A brief glimpse into the daily happenings of a 6-year-old, his new baby brother and his family.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Spring Break Diary Part 2: P T B C

My other spring break project was to have a week-long potty training boot camp for Ben. Somewhat less glamorous than the bathroom floor project (and you saw that big hole in the floor, right?) and somewhat less successful, but at least I can say we tried.

Here are a few daily reports from the trenches:

Monday (day 1): Ben has aversion to the potty seat at Mimi's house. We went to Target to buy a new potty seat and also picked up some motivational "big boy" underwear (Tinkerbell). The only way I can get him to sit on the potty is to paint his toenails and fingernails. **(see note below)

Tuesday (day 2): Great day! Ben does most of his business in the potty. However after cleaning a well-formed poo off the floor, I decide to discontinue the "commando" from the waist down style of potty training.

Wednesday (day 3): Back in our new bathroom, the process comes to a screeching (and screaming and crying) halt. Several accidents cause Mommy to take the big boy underwear away and substitute Pull-Ups.

Weekend (days 6 and 7): Off and on success. He's like clockwork with the poo (must be a man thing) but can't be bothered to pee. I have resorted to a "bribe box" full of dollar store finds. If something goes in the potty, he gets a prize.

Monday (day 8): Back to school. I took him to school in a pull up, with no expectations. Ok, that's a lie. I expected it to be a disaster. I thought his teachers would send home a note that requested he be in diapers until kindergarten. Much to my surprise, he sat on the potty at school several times. He was dry ALL DAY. We celebrated at Sheridan's for ice cream after dinner. He continued to be dry the rest of the night.

Tuesday (day 9): The day I realized how deeply emotionally involved I was in the bodily functions of a 2 year old. He refused to have anything to do with the potty and I refused to be anything less than a basket case. I honestly locked myself in the bathroom and cried about his accidents.

Since regaining some composure and realizing that he'll do it when he's ready, I'm a little more "go with the flow" (pun intended) about the whole thing. Plus, his tushie in Tinkerbell underwear is super cute.

**Note: I know many of you are going to have things to say about the Tinkerbell underwear and the nail painting. No, I'm not raising a transvestite. He is really obsessed with Peter Pan and they didn't have boy Peter Pan underwear. We went to the Disney Store later in the week and purchased some Pan/Hook underwear to substitute for the Tinkerbells. I'm pretty sure the emotional scars from potty training will not be a result of underwear or nail polish...it's much more likely to be the post-traumatic stress of boot camp.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Spring Break Diary Part 1: Bathroom Floor

A week ago Saturday morning, we put the toilet on the porch (awesome) and began demolition of the floor in the bathroom.

If you've, ah, used the facilities in our house anytime in the recent past, know that you are a lucky, lucky soul. Look what the floor (or lack of) was like underneath..

Luckily, we had an expert contractor to help with tearing the floor out (seriously..a big, gaping hole all the way down to the crawl space) and rebuilding the sub floor.

Here are a few pictures we took while we were working. In addition to the work shown in these pictures, we learned the following:
1) ripping up linoleum that has been glued and tacked to plywood that was glued and tacked to linoleum that was glued and tacked to plywood is the worst job since stripping wallpaper

2) when you turn off the water supply from the wall to the toilet and it keeps dripping, make sure you confirm what kind of pipe you have before you go to Home Depot to buy the replacement

2B) the old guy in the plumbing aisle at Home Depot doesn't think it's nearly as cute and clever as you do that you took pictures of the pipe and brought your digital camera to the store to figure out what kind of pipe you need

3) No matter how much water you think you've gotten out of your toilet, when you bring it back in, water spills on the floor.

4) All those hours playing Tetris comes in pretty handy when you're trying to figure out the shape to cut the tiles around the toilet. Don has the high score on Toilet Tetris!

The good news is that we now have a beautiful bathroom floor. So, what did we do with the rest of Spring Break? 4 words... Potty Training Boot Camp. But, that's a blog for another day...like tomorrow.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Rock Chalk Jayhawk

Friday night, our little Jayhawk helped ensure a victory by gathering his best buddies for the game. It's true, they watched very little of the game, but they looked good.

Ben, Riley, and Lauren

Ben and Lauren watching Dora

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Belly on up

Welcome to Ben's bar. Open every evening around 7:30pm. Now serving an assortment of shower gels, shampoo, and face wash. Come for the amazing selection, but stay for the charming company. Don't forget to order the "big bucket drink".

B: Hey, Mommy. Whaddayu-have? You want a drink?
H: Sure. I'd like a diet coke.
B: We don't have that. You can have a big bucket drink.
H: What's in the big bucket drink?
B: Everything we got.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The smell of spring

Spring is here! With the beautiful weather yesterday, Ben has discovered that there is a place almost as wonderful as Harper's cave. He played in his sandbox for almost 30 minutes without stopping. He filled and dumped sand all over the place-- the grass, his head, his pants, in his diaper... I truly mean EVERYWHERE.

The only unfortunate side effect of all this fun is the new "spring scent." I am not kidding... when the kid came into the house after playing outside I thought an entire junior high football team had found its way into my kitchen. The kid had the "BO" bad. I'm talking stinky feet, sweaty-after-recess-spent-playing-dodge-ball-on-a-hot-day stink. Seriously. It was don't-you-even-THINK-about-sitting-on-the-couch smelly. The good news is that he smelled fine after his bath and slept better than he's slept in months. HOORAY FOR SPRING!

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Hola, me llamo Ben

Thursday, while dining at the very exclusive "Old Donald's", Ben decided to bridge the language gap and reach out to a fellow human in need. What a humanitarian.

When we sat down in playland, there were only two other people having lunch... a dad and his daughter. The dad was speaking Spanish on his cell phone and the little girl also spoke Spanish. As we ate, I played through several scenarios in my mind-- all were variations of him calling the little girl "Dora" or asking where "Diego" was. Little did I know..

At one point, the little girl had climbed up in the playscape and yelled down to her father, "Papa! Papa!" She smiled and waved. The dad looked up, smiled, waved and said, "Hola!"

At the sound of the "Dora speak", Ben's head whipped to the side as he smiled, looked at the dad and yelled, "HOLA people! HOLA!" Ben then looked up at the little girl and said, "Oh no! Her is stuck in there. AYUDAME! AYUDAME! Help her. Her is stuck." (Ayudame means "help me" in Spanish.)

The father looked over at us, looked surprised and asked me, "Hablen espanol? (Do you speak Spanish)" I smiled (a somewhat mortified smile) and said, "Un poco. Dora. (a little, Dora.)" The dad nodded and said, "Si, si."

I tell ya, the wonders of Nick Jr. and Dora the Explorer.