Breathe In, Breathe Out
I Didn't Make My Bed Today But I Sure As Hell Will Lie In It

Writing Checks Your DVD Collection Can't Cash

Or, Why I Didn't Post Yesterday

So. For the record, Noah has been successfully potty-trained since the summer. At least, in one -- ahem -- aspect of the undertaking. The second -- cough -- aspect has been kind of a no-go, and my word, am I making a lot of unintentional puns already. POOP. I AM TALKING ABOUT POOP.

This is, apparently, super-normal, and considering the kid lives on a diet of bread, cheese, milk and bananas, we had Bigger Issues to worry about. Bigger Issues I have no interest in documenting, except to say that constipation + stubbornness = honey child, I don't give a shit (bwah!) WHERE you go, JUST GO ALREADY.

Recently, however, we've gotten that situation under control, and were simply waiting for Noah to decide when Noah is ready, one of the biggest loads of crap (bwah! hah!) we've ever been told about potty training. 

(I know, I know. Some kids just wake up one day and decide to do it and everything works perfectly and the blessed angels sing and these kids' mothers become insufferable bores about the whole thing, what with the respecting of the delicate little bottom business and desires of the child and such. Let me tell you, the only potty-training assvice I will ever offer is that if you can avoid trying to train a three-year-old, DO SO. Make at least one honest hardcore attempt when they are still somewhat compliant and a few pounds lighter and easier to wrastle. Three-year-olds are scary. Do not engage a three-year-old. Teach your two-year-old how to use the toilet and where the Cheerios are and then like, check in on them in a year. Or two years. I haven't been hearing very good things about Four, to be honest.)

Personally, we've learned that Noah will be ready whenever Noah is offered the correct bribe...and then is sort of forced to accept that bribe through the luck of good timing on our part. For number one, it was -- of all things -- BUTTONS. Goddamn buttons. He was fascinated with all the spare buttons from my sewing kit, so I drew some buttons on a Ziploc baggie and told him he could have a button everytime he used the potty. For every accident, he lost a button. We went cold turkey to underpants and yeah, he lost a few buttons and I did some extra laundry, but in under a week, he was trained and the proud owner of every spare button in the house.

We've offered him a variety of bribes to finish the process, but none have really been enough. Candy bars, special outings, toys -- so. not. interested. I was okay with not forcing the issue, but dude. Three-year-old poops are disgusting. There's no Pull-Up in the world capable of containing some of them. That's a MAN, man, if you know what I am saying. However: he will go when he is ready, I maintained, through gritted teeth and a smile and a bottle of vodka.

It turns out, he was ready yesterday. There was some cajoling and repeating and repeating of the poop bribe du jour: a candy bar AND the 101 Dalmations movie, which he'd watched a couple weeks ago at my in-laws and has not shut up about since. We seized on this and dangled the chance to watch it again over his head, like a carrot.

(By the way, since I seem to get the same snide comment almost every time I mention the fact that yes, we own a TV and yes, Noah occasionally watches it, which apparently means he watches it ALL THE TIME, NON-STOP and thus leaves us NO TIME in the day to talk to him or read him books or do anything that would potentially help his speech, let me huffily clarify: Yes, he watches TV all the time, non-stop and we make it a point to never talk to him or read him books.)

(Seriously, though. He watches maybe one show a day. Little Bear before his nap, or Blues Clues as a reward for eating a good dinner. We have family movie night once a week where he gets to pick a Pixar movie. Exceptions are made on sick days or snow days, because I AM NOT MADE OF MAGIC.)

So where was I? Oh, yes. 101 Dalmations, which Noah calls the Dadamations, which kind of sounds like an avante garde dance troupe who could give Sparkle Motion a run for their money, but is also pretty cute. We did not actually have the DVD, but Jason assured me it was available On Demand. Bribe away!

I bet you can see.

Where this is going.

I pulled up the movie On Demand while Noah proudly chomped away at a leftover Halloween Kit-Kat and oh, there was much rejoicing, and then much scowling as Noah eyed Glenn Close as Cruella De Vil and looked back at me with much suspicion while I frantically looked online and through our Tivo options for the animated version. Netflix? iTunes? Amazon UnBox? FIVE ZILLION OPTIONS FOR INSTANT MEDIA GRATIFICATION, all of which offer nothing but the live-action piece of crap. Try explaining that to a child who has only ever known the magic of TiVo, who can request any specific show (and episode) at any time of the day, who cannot grasp that sometimes certain shows just aren't ON, who will one day roll his eyes at my talk of just five channels and aluminum foil on the TV antenna and how we watched Sesame Street AND WE LIKED IT and snow, uphill, both ways, with only VHS cases for shoes, and that's if you were LUCKY.

I found it divided into 10-minute segments on YouTube, but by this point Noah was crumbling into despair. "You need to FIX IT," he sobbed, pointing at the television, "Dats all WRONG."

What else could I do? I put the kids in their coats and in the car and drove them to the nearest store and prayed and prayed and prayed that their online in-stock status thingie was correct, thanked the nice man who held the door for us by ramming him in the shin with Ezra's stroller, and ta-daaaaaaaaaa! Procured the correct version of the Dadamations for Noah, who regarded the DVD with awe and wonder and proudly handed it to the cashier and proceeded to tell her exactly why he was getting that movie.

We came home and watched it together instead of taking a nap. People smoke and smack each other and call each other idiots and you know, talk about skinning puppies and Cruella is clearly the stuff of toddler nightmares. It was everything Noah hoped it would be, and I was Parent Of The Year for a few hours, until he -- ahem -- demanded it again at 11 pm.

The moral of this story, I think: Wait until they're ready, or at least lay off the fiber.



I have a four year old who only potty trained in his third year. Because he cannot be bought. There is no bribe in the WORLD you can offer this kid in exchange for good (or even passable) behavior.

If I told him he'd get a piece of candy if he pooped on the potty: "I not want candy anyway."

If I told him he couldn't watch TV unless he pooped on the potty (or peed, for a loooong while): "I want to look at books anyway."

ARGGGHHHHHHHHH. Finally we just accepted that he would do it when. he. was ready. I also made him sit on the potty, alone, for half-hour stretches at a time and impressed upon him that he could not share a room with his Beloved Big Brother until he was out of diapers.

And yeah, we hate the live-action Dalmations movies, too. The only good thing about those is Ioan Gruffud. Yum.

Lag Liv

I laughed out loud about six times during that post. You're an utterly marvelous writer, even if you're not made of magic.


"I am not made of magic" is awesome and will possibly be used in conversation regularly.

And we all know that Noah watches TV all day and never gets talked to or read to. We know this because we are parents and that's how we raised our kids! (Just throw some of the freshly acquired poop at those people)

Oh, yeah, here's hoping the DVD continues it's wonder working magic. Because I know -- that is some nasty shit!


You're so funny - I can't believe you made it to 3 WITHOUT already having procured a full compliment of Disney movie DVDs!!! Of course, for my son, it was VHS - and we have EVERY DISNEY MOVIE EVER MADE (or darn near) in VHS. We're sort of a Disneyphile type household, and I wanted him to have all of the movies to pass down to his kids....and then, (((you stupid idiot, how could you NOT see this coming??!))) they switch formats on me and they all now need to be replaced in DVD. Problem is - Disney doesn't release ALL of their movies at the same time....I'm still waiting for the original Parent Trap and Swiss Family Robinson to show up on DVD ( or BluRay even, I'm not picky)!! So, the point of all this pointless rambling?? Be careful WHICH Disney movie you promise to ANY child UNLESS it's already in your library(arsenal!!)....because it may just not be for sale at any store, although perhaps you COULD find it on amazon at a horribly over-inflated price and totally devoid of the instant gratification that most 3 year olds demand.....good luck.....and WTG, Noah!! (btw, I'm one of those parents whose 3 year old son just "decided" to self-train one day shortly after his 3rd birthday and never even had an accident - sorry.....)but, I have a friend who's son refused to fully train (same situation as yours) until he was 5 and was threatened with enemas - that cured him totally - go figure.....


Oh, wow, what an undertaking! I myself have been through the potty training of the 3-year-old (and finally managed it with the help of a book I found in the diaper aisle of CVS: "Toilet Training Without Tears"--which is exactly what I needed, a scenario where neither of us was crying), and it was not pretty. My Ezra has just turned 3 and can potty on demand but is generally happy going in the pull-up. So I'm waiting until the horrible flesh-eating disease leaves our house and am going try it full force again.

Congratulations over and over again on the successful pooping! A friend's little boy has been promised that he can set a TV on fire in the backyard if he puts all his poops in the potty. I say, stand by with a fire extinguisher and do whatever works! Way to poop, Noah!


Yes. To everything you said! LOL

(Except that part about you being a horrible mom because you only let your child watch TV all the time & never talk to him or potty train him or feed him, etc.) 'Cause I've SO been there with migraines. And I have NO room to talk.

Thanks for the laugh this morning!


My TV guilt is all encompassing. I have basically the same set of rules for TV with my 3.5 year old, but on days when the snot is flowing like a polluted river and the whining is non-stop I sedate the child with videos.

It's better than dispensing the $6 babysitter (benadryl) and it seems to produce the same glassy eyed stare and closed mouth that I'm looking for.


I think you did good, I think you're a terrific mother. Around here we keep the tv on 24/7 just to be sure our kids turned into vegetables. Not made of magic either and think a little TV is just fine. *gasp*

I love how people make ass-umptions.

Anyway, my assvice? Hard earned through 4 kids? Laxative. Nice, gentle, everyday laxative so ze poop becomes not a big deal. Not sure if you've tried it, or even want to, but when it's nice and soft, my kids stopped being afraid, or trying to control it, or whatever was making them so determined/afraid/whatever about pooping in the potty.


I feel your pain. My daughter was/is a withholder. She was potty trained for pee in July (she turned 3). And not for poop until November. Until November, she just asked for a pullup when she had to go.

I certainly hope that 101 Dalmations does it for you. Great post!

And, BTW, my kid watches TV too! I've seen parts of Wizard of Oz about 10 times in the last 5 days. Now, I think she's moved on to Jungle Book.

Momo Fali

Really? The people about the TV, and their yogurt they make by hand right out of the goat. Enough. I have Little Einsteins on a constant loop.


Toddlers being potty-trained "when they're ready" is a big steaming load of crap. Toddlers will be potty-trained the minute you open a Costco-sized box of pull-ups. The end.


First of all, you should SEE the ad on your sidebar right now. It's an ad for a dating service (I assume) with a a bouncing bimbo in a tiny plaid skirt and hot pink bustier who looks like maybe she's getting ready to play golf or hit someone on the head with a golf club. Not what I expected to see next to a post about poop, you know?!

Bribes are the only thing that worked with us... and the taking away of things when he backtracks. Which he still does for some reason. Often. So I am a very mean mom, of Cruella Deville-like proportions, some might say. But seriously, if you think three year old poop is bad, trying cleaning up after a four year old who had decided he'd rather sit in his own shit than put down his Leapster. NAS-TEE!


My little brother used to listen to storybook records (Thank you Disney!) while relaxing on his little potty seat in his bedroom.

On long car trips he would entertain us with the entire Dumbo LP complete with accurate voices and musical interludes.

In fact I can, even today, entertain you with parts of the Dumbo LP complete with voices and musical interludes.


Mom24 - we're alllll about the Miralax, baby. Powder of the gods! Cocaine of the butt!

Miss W

Oh, if only it was as simple as buttons and Dalmations in our house! Seriously, my kid will hold it, stay dry, do it so well and then? PISS AT MY FEET IN FRONT OF THE POTTY...AND SNOTTILY ASK ME "CAN I HAVE THE SESAME STREET DIAPER LIKE I WANTED NOW?!?!?!" Hoping to find the right bribe. Told him I'd take him back to Mickey Mouse's House (Disney World) and did he want to go back? Excited YESYESYES! "So do all your pee-pee in the potty for just ONE short month." "Um, no. I'm not doing that."

Seriously. Wouldn't do it for frickin' DISNEY WORLD! Where he has been! And talks about constantly because he loved it sooooo much! Just, you know, not as much as peeing in his Sesame Street diapers.

Glad to see that someone is having progress :)


De-lurking, because? I've totally been there. Apparently, it is very common for kids with sensory issues to have pooping issues as well. My son has SPD and we went for an entire year where he was "pee-trained" but we still dealt with poop in the undies (or the pull up) and countless loads of laundry. I also made it our nasty little secret and let it get out of hand because oh. my. god. Just poop already!! It took a nine-day regimen to clean out my little guy out and the kid held in an enema for 30 minutes! (Now that's determination) My point? It is common in the sensory processing world, but no one talks about it. If it becomes a problem (and I'm not saying it will since it seems like you are actually making progress), a pediatric GI can help and will give you a step-by-step solution. Our GI sees it on a regular basis and told me that no parent can MAKE a kid poop (see above and enema). You're doing great... And? It will all get better... I just didn't want you to think you are alone.


Your humor and sarcastically wonderful wit come through in your posting. I've been reading you on my feed reader for quite some time now, and just thought I'd poop in, um, pop in, and lecha know this post is hilarious!
I'm sure your potty training days are just about behind ya now! :)

Parsing Nonsense

I've heard boys are way harder to potty train than girls, and I wonder why this is. If maybe men are just hard-wired to be content with the status quo?

Anyway, congrats on your parent of the year moment and good luck with your continuing quest. It's gotta happen eventually, right?

Sprite's Keeper

Apparently, Noah's poop IS made of magic, as it was able to produce a copy of 101 Dalmations with little effort. Okay, maybe constipation makes it a little effort, but you know how it goes. :-)
The TV thing? I'm writing a post about it now and I want to hear some honest answers out of parents. I'm tired of feeling this forced shame when I turn on the tv so I can make dinner without my toddler thinking her hand ALSO goes into the oven. (Oven? Who am I kidding? Microwave.)

bethany actually

I totally would have gone to the store to buy the DVD too.

Also, don't believe all you hear about age 4! For us, it's been so much better than 3 in so many ways.


This is just reminding me of my niece and nephew - the niece potty trained in about 30 seconds once she was told she could wear princess underwear if the used the toilet. The nephew could not have cared less if he pooped in his pants right until college. I forget what they did to train him. Something involving Dr. Phil? No, kidding. Finally, he was old enough and the bribes were good enough and the punishments dire enough.

Amy M.

Apparently my 3yo is backwards because he'll only poop in the potty, but not pee. We're going the sticker chart bribing route. Once he fills a row, he gets a toy, usually a Matchbox or something. Yeah, still not working. Oh well.


Krista - YES. And WORD. I swear, I proposed at Blogher after meeting some other SPD moms that we need a secret handshake or gang sign based on what dosage of Miralax our kid is on. HALF CAP IN THE HIZZOUSE.


Yay Noah! Yay Amy! Yay Dadamations! That is a huge step!

We finally crossed the bridge of Number 2 about a month ago. It took forever, and no amount of bribery would work. Then one day, he just did it. And for his reward, he got 8 cents (Monies! Lots of monies!) and a box of Spiderman mac & cheese. He was the happiest 3 year old in the world.

Miss Grace

I lucked out with a combination of the peer pressure of Gabriel's cousin being potty trained AT THE SAME TIME, and his daycare provider doing all of the day time work of the thing. (She potty trained all 6 of the kids she was watching last May. Because she thought they were ready....I rewarded her awesomeness by sending Gabriel to preschool)


So glad that Noah's going in the potty...hope he keeps it up and that you aren't subjected to twice-daily showings of Dadamations!

Here's a funny poop story to brighten your day:

My dad's a pediatrician, so I've heard good and bad potty-training stories over the years. One of the best came six or seven years ago when my dad had an older mom (with boys in their late teens/20's) and surprise twin girls with her second husband. Emma and Jenna - the cutest girls ever. They loved my dad, but hated coming to the office (mostly because of shots). The mom was having a particularly hard time with the girls, noting that her ex-husband had taken care of the potty-training for her now grown boys. In fact, just the previous weekend, one of the girls went - ahem - on the front lawn "like the doggie" and wanted to leave it there until her daddy came home. My dad had a heart-to-heart with the girls.

Then, one Saturday, Emma and Jenna's mom calls the office line - forwarded to my dad's cell - and apologizes profusely because she wasn't calling about an emergency. Instead, the girls simply wanted to call to boast to my dad that they'd gone "poopy in the pottie!"


have your tried the library brib yet? We went thru the same thing. My kids love books and the magic of the lib. is powerful. Only kids who use the potty for everything can get a lib card of their own. ;-)


You ARE made of magic, because I am having a rotten day and you actually made me laugh.

Thank you!!!

Plano Mom

Hang in there. My now 10 year old was in the same spot at 3. He would actually bring us a diaper to put on so he could go poop. We finally succeeded by promising him an electric jeep-"Only BIG boys can handle the jeep" Worked like a charm.

Jessica V

I just spit my coffee all over my laptop with this post - thank you for making my morning. My oldest was super stubborn on the potty training - we tried bribes, threats (they don't call them the "threatening threes" for nothing!), everything...with little luck. He would sit on the potty for long periods of time, reading his books, but would rarely go. ALL of his friends trained early and were promoted to a new class in preschool, while my son had to stay in remedial potty training, but that didn't seem to matter to him. He was just too lazy to bother taking time out of his day to go. Argh - he finally pulled it together around 3 1/2 - but we threw out a lot of underwear before then (I don't wash poopy underwear - that's just nasty). Now he likes to show off his "toilet art" with a flourish and a "ta da"! And then I get to wipe his butt. Lucky me - but still better than the alternative.

Thanks again for this post - I hope Noah keeps up the good work!


Am I the only person who was out of breath after I read this entry? I don't know what it was, but I felt frantic. Maybe I'm channeling the panic of a 3 year when confronted with Glenn Close. I dunno.


What a crappy post.

BWAH ha!

I kill me, sometimes.



So funny! This whole TiVO/On Demand thing has definitely spoiled the kids. Lucas insists, "Yes, you CAN find it, Mom!" -- he knows it is all there accessible anytime.


next time just call me, I own it, and every other disney dvd known to man.

And, and you know what finally got Michael to do it, I told him if he didn't we couldn't go to Disney in 8 days. He now says, how many poops until I meet Mickey. So, million dollar vacations work too.


Mulan was my bribe oh those years ago. I thought I'd be smart and buy it AFTER she went.

So lo, when she went and there was much rejoicing? We couldn't find it at the store. I finally found it at Walgreens. Who knew?

Jen L.

And thanks again for reminding me to talk and read to my kid. GOD, that's hard to remember. ;)


GAWD, mothers should unite against potty trainging or something. My first REVERSE potty trained at 3 (meaning he would poop but not pee in the potty)...I'll tell you it is a lot harder to clean up pee when it is EVERYWHERE. My second didn't finish until 3.5 and there was a lot of weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. I have two more to go and I think I might go insane in the meantime. They are all boys btw. Eeesh. K.


Totally been there, too. The poop was such an issue. I finally bribed my then-3-year-old with a squirt gun (yes, a gun!) and he told everyone it was his poop-gun. Whatever works, I say.


Dadamations - that is adorable. That movie was my sister's favorite when we were little. We watched it over and over and over. However, whenever the part where the mean men come in and the parent dogs attack, we always had to fast forward because she would cry about them getting hurt. I guess the whole thing about the baby puppies getting skinned didn't really register.


I got easy with Playdoh I think---and yes, before 3 is a must. This is totally the age of the quirky reward though--run with it! 4 can't be bought so easily.


This is one of your best essays ever. My youngest (of three) is 7 and I still have a bit of anxiety when I think about potty training. I feel for you.


My 3 yr old keeps telling me "Not yet" when I ask him if he wants to go on the potty. I am praying he starts soon.


Hey, you do what you have to do!

And fuck those TV assholes. TV has been around for half a century and used since then to get parents some damn quiet time already and soceity has yet to crumble.

Sorry, I just get really pissed at all the handwringing over every little thing that kids encounter. They'll be fine. Really.


All I can say is don't let Four fool you. Four is much better than Five.


Wow, this was a perfect blend of your classic pre-Noah hilarity and the post-babies lore. Love! Good luck with the potty training!


My three year old just got out of pull ups a month ago and you are so right: Three year old poop is so many times bigger and more gross than two year old poop. And never feel bad about using the bribe technique for the all important skill of "shitting in the toilet". We used points but I really think she was stubborn and did it when she damn well felt like it. Thank you for telling it like it is. Tears of laughter and empathy across the interweb. :)


Oh, man. I am not looking forward to potty training. Ugh.


Oh, this brought back horrible, painful memories. My ds was one of those insta-trainers, because he has SPD and *hated* the feeling of poop in his diaper. However, not knowing his eventual diagnosis promptly convinced me that I was the best potty-trainer ever, until I had my dd, who is autistic and loved, loved, loved playing with her own poop. I was pregnant with our third when dd was diagnosed and I almost lost my mind... Not because of the diagnosis, but because I was afraid it meant that she would NEVER poop in the potty, or at least not till she was six, which is supposedly the average potty-trained age for autistic kids, and have you tried cleaning up poo four times a day while pregnant and trying not to add vomit to the mess between your kid's legs? Oh, yeah, you probably have!

(As it turned out, the school district's preschool for children with special needs takes un-potty-trained kids and TRAINS them! With or without you! And so one day I was the proud mom of an almost-four-year-old who would poop in the potty. Believe me, I oozed hearts and flowers out of my pores in sheer joy for at least a month.)


My son can still be a withholder. He was in trouble at bathtime the other night for not cooperating, so he told me, "I just won't poop then."

He also once got fixated on seeing Monsters, Inc, which he had at his grandparents, a whole country away. We tried to get it at the video store--they didn't even carry it! We ended up paying some inflated Canadian price for the DVD.


Great post!

Funny thing about buttons... My daughter HATES buttons, and will not wear any article of clothing that has a button or anything that may look like a button. It makes clothes shopping very difficult.

Noah's obsession for them and my daughter's hate for them is pretty odd, huh?

Amber Mc

Shit. My 4 month old will only do tummy time in front of the TV. He's already got me trained. What am I going to have left when he's potty training??

Mama T

In England they make chocolate buttons....


This is too funny. I am the one that was not ready for potty training in our house. It was "just let me get through this road trip" or "just keep it in the diapers past the summer." I found that so much easier to deal with than "we need to find a potty RIGHT NOW!"

We only had to go up to M&Ms in our bribery scheme, but a friend related her story that once her toddler caught on she had to produce and $27 Notre Dame sweatshirt to seal the #2 deal.


Oh my LORD this is an issue for us. Jack will be 3 on Sunday and he has been full potty-trained since July 4. Just like that, in three days he was all over it and has had like five accidents ever. But he will not poop on the potty. And this kid goes twice a day, every day like clockwork. But he does it at naptime and in the morning before getting up. So he thwarts my attempts at catching him at the ready.

Like Noah, no amount of bribes works. We offered candy, presents, the ability to skip his nap, a special outing, nothing. He even asked for an Obama present and we said yes, of course! I finally bought a five-pack of matchbox cars and kept them in the package in the bathroom. Still nothing.

He didn't take a nap about a month ago and told my husband he had to pee. Came out a minute later and said he pooped in the potty. And damned if he didn't! Of course I missed it, I was at Target. Anyway, there was much praise and we called all the grandmas and he got his cars and he was so proud.

And since that time? NOTHING. Not again. Not even close.

So I sympathize with you. I really, really do.


Ha. And Ha.


The "wait until he's ready" crap (pun-sorry)really ticked me off when my son was little. He was bright! He was happy! He was well adjusted! Certainly he could figure out that the poop going into the potty was BETTER than the poop going into the pants! I am older, wiser, bigger! I will make him poop in the potty! I will traaaaaain him!!!!!

(you can see where that went, right?)

After bribes (Flik action figure), a jar of potty candy (candy corn), promises of delights and wonders too numerous to comprehend...still no poop in the potty. I took him to the pediatrician just sure that there was SOMETHING WRONG WITH MY BABY WAAAH! and he would tell me what to do. He was the father of five and calmly told me, "you have a diaper-pooper." Wha--? Apparently most little boys fall into that category. He peeled me off the ceiling and said, "don't worry. He won't go to kindergarten in a diaper."

After I quit making Number Two the number one issue in the house, Zach was poopypottytrained in about two weeks.

My second child? Could have pooped in her pants til five and I would not have cared.


Congrats! Poop day is such an awesome day. The exact opposite of giving-up-naps day. For the record, my son is 4 and just now started consistently pooping in the potty. We waited "until he was ready" and next thing you knew he was 4 asking for a diaper, please, because I need to poop. Finally, my husband got all dad-like and was like, no more diapers, that's it - no more choices, and about 12 hours later of high anxiety on my part that we were ruining the child permanently, he pooped on the potty. He just wasn't going to do it until we basically left him no options. I feel a bit guilty, but the clean-up process more than makes up for it.

Congrats - and I would have gone to get the DVD too!



Completely off topic of post but I have been reading the archives and you have saved my life (exaggeration but STILL). You turned me on to Burt Bees skin care and I have been using it for a bit now and my face will totally talk to me again. You saved me from going back to face melting Proactiv. Seriously, thank you.


You mean I'm supposed to be talking to my kid?

What. The. Hell.

That sounds like, a lot of work, and stuff.


A wise guru once told me "You cannot force a kid to eat, poop, or sleep." That is my story and I am sticking to it.

As an aside, all the crappy comments about TV viewing are full of poo. My younger sister was glued to the TV, yet still managed to graduate valedictorian in her class, went on the college, studied abroad and is planning on doing her Master's this fall.

As a SAHM, I am with my kid for 12+ waking hours a day. We have plenty of time to play outside, read books, play games, draw and yes, even watch a bit of TV. However, I am full of magically delicious goodness. Could that be the difference? Bah.


Mine did it when he was ready too, at 3 years three months. I was always afraid of killer plumbing bills after various unmentionables would be flushed, so I never really pushed the flushing thing (more puns). Now I am the proud owner of a 3.6 year old who poops in our toilets and Never Flushes! I'll take it though. Good luck...

Daisy Duke

Hahaha- my Dad remembers going to see the Dalmations at the theatre and crying & being terrified of Cruella. He still is- we couldn't own the movie as kids :-)


Ah yes, I have fond memories of the great poop challenge. The only place by my darling son would go, was outside. In the little potty. Under the big tree, where the neighbors could see. Oh and maltsupex was a great help. Add a little in a glass of chocolate milk and voila! Good luck with your little darling!


here is a link to a book that might be helpful. (kids book about pooping)


TOO MUCH TV. MY GOSH, ALL YOUR FAULT. Yeah, right, crazy Internet. Clearly, if you are doing the all-TV raising, then the all-TV raising of children produces some awesome kids and we all need to do it. Aren't people who lecture you on your own blog tiring? Anyway --- the buttons were funny and cool, and so glad you found the correct movie. (and hope you found the Most Important Toy in the World).


This is hysterical. So glad it was in stock somewhere. This just sounds like something that would happen to me. I feel ya. Coats and strollers and all.


God, I can't tell you how relieved I am that you weren't subjected to the awfulness that is the stupid stupid awful Disney vault and were actually able to get your poopy hands on the Dadamations. I've been impatiently waiting for Beauty and the Beast since I lost my VHS copy. In college. I'm only pretending to be a grown up.


God, I can't tell you how relieved I am that you weren't subjected to the awfulness that is the stupid stupid awful Disney vault and were actually able to get your poopy hands on the Dadamations. I've been impatiently waiting for Beauty and the Beast since I lost my VHS copy. In college. I'm only pretending to be a grown up.


So this will sound crazy to many, but I shit you not, infant potty training is the bomb. My son was fully trained, out of diapers day and night for his first birthday. We used a cloth diaper service and I don't know if it works with disposable diapers (since they don't feel wet) but he went diaper-less when possible and learned to sit on his little mini potty and wait to go after each meal, before and after naps etc. It's like house training a puppy, they don't argue, they smile and coo at you as you congratulate them.
I admit this is difficult if your child is not home with you all the time, but it will speed up the potty training process by making it normal, before they are old enough to realize they can might like to disagree with the ways of the world.
To everyone who thinks this is crazy, it is perfectly normal through out most of the world that is without disposable diapers, see India, Africa and much of Asia. There are a few books on how to do it, but it's not really rocket science, it takes patience, and works best when you wear baby a lot as they will squirm when they need to go to alert you. Anyone who's struggled with toddler potty training and has another ahead, check it out. It's not for everyone, but I can't tell you how great it was to be completely free of diapers after only one year.

Humor Girl

I read daily...

One of THE funniest posts. Between the buttons and the fiance and I are in tears...


First: Yay for Noah! Way to pee on the potty and know how to get what you want!
Secondly, my parents used to sit me on the transportable kiddy potty IN the living room in front of a disney movie to get me to poop. Awesome story to tell me boyfriend!

mama speak

I didn't read all the comments cause I need to get to bed, but I have a couple of cents worth to throw in here.
1) TV is actually OK (boy will I get comments) for kids w/speech issues. If it's kid friendly & they speak correctly (not baby talk) you're exposing them to a larger vocabulary, etc...
2) My oldest DD (5 now) trained herself at 18mo, "Hey, want to use the potty?" She ran down the hall & did, end of story. My 2nd child (2YO) just got trained last week. She's what you might call "stong-willed" so we took a weekend a while back ago to try & push the issue (lots of juice boxes, no pants, outside, etc...) the kid held it for over 3 hrs & was crying/begging for a pull up. I decided it wasn't worth giving her a UTI. Last week she decided that big girl underware was worth it (wasn't before) and has had 1 accident in a week. So much easier...I don't have to lift her or remind her. Give him time, when he's ready he will and it'll be easier on you. That or make him change himself (mine was doing that already, just lovely.)

Potty training, every mother's most scary thought! I like the buttons as a bribe idea, better than chocolate or lollies -an a co incidence as well!

I laughed at your comment on TIVO, I cant count the number of times my children have had a hissy fit because there show wasnt on tv (or i had not recorded it)!!


My grandson is so challenging because he is both bribe and threat resistant. My daughter had given him a collection of buttons and he loved them. Mixed in with the bunch was a smiley face button. For some reason the little guy adored that smiley face. We could play for hours with just that button. He was tenderly solicitous as he offered it plastic food and I faded into the background as he interacted with the button that could only nod, shake its head and kiss him. His amazing parents found a flashlight that would cast a red happy face on the wall and it would dance all around if he pooped in the potty. For smiley face, he would do anything.


First time posting, but just had to say this entry was BRILLIANT!

And as the mother of a 3 year old, I can heartily concur--3 year olds have MAN-sized poops.


I am glad it all worked out in the end! and yay Noah for going potty :) Good advice though, I will make sure to tackle the potty training thing earlier then 3 (but I make no promises)


I have a 7 year old who still wears pull-ups at night. Yep. 7 - that's years, not months. Pull-ups. And you know what? Fuck it, I say. Because when I was a kid (and so poor we couldn't afford VHS cases - or I'm so old that they weren't invented yet), I wet the bed until I was 10. At about the age of 7 my parents, after trying to get me to stop after bribing, yelling, threatening and finally making me change my own bed sheets in the middle of the night, finally took me to see a doctor. After numerous tests, guess what they found out? Small bladder. Wasn't my fault. The guilt presents I received were glorious.


Ioan Gruffud is in the Dalmation movie? All right. I'll watch it then.

We're working on potty training our three year old. When I say "we" I mean mommy keeps telling everyone we're working on it which, when I think about, is a BIG FAT LIE! I remember to ask him if he sat on the potty once in a blue moon (day care does a much better job at this than I do!). I try and talk to him about it whenever I'm wrist deep in his poopy diaper, but that pathetic note in my voice does not impress him. He's three, he invented pathetic.

I'm way into the idea of bribery. We'll see how that works!

Thanks for the tips!

Laura in Michigan

My 4 year old son used to bring me a diaper when he was ready to poop. I can relate about "man poop". It was not pretty. We tried bribes (think Power Ranger bike), rewards, time outs, changing himself....nothing worked. I finally told him I had enough and he could stay in diapers until he was a grown up. Next day, voila - pooping on the potty like a big kid.!! If only I had known..... BTW, he's 18 now and LOVES it when I tell this story in front of his friends. See, there is justice!


Like everyone else, I'm in love with the line, "I'm not made of magic." Because, seriously, people want me to be.

Why is it that it was okay for us to watch the two hours of cartoons between getting home and the news coming on and then watch the freakin' violent, crazy news and our parent's shows (Dallas, anyone?!?) But God forbid our children watch one measly episode of a an actual age-appropriate, educational show? Our parents had it sooo easy.

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