A Simple Tooth Brushing Routine for Kids

The following is by contributor Vanessa Brown of I Never Grew Up.

Understanding a bit about kid’s dental hygiene and establishing a good routine with your kids and teeth brushing really is setting yourself up for success.

From a Children’s Dentist Perspective

Recently I interviewed Dr. David M. Stewart of Little People’s Dental in South Jordan, Utah on establishing a good tooth brushing routine and here is what I learned:

  • Studies tell us that brushing twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste can decrease the risk of tooth decay. Flossing daily can decrease the risk of periodontal disease and dental decay in between teeth.
  • Children do not have the dexterity to brush and floss well until around seven to nine years of age. At least once a day a parent should lay a child back and brush and floss their teeth as perfectly as they can, and then allow the child to brush at least one other time of the day.
  • For a more detailed how to and video on this you can watch Dr. Stewart go over the routine here: http://littlepeoplesdental.com/care-treatment/brushing-flossing/
  • Until the child is older the parent should “dose” the toothpaste for the child. A rice grain amount until they are six years of age and a small pea sized amount of toothpaste after that.

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Discovering Family History Together

The following is by contributor Vanessa Brown of I Never Grew Up.

I have to admit that we are quite spoiled when it comes to the Family History department. No, not that we happen to have a very awesome family tree (who doesn’t?), but that my grandparents have made it their life mission to get thousands of years of family history in an organized order.

This means they have collected all of the photos, lineage, journal entries, news clips, stories, etc. and published books for the family for all of us to have in our homes. Family history is right at our fingertips, but not everyone has a family member that is extremely into family history. And on the other side of our family, the research is not nearly as extensive.

Where Do I Even Start in Teaching Family History?

There are many things I *wish* I would have done with family members, and I want to teach my girls to put these things as priorities in their lives. For example, last year my grandmother passed away after fighting Alzheimer’s for a few years. Throughout my whole life, she and I had an extremely close relationship that we kept strong through long talks on the phone and handwritten letters to each other.

[Read more…]

Unstructured Playtime in Nature: What Does it Mean and Why Should We Try to Do it?

The following is a guest post by Vanessa Brown of I Never Grew Up.

Unstructured playtime in nature – it seems like such a fancy term for simply letting the kids run wild outside, doesn’t it?  Unstructured playtime in nature is basically letting your children experience nature without any requirements, to-do lists or agendas, either alone or with others.

It results in wonderful benefits: memories, strengthened family relationships, independence, self confidence, increased creativity and appreciation and love for the Earth.

Also, just think of all the important poets, leaders, scientists, environmentalists and ecologists we will need for the next generation!

Many studies have been done on the benefit of unstructured playtime in nature and how problems are caused when it is not provided. There have been beautiful books written on the subject. Last Child In the Woods by Richard Louv should be required reading for everyone that has a job or relationship with children.

How Can I Get My Kids to Do This?

You would think that this unstructured playtime in nature wouldn’t need any prompting or help, right? Well, you know, us adults sometimes do need help!

Children that are usually quite busy and used to structured playtime might be a bit confused when asked to simply go into nature with no agenda. They might come running back saying, “Mom, this is boring.” But stick with it.  They’ll get used to it and learn to love it. [Read more…]