Happy Halloween

Monster Countdown: Mermaid by daekazu
Hello my lovelies! Have a happy and safe Halloween and a Blessed Samhain!

Trick-Or-Treating Safety Tips

Halloween #3 by PaulaDarwinkel

From the candy to the costumes, trick-or-treating is a highlight of the season for kids. Halloween is the one night of the year when kids venture out and enjoy themselves by the thousands. Parents may take the opportunity to give their kids a little more freedom than they normally would. Unfortunately, whether or not parents join their kids on the candy trail, it can be a dangerous night if they aren’t careful. Krav Maga Worldwide, one of the nations leading self-defense organizations, has a few important safety tips for parents to keep in mind before heading out the door this Halloween.

3 Simple Mindfulness Practices

Be Free of Anxiety Forever with 3 Simple Mindfulness Practices

I know anxiety well. At one point I was riddled with anxiety so much so that I wouldn’t drive on the highway, elevators seemed like coffins and commuting into NYC on the train became impossible. I was constantly on high alert for a panic attack, equipped with protein bars, electrolyte water and some form of homeopathic or Xanax in my purse at all times for rescue. I know that my experience isn’t unique. I regularly work with clients who are trapped behind the fear of anxiety. In my book, The Fearless Path, I talk about “Anxiety is the symptom. Behind most any anxiety is an unresolved emotion.”

Brace Yourself, Parents Halloween is Coming!

Brace Yourself, Parents: Halloween
And Orthodontic Repairs Are Coming

Braces are designed to straighten teeth, but Halloween sometimes makes parents clench theirs in frustration.

With the fun night of trick-or-treat around the corner, the annual concern of moms, dads and orthodontists is what kinds of candy the kids will eat. In any bag of goodies there’s always potential bad news – sugary delights that can cause broken brackets, bent wires and a bevy of cavities.

 “I think parents should understand that kids are kids, and regardless of how much you manage them or micromanage them, they’re going to eat some of this stuff because we all did when we were kids,” says Dr. Jamie Reynolds (www.AskDrReynolds.com), an orthodontist, national and international lecturer and author of World Class Smiles Made in Detroit.

“Halloween is a holiday created around candy, but damage done to the braces can be a big time waster for families. As orthodontists we set aside extra time in our schedule for the few days after Halloween because we see a spike in how much people come in for an unscheduled visit.”

Reynolds lists the types of treats that kids wearing braces should avoid on Halloween and in general:
  • Hard candies. Removing these from the kids’ collection may not make them happy Halloween night, but in the long run making these treats a no-no will let the braces do their job without any setbacks. Anything with a hard outer shell should be ruled out. “If you try to bite into those, you’re probably going to knock your brackets off,” Reynolds says.
  • The sticky, chewy, gooey stuff. Candy apples, caramels, toffee and bubblegum are frequent culprits. “The sticky stuff will get wrapped around the brace, making it hard to get clean, and over time increases the risk of cavities,” Reynolds says. Also included on this list are chewable delights from fruity candy to jelly beans, gumdrops and taffy.
  • Popcorn.  For those wearing bands around their teeth – the old-school, traditional style of braces – popcorn is a common problem. “Part of the band extends below the gum, and the popcorn can get wedged between the gum and band, creating a gum infection,” Reynolds says. “For a while we told people not to eat popcorn. However, with technology and advancements, now some braces are stuck to the teeth without bands, so that makes popcorn more OK. But you still have to be careful.”
Reynolds notes that Halloween just magnifies the larger issue parents face with their sugar-loving kids throughout the year – the potential for cavities.

“One of the big challenges as a parent is regulating their sugar intake – the number one cause of cavities,” Reynolds says. “We worry about that with braces on because they can act as little shelves, and bacteria get on top of them.”

About Dr. Jamie Reynolds

Dr. Jamie Reynolds (www.AskDrReynolds.com) is recognized on an annual basis as one of the top orthodontists in metro Detroit. His book, World Class Smiles Made in Detroit, puts an emphasis on the many benefits of having a great smile. Reynolds – who is a national and international lecturer on high-tech digital orthodontics and practice management – attended the University of Michigan for both his undergrad education and dental studies, and did his orthodontic residency at the University of Detroit-Mercy.

Top 5 Benefits of Sublingual Vitamins

The Top 5 Benefits of Sublingual Vitamins vs. the Pill Form
By Sherry Kelishadi, Pharm.D and Vice President at NutraGlow

Ongoing medical science and research continually open our eyes to so many opportunities for improving our health, maximizing our quality of life and even adding years to it through proper nutrition. Unfortunately for many of us, keeping pace with the evolving science about what’s best for our health can be extremely overwhelming as we are constantly faced with new information and decisions regarding what is best for our individual bodies. Each person has different nutritional needs based on genetics, body analysis, eating habits and exercise patterns (or lack thereof). Some of us suffer from vitamin or mineral deficiencies as well, which can negatively affect their health.
I remember back as a kid when my daily vitamin regiment consisted of a chewable multi and maybe a vitamin C pill when inflicted with a flu or cold. Today I see people roaming the lengthy aisle of vitamins, supplements, minerals and herbs, not only contemplating the abundant options to add to their daily intake, but also the dosage and which of the extensive number of brands to choose from. But wait! What about which form of vitamin to take: pill…or sublingual?
Newer to the vitamin world, sublingual supplements, in either liquid or tablet form, are made to be consumed by placing them under your tongue for absorption through the mucosal membrane that lines your mouth. In my years as a pharmacist, I’ve learned two important truths—people cant’s stand taking pills and they often don’t realize there may be a simple alternative available. With that in mind, here are five reasons why you should be taking a serious look ant replacing your pill form vitamins, medications and supplements with the sublingual form:
  1. Better absorbency - We now know that there are different factors that affect vitamin and mineral absorbency. Some minerals are best absorbed when accompanied by other vitamins such as calcium aided by vitamins A and D. Some supplements are best absorbed when taken with food. But sublingual vitamins are altogether more effective than those that come in pill form due to a superior absorption rate into the body in terms of both speed and efficacy. The Mayo Clinicreports that an inability to absorb vitamin B12 from the intestinal tract can cause a type of anemia called pernicious anemia.

  1. Faster results - The effects of sublingual vitamins are felt more quickly and more completely due to the liquid being absorbed immediately into the bloodstream through the mucus in the mouth rather than having to be processed through digestion first. In fact, due to a decreased absorption rate, the critical vitamins contained in pill-form supplements are often flushed out of the body through urine.

  1. More desirable consumption - Sublingual supplements offer a pleasant alternative to pill-form vitamins both in terms of taste and ease of consumption. The most common question I have been asked as a pharmacist has been related to the size of the pills the patients are taking—not their side effects, instructions for when or how to take them, the length of time they are to take the pills, or anything else that might be deemed more medically relevant.

  1. Save time and money – Many who simply cannot swallow or digest pill-form vitamins properly turn to intramuscular shots, such as B-12 injections, at a clinic. This can be time consuming and costly. Sublingual vitamins come with a significant time and money savings in comparison. Furthermore, many brands of pill supplements can be extremely expensive with sublingual versions offering a more affordable alternative.

  1. Pure ingredients - Sublingual vitamin ingredients, such as those contained in NutraGlow’s Super B, which includes Hydroxycobalamin, the most active naturally occurring form of vitamin B-12, and Super Lean, are both purer than those in pill form. Many pills contain harmful preservatives and synthetic ingredients, which our bodies do not recognize as easily as natural ingredients.
With so many supplements available on the market, it can be difficult to choose which to take, how much to take and which form to take it in. A blood workup ordered by your doctor can determine if you are deficient of essential vitamins and minerals. Prevention Magazine listed vitamin B-12 as the most needed vitamin after age 40, and there are a variety of vitamins and minerals millions of us are lacking in that are vital to our health regardless of age. Considering a sublingual vitamin supplement to help offset a deficiency could lead to a significant improvement in your overall health. Speaking with a health care professional can help lead you in the right direction for your body.

Sherry Kelishadi, Pharm.D, is vice president at NutraGlow, Inc, a provider of premium sublingual vitamin supplements developed to help people maximize the benefits of vitamin B-6 and vitamin B-12. She earned a Doctorate of Pharmacy from the prestigious University of Maryland School of Pharmacy in 2011. Kelishadi worked as a chief pharmacist at Rite Aid for three years before joining the team at a compounding pharmacy in Orange County and, ultimately, cofounding NutraGlow. Her passion lies in nutrition, dermatology, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and wound care. Her hobbies include traveling, dancing, sports, and spending time with her family.

Chilling Lagoon Side #mermaidmonday

lagoon mermaids by BeYouTifulDisaster

The Best New Ways to Style Kids’ Art

Single Canvas Prints

Art is one great way to help kids develop interest in creative things and gain the ability to see and appreciate life in details. From painting to crafting projects, which involves out of the box thinking and sometimes even emotions or mood, there are several fun ways to help develop your kid’s personality. You can engage your kids to art classes at an early age.

Nowadays, there are several ways to show off your child’s artwork other than just keeping them on drawing pads or sticking them on to your fridge. How about allowing them to decorate their own walls or study table? It may sound risky, but you’ll be surprised how beautiful it can turn out to be!

Create A Small Art Gallery

A child’s work of art is usually colorful. If you want to set up a small gallery for your children’s masterpieces, you should get a neutral colored wall. You can just add a few more shades throughout the space; something that will be coordinated with the arts displayed.

Collate and Condense

Who does not know a photo book these days? It is becoming a big hit in the market as a replacement to the traditional photo albums. Did you know that can likewise be used to collate your child’s masterpieces? Keeping them in an album would mean saving every picture he or she has drawn!

Do Collaborations

Do you like art too? Why not join your kid and do collaboration? This is a perfect way to bond with your child. Create impressive pieces that will showcase both your talents.

Soft Side

Does your kid dream of making his or her work come to life? How about making his or her drawing an actual toy? With several companies offering to produce made to order toys nowadays, this is possible! Let him or her color an animal painting and have it tailored the same way. For sure, he or she will love it!

Capturing Your Child’s Work of Art

If you can do some basic photo ship skills, you can take a beautiful photo of your child while he or she is doing her art. You can frame the photo and his or her drawing together. That would be a lovely idea!

These are just some of the new and fun ways to take your kid’s artwork to the next level. It is more personal and memorable. Dare to be as creative as your little one!

About the blogger:

Sarah Del Rosario is a mommy blogger, aspiring artist and Community Outreach Specialist at http://www.canvasfactory.com/. Aside from blogging about food and nutrition, Sarah is also fond of writing topics about photography, business, and interior design. If you want to feature her on your blog, drop a line to: sarah@canvasfactory.com

14 Tips on Helping your Child with Disabilities Succeed in School

Tips for Parents of Children With Disabilities Who Want Them To Succeed in School

As someone with a disability myself, and who also knows what it means to parent a child with multiple disabilities, I’ve become an advocate for my children on so many fronts, including their education. After all, when it comes to disability and inclusion, despite good intentions, many schools don’t even know what they don’t know. Also, only 61% of students with disabilities get a high school degree — so it is up to people with disabilities, and their loved ones, to educate and advocate for disability inclusion and success. This is especially true when enabling children with disabilities to have full access to education. While today on average only 1-in-3 working age adults with a disability have a job, studies show that 70% of young people with disabilities can get jobs and careers. But we have to do our part. Here are some tips I’ve used in the past that may be helpful to you:

1. Know you are not alone. Fully 1-in-5 Americans has a disability. While parenting a child with differences feels lonely at times, seek out other families with similar experiences. Peers can offer good advice, and may become your new best friends. They reside in your local community and online.

2. Research which schools in your area have real experience and success working with children with disabilities. While all public schools are required to accommodate students with disabilities, some schools may have magnet programs specifically for your child’s educational needs. In other cases, you may want to resist when your school district wants to bus your child across town to a school for other kids with disabilities, when accommodations can be easily made at his or her neighborhood school.
  • Call your local disability groups to see what resources and leads they can offer. Ask other parents of children with disabilities about their experiences with different schools.
  • Go online to look at the school’s website. Does it say they welcome and serve people with disabilities?
3. Write an “all about how to succeed with my child” letter. Yes, you should also prepare a file with your child’s Individualize Education Plan (IEP), including suggestions for success from any speech, physical, occupational, mental health or other therapists that works with your child. But don’t expect all teachers to be knowledgeable enough to understand some of the technical material. Your letter should be easy to read.

Provide a toolkit for working with your child. Put things into simple language with bullets of information that the school needs to know to make your child’s experience safe and successful.

Remember, as a parent, you have unique insights about your child that can help your child’s teacher understand his/her strengths and needs. Your candor, experience and advice will be much appreciated. Depending on the age of your child, you may want your child to help write the memo.

4. Request a meeting with your child’s teacher and team.
Yes, everyone is busy. However, if you miss out on having a real substantive conversation, you may create a situation that turns your child off to school and learning.

Additionally, it is not enough to meet with the school principal. You need to sit face-to-face with teacher who will be in the classroom with your child, as well as the school leaders who support that teacher. If appropriate, bring your child’s therapists. Depending on the age of your child, you may want to bring them to this meeting.

Before the meeting, you should send your memo about your child to all the meeting participants. Bring copies of it to the meeting as well, and have your “elevator pitch” about your child ready to go. You may want to practice it in front of someone who can offer constructive criticism. It is important to get your points across quickly so they can ask questions. Teachers will really appreciate your efforts, resources and transparency.

Once the teachers learn about your child, the school may want to put an extra aid in the classroom to support your child’s needs. Alternatively, they may want to match your child with a different teacher who is more experienced. If so, do your “elevator pitch” and Q&A with that teacher as well. The school may benefit from having your child’s occupational or physical therapist meet with them, or join the class for a day, to give the teacher some tips.

5. Ask the teacher and team about their preferred method of communication. Mutual respect and trust are important to all relationships. This includes the relationship you want to cultivate with your child’s teacher. That’s why it’s important to find out which method of communication suits them the best. Many prefer emails.

6. Be fully transparent with your child’s team. If your child has tantrums, be sure the staff understands what causes the tantrums, and how to prevent them. If your child needs notification before a transition, or has a tick or expression that they use to indicate he or she is anxious, the team needs to know, so they can best serve your child. This is not the time to worry about privacy - you need to focus on safety and success.

7. Be upbeat. Teachers want proactive parents. A positive relationship with your child’s teacher will help your child feel good about school. Before you hit “send,” look over emails, making sure they’re respectful of the teacher’s time and also of their efforts to help your child. It’s great for you to ask questions and make suggestions as long as your message conveys your trust that the teacher is performing her job ethically, responsibly and to the best of their ability. You want to be their partner. Remember that a teacher is a person first. Send thank you notes, volunteer, let them know when your child really enjoyed a particular lesson, and try to be considerate of their schedule; teachers have families too.

8. Share your enthusiasm for learning with your child. Talk with your child about they will be learning during the year, and why it is important to you. Let your child know that you have confidence in their ability to master the content, and that you believe it will be a positive part of their life. Reinforce the natural progression of the learning process that occurs over the school year. Learning skills take time and repetition. Encourage your child to be patient, attentive, and positive.

9. Slow down and take the time to do it right. Transitions are often difficult for children with disabilities. There will be a few bumps in the road. Your child will have a successful year at school in spite of difficulties. As we move into the first few weeks of school, stay calm and positive. Remember to take care of yourself. Know your limitations, and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Make sure your child has enough sleep, plenty of time to get up, eat breakfast, and get to school.

10. Familiarize yourself with the other professionals. Make an effort to find out who it is in the school who can be a resource for you and your child. Learn their roles and how best to access their help if you need them. This can include the principal, cleaning and kitchen crew, front office personnel and others who may work with kids with disabilities on a daily basis.

11. Reinforce your child’s ability to cope. Give your child a few strategies to manage a difficult situation on his or her own, but encourage your child to tell you or the teacher if problems persist. Maintain open lines of communication with the school.

12. Help your child make at least one real friend there. Arrange play dates. Try to arrange get-togethers with some of your child’s classmates during the first weeks of school to help your child establish positive social relationships with peers. Go to holiday events with other children and help facilitate actual friendships for your child. Parents of other children both with and without disabilities who are friends with your child can become your new best friends as well.

13. Listen to Your Child’s Feelings. When your child shows any anxiety about going back to school, the worst thing you can do is brush it off with a “don’t worry about it” response. Listen and be responsive to your own child and empower them to advocate for themselves as well. Show them your love. Sometimes you need to take a little step back in order to move forward.

14. Enjoy their childhood. It goes way too fast!

Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi is the president of RespectAbility.org, a nonprofit fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for people with disabilities. She can be reached at JenniferM@RespectAbility.org

How an Email Can Change Your Life

How a Simple Weekly Email Inspired Me to Change My Career and Life

By Kelly Ground

About a year ago I came across Friday Forward, a blog created by Acceleration Partners (AP) founder and Managing Director, Robert Glazer.  I started to read his updates every Friday and, because they were so inspiring to me, decided to check out who they actually were.  After researching, I realized that Robert had cultivated a culture that I wanted to be a part of and work in on a daily basis.
Before making this change, I was working for a company and, for all intents and purposes, I was successful. I felt respected at work, listened to, and appreciated, but I wasn’t fulfilled. I was the right person in the wrong seat. Robert’s Friday Forward posts helped me realize that I wanted to change where I was headed – both personally and professionally. So, 10 months ago, I left a very large retail company and joined Robert’s team. It has been one of the best decisions I have made.

Since making the transition, I’ve had the opportunity to reflect back on a few Friday Forward posts that have inspired me and opened my eyes to some valuable perspectives:

1. It’s not good to always be “right.”

I know that may sound presumptuous, but in my other job, my partners acted as if I was always right and typically moved forward with my recommendation – even if it wasn’t always the right direction to take.  While a boost to my ego, it didn’t help me grow or get better in my position. So, when I first started at AP, I was a bit taken aback when I’d recommend a new approach or suggest a change to a client and they either didn’t agree with it or decided not to move forward with it. What they would do, however, is provide constructive feedback. This has helped me learn and grow and embrace that the word “no” is ok. In fact, it’s often an opening to better, more productive discussions to get to “yes.”

2. In order to grow, we must be self-aware.

We should all think of ourselves as constantly evolving.  However, although we may be learning something, we may not necessarily be diversifying our knowledge and expertise.  If we want to grow, we have to challenge ourselves and embrace the possibility of failure.  It can be scary but it is the best feeling when you get to that finish line and realize how much you have changed for the better.

3. It’s about work-life integration, not balance.

I now work in a fully remote environment, so we have employee who work from their home office, coffee shop, co-working space, etc. all over the US and even internationally.  Being able to work from home and no longer have to commute 2.5 hours round-trip has been truly life-changing for me. Now, I’m able to exercise 4-5 days a week, take my dog for a walk at 1:00 pm in the afternoon and drive my kids to school and pick them up.  There is nothing like being able to do work that you enjoy while also having control of your time and calendar.
If you’re like me and strive to diversify yourself, grow personally and professionally, work with other people who will motivate and inspire you, and change your work-life paradigm, then I encourage you to take the leap on whatever path you are headed. Life is too short to question what you are spending your time on 40+ hours a week.

For more information or to sign up to receive Robert’s Friday Forward, please visit www.fridayfwd.com.

Kelly Ground is a Senior Account Manager at Acceleration Partners. Robert Glazer is the founder and Managing Director of Acceleration Partners, author of the best-selling book, Performance Partnerships: The Checkered Past, Shifting Present, and Exciting Future of Affiliate Marketing” and sought-after keynote speaker. For more information, please visit, www.robertsglazer.com.

3 Tips to Encourage a Love of Books in Kids

3 Tips For Encouraging ChildrenTo Love Books In The Digital Age

Plenty of things can get between a child and a good book – TV, video games and even kid-friendly cellphone apps.
But despite all those potential distractions, there’s still a place in every child’s home for the printed word and such characters as Tom Sawyer, Winnie-the-Pooh and Curious George.
“Even in the digital age, the physical book is not outdated, and only the ones with shallow content will become so,” says J.L. Baumann, author of Mackenzie Goes Adventuring (www.snookton.com), a picture book that stresses the importance of education.
“The more universal the book’s message and the more philosophically stimulating the work is, the greater the piece will stand the test of time.”
Introducing books to children at even the youngest age pays off. Research that was presented at the 2017 Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting showed that reading books with a child beginning in early infancy can boost vocabulary and reading skills four years later, before the start of elementary school.
Baumann is a big proponent of reading aloud, adding a theatrical flair that brings his characters to life when he reads his own books to children.
He has a few tips for getting children excited about reading:
  • Make plenty of books available. A lack of access to a large selection of books at home can make a difference in how much children read, according to the biannual “Kids and Family Reading” report that Scholastic released earlier this year. Children who are frequent readers, devouring books for fun five to seven days a week, have on average a whopping 141 children’s books in their homes. Those who read for fun one day or less each week have an average of 65 books in their homes – still a lot, but not quite enough, according to the study. “It will cost about $20 to take two children to lunch with you at McDonald’s, a meal that will be forgotten in no time,” Baumann says. “You could use that same money for a book that could become a cherished possession.” And if money is an issue, a weekly visit to the library can help.
  • Let the child choose. Children are more likely to be enthusiastic about books if they get to choose what they read – even if an adult is unimpressed with the literary choice. “As they come to love reading, children will be more apt to choose books with more substance,” Baumann says. “But the first step is just to get them excited.”
  • Don’t be dissuaded by complex illustrations. Some adults seem to think it best that children’s picture books have simple drawings that don’t challenge the child, but Baumann thinks they are selling the children short. “Children will notice the smallest thing in detailed artwork,” Baumann says. “Children can appreciate art that adults sometimes think is too sophisticated for them. If a book has intricate artwork with a lot going on, the children are likely to discover something new each time they return to the book.”

“Reading helps children in so many ways,” Baumann says. “It improves their vocabulary. It increases their knowledge. It prepares them for school and is a skill they need for every subject. But also, it’s just plain fun and gives them the opportunity to stretch their imaginations and enjoy the adventures waiting for them between those two covers.”

About J.L. Baumann
J.L. Baumann is the author of the children’s book Mackenzie Goes Adventuring (www.snookton.com) and numerous works for adults, including A Gothic Rendezvous and Sonnets of the Provocative Kind. He is the father of four children, all of whom were home schooled, and has a background in accounting. He is also the founder of Prosperity Financial Services Inc. and Postmortem Publications Inc.