Wednesday, October 15th, 2008
Potty Training: The Only Two Products You Absolutely Need
Forget plastic potty chairs. Yeah, everyone uses them, but why? A chair that sits on the floor has to be washed by you after every use. Yuck! And if you opt for a portable seat you place over your regular toilet seat, you’ve got to hang the ugly thing on the wall, and take it down each time your kid wants to poop.
I settled on a simpler two-part long-term solution.
Purchase #1: A permanent adult-child combination toilet seat. It replaces your existing seat, screwed to the toilet. A toddler-size seat nests inside the regular-size lid and is pulled down, or left down, for use. The adult seat is used as normal.
I prefer toddler accessories which blend into a
normal household, treating my kid as an equal to mom and dad, rather
than as a special case.
If your toddler is skittish, you might at first have to hold her hands while she’s up on the toilet.
Purchase #2: A sturdy wood or metal stepping stool. First your kid uses it to reach the toilet seat, then he moves it to reach the bathroom sink. Or, buy two steps. Several years after potty training has ended, the stool will still be used to reach the bathroom sink.
I found what I needed at a Target chain store.
In my own defense, that toilet bowl really is clean. My top-mounted flash (bounced off the ceiling) lit the water brighter than the rest of the bowl.
I found this Target “Home” brand white wood Adults’ and Children’s Toilet Seat alongside regular toilet seats in the bathroom aisle for $25.
When not in use, two plastic locking clips can hold the child seat inside the recessed lid.
Note: Two years ago I wrote about this Target seat and two others while Target was in the process of discontinuing the item.
As of October 2008 the seat is back, with slight improvements. That’s what spurred this article. We just bought this seat for the third toilet in our home that was not yet toddler-accessible.
Some Thinga-readers reported that the clips on the 2006 version easily broke off. I haven’t experienced that problem, but did notice the 2008 version has a redesigned, thicker clip. Take a look:
Here’s another cool thing. You’d never store a portable plastic potty seat under your bathroom sink for a decade, right? But years from now, when my kids are in high school, I’ll still have a friendly seat available for the occasional toddler who visits, and I won’t use up any storage space keeping it around.
Similar seats include:
The Family Seat â€” (one locking clip)
Dr. Merry’s Potty Pal â€” We own one. It’s good, except it is plastic and has no locking clip. It’s best used in a bathroom that adults don’t frequently use, or if your toddler regularly slams the lid down. It will still make a good amount of noise, but not as much as a wood lid slamming down.
Flip-N-Flush â€” This is the cheapest option at $13. It is a standalone attachment for your existing seat. There is no locking clip. It’s an ideal buy for grandparents because the seat easily removes and can be stored under the bathroom sink until your next visit. A small rectangular base remains on the toilet. Buy white so the base doesn’t look odd.
Secondly, buy a sturdy stepping stool. We bought one at Target that contains a storage compartment under the top step. Our daughter stores her hair supplies inside and at age 4 still uses the step to reach the bathroom sink. I’d show you a photo, but the linked stool is slightly different from the one we purchased two years ago.
If you’ve survived potty training, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Tell me how much you loved dumping your child’s waste products from that little plastic bowl into the toilet every day. Tell me I don’t know what I’m missing.