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Potty training.  I have an instant dislike for anything with the word “training” in, when it’s mentioned in conjunction with parenting – but this was an area that I was pretty sure I couldn’t avoid.  After all, we do at some point need to know how to use a toilet properly.
Most people seem to agree that upwards of 2 years old is a good time to start thinking about it, but other than that there’s no clear milestone – other than the fear of your child arriving at preschool aged three and you not being up to speed with other parents having already succeeded in the toileting mission.

As a pre-parent and teacher, I could not believe that there were children who could speak and understand their parents who were unable to get to the toilet.  Ah, the naivety of those without children.  I may have forgotten to mention that I was an awesome pre-parent.  The theory is easy, the practical application when presented with own children is somewhat different.

Jensen was slightly difficult to persuade to use the toilet as he really didn’t see the point in it.  Lyoto however, so far is a breeze.  He wants to be a big boy like his brother and now he also wants Thomas to be happy with him thanks to a very sweet and encouraging book themed around his favourite little blue engine.

The book is very simple and really supportive of little ones – there are pages on picking your own potty – which I actually never considered, but is a brilliant tip because naturally they want to sit on something that they decided on themselves and bought home from the shop.

It covers wearing smart pants [or tighty-whiteys as my boys are now calling them], washing your hands and accidents.  I love that on the accidents page it specifically tells you that you might have them, and that it’s okay.  It’s so easy as a parent to be frustrated with your little one peeing all over your rug because they forgot to go to the toilet – and yet it’s so counterproductive to both parties.  Little people need big support – and the saddest part for me this week was when Lyoto didn’t quite make it up the stairs and at bedtime when we were doing his bedtime chart [which also features Thomas and is more for Jensen to have his things ready for school the next day] and he asked if Thomas was going to be sad because he had a wee on the stairs.  

But we are practically there!  It’s been more fun this time because firstly I have some idea of how boys need guiding [sometimes quite literally] at toilet time and secondly because Lyoto is just so hilarious.  Humourous episodes so far have included hands free weeing, shouting “me can write me name with me penis!” and possibly the most sweet of all, peeping in at him in the bathroom to see if he was okay to find him snuggled on there with bed pillow behind him, blanket over his lap and Thomas book in hand, reading in comfort.  And yes, we have a photo.  That will be coming out when he’s older for him to laugh at, or if he has children of his own as a reminder.

In the back of the book is a reward chart, which Lyoto loves.  He’s very motivated by stickers along a chart and the supporting reward chart book means that we can continue the sticker collecting after the initial chart is finished.

The “My Thomas Potty Book” is a brilliant introduction for little ones to toilet time, and with a padded jacket and board pages, it’s durable enough to last until Hero needs to learn too.

Everyone has a trick they’ve found to be brilliant at potty time – my mum’s was squeezing a sponge behind a teddy bear on the potty and asking me if I could wee like my bear!  What’s yours?

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  1. I don;t have any tips, but we totally skipped the potty and went straght to the loo. The boys just kind of sorted themselves and we were all done in three days, no accidents after that during the day at all! BUT that is nothing to do with me. I was lazy and they were both nearly three

  2. What beautiful pictures! My tip would be, don't rush into it. With my first I started trying well before he was ready, just because other parents were training. It was painful for everyone, and I wish I'd waited a bit longer.

  3. This book sounds great and Lyoto sounds like he's doing so well! My son surprised me by just taking to it when we tried. I think I was more relaxed with him than I was with his older sister!

  4. I have found with mine that when they were ready it was a pretty quick process, so I would have a go, if no joy within a few days would stop and try again a few weeks later. Anything that encourages them to be interested is a help isnt it!

  5. I love that although it is called a potty book there is a pic of a toilet seat on the front as we did go straight to the loo. I'd have loved to use this book only because he was and still is a huge Thomas fan. I know what you mean about people in the childcare industry – you just don't understand it till you've had your own ha ha x

  6. This sounds like a great book, and I love the tip about the sponge and the teddy. I think that I just made sure that there was a potty around and encouraged mine to use it – but they're 17 and 12 now so it's all a bit hazy!

  7. OH my, those days! We had a potty party in the end, and just spent the whole day bribing them with sweets and silly dancing when they used the potty and presents utterly silly but it consolidated everything from the journey. I think we tried everything along the way – this looks like a great book!

  8. What a brilliant book, I wish we'd looked at them when Poppy was potty training! She used to line her potty with tissue paper like a nest and sit there for a bit but not do anything! When she was ready though, that was it. Will keep my fingers crossed for you. Gorgeous photos as always x

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