Do GNAT go in your underwear, young man.

I’ve never done an Ironman or even a Tough Mudder but I have potty trained a tiny human, so I get the gist.

Sometimes I feel like I should spread out my more…uh…”uncouth” posts, but let’s get real – there’s nothing couth about small children and sometimes the key to survival is laughter.

Which is partly why I’ve been a little bit excited about this stage for a while.

I knew, despite the frustration and tears and laundry, some great laughs would come from potty training. (A fact I reminded myself of over and over yesterday as I remained crouched on the floor of a Target bathroom stall for 20 minutes with a giant baby in my arms and a toddler yelling, “I JUST NEED TO POO POO” at the top of his lungs.)

That toddler, the potty, and I got down to business this week. Beckett has been flirting with the idea for over a year now, occasionally sprinkling in the potty for funsies, but starting last week, I told him that when swim lessons were over, so were diapers.

True to my word, (despite Taylor and I both having food poisoning from the night before) Beckett and I ceremoniously threw away the remaining Pull-Ups on Monday morning. (I promptly fished them out as soon as he left the room just in case.)

Being around a toilet all day after having your face stuck in one the entire night before is hell – actual hell – but I’d talked a big game so it was time to deliver.

The first few days went really well. Surprisingly well. Skeptically well.

But then it was time to go #2.

Turns out this really freaks kids out.

I tried everything.

Bribery (hence the Target scene above – less about needing to potty, more about wanting a dump truck).

Ultimatums (which I’m pretty sure every single parenting book warns you against, but JUST DO IT ALREADY, KID!).

And, finally, The Fart App (as in a free iPhone app that only plays different toot sounds).screenshot.10Tacky? Very. Effective? Sweet mercy, yes. He’s a boy, and boys always love a good toot.

For every time he tried to go, I would play a noise from the app. He tried, I played a toot. He tried, I played a toot.

It totally worked. And once the deed was done, he realized it wasn’t nearly as horrifying as expected.

Fart app for the win.

I regret nothing.

One thing about potty training is that it can be pretty messy. And by “pretty” I mean my mental scale of grossness bears no resemblance to the scale of grossness I once adhered to as a cute, childless person.

So yesterday afternoon I was heading out the door for a run with the boys and – of course – Beckett informed me it was time to go #2 again RIGHT THAT SECOND. And he went! On the potty! Well, half-way on the potty, half-way not on the potty. (Still classified as a win.)

We pottied, we cleaned the potty and surrounding area, we loaded up, we left for our run.


Pushing a double jogging stroller with an almost 3 year old and a 22lb 5 month old who has officially surpassed the maximum weight on his infant car seat (#thunderthighs) is no joke.

It’s also summer in Texas, which means it’s beastly hot.

I usually struggle a bit when I’m running with the boys, but yesterday was pure torture. Aside from the heat and added weight, there were a ridiculous amount of bugs. I don’t know if it was the rain earlier in the week or what but they were EVERYWHERE. Flying around my head, dive-bombing into my mouth…everywhere.

I blew my nose at one point and gnats came out. Of my nose.

And all I could do was keep running. I had to get back home.

Mile 1…man it’s hot. And these bugs are super annoying.

Mile 2…Where are they even coming from? I swear they’re multiplying. I’m about to drive the stroller into that pond if we don’t get out of this gnat cloud ASAP.


We finally finished our excruciating 3 mile run, mere moments before losing all remaining sanity, and this:


Dead bugs. Gnats that perished on my body. That’s how many bugs had swarm-accosted us. Enough that several of them DROWNED IN MY ARM SWEAT.

It was unbelievably baffling.

But as I bent down to stretch my hammies, I caught a glimpse of something on my shin.

Mud? We definitely didn’t run through mud. Chocolate? Plausible, but no.


And then I remembered the incident right before we walked out the door.

I must have overlooked some of the potty shrapnel because there, on my shin, was poo. Excrement. #2. Smeared on my leg.

And that, my friends, is how to attract 15,000 gnats at once.

Not with rain, not with sweat, not with exposed baby thighs scrumptious enough to eat…but with poop.

So I guess the truths I learned this week are:

  1. Potty training a kid is the greatest sense of accomplishment on earth.
  2. Public bathrooms are disgusting. (Partly our fault.)
  3. No one prepared me for how many times I would wear someone else’s poop as a parent.
  4. I should thank my own mom more often.


4 thoughts on “Do GNAT go in your underwear, young man.

  1. Philip Cummings

    Haha! Your blog is one of my favorites, Sarah. I’m so glad you are writing and sharing your mommy adventures. While we are separated by many miles, I still feel like you are close by and I’m grateful for that!


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