Tuesday, December 30, 2008


This is our friend Hilary with her 9 month baby and Ana with Evi. Hilary, her husband, and two children live in Pennsylvania now and we hadn't seen them since our wedding until we ran into them outside a restaurant in Providence! So exciting.

Evi's first Christmas. She got a little overwhelmed by all the kisses.

Evi's new best friend, second only to the thumb.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Potty Renaissance

After a week of pee-filled frustration, we're back in the saddle again... on rather, on the potty again. Last Saturday, Evi came down with her first cold, what I know suppose was the culprit of her seeming inability to use the potty. Now, she has resumed diaperlessness. Yay!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

System breakdown.

Evi is wearing a diaper, has a bit of a rash, and there is nothing in the potty. I'm not sure where the system is breaking down, but it sure is! Before Evi would pee almost as soon as I would put her on the potty, now she does only occasionally. I think that since my shoulder episode, followed by inlaws visiting, I maybe haven't invested the time. But now I have more time again, so I would think it would get better. It hasn't yet! Stay tuned...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Here is my official EC line: "It's better in the potty than on the body." I'm thinking shirts and bumper stickers are in order. How many can I put you down for?

Breaking the Silence.

We reached a milestone today. Evi rolled from her belly to her back. The first time I thought it was a fluke. The second time I saw the determination in her eyes. I knew she disliked "belly time," but I didn't know she disliked it so much that she would do something about it. Is she advancing along in months so quickly that now she feels she can determine for herself? Am I going to find her crib moved to the window because she likes the view ? I prefer to make decisions for her, thank you. Evi, no more milestones without permission; I am enjoying you as you are.

Today marks the end of a 12 day diaper-free strike. We are once again diaper-free, folks. Over the last nearly two weeks, I have been nursing my shoulder due to a case of tendonitis, which led to my shoulder becoming "frozen" in place. Quite painful and very limiting. Both pottying and blogging were out. Evi and I have been primarily holed up in the upstairs of the house. Thank the Lord, Sunday seemed to be the turning point; my range of motion in my arm and shoulder is speedily returning. Today we have once again banished the diaper, though not without consequence; I have already been peed on twice.

And Anita, I will work on your request for more pictures. I know Evi's sweet smile is the only reason people look at the blog anyways.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Writer's Block

It is getting harder to blog this experience. I don't want to get redundant. So great; Evi pees in the potty! What now? It's been a great week for it though. I've been dabbling in the thought of trying it while we are out and about town, but I don't think we will for a while. Maybe when the duration between pees gets a bit longer. We are still at about 30 - 35 minutes between potty breaks, unless she is napping; then, she can go a couple hours.

BTW, I have been realizing that we are down to using about 1-2 diapers a day when we are home most of the day - one overnight and one if we go out for a bit. What a cost savings! We haven't bought diapers in a while!

So, since I would love to make a convert, let me tell you - if you want to save money on diapers, try just catching a few pees or poops! Each one you catch is a diaper saved. Sweet!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Iron Man, a Giggle, and a Poop

The most exciting scene of Iron Man was eclipsed tonight by Evi's first giggle. Grandma was swinging Evi's arms about and engaging her in silly conversation and noises. When I heard it, a second passed before it registered what had happened, because what popped out of her sounded so natural and normal. Then I looked at Mom and said, "Was that her first giggle???" Indeed, we think it was; although we tried for a repeat performance to no avail.

We shall try again tomorrow.

In the middle of said movie, Grandpa held Evi on his lap a bit, during which time she decided to poop quite loudly. Knowing Evi's potential diaperlessness, Grandpa passed Evi off like a hot potato. She was, in fact, wearing a diaper, but you can see the fear that this practice can instill in your guests!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Getting peed on...

I missed blogging all of last week! I will do better than that! I promise. Now I have to update you. Last week was kind of busy, so we didn't go diaper free very much, but I still took Evi to the potty when I thought about it. Sunday and Thursday I got peed on (I hear you snickering.). Sunday, I am convinced she peed on me out of spite. Five minute previously, I had given her a chance to use the potty; she politely declined. I then proceeded to clean her eye mucous, which she hates. She quickly put a stop to that by emptying her bladder onto my lap. Little stinker.

The Thursday pee was more caused by my not paying attention. We had been airing out her little bum (the more I diaper it, the more dry her skin becomes), and I was distracted by cooking. When I set her on my lap, she peed on me! I have found that if I set her on the potty about every 30 minutes, she is normally ready to give a little pee.

On Saturday, we went for our first little car trip. River turned four and we celebrated in North Carolina at a park. The trip took the entire day and Evi had only three potty opportunities; 9:00 AM, 5:00 PM, and 10 PM. The cool part was she didn't poop in her diaper once, only in the potty on those rare opportunites.

She isn't arching her back anymore like she had been. That makes things a little easier.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Exerting her will

Well, I never realized how early children start exerting their wills, but I can say for sure that Evi has a will of her own already! As she is growing stronger, placing her on the potty is becoming a bit harder. She enjoys arching her back and stiffening her entire body, so as to make it impossible for me to set her on her potty. It will be interesting to see how we work through this one, as she is only getting stronger and more in control of her body every day!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Brain Spurt.

So everyone talks about growth spurts, but after observing Evi these last few days, I think there must be such a thing as a brain spurt. During these last three days, not only has she been completely diaper free for hours on end (with no accidents!), she has also begun to roll to her side, mastered the fine art of thumb sucking, and started interacting much more with objects around her. She is beginning to reach for toys and just seems much more visually stimulated by things around her. She is more content to lay by herself with less need to be held. Sad, I know. My baby is growing up!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


I have to share my excitement, because Evi stayed dry from morning till evening yesterday! In the morning around 9:00 am, I got out of bed to potty Evi and found that she had pooped a little in her diaper. Since she generally has more even if I miss a little, we continued on to the Baby Bjorn, where she completely emptied her bladder. Afterwards, I decided to air out her little bum for a while (great preventative measure against diaper rash!) and allowed her to go diaper free, offering occasional "pottytunities" just in case. Each time, she would empty what bit she had in her bladder. Around noon, I decided to put a coverless cloth diaper on her, so if I missed a pee, it would still be caught in something, but I would know it right away. Evi stayed completely dry until we left around six in the evening for dinner with my parents and then a game night at our friends' house.

Staying dry while we are out and about town is a different challenge that we haven't mastered yet! I still give her pottytunities, but tuning in is difficult with so many distractions. If I figure it out, I'll let you know! :)

So yesterday marked the first day we stayed clean for so long all at once with no missed pees. Evi, you amaze me more everyday.

On a non-potty note, Evi is growing everyday; she is getting quite long (don't know where she gets that one from!). She has been able to hold her head up well for quite a while now and every day she gets better at finding that elusive thumb. She is quite a personality; if you talk to her, her dinnerplate eyes will meet yours, and she will stare intently into your eyes, drinking in everything you say. Then she'll respond with all kinds of squeals, squeaks, and gurgles. We are still waiting for that first giggle. I'll let you know when that happens. When she gets super excited, her legs start pumping and she twists back and forth. Evi loves when I sing to her; I suppose she doesn't know anybetter. ha ha! It even calms her down sometimes. She does not like to be put on her belly, but I try to occasionally to give her practice in lifting her head.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Crying on the potty.

Sometimes, Evi will cry if I take her to the potty. My potty book, "Diaper Free Baby," says to respect if the baby tells you "no" when you put her on the potty, but I have found that not all cries are "no's." I just have to evaluate the situation to decide if I keep her on the potty or not. Sometimes she is crying because of the discomfort of pooping, and when I continue to hold her on the potty, she will eventually get it out and then light up the room with a huge grin. Those cries have more of a complaining tone to them.

If her cry on the potty really is communicating anguish, I will take her off the potty, even if I am convinced she needs to go. I suppose it is far better for her to use her diaper backup than to create negative associations with her potty. This happens mostly during the nighttime - the hardest time, I find, for practicing EC.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Success! And failure...

So, we began the trek into toilet independence on August 22nd with many ups and downs. Often, I'll have days where I catch every poop and quite a few pees. And then there are the days where I miss almost everything! But thank goodness for the diaper backup that I have chosen to use. There are some more courageous EC mothers who don't use any type of diaper, but I am not that good! ha ha!

EC benefit #1 - Save $$$ on diapers. One great thing about EC is I am able to keep Evi in the same disposable diaper much longer, because, when I know she needs to use the potty, I can take the diaper off her and put her on the potty. When she is done, I wipe her up and put the same clean diaper back on her. And there are those occasional times I don't put a diaper on her at all - mostly for 20 or 30 minutes after she has used the potty. I make sure during those times that I am not too distracted to noticed her (sometimes subtle) signals that she has to go.

Also, while many conventionally potty trained children stay in diapers until 3 years old, I believe Evi will be able to use the potty independently much earlier, thus saving money due to the shortened duration of diaper use. But that is yet to be seen. Stay tuned!

The first attempt!

The number one principle that I just had to try is to take the baby to pee right after they awaken, because babies will rarely pee in deep sleep. Before they pee, they will generally begin to wake up and may start squirming or crying.

So the next afternoon after rereading portions of the book, I waited for Evi to wake up from a nap. When she did, I (feeling slightly - no, very foolish) began to remove her diaper and carry her to the bathroom. There, I suspended her over the toilet and began to wait... quite prepared for nothing to happen. Before I had time to blush, embarrassed at the failure of my silly, silly ideas, I heard a tiny tinkle-tinkle-tinkle. To top it off, Evi immediately finished it off with a grand POOOOP.

I felt a quiver in my gut. What had just happened? Surely it could not have worked on the first try! But I had the proof in the potty. Whoa.

So, for the historical record, Evi utilized the potty for her first time on her one month birthday - August 22, 2008.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The first month...

So, for the first month of Evi's life, I completely forgot all the principles of EC. All...of...them. I felt overwhelmed by the prospect of doing it and bummed out because I had been so excited about it! I couldn't visualize HOW in the WORLD I could make this practice applicable to my daily life.

One evening on my way home, I chatted with my friend Meagan and we discussed it a little bit. Talking it over with her remotivated me to make this craziness work! That same evening, I sat in bed and reread all the principles in the book. I began remembering concepts I had completely forgotten and seeing ways that Evi and I might be able to incorporate it into our daily life.

The nice thing about EC is that everyone doesn't have to do it the same way. One person might start it in the hospital after delivery; another might wait for 6 months old; while a third might begin at the first birthday!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

In the beginnning, reality struck.

Once I read about the elimination communication idea, it sounded just interesting enough that I had to find out more. I started following links and looking for books. I ordered the book, "The Diaper Free Baby" by Ingrid Bauer. The cover shows a wee naked babe sporting a bandanna seated in tall green grass, presumabley "diaper-free." Perfect.

Reading the book heightened my resolve; why not save money and the environment by using fewer diapers? Heck, why not have a child using the toilet independently by 18 months (more or less). What really could I lose by trying? I was pumped to try it!

And then I gave birth to a child and reality set in. I was healing from labor; my sciatic nerve made any moving horribly painful; between feedings, trying to find time to sleep, and trying to understand my new role as MOTHER, I am supposed to understand my baby and know when she needs to poop???? Bahahahhahah!

Thankfully, elimination communication is a very forgiving, pliable practice!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Backing up...

So, I am a little late in starting this blog. Who'd have known how time consuming motherhood is? Regardless, I am going to try to catch you up over the next few days. For the sake of a brief overview, I gave birth to my first child, Evi Izabel, on July 22, 2008. Before she arrived, I had happened upon the random internet article detailing the previously unheard of (for me!) idea of elimination communication (EC), basically an alternative to the practice of diapering. So, now that she is here and we have been practicing it (in one form or another) for a little over a month now, I have decided to blog my experience for my own historical point-of-reference and for anybody else out there who might care (Anyone? Anyone?).