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Help Your Child Thrive While Living With Diabetes With These 6 Ideas

livingsmartgirl.coHelp Your Child Thrive While Living With Diabetes With These 6 Ideas

Living with diabetes is tough for anyone
let alone a child. Trying to understand it and come to terms with their
diagnosis can be hard for you and especially your little one. Though it’s not
without its challenges, kids can lead very satisfying lives with Juvenile
Diabetes. Here are several ideas that can make coping with T1D (Type 1 Diabetes) a bit easier.

1. Switch up the Meal Plans

Who doesn’t love breakfast for dinner or
eating desert first every now and then? Living with T1D is a routine filled
lifestyle so switching up meals can add a little excitement for your little
one. It will make eating a fun experience and ultimately it becomes a routine
that your child will love.

2. Find a Support/Play Group For Your

Having someone else in their shoes can be
a great way for a child to come to terms with living with diabetes; and what
better way than to do that by finding other children with T1D? Kids need to know they are not alone, and by having kids their own age dealing with the same adversities can help them tremendously. Not only will the playgroup be great for you but families who understand the daily struggles of T1D also surround you. There are many resources online to help you find something in your area. If you can’t find a specific group in your location, there are definitely ways to help you form your own group. It’s beneficial for your child, and it gives you peace of mind that they have
children around them who understand exactly what they are going through.

3. Reward System

It’s no secret that kids love positive
reinforcement particularly if it comes in the form of stickers. There are many
day to day responsibilities that children with Juvenile Diabetes have to
endure. Having a reward system in place can help motivate them to keep up with their routines and make it fun in the process. One example is having a weekly chart. If your child completes their tasks everyday, have them place a sticker on their chart. Once they get to the 7th day, they can do an activity that they like. Maybe it’s taking them to the movies, the park, or a little adventure into town. By having this in place, it will give your child something to look forward to as well as making their health the
priority without them fully realizing it.

4. Reliable Devices

Ensuring your child’s glucose levels are
in the normal target range each day is a daunting task. Whether they are at
school, at a playdate, or at home, you want to make sure you have the best
device on hand to make sure that your child is safe at all times. In addition
to having a device that works well, it also should be easy to use and child
friendly. Gadgets like Dexcom G4 Platinum Receiver help
significantly in such endeavors. Not only is it accurately consistent  in
readings, it is suitable for children as young as 2 years old. Having the
proper equipment for your child can really take the stress off of you by making
sure your child is healthy at all times

5. Listen to Their Frustrations

One of the best things you can do for your child is to listen. It’s hard for them to fully grasp what they’re up against and feelings of resentment, frustration, and guilt are
a reality for them. Let’s not forget how the diagnosis affects you as a parent.
It can be hard on the whole family, but it is important to remember that kids
cannot fully understand their illness, so it’s important that you give them
your attention when they just need to vent or get out whatever it is that
they’re feeling about the situation. Just being there and letting them know
they can come to you with questions and complaints at any time can really make
an impact.

6. Give Them a Creative Outlet

Sometimes when children cannot verbally
express themselves, it is best that they have a creative way at home to do so.
Freedom of expression is such a great tool to help your child and it has many
benefits as well. By having construction paper, crayons, colored pencils, etc.
your child can creatively get out what they’re feeling. At times they are going
to feel that the extra tasks they have to do daily are unfair and they can
become upset. Give them the opportunity to release
those feelings with art
. Type 1 diabetes does not only affect kids
physiologically but psychologically as well; so being able to express
themselves in different outlets will really give them a chance to thrive.

Having little ones with T1D is not an
easy circumstance, even in the best situations. It impacts the whole family and
there are a lot of life changes that need to occur to ensure the best for your
child. That being said, juvenile diabetes doesn’t always have to be burdensome.
By using these ideas, you can create a positive atmosphere for your child.
It will help them realize that there is so much more to life than being defined
by their diagnoses. It will also give them healthy outlets in coping with T1D,
which can give them encouragement when they need it, most. Living with Juvenile
diabetes is not without its complications, however you can give your child the
support they need to live happy and flourishing lives.


Help Support the MDA by Donating to my Bail

campersmile.jpgI’m proud to tell you that I’m going “behind bars” to help in the fight against muscle disease. I’m joining other community leaders to help raise critical funds for MDA, and I need your help to reach my bail!

 The 2014 Duluth Lock Up takes place on April 17th, but I’m raising my bail before I go to jail! All you have to do is click here to make a secure, online donation today. Your support will help families living in our community with muscle disease, and help guarantee that I get out of jail. I will be sure to add you to my list of contributors.

 Please support me in this important goal by visiting my fundraising page and making a contribution. Your tax-deductible donation makes a difference to the hundreds of kids, adults and their families who live right here in our local community.

Thanks in advance for your help. Don’t hesitate to call or email me with questions.

Every donation helps, no matter how big or small.  Please help me send 2 amazing kids to camp this summer. 


Arranging A Sporting Trip For The Family

Arranging A Sporting Trip For The Family


Sporting events draw millions of spectators across the US every year. From football to baseball to basketball to hockey, we love our sports as a nation. For many, arranging a trip to a sports game is a special family occasion, and one that can be cherished for years to come. For others, it can grow into a regular pursuit, attending every home game of your chosen football, baseball, basketball or hockey team. For the entire family, these events represent wholesome good fun, and an excellent way to bond. When you are arranging a sporting trip for the family, regardless of the event, there are a few factors you should take care to bear in mind, so you can get the best possible experience while you are there.



The first thing you need to do is to book tickets. Getting tickets to the event is usually easy enough, unless there is a particular buzz around a game, the teams or the players involved. However, this should be arranged well in advance to avoid disappointment. When you have the tickets in place, you can then start to plan everything else round about your trip. It is also worth looking for family booking discounts. Teams like the Philadelphia Eagles often offer family tickets, or discount tickets for kids and older people. These deals can make it possible to go to the game for less, so you can spend more on enjoying yourself when you are there.

Depending on where in the world the game is being held, you may need to arrange travel to get there. Traveling across the US is best achieved by car when you have a small or young family, simply because of the convenience that comes with being in control of your own destiny. With a car, you can choose when you leave, when you stop off, and when you take a rest – perfect for traveling longer distances, without the upheaval of airports or taking your family on the bus.

In the same vein, it might be worth considering finding a place to stay near the game for the night. Especially if you are driving for long distances, it can often be worth breaking up the trip. This can help ensure you are feeling fresh and ready for the drive back home, rather than pushing through to get home after the game. Where this is compatible with your work and school schedules, this approach also works best for the kids, who will no doubt be tired and more than a little cranky on the journey home!



Taking the family to a professional sporting event is a common way to spend time and to bond with your kids, in a fun, family-oriented atmosphere. Provided you can arrange the trip in advance, and take steps to plan and prepare each element of your trip ahead of time, it can be a great way for you and your family to spend some quality time together. Even better yet, if there is a local team you can support, there’s no reason why your sporting trips can’t become a more regular event.

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Support the Fresh Air Fund


camp abc, 2011-8-16 - 0034 - joan barker


Fresh Air summers are filled with children running barefoot through the grass, gazing at star-filled skies or swimming for the first time. The Fresh Air Fund, an independent, not-for-profit-agency, unlocks the limitless potential of thousands of New York City children, and you can too. Visit The Fresh Air Fund online at for more information.

childs family, 2013-07-6 - 001 - christina childs

Who Needs Life Insurance ?

Information for this post is sourced from Genworth Financial in partnership with the SheHeard Influencer Network.
All opinions are 100% Living Smart Girl’s.

Who needs life insurance ?

If you don’t know the answer to that question or are a bit confused as to what life insurance really is then this is a must read for you.   I, not to many years ago, was not sure what life insurance was or if/why someone really needed it.  Back in 2006 my husbands father passed away, and he did not have life insurance.  This put a big strain on my husband and his only other sibling.  Not only financially, but also mentally because they didn’t understand why their father would not have chosen to carry life insurance to make sure things were covered upon his passing.  Well, he didn’t carry life insurance because he lived life day to day and didn’t expect to leave us so soon.  It was a hard lesson to learn for us but after that we realized that it is very important to have life insurance to make sure our loved ones left behind don’t have to carry the financial burden of funeral expenses and all the other things that might arise when we are gone.

My husband has life insurance thru his work and he also has a small policy on myself and our son.  But, being that my husbands company offers such a small policy on spouses we decided that it was in our best interest to find a great life insurance policy for me.  Genworth Financial is a great place to find resources and such for work at home parents like myself.   Even though I don’t have a 9-5 job outside the home I do bring an income in that helps to support my family.  If something should happen to me the bills would still be here but my income would be gone.  That is something not many people think about.   Also, being an at home wife/mom I do many things to keep the house running smoothly that in the event of my absence would need to be done by someone else which would cost money.  So, it is very important to me to make sure I put no burden on my  loved ones in the event something might happen to me.

Do you have life insurance for yourself or family members?   If not, maybe it is time to consider looking into it.  Life insurance is very reasonable, and give piece of mind.


Back To School Means Back To Basics

Back To School Means Back To Basics


It’s hard to believe when the school vacation is over. Where did the time go? It just seems like school was breaking up a few weeks ago, and all of a sudden it’s time to get ready for your kids to go back again.


The kids may be excited about going back to school and seeing their friends and favorite teachers again. On the other hand, there’s a good chance that they are moping around with long faces, wondering why life is so unfair. Don’t worry if they do – they will get over it, but it’s your job to make sure they get the most out of the school year.



The first thing to keep in mind is that while it’s okay if your kids don’t have a regular routine during their vacation, this just won’t work once they are back at school. For young children, you need to make sure that you send them to bed at the same time each night so that they get enough sleep – don’t give in to them wanting to stay up for that special program on TV. With teens, it’s a bit harder, but they need their sleep too. Agree a time with them for school nights, and insist that they are home in time to eat dinner and do their homework before they go to bed.


When it comes to homework, you need to give your children a good place to work. Make sure that wherever you choose is quiet and well lit, and that there are no distractions such as the TV to get in the way. For teens, this also includes distractions such as mobile phones and video games that could draw them away from their work. You may be able to trust your teen to go do their homework in their bedroom, but there’s no point in surrounding them with all sorts of temptations.


They will also need the right supplies for school. Pencils, pens, rulers and calculators can all be expensive, so look for cheap school supplies online or in back-to-school sales to bring the cost down. For young children, you will need to do the shopping, but older children can probably shop for their own supplies, provided that you agree both a list to buy and a budget.


Also remember that children work better when they have enough exercise and the right food to eat. If you give them school lunches, try to include fresh fruit and vegetables in their lunchbox and avoid high-fat or high-sugar items such as potato chips and soft drinks. They may complain to start with, but they’ll soon get used to it – especially if you provide some variety. Similarly, they may get exercise at school, but it’s also a good idea to get them to play sports – even if they’re not very good at it, they will enjoy it if you encourage them and aren’t critical of their performance. Going for family walks and hikes is also a good idea, as it gives them the opportunity to both exercise and to talk to you about how things are going at school.





You can make all the difference when it comes to how your kids do at school and whether they enjoy it or not. With a little planning and lots of support, you can give your kids a lifelong love of learning. It’s more than worth the investment.

Being a Single Woman facing Financial Challenges

Information for this post is sourced from Genworth Financial in partnership with the SheHeard Influencer Network.
All opinions are 100% Living Smart Girl’s.

Life is hard enough financially these days when you are in a relationship, but when something happens and you find yourself a single woman, all alone, it puts a whole new spin on your finance situation.   Regardless of how you end up single, you are single and it changes many things.  Genworth Financial is here to help you thru your difficult time to get yourself on track for the future.

I am lucky that I have not had to experience this first hand.  But, I do have experience thru friends and family that have been thru this.  A good friend of mine has ended her marriage recently and in doing so she has gone from a 2 person income home to a 1 person income home.  Yes, the bills are less, but her income is about 1/4th of what her husbands was so she is facing many financial challenges.  Things that one doesn’t really think to much of when you have money.  Like, utility bills, car insurance, life insurance, gas, food, daily personal needs, etc.   There are many things that one just buys weekly that sometimes not a lot of thought goes into it when the money is there.  She is facing many huge changes and I see how it is effecting her in many ways.

As with all changes in life, like divorce there are also other changes in life, like meeting someone new.  I know she is dating and of course the idea comes into her head about entering into a new life with someone.  But, being that she has now been thru this 2 times she is a bit worried.   Both times she has left with not much in her pocket.   She has done so because she chooses to try and stand on her own two feet.  Some might agree or not agree with her methods but regardless it is her choice.   We have talked a few times about her options for protecting herself if she enters into another relationship. Even though she might not have a lot to protect, she wants to make sure she stays in control of what is hers.

Being an independent woman is important regardless if you are in a relationship or not.  I know many women that rely on their husbands/partners.  I know I have for years because that is just how our relationship works.  Raising kids and being a stay at home mom/wife.  But, I do know that if something happened and I found myself single, I would be ok.   Would you ?  Do you worry what would happen to you if you became single ?



Dealing With Incontinence Before And After Pregnancy

Incontinence is when you can’t control when you urinate. This becomes more common as we age. Among women, it’s also common during pregnancy. It can happen before, during and after pregnancy.


While it is a difficult problem for pregnant women to deal with, there a few ways you can limit the problems associated with it. One of the best ways is to simply plan regular toilet breaks. Over time, you will get better at timing this and you should be able to limit or even eliminate the occasions where involuntary urination occurs.




You can also use a technique called double voiding. This is when you go to the bathroom, urinate, relax for a short while, and then try to urinate again only moments later. Through following this process you empty your bladder to a much greater extent than you otherwise would. The end result is that you can go longer between bathroom breaks and you considerably limit the amount of urine that you would pass should you experience incontinence.


It is a good idea to record the amount of fluids that you drink. You should never drink less than you need, but you should use this as a way to time your toilet breaks. If you happen to drink more during a certain spell, you will know that you need to visit the bathroom sooner. Keep in mind that diuretics like coffee make it more difficult to wait between toilet breaks. So, be extra vigilant when you are consuming coffee and other caffeine-based drinks. Some people choose to limit the times they drink coffee to the morning or early afternoon. Remember, you can always drink herbal teas and other types of hot drinks instead.


Websites like are a great choice for women suffering from incontinence. You can buy a range of absorbent products, including cloth underpads and disposable underwear.



Many people worry about going out when they are suffering from incontinence, but this doesn’t have to be a concern. If you know where a bathroom is at all times, and you are wearing disposable incontinence underwear, you should be able to handle the process just fine. Many people like to bring along a spare few pairs of disposable underwear in their bags and to also decrease the times between toilet visits. Taken together, these should considerably limit the problems associated with going out when you are suffering from incontinence.


“The kind of incontinence experienced during pregnancy is usually stress incontinence (SI). Stress incontinence is the loss of urine caused by increased pressure on the bladder. In stress incontinence, the bladder sphincter does not function well enough to hold in urine,” writes WebMD. “Urinary incontinence during pregnancy can also be the result of an overactive bladder. Women who have an overactive bladder (OAB) need to urinate more than usual because their bladders have uncontrollable spasms. In addition, the muscles surrounding the urethra – the tube through which urine passes from the bladder – can be affected.”

Secrets Of A Happy Family Home

We all aspire to have a harmonious and joyous family life, but sometimes we’re at a loss to know how to achieve that. There isn’t a single magic bullet, but there are some basic things you can do to build a strong and loving environment. There is no guarantee that you will end up like the Brady Bunch or Leave It to Beaver –  and you probably don’t want to – but you will find things are just a little bit better if you put in the effort.



The single best thing you can do for your home and family is to eat together. The kitchen is the heart of the family, and making time on a regular basis to break bread together reinforces your family bonds. As a minimum, try to have dinner together at least three times a week, and make it an occasion where you share and talk about things. Don’t let the kids wolf down their meal and race off to watch TV – talk to them about how their day has been, and what their plans are. You might even want to follow the meal with a family game – for example, Scrabble.


Building rituals is also an effective way of strengthening your family. These could be religious, such as all going to church or the synagogue together. On the other hand, it could be as simple as having pizza on Wednesdays, or all watching A Christmas Carol together every Christmas Eve. The thing about rituals, however, is that you need to make them flexible. There’s no point in insisting that your kids stay and eat pizza when they’ve got a one-off chance to go to a concert. Otherwise, rituals become a duty and a burden, rather than a chance to build family ties.


As parents, you set the tone of your home. Now, no marriage is perfect, and you’re going to have arguments with your spouse from time to time. However, there is no point in making the kids listen to you telling each other off. Not only does it set a bad example, but it’s also disturbing for your kids. You want to be seen as a stable and calm influence, giving your kids something that they can rely on in a world that seems just a little bit hostile to them.



You also need to encourage good manners. This isn’t about creating a 1950s Nirvana where everyone smiles all the time and says please and thank you with metronomic regularity. What it does mean is that you need to create a calm and positive environment which your kids want to come home to. Make sure that you never raise your voice, and that your kids know the best way of getting along is agreement, not conflict. Try to create sibling harmony by telling your kids how fortunate they are to have each other. Teach them to always be considerate of other people’s feelings, and to ask themselves how they would feel if they were in the other person’s shoes.