Monday, November 28, 2011

Potty Training Boot Camp

Sorry for the lack of posts as of late. We've been in potty training boot camp.

I took the subtle approach since June, with no luck. I don't think they were ready. The boys are currently 3 years, 2 months. We'd mention the potty to them, and get a big, fat "NO!" right back. We read all of the potty books. We tried the no-diaper approach before, with no success. I just don't think they were ready then. So I tried it again. We stripped off the diapers, put on their Spider-Man and Yo Gabba Gabba under-roos, and put the potties in the middle of the living room. I had luck in the past giving them a full cup of water and putting on an hour long Sesame Street. They were happy to sit still, and the pee would just happen. TV works, so that's where the potties stay for now. We had some random successes in the first day, and a few accidents. They don't like wet underwear. There were some cases of them having accidents upstairs, where they couldn't get down stairs quickly enough.

Today makes day 6. I've stayed true to the underwear approach, no diapers unless we go out or during nap time/bed time. Today, there were no accidents. There was even a point tonight when they ran downstairs after I put them in bed, dropped their night time pull-up, and went potty. Success!

There was also some bribing in there. K had the potty down from almost day one, but L is just really stubborn. His brother's success wasn't any kind of motivation. No amount of hugs, applause, cheers, would inspire him to use the potty. But a piece of candy corn does. Kids love candy corn. I give them 1 piece every time they empty their bladder. L doesn't like K eating candy corn when he can't have any. L was using the potty all day today. I'll be able to wean off that pretty quick with them, give them a piece every other time. By week's end, it should be 100% successful. I'm not sure how long it takes to get them used to public bathrooms, so I'll use the pull-up approach still.

Hope this helps anyone currently potty training!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Trip to the library! + Mom's reading list

We've been spending some time at the library lately. I often forget about it, which is terrible. We're big readers! So here's some of the latest titles we've checked out.

 Big Book of Stories includes
Clifford the Big Red Dog
Clifford's Puppy Days
Clifford's Good Deeds
Clifford Gets a Job
 Goodnight Moon
Instant favorite, has to be a Christmas gift now
we're going to have to end up buying this one too

Some of you have been asking, Mom's been reading...
Just amazing. I saw all of the Swedish movies. Can't wait for the movie next month, or book 2.
Inspired by true events + the story of Beowulf. One of my favorite authors.
If you saw the movie, it's written almost poetically. It's heartbreaking.

And I've been reading this chemistry book. Yes, chemistry. I'm a huge science nerd, but chem is my kryptonite. If I could nail it, I could apply it to anything, and become a mad scientist! mwahaha so here's to round four of learning chemistry.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

November Reading List & Pre-Thanksgiving

Sorry we haven't had any posts lately. We've been busy with school work, random play & reading. We've been coloring a lot, the playdoh's been out a bunch, but nothing to really post.

We did do an activity with mixing colors, but we didn't get pictures. We took baking soda, added a few drops of food coloring in clear cups, then I let the boys pour in pre-measured vinegar to make the color appear in volcanic form! We actually recommended this as a science project last year in Early Head Start, and it was a big success. The boys love it. They think it's magic and shout "Presto!"

Here's what we've been reading... I've been noticing we have duplicate stories, with different covers and minor differences in the stories. I'm sure some day I'll weed out some of those and donate them.
I'm focusing on L memorizing this series so he can learn to read!
 The Castle Ghost
This was a cute story!
 A Crack in the Track
*another book I think I can get L to memorize
a little mature for the boys, but good!
 I Can Count
a collection of smaller stories, hard to hold their interest all at once
I notice the boys have 0 interest in Disney Princesses, but it's good to read regardless!
 Look at me!
a funny mask baby board book, but the kids still like it
 The Magic Grinder
it's funny, K loves dinosaurs, but has no interest in dragons
regardless, anything Mickey Mouse goes over big
Pussycat Tiger
 So cute! For little boys who want to grow up as big and strong as their Dad!
again, boys have no interest
The Tale of Tom Kitten
Beatrix Potter ranks right up there with Jane Austin in my book with all their etiquette and what's proper. Kinda funny, but K likes cats so he asks for this one.

Yo Gabba Gabba: Dreams
Not on amazon at all, but it goes with the song on the show

Snow White
same publisher as Thumbelina above

Winnie the Pooh: Oh, Bother! No One's Listening

Winnie the Pooh: Oh, Bother! Someone's Messy

Thomas the Train: 5 Useful Engines

Lady and the Tramp

I do have a project coming soon involving paint and the whole family for Thanksgiving, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Nature Walk

We love going on walks. It's especially nice that the weather has been awesome lately. So we're getting in all kinds of walks now before the weather turns. Tomorrow is my anniversary. I remember getting married without a jacket! This is always a fabulous time of November.
I found this cool check list here.
We spotted trees and grass, but no ants. We found all kinds of leaves that crunched under our feet. We spotted a small flock of birds flying, and even found an empty nest! No squirrels this time, I haven't seen them for a bit, they might be hibernating. We saw mums, small daisies with bees, and smartweed.
That's smartweed. I'm sure you've seen it, just never knew the name for it. We made it a point this summer to look up flowers we didn't know. We even found out we had poisonous nightshade all over the neighborhood.

Back to the list, we didn't find any acorns since there's no oak trees on our route. We didn't even spot a pinecone. We did see clouds and branches too.
As for things off the list, we made a note. We found some abandoned honeycomb. This was an excellent time to teach the boys not to touch them, there might be a bee in there. And that bees live and make honey in honeycombs. They love honey butter bread. So this was a good time to teach them how important a honey comb is, but also dangerous at the same time. We saw a fire hydrant and 2 rock salt boxes. I opened the boxes and explained that the salt is used to help melt snow and ice off the roads. We spotted our usual stop signs and the groundhog hole. We also found an aerie and a squirrel nest, not far from each other. We have hawks around here, but I think it might have been an old aerie. It's cool in the spring when the hawks teach their young to fly. We've been here for at least 3 seasons of babies.

So that was our nature walk. It's great to get out, get the exercise, smell the smells, breathe in the fresh air. The boys really like it, and remind me every day, "Mom, let's go for a walk!"

Break out the crayons! It's hand turkey time!

We had a fun old-fashioned family coloring day. We learned how to do crayon rubbings. We placed leaves, puzzle pieces, foam shapes & other objects under the paper, and rubbed over them with crayons.

 Then we made hand turkeys! My favorite part of Thanksgiving!
I think Dad forgot turkeys only have 2 legs. haha

November Reading List

Here's what we've read so far this month! We found a bunch of goodies at a local thrift store. We simply adore giving used books new life! The older, the better.
 Clifford's Christmas
(The boys love Clifford!)
If you're not familiar with this, it's a great book for their reading level now. They're beginning to be able to tell what's going on in the story using the pictures. There's 1 word per page, so it's really easy for them!

Wuzzles: Hoppopotamus Goes to Hollywuz

My House, by Richard Scarry

The Day of the Dinosaur, by Stan & Jan Berenstain
We love this book. It's, by far, a favorite. But my only complaint is that there's a Triceratops on the cover, and no Triceratops in the book. I never noticed, but a 3 year old with a Triceratops obsession did. There is a prehistoric rhino in there though, so he's somewhat content with that part.

We plan to go to Half Price Books this week. LOVE their clearance. They always have a ton of kids books for $1 or less.