Tag Archives: bikes

Sweet Potty Seat Bag Freedom!

Most of the last 4 years, I’ve been a bag lady. A potty seat bag lady.

That’s right, everywhere I go, I have to carry not only a giant diaper bag and a baby and hold two bigger kids’ hands, but I also have to carry a potty seat. In a bag. Just like people do.

My first two children had strong public toilet phobias and refused to even try sitting on a toilet without a portable potty seat ring. I have tried every conceivable method to get Rose to go in public without a potty seat, including letting her have an accident, but nothing has worked. She would act like she was dying whenever I tried to hold her on the toilet without a seat. It was a battle too messy to fight.

A few months ago, we stumbled upon a Cinderella bike that was perfect for Rose and didn’t want to wait for her birthday to give it to her, so we decided to use it as a potty seat bribe. We bought that bike in July because we thought for sure it would be the perfect temptation. I mean, if I were a little kid with a Cinderella obsession as large as hers, I’d do just about ANYTHING to get that bike, but we were a no go. In fact, Rose started saying she didn’t want the bike at all. She would walk up to people, show them the picture of the bike I carried for bribe reminders and say “See this bike? I don’t want it.” She even stopped riding the bike she already had in an attempt to show how much she didn’t want a Cinderella bike.
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Which, of course she wanted a Cinderella bike! Who wouldn’t? I want one! The bike is AMAZING.

All along, Rose has said she wouldn’t go potty without a potty seat until she was 4. She said “people” COULDN’T until they were 4. I assured her that most kids DID and pointed out all her 3 year old classmates at preschool who used the potty without a potty seat. She was the only kid using a potty seat at school!

Then last week Rose was in a bind. She had to go to the potty really badly while we were at gymnastics. She had left the potty seat in the car and I have a hard and heavy rule with her that if she wants to use the potty seat, she is responsible for carrying it wherever we go. This “responsibility” was put in place to encourage her to stop using the damn seat, but of course it didn’t work and half the time I still ended up carrying that stupid potty seat bag.

When Rose said she had to go potty, I said I had no potty seat so she was going to have to go without because she was almost 4. She would be 4 in 2 weeks so she could do it.

I have used this line many times before and it has never worked before, but for some reason it worked that day. Rose used the potty without a potty seat and was SO proud of herself. She hasn’t used the potty seat in public since. I told her we would wait a week to give her the bike, but on Monday she came home from preschool and announced that she had gone to the potty without a potty seat. We hadn’t even reminded her to try to go without the potty seat at school and we hadn’t asked her teacher to encourage her to do this! She thought to do it all by herself! As we drove home from school, Rose said “I’m so proud of me!”

Me too, kid! Me too!

That night, Rose finally got her magical Cinderella bike, the bike she “didn’t want.” She has been riding it non-stop ever since.
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But the real happy ending here is that I don’t have to carry a potty seat bag anymore.

Not for another year at least.

And we did get to give Rose her bike before her birthday like we wanted. One whole week before her birthday. When that kid said she couldn’t use the potty without a potty seat until she was 4, she really meant it!

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Bike Safety

Something happened recently that we thought may be another year or two away. Lily learned how to ride a big girl bike with training wheels. It may sound like a small feat for a 4 year old. In fact, most of the kids in our neighborhood seem to be transitioning off their trikes 6 months to a year before Lily did, but Lily was sort of slow when it came to her tricycle. Last fall she still didn’t master the concept, partially because she wasn’t interested. This used to worry me, but she’s so ahead in other areas I decided to let it go.

Imagine our surprise when warm weather hit this spring and Lily could race around the block on her tricycle, steering and everything. Years ago, I bought her a tiny pink Schwinn for $5 at a garage sale. We finally got to bring it up from the basement and teach her how to ride it. She took to it right away and is FINALLY a natural at bike riding.

Yes, we know her helmet wasn't on right. The situation has been rectified.


I’m not holding my breath for her to ride without training wheels. Neither her father nor I were able to get rid of them until we were 7. My husband claims I still don’t know how to ride a bike. I never said I was any good at it, but I CAN ride. I’m forbidden from riding pulling the kid buggy or with a kid on the back of my bike, per Dr. Toy Warden. Much like how he has banned me from trying to fry bacon myself (I burn it), he is absolutely right in this rare effort to control me.

It didn’t take long for Lily to insist that Woof Woof ride with her. OF COURSE Woof Woof needed to be on the bike. At first she was trying to ride with Woof Woof in her lap or shoved between the handlebars. I was worried Woof Woof would fall and either Woof Woof or Lily would get injured. I went out and got her a bike basket.

But really, how safe is it for Woof Woof to just be sitting in someone’s bike basket? What if Woof Woof falls out? Would Woof Woof be ok if she hit her head on the sidewalk?

And furthermore, shouldn’t Woof Woof try to be a better role model for Lily? What kind of parent am I to make Lily wear a helmet, but not Woof Woof?

Obviously, something needed to be done.

Now only Woof Woof's ears are in jeopardy.


Are the people at Build-A-Bear geniuses or what?

My sister has pointed out that Woof Woof’s ears are in jeopardy, but Woof Woof looks so stupid when I tuck them into her helmet. She looks like a wet cat or something without ears. So we’ll risk it for cosmetic reasons.

Woof Woof is just a stuffed animal, after all. OR IS SHE?

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