every weekend or prolonged period of time anthony is home, mason ends up with chonies on. which of course is extremely helpful to me and if he could, anthony would take over all undesirable duties i face like potty-training, childbirth, and teaching art. he loves me like that.
but come monday, mason is typically back in a diaper. i just haven't had it in me to focus on potty training while i'm busy homeschooling my other 2 children and trying to do everything i can to not get up and run to the bathroom every 25 seconds.
but let's face it. the clock is ticking. there is a newborn coming and mason will one day get a drivers license and go off to college and i can't avoid potty training forever.
so on my way home from my doctor appointment last week (the one where i was officially given the green light to not be on bedrest (unless of course there is laundry or cooking to be done) and the hopeful possibility of not facing the dreaded c-section (yay!)) i stopped to pick up gummy worms.
when i got home i pulled them out of my purse and announced with great enthusiasm "pee-pee treats!" to which everyone danced around and squealed in excitement. (really, you can trick your kids into being excited about almost anything at this age. it's a correlation between level of expressed exhilaration and amount of sugar at hand)
and here is the real trick in making sure the pee-pee treats work.
enter my brilliance: "ella and bennett, you can get one too, each time mason goes in the toilet!"
potty training on my part? done.
therapy for my older children who will one day look back and say, wow, my mom actually had me potty train my little brother... only just beginning.
(i have no idea what mason is doing here...)
so now mason will be happily playing with his cars on the floor when he'll suddenly stand up and yell, "me pee-pee!" and ella and bennett will jump up from the table, pencils and math worksheets flying and grab him by the hand and race down the hallway and he'll squeal in delight as they open the potty chair lid for him and he'll say, "yay, me pee-pee party!" because, after all, who doesn't want a party in their honor every time they have to empty their bladder?
then he'll sit for a little while and everyone will expectantly watch as pure exuberance breaks across his face and he proclaims, "ME! PEE! PEE! YAAAYYYY! YAH-HOO!" and then he'll glance up at me and ask with an adorable, expectant, proud smile, "me worm treat?" and ella and bennett will jump up and down and tell him how proud they are of him and then they all race to line up in front of the pantry door to receive their reward.
this, people, is the secret to potty training.
it has gone amazingly smooth. my sister asked me if i make them wipe him. i laughed and said of course not. then i got to thinking... maybe for 2 worm treats?
we ran out of worm treats yesterday. i figured, hey, we have the hang of it now, should it really matter anymore? so i told mason when he was getting the last one and that now he can have stickers.
this made logical sense to me. but i, of course, don't have the mind of a 3 year old.
so an hour later he jumps up, screams "me pee-pee!" and runs to the bathroom and i'm helping him get ready but before he'll go he looks at me very serious and says, "worm treat?" and i remind him there aren't any left but he can pick out whatever sticker he wants.
he just stares at me, pulls back up his chonies and says, "me no pee-pee." and just like that he went on a pee-pee strike for the next couple of hours.
i then caved and started giving him chocolate chips. and right behind him are ella and bennett with their hands out. the family all sticks together over here. i'm just encouraging sibling unity when i keep handing out sugar.
you know, this is why we homeschool after all. while other kids are at recess or music class or conjugating spanish verbs at the public school, my kids get to watch their brother pee in a plastic chair for sugar.
but for sure, i'm gonna pick up some more this week and when i get home i'm going to announce with gusto, "laundry/mopping/cooking/sweeping treats!"
and then i'm going to show them the cleaning supplies.
hey, i'm onto something here.