“I Pee-peed!” … Where??? – Potty Training Tips and Mishaps in Preparation for Baby


It’s Potty Time!

You’ve probably seen the Clorox commercial that starts with the toddler running over to mommy with a proud little scoot. “Mommy, I made poo poo!” Mom then runs to the toilet with a proud smile that slowly fades when she realizes the toilet is empty. “Where?” she stammers. Toddler points to X location.

X = {hallway, floor, corner of the room, couch, anybody’s guess if you aren’t quite vigilant enough}

This scenario is all too familiar. We’ve had our share of “Mommy, I peepeed (or poopooed)” over time. Before potty training, it usually happened when the diaperless toddlers ran around the house while being corralled for bath time.



The pressure was turned way up in our household for several reasons, the biggest being I DON’T WANT THREE KIDS IN DIAPERS. I’m due with my third child under three in early July. Hence the extra enthusiasm from mommy and daddy for our eldest to master toilet training.

This was an important step on a bigger checklist of:

Things to Do Before Baby Arrives

Here’s the basic plan with a few items checked off and a few additions.

Step 1: Sort all clothes. Group by sizes. Store anything too small for boy 1 and boy 2 (ages 2.5 and 1, respectively).

Step 2: Introduce co-sleeping to my sons. Time to start sharing a room, boys. (They play mainly in one anyway!)

Step 2B: Get the kids to sleep in the same room, and actually sleep.

Step 2C: Potty train our firstborn. (Scroll down for Tips and Mishaps)

Step 3: Prepare the soon-to-be vacant bedroom to be the nursery.

Step 4: Figure out how to safely fit three car seats in my vehicle.

Step 5: Clean and sanitize baby things – clothes, breast pump, crib, etc.

Step 6: Exercise and eat well.

Step 7: Pack a bag for the hospital.

Step 8: Delivery, etc. – Preregister at hospital, Enlist help from grandparents to watch the boys and feed the dog, Get the camera ready, Check the Full Moon calendar

Step 9: Figure out what other steps have not been included yet, hopefully before July 5th, or July 4th, or June 27th.

We are now wrapping up the training days with certain measures of success and other mistakes that mommy won’t be repeating with future training days for younger kids.


Did you know that diapers get more expensive as their sizes increase? Pull-ups are a degree above that with nighttime diapers topping the charts? Here’s a snapshot of some popular brands and their prices by size. Now multiply by 5 or 10 diapers a day. Multiply that by 7 days a week… 4 weeks a month… or 52 weeks a year!  Now multiply that by three children. Once again, I don’t think so!


On a given week, we spend approximately $35 on diapers, which is close to $140-150 per month. It adds up.


  1. Positivity – High fives, potty dances, stickers, praise, and lots of verbal celebration – all very helpful and positive.
  2. Diaperless Days – I heard about this from other moms and then read up on it, too. The gist is to keep your kid diaper-less at home for three days. Reinforce that peepee and poopoo DO NOT belong on the floor or anywhere else. They belong in the toilet. You will want to find a window of time when you can stay home as much as possible for three days. There is allowance for a quick one hour trip on day two, and two one-hour trips on day three, with your kid dressed in loose pants but still no diaper or underwear. If they go in the toilet, a great quick reward is to go outside for a bit afterwards to train them that it’s good to go potty before we leave the house (setting the foundation for trips, outings).
  3. Trains – Quite possibly my son’s best friends, his trains are dearly missed when not on his train table. When the accidents started feeling somewhat spiteful (followed by giggling or “no, peepee goes on the floor!”) the trains started flying up to the top of the bookshelf, out of reach. The ONLY way to get a train back on the train table was to peepee or poopoo in the toilet. IT WORKED. He REALLY wanted those trains back.trains up high small
  4. Relocate the Toilet – I got this idea from the “diaperless days” technique. It helped tremendously to have the little potty in a location that was easily accessible. No need to run down the hall and around the corner into the bathroom when “the pee was coming”! Most accidents happened during play anyway, right next to all of the toys.Potty Training
  5. Sticker Chart – Stemming from my son’s admiration of certain cartoon characters, I found a great printable potty chart with Cars on each week with a finish line. I also happen to sell kisses stickers, so I used my blank stock and created a page of little stickers with fun icons including smiles, stars, cars, and planes. Each time my son had a “hit” in the toilet, he chose his own sticker and placed it on the chart. The big emphasis is on the finish line, although after the first prize was awarded he often wanted a prize for any given sticker. For my fellow MATH enthusiasts, this chart provides a great opportunity to use verbiage like “How many spaces left before the finish line?”, “You had 1,2,3 stickers and one more sticker equals 4!”, “How many more stickers are needed to get all 6?”, “Let’s count the stickers in this row”, etc.It's Potty Time
  6. Inedible Rewards – Grab some small toys from the dollar store or toy department, wrap them up individually, throw them in a distinct bag or basket, and voila! It’s a treasure chest! I kept this high up on a bookshelf to avoid it being raided, but fully visible so my son knew that it was coming with enough “hits” in the toilet. He got to choose his “prize” each time he made it to the finish line on his potty chart. WIN!Rewards
  7. “Keep {Insert Underwear Theme} dry” – fill in the blank with the underwear decoration (i.e. Keep Buzz dry, Keep Lightening McQueen dry, Keep the dinosaurs dry)Keep these dry
  8. Have him sit backwards on the toilet seat – This tip came from a family gathering recently while we were having little luck “going” out in public places. She had her son sit backwards on the toilet seat, facing the lid. It WORKS. He gets to see the pee and poo fall into the toilet, which is exciting for him and rewarding, too. This technique also seems to be an easier way to sit for such a little person. It may sound silly, but you might just give it a try!



  1. Candy Fail – The first time my sweet son managed timing his #2 into the proper dropping spot, I was so excited that I ran to the kitchen and grabbed an Oreo. The problem was the next few times when I turned INCONSISTENT because I was not crazy about giving my child a cookie right before bed, after teeth were brushed and story time was over. Once he figured this out (which happened pretty quickly) he initially wanted to go all the time and then completely lost interest. No cookie, no poop. 
  2. Commitment – I wasn’t always in 100%. It was more convenient to avoid public bathrooms and not deal with constant checking while out of the house. My fail. Potty training has to be a full-time commitment. Be prepared to reinforce the idea of keeping those undies dry all the time. Avoid giving mixed messages to your toddler.
  3. (Not) Dealing with Accidents Properly – It was “okay” to have accidents. We literally used to say “That’s okay” or “Let’s clean it up” or “Maybe next time” which changed during the serious potty training more to the tune of “No, pee pee goes in the toilet, not on the floor.” The parental verbiage needed to firm up, and it did.


Preparing for Baby (Week 33) – Sleep Training and Preregistering at the Hospital

Preparing for Baby (Week 30) – Making Room WITH a Music Room, Time to Share a Room, Boys!

Preparing for Baby (Week 28) – System for Sorting Clothes in Preparation for Baby

Six Survival Items for Moms with Little Ones

Baby Center’s 3-Day Training Tips

Want to go diaperless from the beginning? Here’s an interesting article about going totally diaperless from the birth!


What about you? Do you have any potty training tips? What worked for you? What didn’t work so well?

Please share in our comments below!


  1. Totally agree with the candy and sweets rewards. I did it and I thought my daughter was going to lose her teeth before she tackled potty training! Love! Love! Love!


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