Saturday, March 25, 2006

PottyTraining with Fisher-Price's The Royal Potty

Potty training a toddler is a bittersweet milestone for most parents. On the one hand, a potty trained toddler will mean that you will no longer have the expense of buying diapers. On the other hand, potty training your toddler also means that he or she is no longer a baby anymore-- indeed your baby is growing up!

We had just begun potty training my son and I was just about at my wits end. My son, for some reason, was deathly afraid of the toilet. I bought him one of those foam potty rings, with pictures of his favorite Blue's Clues characters on it, and I sat him down on it on the regular toilet. He screamed as if he were being tortured. He did not like sitting on that big potty one single bit. After several long winded attempts at this, I gave up. I figured he just wasn't ready to be potty trained, even though he was quickly approaching his third birthday. So we went back to wearing diapers 24/7.

Then a few weeks later I was out shopping and I spotted Fisher Price's Royal Potty. I was intrigued by it, even though I had sworn that I wasn't going to buy my son a potty chair. The Royal Potty claimed to make potty training fun. With built in sensors, the Royal Potty would even play a song when the toddler went to the potty. I decided to buy it on a whim. Armed with our new Royal Potty and some Nascar big boy underwear (my son picked them out) we made a new attempt at potty training.

Assembling the Royal Potty was quite simple-- just a few pieces of plastic that snapped together and a quick battery insertion. It also came with a cute little story book that explained how "special" the potty was. The story, called "A Throne of Your Own" was just a few pages long but my son squealed with excitement when he saw the picture of the potty in the story. The set also came with a potty tracking chart and two dozen royal stickers (they are stickers of crowns, 12 for a boy and 12 for a girl). These stickers are meant to reward the child when he or she uses the potty.

I put a pair of the Nascar underwear on my son and explained to him that these were his big boy underwear and that he shouldn't wet them. I told him that if he needed to go to the bathroom, that he should let me know and he could sit on his special potty. I said this all to him, all the while being pretty positive that eh wasn't retaining anything that I was saying. So imagine my surprise when, in the middle of dinner, he announced that he had to go to the potty. He ran into the bathroom and sat on his new little "throne". He was delighted when the music starting playing. We rewarded him with a sticker and ever since then he has been so excited to use his new potty. The best part is, the Royal Potty seat can also fit on top of your regular toilet-- and it will still play music when your child goes.

My 5 year old daughter got into the act, too. Although she understands that the Royal Potty is for her brother's use only, she made herself her own homemade potty chart and she puts a checkmark on it every time she goes to the bathroom.

A few things to consider if you're thinking of purchasing Fisher-Price's Royal Potty:

-- Make sure your child is old enough to understand the concept of potty training. If you start a child too early, it will take longer to potty train and he or she will become frustrated.

-- The music will only play if your child successfully uses the potty. If nothing comes out, the music won't play.

-- The "songs" that the potty plays are just a few chords of royal-sounding music. Still, it's cute and my son loves it.

-- Plan to buy extra stickers. My son was so excited to place a new sticker on his potty chart that we ran out of stickers pretty quickly. I just bought some more stickers at the dollar store to use as we continue the process.

Bottom line: If you're skeptical about The Royal Potty, let me tell you that it really worked for us. It costs under twenty dollars and the removable potty pot is easy to clean. Fisher-Price's Royal Potty will make the potty training process much more enjoyable for you and your child.

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