Our Five Ring Circus: Potty Training: The Often Overlooked Messy Milestone

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Potty Training: The Often Overlooked Messy Milestone

Potty Training


From the moment our children are born, we eagerly anticipate all those milestones. From the first smile to the first steps, we're there to cheer them on every step of the way! Those are the most anticipated milestones, but there's one that's often overlooked: potty training!


With the first child, we can't WAIT for them to achieve their milestones. But by the time another child is born, we realize just how quickly time goes by. The truth is milestones will be achieved and they will be achieved much faster than we could ever imagine.  There's no need to rush anything or compare your child to others! Kids will get there when they are ready.

Those other milestones are surrounded by so much excitement, but seasoned parents know the real deal: The most exciting milestone is having a fully potty trained child! That is the ultimate reward after that often incredibly frustrating journey. And for a parent of a child who has special needs, it's easily the most exciting and most rewarding milestone of them all!

Potty Training

Right now, Liam is working on two major milestones. Not only is he potty training, but he will also be starting his first day of preschool next month. There are some huge changes ahead for my sweet boy. Some changes I'm ready for (having a fully potty trained child) while others are a bit tough on mommy.

Most of my readers know that Liam has Down syndrome. Although he's defying all those misconceptions and showing the world that he is fully capable, there is some uncertainty about when he will be fully potty trained. One of his main goals is to have him ready for FULL inclusion within a year. I was expecting at least two to three years in a developmental preschool before reaching our goal of full inclusion in Kindergarten, but Liam is doing so well that it got pushed up. That means that he has to be day trained by next Fall. I'm so proud of him but it also makes me really nervous!

Potty Training a child with Down syndrome

We have a lot of work ahead of us, but I'm armed with the experience of potty training his three older siblings and I have an arsenal of dependable products by my side. A positive attitude and believing that he can and will conquer this milestone also helps!

Right now we're on vacation at the beach. And although we're taking a break from reality, there is no break in potty training! Liam has to keep working on that milestone in order to avoid a regression.  We officially made the switch to only using Pull-Ups during the day so he feels like a big boy and we visit the potty often. VERY often.


Let me just say that going to the beach with 4 kids is no joke. I'm going to need another vacation (ALONE) by the time we get home. Our SUV was packed to the point of overflowing and that was even with a luggage rack on top. There was no way Liam's Pull-Ups, nighttime diapers and wipes were going to fit in the car. Thankfully, I found a Walmart Neighborhood Market near our hotel and made plans to stop by to stock up after we arrived!

Potty Training

Of course, as most parents know, always expect the unexpected. Leave it to me to get sick-REALLY sick-on our road trip to the beach. NOT FAIR. I waited all year for this vacation only to experience incredibly bad luck. A stuffy nose, sore throat, fever and literally no sleep in over 24 hours left me so weak that my husband actually offered to do the shopping for me.

I sent him to the Walmart Neighborhood Market with a detailed list, screenshots of what he needed to buy and an assistant. Let's be honest here: it wasn't overkill. My husband is skilled in many areas but shopping is not one of them. Luckily, the Walmart Neighborhood Market in Virginia Beach made it easy for him!

Walmart Neighborhood Market

After only 3 picture texts and one phone call, he was confident he had everything Liam needed. He did so well that I decided to forgive him for forgetting the Tylenol to take my fever away! The fact that he bought me chocolate definitely helped. (That's totally a potty training reward for me. When you log in all those hours in the bathroom watching your child sit on a toilet, a reward is necessary. Give me chocolate. ALL the chocolate.)

So here we are at the beach and potty training is still in full swing! Liam's tiny booty is encased in the soft comfort of Pull-Ups Training Pants. (And by tiny, I really do mean tiny. He weighed in at 25 lbs just before his third birthday, so I'm very grateful for the adjustable sides on the Pull-Ups which give him a snug, secure fit.) We've gotten to know every single detail about the hotel bathroom.

We're not quite ready to make the switch to underwear yet, so Pull-Ups are a great alternative! Liam can easily pull them on and off all by himself which builds his confidence. They look and work more like underwear than diapers, which helps him feel like a big kid. They still offer leak protection, so I don't have to worry so much about all those messes that happen!


Plus, the Disney Cars patterns are a hit! They are perfect for a little boy. Liam keeps pointing at his training pants and buildeveryone "Beep Beep!"  Hopefully he will continue to remain this enthusiastic about the potty training process!

When Liam is wearing Pull-Ups, I feel confident that I can keep all those #MishapMoments under control! And when those inevitable messes do happen, I have a trusty stockpile of Huggies wipes at my fingertips at all times.

Huggies Natural Care Wipes

Wipes are simply the most versatile baby product that can be used long after those potty training days are over! My husband actually asked if we really needed 3 packs of Huggies Natural Care wipes this week. My answer was yes. Most definitely yes! There a few good reasons I keep a pack in my purse, a pack in the diaper bag, a pack in our car, a pack attached to the stroller and a pack in each room of our home!

Although the initial use is for diaper changes, wipes aren't just for wiping tiny bums. They're also great for wiping messy hands and faces, wiping messes off of tables, wiping off public toilets before using them, wiping off strollers and other baby gear and wiping up any potty training mishaps. (There are also many other uses around the home, such as dusting off furniture and cleaning cell phone screens!)

That multi-pack of Huggies Natural Care wipes already came in handy this week. From wiping up puddles of pee to cleaning ice cream off of the stroller handle to scrubbing off spaghetti covered cheeks, those wipes were a mom's best friend! My advice to new moms is to stock up on wipes and NEVER run out!

With the help of Pull-Ups and Huggies wipes, Liam's potty training journey is going as smoothly as possible! And thanks to Walmart Neighborhood Market, they had us covered with everything we needed for Liam, even when we were 350+ miles away from home!

Potty Training Essentials

Visit your local Walmart Neighborhood Market for great prices on Pull-Ups or your favorite Huggies products! Find a location HERE.

Everybody loves to save money! From August 28th through September 10th use THIS COUPON on Huggies wipes at your local Walmart Neighborhood Market OR save on Pull-Ups or GoodNites by using THIS COUPON.

Thank you to Pull-Ups for sponsoring today's post and for being a great potty training tool during this significant milestone!

Potty Training Tips

Tell me about your potty training experience with your child! Was it easy? Was it frustrating? Do you have any great tips to share? What are your favorite potty training tools?


  1. My goodness does Liam look so adorable. I love littles in a shirt and diaper/pull up. It's just so cute. He's gonna rock potty training just like he does everything else. :)

  2. Potty training was my least favorite parenting step! Good luck!

  3. First, liam and his little haircut are the cutest. And we're huge pull-ups fans in our house too!

  4. We love pull ups! Thanks for sharing!

    xo Trista | www.shopaholicandababy.com

  5. He's so handsome! We haven't even started potty training yet.....ugh!

  6. too adorable! And great tips! We are starting soon!

  7. We will be picking some up and starting potty training soon!! Thanks for the tips!

  8. Oh potty training.... Booo. But so exciting (for ten and is) once it happens. And pull-ups saved us too!


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