First off, lets talk potty training! I've been dragging my feet on this one. Why? I don't know. Ethan is ready. He's been ready for weeks now. I guess I would rather change a diaper at this point than constantly put my efforts towards teaching him to use the potty. Enter the "light bulb" moment. Why should I teach him when I can have his older brother teach him?!
I know what you're thinking. Aaron is 3. How can he teach Ethan to be potty trained? Well I came up with this brilliant plan to make a sticker chart for BOTH the boys. One for Ethan for every time he does something on the potty - even a little. He gets a 1 sticker for number 1 and 2 stickers for number 2... hehehe. Every third square is a prize. Thanks to the grandparents on both sides and the Easter bunny, we're set on the candy bucket for a while! : )
The other chart is "Aaron's Big Brother Helper Chart." He gets the same amount of stickers every time he helps Ethan. This could mean he reminds him, helps him get his pants down, shows him how to pull them up, or even just cheering him on while he does his business. Ethan loves the cheer-leading/help, and Aaron loves to be the helper. And they BOTH get prizes. I love it when I hear Aaron say, "Ok Eason (he can't say "th" yet), when you need to go potty you just tell me and I'll help you, OK?" or "Ethan, you need to go potty yet? Remember the next time you go you get a prize." Today Aaron helped him while I was cooking dinner. They had it all taken care of and ready for a sticker! And I did hear him go so I know they were not just plotting for a sticker.
On his first day, Ethan had zero accidents after I put him in his first pull up. Now this was a few hours after he had woken up so he had already done some business in a diaper but from then on out, he wore the same pull up until bed!!! He had a little bit of beginners luck I think because today was not as great. He did use the potty but we went through 3 pull ups - all from number 2 accidents. Still, I'd say he is a champ! Right on target. Looking forward to not having diapers around. Plus, we can start taking him to Kids Night Out at the YMCA once he's potty trained! It's 5 hours of fun for the kids and a date night for mommy and daddy!
On to Aaron. The same day I started Ethan on his potty training regime, Aaron came to me after nap time. He said, "Mommy, come here. I have a surprise for you. It's in my room." Not sure what to expect I followed him down the hall. He was giddy and seemed VERY proud of himself. I wondered what it could possibly be. Marker on the wall? A design on his bed made out of diaper cream? Maybe a display of "artwork" created with baby powder and diaper wipes? None of the above. I walked in the room and found this:
"I cleaned my room for you mom!" Speechless. Unprompted, unasked, he picked up his room and couldn't wait to show me. What a fantastic surprise! I'm not sure he really realized the weight of what he had done though. Now I KNOW he is capable of keeping a clean room! Or at least picking it up when it gets out of control. : ) Seriously though, I am one proud mommy. He earned himself a piece of candy. Actually I probably would have given him anything he wanted at that point!
And on a spiritual note - because God loves to teach me things using my kiddos - What have I done recently to try to make my heavenly father smile? Aaron knew that I would be happy and proud of him if he cleaned up his room without me asking him. He did it joyfully and couldn't wait for me to see it. I bet God's heart would burst with joy, just as mine did, if I did something for Him with as much joy as Aaron did for me. And just as I wanted to bless Aaron to show him my love, so too does God want to bless us in return for our obedience and adoration.
Saturday was one of those days that I was happy to simply be a mommy.