Yay! Potty Trained

Certain book titles like “How to Potty Train your Child in Just Three Days” seem to be something out of reach, but my little girl proved me wrong. Last Tuesday, she woke up with a decision in her mind; she had her intentions set on completely removing her diaper. As we were choosing her clothes for the day, she held her underwear saying, “No couche, mama! I want culotte.” I saw the determination in her eyes and her readiness to get rid and done with her nappies. So hiding my eagerness and excitement, I calmly explained to her that underwears cannot hold anything inside, and that she needs to use the potty in order to stay clean. And she agreed!

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To my surprise she had only one accident while the rest of the times she was able to inform me about her need to use the potty. On the third day, she was able to maintain her potty training even when I took them to a play date where she successfully used the regular toilet.

i can i willOf course we have been working on the concept for a year now by talking about it, reading books, and showing her and her twin brother as well, how we use the toilet. I also kept repeating that they soon will be able to remove their diapers. Her twin brother got excited about trying it as well, but he showed no signs of real interest or readiness to do so. That is why, I did not focus on the issue with him and decided to finish with his sister first.

And so our potty training came easily, smoothly, and with no stress (during the day and at night as well). The biggest gratitude goes to my little girl – 2 years and 3 months – whose decision gave me a forth cast on the type of woman she will turn into; a determined young lady who is able to take the right decision at the right time.

According to Dr. Schmitt, professor of paediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and Medical director of the Encropesis-Enuresis Clinics, stress free potty training can improve a child’s self-confidence and grant him/her the independence he/she seeks later on in life.

However, if done improperly, studies show that it can lead to several long term issues which might be difficult to solve later on in life. Trauma, timidity, and fear are some of those concerns that might arise. We need to keep in mind that the child at this stage is fragile and sensitive. Being empathic, patient, and understanding the child’s needs result in having a successfull potty training.

www.livestrong.com/article/560414-long-term-effects-of-bad-potty-training

The more parents become frustrated and look disappointed by how long the process is taking, the more the child may withdraw into himself/herself and feel embarrassed and timid.

I believe that the calmer we are, the less stressful we act, and the more understanding we become, most parenting issues seem to be easier. So whether it is working on potty training or dealing with emotional concerns, we as parents need to work on our attitude first before having the impact on our beloved children.

N.B: I have written an article about potty training before where I have included a few important points as well. You can also have a look on it by clicking on the link below: www.thehelicoptermommy.wordpress.com/2015/05/25/help-its-potty-training-time/

 

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N.B: Images taken from @pinterest

 

 

 

 

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Sensing Art

During the summer break, my children and I usually get the chance of doing more art work together. This time we had the opportunity to explore the Johnson’s Pure Protect Exploration Kit which consisted of various products. An instruction book which describes the proper use of each of the ten products was also included. Tang powder bags, food color, paint kit, Johnsons wipes, soap bar, hand soap, and baby shower gel are some of the products found in the kit.

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It was very interesting to observe how each of my children interacted with the various products. My three older boys mainly wondered about the odours mixed into the cotton filled jars, while the twins explored their senses through their hands.

Some innovative ideas were found in the kit; I never thought of using Tang powder to paint a drawing! The feeling of the sugary powder on the skin was sensational especially to the twins who absolutely enjoyed the sticky sandy like feeling rubbing on their hands.

First, we mixed the powdered tang with some water and a few drops of food color, I was surprised that the children were able to tint and have fun trying a new kind of paint. They then covered their hands with the paint and made some hand prints.

Next, we worked on testing our smelling senses through the four different types of essence jars that came along. I covered the boys’ eyes and had them smell the cotton where I have added two different types of essence. They easily recognized the lemon extract but the cardamom concentration was a bit tricky.

We also worked on smelling dried plants from my pot pourri bowl, and I used the remaining essence like lavender and rose.

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After that I gave my twins the cotton in the plastic jars as they continued to smell them while learning new vocabulary trying out words like ‘lavender’ and ‘rose’ after every sniff.

Learning is best acquired through play. Today my children and mainly the twins, had fun as they explored, smeared paint, splattered colors, and sensed new experiences. Luckily we had the Johnsons’ soap and wet wipes to clean the mess they created.

A special thank you goes to Momsguide and Johnsons and Johnsons for providing us with this enjoyable learning opportunity.

Life in a Village

Our beautiful Lebanon provides children with plenty of natural and nurturing experiences that help in their growth and development. Last weekend, I took my precious five to their father’s hometown village where we decided to spend a few days – unlike the previous times when we only completed a few visits and left. Like most of the “international” children of this generation, we work hard on having them develop that sense of love and patriotism to the countries that not only nourish, feed, and support them, but also the one country that has given them their roots and carries their family history along with it.

During those three days I did not even worry about an entertaining activity to occupy their time. I made a point to leave their iPads back in Abu Dhabi and the perfect opportunity was presented to even avoid the TV screens as well.  Personally, I also enjoyed the ‘online detox’ as I eased my mind, soul, and thoughts when I decided to be disconnected and enjoy the calmness of the village. We were all experiencing the simple life which replenished our souls and allowed us to listen to our inner selves away from the chaotic and luxurious modern life.

On our way back to my parents’ house, the boys and I discussed what they enjoyed doing the most, and I felt delighted by the outcome they have experienced.

Sense of security:
The minute we arrived, I asked the boys to go on their own and knock on a few doors of relatives and friends, to inform them of our presence. I could see the surprise in their eyes so I explained to them that here they can enjoy the sense of security and explore the freedom of discovery in peace. Very early the next morning, just as they finished breakfast they directly asked if they could have a morning walk around the village. They were more than happy to discover the true freedom which every individual dreams of.

Free play:

Although my children get the opportunity to discover free play on many occasions, this time they have experienced it with other children and in a new setting. As a matter of fact, undirected free play has multiple advantages:

  • It helps children learn how to work collaboratively, to share, to negotiate, to resolve conflicts, and learn self-advocacy skills. It even helps them tolerate pain, ignore the blisters and cuts, and continue enjoying their play.
  • It helps children practice decision-making skills, move at their own pace, discover areas of interest on their own, and ultimately engage fully in the passions they wish to pursue.
  • It develops children’s imagination and self-confidence since each one of them formulates and lives in his/her own world. It also boosts their self-image seeing themselves like grownups given the freedom to roam around their village with ease.

Sense of belonging:
They understood the real meaning of what a village is; the traditions, the hospitality, and the affection amongst its people. I was more than delighted to have served in building those memories with them. When they look back, they will live those unique moments again jumping over garden beds, running through the narrow alleys, skipping over rocks, and hiding behind trees and bushes. They might never return to live there, but at least they know they have a “home” that will last forever.

 

I believe that children who get the chance of discovering free play are fortunate and privileged. I salute all the parents who make it a point by bringing their children from far away countries, every summer, to have them live Lebanon’s beauty and uniqueness. It is true that we are dispersed all over the world and many of us might have one or two other nationalities, but we want to keep that bond, have them cherish those memories, and make them take the advantages that Lebanon still offers to the new generations.