Monday, June 20, 2011

Pee Pride

In the afternoon today I let Gabe wear a pair of his precious Thomas the Train underwear. As usual, there was a soggy ending to the story. Bedtime rolled around. Gabe was standing on his stepping stool washing his hands in the kitchen, when I told him it was time to go to the potty and pee. But the power of suggestion was too strong: Gabe wet himself right there on the stool. He apologetically announced, "I'm peeing."

But fantastic progress had already been made. After an hour of wearing the undies, I realized it was high time for Gabe to have a pee break. But Kaylee was starting her fussy-wiggles, so I had to high-tail it to the nursery for a visit to her potty box. It turned out she was more interested in nursing than in immediately peeing, so I was stuck there in the rocking chair while Gabe wandered freely, a pee-bomb waiting to happen.

"Gabe," I said, "it's time to use the potty. Come take off your shorts."

Well, heck, he listened to me. I heard him fumbling in the bathroom, and then into the nursery he stumbles, beaming, to demonstrate that he has his undies own around his ankles. "Okay," I said, "now go sit on the potty."

More bathroom fumbling ensues. There are suspicious thumps. "I'm all wet," he says. But not with pee. It turns out he has attempted to sit on the grown-up potty, has somehow dipped the back of his shirt in it. How, exactly, he managed to extract himself from the toilet is anybody's guess. I stripped him of his wet shirt, while still juggling a nursing baby whose bare butt is jammed into a tupperware box. "Try the little potty," I said.

Voila! "I did it!" Gabe proclaimed. And voila! Kaylee peed too. Only I was so distracted by Gabe's antics that the potty box isn't positioned correctly, and I got baptized.

Gabe got himself back into his undies and shorts with only minimal assistance, and had I been a little sooner with my reminder, he might have made it dry to bedtime as well. But as if he didn't want to leave the day on a soggy note, he surprised me again. Kaylee needed one last visit to the potty box during the bedtime rituals. Gabe was happily diapered, but he took one look at Kaylee's bare bum, and asked if he could go pee on the potty, too, and gets himself naked and on the potty and did his business in a flash.

And this time, I caught Kaylee's pee in the box.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


Of course, I'm way behind on documenting where the kid are at. Gabe is forging ahead boldly into preschool territory, amazing me every day with his profound little steps into personhood. But this post is about Kaylee. At two and a half months, she feels like she has been in my life forever, and yet also seems to be rocketing through the infant stages so fast that I fear I will blink and miss them.

Today she laughed for the first time. Kaylee had just endured Gabe's end-of-day meltdown, in which he first screamed that he didn't want to be in the shower, and then screamed that he didn't want the shower to end. Chris applied some zen and calmed him down; Kaylee looked on with a giant grin, and then said "tee-hee!"

Kaylee just beams at us now, great big toothless, lovely grins. As with Gabe, the ceiling fans have been her first crush. She wakes up at dawn beneath our bedroom fan and proceeds to have an hour-long wiggle-flirt session with the whirling blades.

I had been taking Kaylee directly to bed with me at night around 8, when she was ready for sleep. But of course this prevented me from having any grown-up time with Chris, so I switched to putting her in the crib for the first part of the night. She surprised me by being entirely okay with this arrangement, so much so that on many nights she accepted my good night kiss and went to sleep without any fuss whatsoever. But then she went and slept through the night! I woke up at 4 A.M. that first night with this terrible feeling of not being ready yet, and broke all the rules by waking her up so that she could come back to bed with me.

Okay, so that was silly of me, and I haven't done it since.

What else? Well, I've started experimenting with a variation on the ancient and universal human method of dealing with baby elimination; i.e. "pottying" the baby instead of wasting resources in the form of a diaper. I am officially committed to doing nothing; I am not aiming to have a diaper-free infant or a halved diaper bill or anything as grand. For me, that would be a recipe for failure. I am merely asking, "can I get her to pee in a box once or twice today, to keep one more diaper out of the landfill?" The answer, so far, is hell yes! I will have to write more about this in another post, assuming that the experiment continues to go so well.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


At random while watching Chris play a baseball game, Gabe said: "Daddy, the green car makes bad decisions. He needs to make good decisions and be nice to his friends. He needs to put on his listening ears so he can make good decisions."

At random in the car, perhaps inspired by the movie "Cars", Gabe declared "Cars don't dance." On another occasion he stated that "cars don't have mouths." Later, it was "fire trucks don't dance."

Gabe was making his careful way down a climbing structure when an older boy jostled him. Gabe blurted out, with a glare: "Oh you have got to be kidding me!"

Chris pointed out a butterfly in the brand new community gardens. Gabe asked: "What's he doing in the community garden?" A teacher happened to be listening in, and her jaw dropped. (I'm so proud!)

My friend Nicole went up to the coffee shop counter to make a purchase, leaving Gabe and I with her toddler. Gabe asked, "did the baby come out of her tummy?"

"I'm peeing!" Gabe announces while watering the bath mat. He then examines the moist patch and says "I make a letter!"