Last night we got together with our friend A., whose husband was out of town, and her two kids Connor and Shannon for dinner and kiddie romping time. The kids are 5 and nearly 3, respectively, and both are potty trained. Charlotte is always excited to see them, and tries to do everything they do. We ended up at Steak and Shake for dinner, and Charlotte would not sit still until she had a little paper hat to color and wear, just like the big kids. When Connor decided to "take our orders" using a crayon and a comment card, Charlotte had to have a comment card to scribble on as well. After dinner, we went back to our house to let the kids run off some of their chocolate shakes, and all three danced to my husband's guitar, and took turns helping him to play it :)
One of the funnier parts for me, was when Connor had to use the restroom a little while before we left for dinner. He went right in to the powder room and shut the door behind him, just like he was supposed to. Charlotte is not used to being shut out of the restroom (we either get to pee with an audience, or listen to her scream on the other side of the door...), and besides, she wanted to do *everything* the big kids were doing. She actually stood outside the bathroom door whining and trying to reach the door handle (lucky for Connor she's still too short to turn the knob) and saying "potty". When she reached down to grab at her diaper and then tried to pull off her top, I decided to take her upstairs to her little potty chair to see if she actually had to go. She was thrilled for me to unsnap her pants and take off her diaper, and sat proudly on her little potty chair and....did nothing. However, less than 10 minutes later as we were getting ready to leave for the restaurant, she did have a wet diaper, so maybe she had to go, but doesn't quite get the whole picture yet.
This isn't the first time that Charlotte's insisted on sitting on the potty when she sees bigger kids doing it. She's not even 2 yet, and besides buying the potty chair and occaisionally sitting her on it (usually right before a bath, when she's already naked), we haven't done much to try to potty train her. She has actually both peed and pooped in the potty in the past, but I think that was just lucky timing on our part. Every now and then, she tells us when she's wet or messy--by saying "potty", or tugging on her diaper, so maybe it won't be long until we're full-swing into potty training. I keep wondering if she'd be trained faster if she was around older kids all the time--I wouldn't mind a bit if she trains herself by imitating them.