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The simple truth about toilet training is that if the child is ready, it happens very easily. If not, a power struggle often ensues -- and we all know that no one wins a parent-child power struggle. Fights with your child about his or her body are fights you will never win.

Luckily, there is a never a reason to fight with your child about this. Moving from diapers to being self-sufficiently able to use the toilet is a natural process. Humans have been doing it for a long time. They all get out of diapers sooner or later.

So you don't actually need to "toilet train" your child. Instead, set up conditions so your child can learn. Your goal is to make it as easy and effortless as possible. Think of this as a process of learning that unfolds over time, like all other learning and mastery.

Here's a step by step guide for child-led potty learning.

Here’s wishing all our Druid City Living readers a great week, filled with all kinds of outstanding local events. Get out, get involved, and above all else: Have fun.

And remember: If you’d like to have your event added to our online weekly calendar, just email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We’re happy to add anything you’d like to announce.

Enjoy your week, T-Town.

Children may ask heartbreaking questions that seem impossible to answer, but there are honest, age-appropriate ways to respond. Print out these ideas for parents to use as they handle difficult questions from their children. Each parent will have to decide how much information to share, and how to adjust their answers based on children’s ages.

Here’s wishing all our Druid City Living readers a great week, filled with all kinds of outstanding local events. Get out, get involved, and above all else: Have fun.

And remember: If you’d like to have your event added to our online weekly calendar, just email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We’re happy to add anything you’d like to announce.

Enjoy your week, T-Town.

This handsome, sweet, big boy is Winston. He’s the Humane Society of West Alabama’s Pet of the Week.

The Community Foundation of West Alabama (CFWA) announces the deadline to submit nominations for the 2020 class of Pillars of West Alabama is Friday, January 17, 2020. Nominations can be made by downloading the nomination form from the website at thecwa.org.

DCL Writers Speak: What are Your Greatest Hopes for the New Year? 

We’re so fortunate here at Druid City Living to have so many unique, local voices in each month’s paper. You may know them well from reading their columns each month, but we thought this would be another way our readers could find out what’s top of their minds when it comes to this new year.  

We asked each writer to tell us their hopes for 2020 – personally or professionally (or both). Their answers were so thought provoking, we wanted to include them here, in print, for all to see. Read on…  

Allison Adams, Lake Living 

My greatest hope for the new year is having mindful vision – to let go of anything holding me back. To see clearly what matters going forward in health, home selling (work), parenting, creativity, and purpose – and to make more connections with Tuscaloosa women wanting to do the same in 2020.  

To that end, I’m putting together a meetup group called “Mindful Momentum” and we’re going to start with journaling, collages for vision, business basics (like credit, planning for the future/investing), health and centering/focus, and legacy (what are we here for?). We’ll cover one topic each month. Email me if you want to get involved: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Larry Deavers, Family Counseling Service 

I hope our society makes strides towards decreasing the stigma associated with mental health. As many as 1 in 6 Americans suffers some degree of mental illness in any given year, yet most of them will never seek treatment due to the concern over being criticized or judged, even by those closest to them.   

I hope spouses, families, employers, churches, and schools become more aware of the need to develop emotionally supportive approaches to encouraging those who need help to seek it out without fear. Giving them the permission and encouragement to seek help without being seen as weak or broken can be life changing. 

Alicia Jenne’, PreK Pals’ Ponderings 

My hope for the New Year is that everyone finds their joy. Be intentional in living your life and do so much more of what brings you peace and what makes your heart happy. Try to be thankful every day, even if you have to dig deep on those hardest of days to find that one thing that was good. I promise that the more you look for it, the more you will find it. Be intentional and choose joy. 

Sheena Gregg, Taste of Tuscaloosa 

My personal hope for the New Year is to strive to be the best wife and mother to my husband Terry and son Sam Asher. I am also praying and believing and confident in the Lord that 2020 is the year that my dad finally gets a successful kidney donor match.  

 

As a dietitian nutritionist, I hope that I can continue to help my patients achieve and maintain a healthy relationship with food while meeting their health goals.  

Jerry Roberts, Alabama Armchair Critic 

In the new year I have hopes both personal and global. I realize that it sounds overly familiar, but I would like to see the world situation improve even if it's only a tiny drop in the bucket.   
 
Obviously, as a film critic, I hope for better movies – but more than that, I hope for more creativity, more movies that defy our expectations. Id like to see studio executives take more chances and move away from the old familiar "sure thing." 
 
Personally, I hope to press forward with my career.  I have just graduated, so I hope to find a job in my field, and I hope to get my book published. But most of all, I'll keep pressing forward.  Just keep swimming…  

 

Amy Poore, Druid City Living Recipes 

 

My hope for the new year Is more like a resolution for myself. I would like to try and slow down a bit and enjoy each day for what it is instead of worrying and scheduling the coming days and weeks. I guess I want to “stop and smell the roses.”   

 

Brandie Bowden, Features Writer 

 

My first hope for 2020 is to lose 20 pounds. I already have my weight-loss plan in place: deliver my baby, which should happen in February. Ha! But seriously, I’m hoping for a transition as smooth as possible for the whole process of expanding our family from three to four.  

I also want to get some of the big stuff on my need-to-do list out of the way, to cut that list down to a more manageable size. It is way too easy to get caught up in what I need to do, leaving me feeling guilty if I consider doing something I want to do. I know there’s a balance, I just need to find it. I’m pretty sure getting a more manageable list is the best start. 

 

Mike Green, Give Life to Your Story 

 

I hope to spend more time in 2020 with my grandkids and other family members. I want to enjoy every minute I have with them. I also hope to be less and less focused on me and more on those around me. I tend to be self-absorbed. I hope that the work we do at YFC is life-changing for hundreds of teenagers and their families. 

 

Kelly Wingo, Words of Wellness 

My hope for the New Year is that there would be more kindness. If the opposite of kindness is selfishness and cruelty, I’d like to believe that kindness is the anecdote to a whole host of problems such as broken relationships, bullying, political discord, and global conflict. Kindness is a practical step in the right direction to impacting these things.   

 

So—ultimately, my hope is that more Good Samaritans will surface in 2020 and that families, schools, our places of work, and our country will be transformed by one act of random kindness at a time. Im admittedly an animal lover and a bit of a tree hugger. So, I’d love to see animal welfare and the environment benefit from a little bit of kindness, too. 

 

Marlena Rice, The Mommy Chronicles 

When I was 12 years old, I told those close to me that I would have a book published by the time I was 22. I got plenty of kudos and encouragement from family. However, I quickly learned that those kinds of goals were fun to talk about – but they’d “never really happen.” 

Over the years, there’s been one excuse after another: college, job hunting after graduation, marriage, and then motherhood. Now I’m in a great place, and there is a finished book nestled in my office desk. I hope for 2020 to become the year I unleash my true, creative side, and learn to embrace it with all the other parts of me. 

Derek Osborn, The Land of Oz 

This is where I’m supposed to say peace, happiness, and success. But I bet it’s already been said, so I hope for a… 

  • Significant reduction in road construction 
  • Significant increase in crab leg consumption 
  • Significant reduction in shootings and violent crime 
  • Significant increase in massages 
  • Significant reduction in drug abuse and addiction 
  • Significant increase in what I am paid to write for this paper (currently $0.00) 

 

 

 

 

Parents and teachers can use questions about homelessness (from children who have not experienced it) as a valuable opportunity to build empathy and compassion. Explaining homelessness to young children who have not experienced it is tough, but there are age-appropriate and honest answers. Public-classroom teachers and early-childhood educators can use these responses as a guide, and also distribute them to parents. Naturally, answers should be adjusted, depending on children’s ages.

Here’s wishing all our Druid City Living readers a great week, filled with all kinds of outstanding local events. Get out, get involved, and above all else: Have fun.

And remember: If you’d like to have your event added to our online weekly calendar, just email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We’re happy to add anything you’d like to announce.

Enjoy your week, T-Town.

This sweet, shy boy is Figgy, a 10-month old Border Collie mix. He's the Humane Society of West Alabama's Pet of the Week.

Druid City Living (DCL) is Tuscaloosa, Alabama's premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.

 

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