Monthly Archives: October 2013

5 Uses for Leftover Candy Corn

5 Uses for Leftover Candy Corn

When my kids were little and would bring back their trick or treat bags on Halloween it seemed like the bags were stuffed with candy corn.  While I like candy corn and so do my kids and husband, you can only eat so much of it.  At least straight out of the bag.  With that in mind, and the fact that we are going to a Halloween party this year, I thought I would go in search of more creative ways to use candy corn.  Turns out I’m not the only one who had this idea.  Here are some of the fun and delicious ways candy corn can be used in familiar recipes.

Candy Corn PopCorn Balls

A sugary treat, but still healthy because of the popcorn, Tattooed Martha brings us Candy Corn Popcorn Balls. Use them as a center piece and then pass out for dessert.




Candy Corn Trail MixAnother healthy treat uses candy corn in a traditional trail mix recipe.  This is a great recipe and like any trail mix you can add and subtract ingredients to suit your family’s tastes.  I like the colorful look of this one.  Plus it includes my favorite chocolate candy M&M’s.




Candy Corn White Chocolate PretzelsAlida’s Kitchen showcases Candy Corn White Chocolate Pretzels. I think these can work at an adult or kids party.  For the adults, serve on a pretty tray.  For the kids, fill a big orange bowl and pass out.  Also a fun snack to have while watching scary movies.




Pay Day CookiesShugary Sweets Pay Day Cookies uses an unusual mix of ingredients to come up with a great tasting cookie.  I think this is a cookie kids could easily make and have fun with.  I would try different flavors of M&M’s or maybe even butterscotch or white chocolate pieces.




Dark Chocolate Candy Corn BarkI love peppermint bark at Christmas time.  Now I can indulge at Halloween time too with this Dark Chocolate Candy Corn Bark from It sounds incredibility rich and I might have to limit myself to just one piece – an hour.




Happy Halloween!






9 Tips to Survive Teen Dating

9 Tips to Survive Teen Dating

Introducing teenage children to the rules and responsibilities of dating gives parents opportunities to teach their values and keep their kids safe.  Although dating rules will be different from family to family, here are some commonly suggested dating guidelines for teens:

Establish age minimums for dating

Allow group or double dating after age 14 – typically when a child is finishing middle school and entering high school.  Wait until age 16 to allow one-on-one dating.

School nights are for school activities and homework

Don’t allow dating on school nights.  For a teen’s overall health and well-being sticking to a school night routine is best.

Curfew on the weekends

Friday and Saturday night dating should come with a curfew that has been previously set such as midnight.  As your child ages, this curfew can be adjusted.  Be aware of local laws that might already set a curfew for teens.

Keep alcohol out of the dating scene

The legal drinking age is 21 and should be honored at home and at parties outside the home.  Know where your teen will be for the evening and verify that alcohol will not be served.  It is ok to say ‘no’ to your teen if you find out an adult won’t be present at the party to enforce the no alcohol rule.  Set the example and enforce this rule in your own home by being present when your teen is entertaining their friends.

Be aware of who is doing the driving

Most states have restrictive driving rules now for teens that center around how many non-family passengers can be in the car while teens are driving.  Check with other parents and verify safe driving records of their children.  Limiting driving distances for dates to in-town driving may also be helpful.  Have designated driving rules in place and back up plans if no one is capable of driving.

Do the driving yourself

While this may embarass your teen, it does provide peace of mind for you and other parents involved.

Know the families of people your teens are dating

It’s easy to pick up the phone and have a conversation before the date occurs.  Use this opportunity to mutually agree on ground rules.

Know the itinerary for the date

Ask where the date will occur and agree that if locations change your teen will call you.  With today’s technology it is easier to track a teen’s movement through items such as their cell phone.  It’s best though to build a trusting relationship with your teen on this issue.  Verify that an adult will be present if the date is at a private home.

Educate your teens about sex and alcohol

The average American youth has sex for the first time at about age 17, while about 26% of U.S. youth ages 12 to 20 have begun to drink alcohol.  Assume that your kids will have sex or drink and give them the proper information to keep themselves safe.  Here is a helpful link to the age of consent laws in each state.





Menstruation Artwork

Menstruation Artwork

I spend a fair amount of time on the internet reading and researching menstruation information to bring to Dot Girl readers.  It seems lately that the discussion of menstruation and periods is landing in the main stream news more often.  This is a good thing as menstruation should not be a taboo subject and the more information girls have the better.  The topic of menstruation is also being used in art pieces and clothing and today I bring you two examples that I recently discovered.

American Apparel Period Power T-Shirt

American Apparel
Period Power T-Shirt

This period t-shirt to be found at American Apparel is probably not going to end up on my shopping list.  The Canadian artist Petra Collins created an artistic drawing of the crotch of a woman who is both menstruating and masturbating.  Not for the faint of heart and already creating much buzz – both pro and con.  While I agree that women’s sexuality should not be a hidden subject and neither should menstruation, I’m not sure this is the best way to open the discussion.  I have yet to see anyone wearing this t-shirt.  Please let me know if you do.



Menstruation Artworkby Carina Ubeda

Menstruation Artwork
by Carina Ubeda

This art installation by Chilean Artist Carina Ubeda is comprised of five years of her own menstrual blood.  The imprints vary on the pieces of cloth and are each embroidered with words like “destroyed” and “production.” Reactions have raved from disgusted to interested.  As one female viewer noted “male blood is celebrated for being brave while ours is a shame.”

I agree with the female viewer’s comment that menstruation blood should not be viewed as shameful.  After all, over half of the world’s population experiences this monthly event.  Treating it as a normal everyday topic is the right step.

Have you seen other examples of menstruation artwork?  Please share in the comments below.



The Best Resources for Talking to Your Daughter About Sex

The Best Resources for Talking to Your Daughter About Sex

The Best Resources for Talking to Your Daughter about Sex

Don’t keep sex a secret from your daughter!

Parents: It’s time to show your daughters (and sons too) some love.  October is National Family Sexuality Education Month as promoted by Planned Parenthood and a coalition of non-profit organizations since 2002.  This month is the perfect time to prepare yourself to have some sex talks with your daughter.  The goal? To educate kids about sex, love, relationships, menstrual periods, body parts and so many other topics that your daughter wants to know about and you might be afraid to talk about.

Dot Girl is here is help with the discussion.  I’ve put together a list of some resources for you to draw from.  Use one, use them all, but use them to talk to your daughter about sex.  Research shows children want this information from their parents, not their peers.  She may not appear to be listening, but really she is.

Planned Parenthood Tools for Parents

Start with the premier provider of sexual health services.  Watch the first video to get your courage up and then watch the rest for tips on what to say and when to say it.  Most importantly, pay attention to the information on how to help your daughter delay her first sexual experience and then how to help her stay safe if and when she does start.  Risky behavior is not something you want your daughter to engage in.

What She Must Know About Contraception

Methods of contraception have multiplied over the past 20 years.  Need help explaining which is which to your daughter?  This infographic from Greatlist will help.  Review all the methods, some won’t be appropriate for a girl in her teens.  But better to know what is available early before it is too late.  And make sure she knows that contraception is a joint responsibility for both partners. More thoughts on this topic here.

Dr. Laura Berman

Yes, she targets adult sexual relationships.  And yet there are times when she has good advice for parents too.  Catch her on for a great article about Having the Sex Talk with Your Kids.

A great site courtesy of Nemours, this site has plenty of information for girls about puberty and what bodily changes to expect.  Review the information and share with your daughter.  There are also resources for parents.

Remember, the more information your daughter has about sex, the more informed she will be about sex.  The more informed she is about sex, the safer she will be having sex.  Good Luck!