H...I
Me:  (still repeating letters)
Neil:  One!
Me:  I thought you were doing your letters.
Neil:  ONE!
Me:  Okay!  One.
Neil:  2...3...4...5...(each number shouted angrily...don't know why)
Me:  (repeating numbers until the cat walks past)
Neil:  Hey!  Cow!
Me:  Cat, Neil.  Cat.  T-t-t.
Neil:  Yow.  Go-Go.
Me:  Yep, that's Go-Go.  (Off he goes to chase the cat)

What can I say?  He's a man of few words, but many letters and numbers.  With both of them, these are successful conversations.  No tantrums, no tears, and we had a conversation...I guess.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

...The Twins Turn Two...

I'm going to bed in a few minutes. Yes, it's 8:00 on a Saturday night and I'm going to bed, don't judge. ;)  in fact, early nights are a regular occurrence here.  What's different tonight is that when I wake up Neil and Lizzie will be two.

I know that everyone says that the changed that occur over the first year are amazing, but the changes that happen between one and two really blew my mind.  Neil and Lizzie went from these crawling, cooing babies to toddlers that can talk, walk, run, fight, kiss, tease, and play, each with their own personality.  I don't know how else to explain it, but I'm starting to see the people that they may become.

I wonder what the next year will bring.  Please let it involve successfully potty training both kids.

RMH 2/8/14

Thursday, January 9, 2014

...Developmental Doldrums...

Since the twins were born premature, and with a low birth weight, we qualified for a bunch of services from WIC (supplemental food for low birth weight multiples is provided to families regardless of their income) to regular developmental screenings.  By the time we found out about WIC the twins no longer qualified, but we have taken advantage of the developmental screenings through The Alliance.  

The screenings are generally fun.  A wonderful woman named Mary Alice comes to the house and basically plays with the kids while asking me questions about their abilities.  The activities gauge their gross motor skills, fine motor skills, problem solving skills, and personal-social skills.  At first, the twins were being screened monthly ( at both their adjusted age and their actual age), but now they are screened every few months.  In between screenings I am sent a questionnaire to complete called the Ages and Stages Questionnaire.

As I looked at the latest questionnaire, I got overwhelmed.  For the first time there were more questions that I couldn't answer right away than ones that I could, mainly because I hadn't tried these activities with the twins.  Here are the questions that I didn't have answers for:

Gross Motor:
5.  Does your child jump with both feet leaving the floor at the same time?

Fine Motor:
2.  Does your child stack six small blocks or toys on top of each other by himself/herself?  (You could also use spools of thread, small boxes, or toys that are about 1 inch in size.)
3.  Does your child use a turning motion with his/her hand while trying to turn doorknobs, wind up toys, twist tops, or screw lids on and off jars?
6.  Can your child string small items such as beads, macaroni, or pasta "wagon wheels" onto a string or shoelace?

Problem Solving:
2.  While your child watches, line up four objects like blocks or cars in a row.  Does your child copy or imitate you and line up at least two blocks side by side?   (You could also use spools of thread, small boxes, or other small toys.)
4.  After watching you draw a line from the top of the paper to the bottom with a crayon (or pencil or pen), does your child copy you by drawing a single line on the paper in any direction?
6.  If you give your child a bottle, spoon, or pencil upside down, does he/she turn it right side up so that he/she can use it properly?

4.  Does your child drink from a cup or glass, putting it down again with little spilling?

Ugh!  Don't they know that I have twins and I don't have the time, or mental fortitude, to experiment with small objects being strung onto a string???  Do you know what that would turn into?  The twins throwing said small objects at each other while simultaneously attempting to whip their strings around like Terrible Towels.  No thanks.  And drink from a cup without spilling???  Who in their right mind wants to test that one out?  Maybe we can try that in the tub...

So here I am, in the Developmental Doldrums because I have to answer these questions, and because I'm disappointed that I don't know the answers to these questions.  Not knowing makes me feel like I'm not doing my Mom-job.  In my defense, no one ever mentioned freaking spools of thread, beads, or one inch toys as GOOD things to have around toddlers.  They're usually classified as choking hazards...

RMH 1/9/14