#TeamGroundhog

This is what we were feeling like last weekend when I even managed to get out for not one, but two outdoor runs…in Southern Ontario.

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So I was feeling pretty confident in the groundhog who informed us by not running away from his shadow a few weeks ago that spring was indeed coming.

Then this happened. Don’t let the happy heart shapes fool you, it’s cold and wet and miserable.

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Overall, I am absolutely not complaining about this winter. It has plain and simply rocked and after last year when it was just unbearably awful. Seriously, I think I wore a minimum of 3 layers every day for around 8 weeks straight (or more) and I still couldn’t get warm enough.

So, I thank Mother Nature for the warm ‘winter’ we’ve had this year…but that groundhog has 2 more weeks ’til I best be seeing green again. I’ll be cheering his prediction on let me tell you. #GoGroundhog #BringOnSpring

Until then, stay warm, and cheer along with me…it can’t hurt…and it may in fact keep up warm in the interim 😉

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Spring Party Tooth Sensitivity Tips

I have officially decided spring is upon us. I am also choosing to ignore the dire warnings for this week where I live of potential snowstorms and instead focus on the season that is just begging to fully arrive any moment…really, any moment now….how about now? Nope, not yet huh?

Alright, what we’ll do instead is plan ahead and daydream about the parties we’ll attend, and the treats we’ll have…and enjoy with some tips from my friends at ProNamel. I felt it important to go to the experts for us so we’re all set for maximum enjoyment.

Multi-Action

I do, in fact, have sensitivity as a result of enamel loss and am a very long-time user of  Sensodyne and ProNamel. ‎At the bevvy of parties and fun gatherings a multitude of cocktails and assorted beverages make an appearance, from wine to hot apple cider and hot chocola te (still in season and lovely). What are ‘better’ choices and ‘less than ideal’ ones that might put a sour note on the event?

Beverages that are often served at parties like red wine, white wine, apple cider and hot chocolate are high in acidity and have the potential to cause long-term erosion and tooth wear. Other beverages that are high in acid include soft drinks, coffee and tonic water.

Interestingly enough, a recent survey conducted by GSK revealed that Canadians rank coffee and wine among their favourite beverages but the majority don’t realize that these beverages are acidic.

I try my darndest to eat a lot of fruits and veggies at  parties to offset a couple of treats. Are there any in particular I, and others like me, should avoid or gravitate towards in order to not eat too many of those craved sweets?

Fruits and vegetables like broccoli, cucumber, avocados, bananas which are many of our favourite foods are low in acid.

Fruit like blackberries, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, grapes, grapefruit, lemons, limes, pineapples, pomegranates, raspberries and strawberries are high in acidity.

But you don’t have to give up on your favourite appetizers. Canadians can still enjoy the foods they love without compromising the strength of their teeth. Utilizing proper oral hygiene techniques and using a toothpaste specifically designed to help protect against the effects of acid erosion can help to mitigate the harm done by acidic foods. Toothpastes such as ProNamel help strengthen and re-harden acid-weakened enamel making it healthy, stronger and better-protected so it’s more resistant to enamel loss and future Acid Wear, which could lead to sensitivity.

Chocolate? Cookies? Brittle candy? Cakes? Which are better ‘not so great’ choices?

Apart from the issue of introducing sugar to the teeth, the sweet items mentioned have other damaging effects.  Most of us are well aware of the benefits that cocoa provides.  However, chocolates may also contain caffeine which can exacerbate acid reflux for those suffering from the condition.  Therefore, for those people, eating chocolates in moderation would be the key to reducing acid challenges on the enamel.  Candies and cookies that are of hard consistency can introduce micro fractures in the enamel.   Furthermore, enamel that is already weakened by acid can fracture or simply chip away small portions at a time.  For this reason, hard foods such as brittle candies, nuts and hard candies should be avoided at all times.

I’ve heard that sometimes straws help with beverages, is that an option? Difficult with some drinks for sure, but perhaps with others it might work?

To help reduce the risk of enamel wear there are many things you can do. You can try reducing the amount of time that acids are in contact with the teeth. To minimize swirling, swishing or holding acidic drinks in your mouth, you can use a straw.

In addition to this, there are a few other tips to help protect against Acid Wear:

  • Make an appointment to see the dentist. They will be able to look at your teeth for early signs of Acid Wear and assess levels of risk likely from your diet and brushing habits.
  • Try not to brush your teeth immediately after eating or drinking acid foods and beverages, and make sure you’re using a soft bristled brush. Ideally wait 30 minutes before brushing.
  • Encourage children and teenagers to brush twice a day with a toothpaste like ProNamel to encourage good brushing habits and prevent future acid challenges.

Enamel loss is caused by acids acting on the tooth’s surface. In fact, as few as four acidic exposures a day can put tooth enamel at risk of Acid Wear. Each time teeth are exposed to acidic food or drinks, the acids can weaken the enamel as it loses minerals, making it easier for the enamel to wear away.

If enough of the enamel wears away the dentin layer becomes exposed and the nerve in the center of the tooth becomes susceptible to stimuli, resulting in a short, sharp pain caused by certain triggers, such as hot and cold foods and beverages.

ProNamel toothpaste builds up a protective barrier and insulates the nerve (with twice daily brushing) so you can keep enjoying hot and cold beverages.

Visit www.pronamel.ca for more information on Acid Wear, its effects and its causes.

Thank you to my friends at ProNamel for these wonderful tips and tricks to maximize our return to gatherings in warmer temps…which are coming…the groundhog said so…right? 😉

Merry Christmas Wishes to All!

Reno’s for my sanity and the insanity they cause

Renos. Yup, we made the decision that since our home’s location is pretty much perfect we’re acknowledging that some updates need to happen.

‎This year, after staring at my too dark living room I finally snapped and it was painted. It took three days, but it was worth it, I cannot get over how a little paint can make such a BIG impact in a space.

That was phase one.

Phase two has been the kitchen. I loathed it. I’ve put up with it since 2002 and enough was enough. This project took a lot of research, tears, compromising and planning, but it’s finally coming together.

After my tears of realization of what a new (or even re-faced) kitchen was going to cost, hubby and ‎found a solution: new doors and hardware (we re-used our hinges) and a new hood.

After ordering the doors my sanity returned, then the insanity set in as I waited, and waited for them to arrive. They were a couple weeks late, but oh so worth it.

Then, the insanity kicked up again as adjustments had to be made on our present cupboards. Things were banged, tools were worn out, new ones were purchased. A process I thought would be quick is on week two now.

It has been a process, and it’s not over yet (4 handles to go and the hood!), but it’s close. And I’m calming and realizing that’s OK.

My sanity will return.

And then we’ll go to phase three…‎my poor husband ;).

Today We Remember #LestWeForget

Today, and for the past couple of weeks, I proudly wear my poppy in remembrance and thanks to all those who have served, do serve and will serve.

Because of your sacrifices we enjoy freedom’s many parts of the world wish they had.

I thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

The Little Moments

Every morning on my way to the office I have to cross one particular street. On the other side is a bus stop for the kids, I know because of, let’s call him: Spider-kid.
Every morning he watches for cars and ‘races’ them running from one street to another (basically the width of two houses).
He does this while wearing his Spiderman hat too.
It’s adorable and he in fact beats me every day…My car seems to not be at speed there 😉 (within reason, if there’s a car behind me obviously I’m safe and not going to cause a problem by going too slow).
It’s just the cutest and sweetest way to start my day and I wanted to share it.
Kids. They really do the cutest things :).
Where do you find your happy moment?

Road Trip to #Gettysburg Part Two

Admittedly this post is a little delayed, but that shouldn’t take anything away from it.

On our second full-day at Gettysburg, and I mean full too, we accomplished A LOT.

We started off at the Gettysburg National Military Park visitor centre and attended a fantastic lecture (complimentary too) put on by one of the fantastic NPS park rangers. This one was an overview of the whole battle and was made all the better since we had driven it the day before. We highly recommend attending one of their talks, or more.

We then did the video, the cyclorama and museum on-site… and some shopping afterwards of course. I thought the cyclorama was simply a painting, but wow, it was that and so much more. An interactive telling of Pickett’s charge from Cemetery Ridge where you are ‘in’ the line, we were very impressed.

The museum took you from beginning to end and showcased many of the poignant stories from the battle along with a history of the period. The one that touched me was the story of a Union soldier who was identified post-mortem by the sweet picture of his children he was clutching when he passed.

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After our adventures at the visitor centre we headed to the Jennie Wade House for a tour. Jennie was the sole civilian killed during the battle and seeing the actual spot where she was killed and the actual bullet hole was very moving. This tour is another must. She was a young girl who was only at this house to help her sister Georgia who had just given birth to a baby and was killed while making bread and biscuits for the Union soldiers.

Where Jennie was killed

Where Jennie was killed

Myself and Jennie's statue

Myself and Jennie’s statue

That evening we enjoyed another fantastic meal, this time at The Farnsworth House.

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The food was period fare and included a starter of Jennie Wade bread (which I’m trying to find the recipe to) and a delectable menu. The Farnsworth House also offers haunted ghost walks. I was all over that. Our guide was Tom and he was fantastic. The house itself is said to be occupied by spirits and when we were in the attic the door did slam by itself. Tom said that was the spirit of a little boy named Jeremy who likes to play. We also saw the window from which snipers took their shots during the battle and in fact, it is strongly suspected that the shot that killed poor Jennie Wade came from here.

The window where the sniper shot likely came from

The window where the sniper shot likely came from

Our guide Tom

Our guide Tom

Tom took us up the road and showed and told us more stories, and just the history alone makes these tours so great, and we ended on a road where there are said to be a lot of spirits. I of course took out my camera and got a couple of ‘interesting’ pictures. Judge for yourself, but I know what I see ;).

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All I know is, we’re counting down until we can go back… and I will have my camera ready again too ;).