Monthly Archives: April 2012

Anna-Mae Mysteries:The Golden Treasure

Anna-Mae Mysteries:The Golden Treasure

The Anna-Mae Mysteries - The Golden TreasureIs your daughter an amateur detective? Does she like thrilling mysteries?  Is she interested in the Civil War? Then The Anna-Mae Mysteries:The Golden Treasure by Lillian S. Cauldwell is just the book for her.  Based on the true story of Jefferson Davis and the lost gold of the confederacy, the book follows the 12-year old Anna-Mae, her brother Malcolm and her best friend Raul as they follow clues from mysterious sources to find the lost gold.

This book really grabbed my attention as I have always been a Civil War buff.  Basing the story on a true event provides a history lesson and some fun too.  What would your daughter do if she suddenly had a chance to find a treasure?  Anna-Mae, Malcolm and Raul are continually confronted with situations where they must figure out their own answers.  Along the way they are helped by some paranormal forces.  They also have to overcome bullies at school.  Through it all they stick together to find the answers to the lost treasure.

One of the neatest tricks in the book is how the trio uses ordinary items for extraordinary purposes.  For example, coat hangers as divining rods.  Ingenuity as it’s best.  Anna-Mae also relies on her steadfast Granma for much needed advice.  This was also one of my favorite parts of the book – the bringing together of the generations.  Ms. Cauldwell did a nice job of demonstrating how important elderly wisdom can be.

The Golden Treasure is the first in a series of three books featuring Anna-Mae, Malcolm and Raul.  I know that once your daughter is done with the first book, she will be eagerly awaiting the next two in the series.

Leave a comment about this blog post and enter to win an inscribed copy of The Anna-Mae Mysteries:The Golden Treasure. Comments must be left by 12 midnight PST on Friday, April 27th, 2012.

Miss Expo – Girls into Women

Miss Expo – Girls into Women

Miss ExpoThis coming weekend Dot Girl is excited to be exhibiting at Miss Expo in Long Beach, CA.  The expo takes place at the Long Beach Convention Center on Saturday, April 28th.  Dot Girl was at the first Miss Expo in Washington D.C. two years ago and it is wonderful to see how the event has grown.  Now expanded to several U.S. cities, Miss Expo “brings together, in one place, under one roof – all the newest and best tween products and services.”  The goal is to help tween girls transition into womanhood and is the ultimate tween experience.  If you are in the Southern California area this would be a great event to attend with your daughter.

How to Create Happy Kids!

How to Create Happy Kids!

How to create happy kids!The goal of parents everywhere is to have happy kids since happy kids mean happy parents.  But what if you are struggling to find that right balance between happiness for you and happiness for your kids?  Well, you may look no further than this book written to help parents through this dilemma.

Written by our good friend, Shirin Sherkat Psy.D., Create Happy Kids provides practical parenting solutions to create motivated, respectful and compliant kids.  The book starts with a definition of a happy kid which is broken down into twelve important factors including feeling honored and loved unconditionally.  Important factors for everyone, not just kids.

The rest of the book is divided into 12 sections.  Each section covers a different topic on creating happy kids.  Parents learn how to understand their kid’s perspective, what motivates their children and how to use that motivation to create greater harmony in the home.

Dr. Sherkat gives an excellent example of how to use the tools she is teaching with a story about her four year old nephew.  Her nephew was yelling a Christmas carol for well over an hour, yelling not singing, and driving everyone to distraction.

Recognizing that her nephew was yelling for attention as he felt ignored, Dr. Sherkat approached him and asked to film him singing his favorite song. Notice that she asked him to sing, not yell and that she would tape him only if he was singing, not yelling.

Her nephew happily complied.  His negative behavior was ignored, his positive behavior was rewarded and as Dr. Sherkat concluded, yelling at him to stop yelling would not have solved the situation.

I have heard Dr. Sherkat speak several times and she continually stresses that it is important to listen to and acknowledge your child.  In her many interviews with families, she has found that this is what children want most from their parents.  And in the end that is also what we want most from our children.

After reading the book Create Happy Kids, you will have the tools to create children who will listen and also learn how to increase your own listening skills.

Leave a comment about this blog post and enter to win an inscribed copy of Create Happy Kids. Comments must be left by 12 midnight PST on Friday, April 20th, 2012.

Period Fact #10 – What feminine pads should my daughter use?

What feminine pads should my daughter use?

Period Fact #10 - What type of feminie pads should she use?It’s Friday and our period talk for today is ‘what feminine pads should my daughter use?’ As moms know, there are many different types of feminine pads. They come in different lengths and thicknesses to match various amounts of blood flow.

Thinner “mini” pads are for lighter flow and thicker “maxi” pads are for heavy flow or overnight. Most feminine pads now come individually wrapped in plastic so they are easier to carry and keep clean. We recommend your daughter become familiar with the different feminine pads before she starts her period.

Your daughter may also ask about tampons especially if she is active in sports or other physical activities like dancing. If your daughter decides to use tampons remind her to change them frequently and to use the size that matches her flow. Girls just starting their periods will have a lighter flow and tampons are meant to absorb liquid. If her flow is light, it may be uncomfortable pulling out the used tampon. This may turn your daughter off from tampons. So talk to her about the appropriate times to use tampons. And remember that every box of tampons will also come with information on avoiding Toxic Shock Syndrome – important information for your daughter to know.

This is also a good time to teach your daughter about disposing of used feminine pads and tampons. They should never be flushed down the toilet. There are special disposal bags available such as ones included in The Dot Girl First Period Kit. The used pad or tampon should be placed in the disposal bag and placed in the garbage can.

If your daughter does not have disposal bags handy, she should fold up the pad as best she can and wrap it several times in toilet paper before throwing it in the trash. A tampon can also be wrapped in toilet paper before putting it in the trash.

Best Websites for Tween Girls

Best Websites for Tween Girls

We have been traveling the internet looking for the best websites for tweens girls. Here are our latest fab findings that we want to share with our readers.

This is our list in completely random order:

#1 – A Mighty Girl
This site is brand new and we are quite excited to see it join the internet community. The company tag line ‘The world’s largest collection of books and movies for smart, confident, and courageous girls’ says it all. Blog posts review books and movies that are appropriate for the tween girl age group. With new titles and old favorites, your daughter will be sure to find something to her liking and you will know her choice fits her age.

#2 – Best Bones Forever!
Tired of trying to convince your daughter to drink her milk or eat her yogurt? Will then, this site is perfect. Best Bones Forever! is a campaign by the Office on Women’s Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The ages between 9 and 12 are critical to bone health. Using fun activities and delicious recipes, the campaign encourages girls to exercise and eat right to build strong bones that will last a lifetime. And every year there is a fun dance contest to enter!

#3 – New Moon Girls
Looking for a place where your daughter may roam without being subject to advertising? New Moon Girls is the place to be. Safe and educational, the site is ad-free. Girls may join the online community and share news, poetry, and videos. The print companion, New Moon Girls Magazine is also ad-free and comes packed with information appropriate for girls 8 and up. The every other month publication has a different theme which all focus on expanding a girl’s horizons.

#4 – Zuzee
We have nicknamed this site the ‘Pinterest for Girls’. Girls create an account (and a parent account is automatically created and linked to your daughter’s account) to share photos and create scrapbook pages. Friends who have accounts can share and comment on each others pages. The site is an easy way to share photos without all the worries associated with Facebook. Every tween girl will love this site.

When should I use the good napkins?

When should I use the good napkins?

Kotex vintage ad for feminine napkins.Monday mornings need to start with laughter and so I thought I would share this story that my sister-in-law Leone passed on to me many years ago. Just imagine if this mother had handed her daughter The Dot Girl First Period Kit instead!

For those that had the joy of raising girls, or who were themselves girls in the old days, I know this will tickle your funny bone!

This is too good to not share. I think we are the last generation to know what ‘napkins’ are. THE GOOD NAPKINS … Ahhhh and the joys of having girls.

My mother taught me to read when I was four years old (her first mistake). One day, I was in the bathroom and noticed one of the cabinet doors was ajar. I read the box in the cabinet. I then asked my mother why she was keeping ‘napkins’ in the bathroom. Didn’t they belong in the kitchen?

Not wanting to burden me with unnecessary facts, she told me that those were for ‘special occasions’ (her second mistake).

Now fast forward a few months. It’s Thanksgiving Day, and my folks are leaving to pick up my uncle and his wife for dinner. Mom had assignments for all of us while they were gone. Mine was to set the table (her third mistake).

When they returned, my uncle came in first and immediately burst into laughter. Next came his wife, who gasped, then, began giggling. Next came my father, who roared with laughter. Then came Mom, who almost died of embarrassment when she saw each place setting on the table with a ‘special occasion Kotex napkin at each plate, with the fork carefully arranged on top. I had even tucked the little tail in so they didn’t hang off the edge!!

My mother asked me why I used these and, of course, my response sent the other adults into further fits of laughter. ‘But, Mom, you said they were for special occasions!!!’

Pass this on to your girlfriends and daughters who need a good laugh or anyone who has a daughter!

Life is too short for drama & petty things, so kiss slowly, laugh insanely, love truly and forgive quickly, and for heaven’s sake, use the good napkins whenever you can.

Period Fact #9 – Period Tracking on a Calendar

Period Fact #9 – Period Tracking on a Calendar

Period Fact #9 - Period Tracking on a CalendarThis week for our Friday series on periods we are going to talk about tracking periods on a calendar.  As we all know, the first question asked at annual ob/gyn exams is ‘when was the first day of your last period’?  Your daughter will also want to track her period for other reasons.  Knowing her cycle will help her plan for camp or other activities so can pack the supplies she needs.

Tracking her periods also helps your daughter know what is normal for her body.  That way she will notice if anything seems not normal.  Sometimes an abnormal or irregular menstrual cycle can be a sign of some other problem in her body.  Always, if you or your daughter have questions about her health, you should talk to a doctor.

To help your daughter track her period find a special calendar to use or download a free Dot Girl period calendar. Teach your daughter to mark the day she first starts bleeding.  After a few months of doing this she will start to see how many days there are in between periods each month.  Remember that it might take up to a year or two for your daughter to become regular once she first starts menstruating.  And regular means something different for everyone.  It may not be the same each month and she may skip a month altogether which is normal too.

Your daughter can also mark the days she has mucous or cramps.  Over time this information will help her to better understand her body.  She can also plan to adjust her diet or activities to help deal with cramps if she has them – like more exercise, more cups of tea, or just knowing where the heating pad is stored.

We would recommend your daughter always has supplies on hand in the first couple of years after she starts her period.  A pad can be slipped into her backpack, purse or gym bag.  Using the pink bag with The Dot Girl First Period Kit is also a discreet way to store and carry supplies.  Once she is familiar with her own cycle, she’ll be able to better plan when to have supplies with her.





Top 3 Beauty Tips for Your Daughter

Top 3 Beauty Tips for Your Daughter

We grew up in a family of four girls guided by very practical parents.  Our mom and dad required that we dress neatly and personal hygiene was emphasized.  We had a busy bathroom when it came to face washing and hair combing time.

Overall though we were raised to believe the important thing was how we cared for ourselves from the inside out.  Our parents wanted us to have a healthy self image and they managed to put just the right amount of emphasis on our inner and outer appearances.

In today’s world constant attention is placed on how girls look. Even 5 year old Suri Cruise can’t escape the spotlight.  Parents need to be ever more vigilant in finding teachable moments to talk to their daughters about what beauty means to you and your family.

Here are our top 3 tips for talking to your daughter about beauty:

1.  Leaf through a current issue of your daughter’s favorite magazine and talk about the models.  Are all body types represented?  Are the clothes they are wearing appropriate to their figures?  Which model has the prettiest smile regardless of the rest of her features?

2.  Ask your daughter who she thinks is beautiful – whether it be a celebrity or a family friend.  And then ask her to explain why.  Then you take a turn and find out why.  Make sure to include Dad or brothers or other male family friends to get a ‘guy’ perspective.

3.  While watching TV, movies or even YouTube videos, talk about the women on the screen.  Ask your daughter how the women portrayed compare to what she sees in the ‘real’ world remembering that media plays a large role in people’s opinions of  beauty.

Remember that praising your daughter’s qualities – academic, athletic, personality – or whatever she excels in will go a long way in building her self-esteem.   Focusing on the whole person and not just the outside appearance will provide your daughter with a well rounded opinion of herself.

Dot Girl Products featured in Entro Magazine

Dot Girl Products featured in Entro Magazine

Mom's Choice Awards - Entro 2012 MagazineDot Girl Products founder Kathy Pickus is honored to be featured in the 2012 edition of Entro Magazine, the online outlet for Mom’s Choice Awards.

The Dot Girl First Period Kit was voted among the best in family-friendly media, products and services in 2010.  The kit was a Gold Recipient in the Personal Use Products category.

Excerpts from In the Spotlight: Entrepreneur Draws on Own Experience to Help Girls:

“Believing that adolescence is already tough on girls, entrepreneur Kathy Pickus wants to remove one obstacle in their path by offering products that can help them through the awkwardness and confusion of their first period.”

“The company was founded by my sister, Terri Goodwin, and me. Our motivation to create The Dot Girl First Period Kit grew from our own awkward teenage experiences. Despite the fact that our mother was a wonderful nurturer to four daughters, she was never comfortable talking to us about our bodies, therefore, both of us were caught by complete surprise when our periods started. I vowed the first period experience would be different for my daughter, and thus was born the idea behind Dot Girl Products.”

Click here to read the full article on pages 10 and 11.