Ahhhh, the dishes are washed, kitchen cleaned, toys picked up, table cleared, potty training items put away, carpet and floors vacuumed, and a load of laundry is in the washer and dryer! So, I am ready to start my day tomorrow and my weekend.
We don't really have much planned for the holiday weekend. Well, we purchased our Ford Focus Wagon just in time because the Monday after our BIG purchase, the transmission on our Ford Escort ZX2 went out. So, for the past 2 weeks, DearHubby has been driving the Mustang we supposedly retired and he is spending this holiday weekend replacing the shot transmission.
Nonetheless, the girls and I went to the grocery store today and bought a box of Bubba hamburgers (1/3 lb patties), a package of hot dogs, and some other miscellaneous items for a small family BBQ on Monday.
I've been spending a lot of time re-establishing a routine here at home. Potty training has taken much more time than I anticipated and I needed to reassess everthing on my plate and reorganize my time and priorities. Before I started potty training DearDaughter1 I talked to my sister about her experience with potty training. She had a lot of positive things to say and she made potty training sound sooooooo easy. She literally trained my niece in a day and she made it sound like my niece was completely out of diapers immediately afterwards. Maybe it was THAT easy for her and I expected it to be THAT easy for me which caused me to expect a lot from DearDaughter1.
For the 1st few days, DearDaughter1 was really into potty training and only had 1 or 2 accidents a day and so I thought she was ready to go out on errands in undies. Unfortunately, she had one embarrassing accident at the gym and I think that did it in for the potty training and she completely lost interest. I then decided that DearDaughter1 is not ready to go out on errands in undies and that I'd put her in Pull-Ups. However, from that accident time on, potty training became a contentious issue between us to the point where I stressed over it and stressed DearDaughter1 over it.
As a result, at the beginning of this week, DearDaughter1 had an accident every time, and went through all 14 of her undies in about 1 1/2 days. She just refused to use the potty and I got so upset that for a short moment I did give up! I put away all the potty training items and put DearDaughter1 into her little sister's diaper.
After thinking about how I was not exemplifying Christ likeness in handling difficult and challenging situations, DearDaughter1 and I prayed for God's wisdom and strength about potty training. Our decision was to still persevere through it, but I've backed off on expecting more than what DearDaughter1 can do. When we first started, I had DearDaughter1 in undies all day. I took that pressure off of DearDaughter1 by allowing her to be in Pull-Ups for part of the day. I still expect her to go to the potty while she is in the Pull-Ups, but if she has an accident, it's ok. It's taken off stress from DearDaughter1 and me too. The clean-ups from accidents were nasty and very time consuming. The day DearDaughter1 had an accident the whole day, I felt like I literally spent all day cleaning up after her. I wasn't getting much done as far as house chores were concerned and that really made me anxious. I realized that potty training, at least for DearDaughter1, is a learning process. It's a habit that has to be established and it depends on DearDaughter1's maturity level, her willingness to do it, and her physical capabilities to know when to do it. That's a lot on a little 2 year old's shoulders and I needed to learn that the hard way.
I do have to say that despite the challenging moments, I am so proud of DearDaughter1 and her perseverance through learning how to use the potty. I've caused her much stress these past several weeks, but despite the stress, she still managed to reach milestones! Last Friday, while we were out, she asked to use the potty even while in a Pull-Up! This Wednesday, she went poo poo in the potty for the first time!!! They were both very joyous moments and DearDaughter1 was very proud of herself!!!
Aside from working through the potty training issue, I spent a lot of time with the girls this week. The nearest parks I knew about are 20 to 25 minutes away and so I made it a goal this week to find parks closer to our house. I got out the map (on Mapquest) and just looked for big green areas and since Tuesday, the girls and I have been park hopping! We visited 3 known parks and 2 new parks. Some were nicer than others, but we still had a lot of fun at all of them!
It was actually really nice going to the park because it allowed opportunity for the girls and I to spend time with each other and I didn't feel so stressed out because most everything at the park is permissible for DearDaughter1 to play with and I didn't have to do much disciplining. When we got home, the girls were so tired that DearDaughter2 would go down for 2 hour naps while DearDaughter1 quietly played by herself, which allowed me to get much done here at home!
One thing I've been trying to get back into the habit of is doing all the clean-up after the girls go to bed. I got into the habit of cleaning up in the evening a few months ago, but reverted back to doing chores during the day because I was just so tired by the end of the day. However, I've realized that clean-up just goes so much faster when the girls are not around. What usually takes me a whole day to accomplish would take me an hour to 2 hours in the evening because I'm not constantly being interrupted. I don't have much time to relax in the evening and I'm usually working up until bedtime, but I'm finding that I am less anxious during the day because I have more "free" time and I'm not so worried about house chores. That gives me more time to just hang out with the girls and do more fun stuff. I used to not like doing chores after 8pm, but I think this is a season that I will need to and it's helping me get my strength from God.
The next thing I want to work on is good time management. In order for me to re-establish a good routine here at home, I've had to really cut out a lot of play date opportunities and other extra activities with others. I'm not sure how to integrate them back in yet. I'm going to have to take that one step at a time.
Well, it's late...Just wanted to jot down some thoughts before the weekend since I've been quiet all week long.