Our routine changed a bit today ~ I took Ella to her first dentist appointment. About a year late, but with the move to Connecticut and then back to Pennsylvania and the fact that I put a lot of thought and time in choosing where I would take her for her first dental experience - it just didn't make it on the calendar until now. For the most part I kept finding "dentist playgrounds" that included character overload, TV, video games, garish colors and over-stimulated employees. To regress a little - my earliest memories is none of this, but of a grumpy old man with long nose hairs poking out at me, a stuffed shark on the wall, the smell of laughing gas and the awful sound of the drill, and yes cavities lots of cavities - stuff nightmares are made out of. I wanted Ella's experience to be less Disneyland and more friendlier than my experience. Like finding a needle in a haystack I found Dr. Robert Lloyd in Jenkintown. His office was simply amazing. The atmosphere was modest, calm and clean. Quilts adorned the walls, some wood blocks in a crate, children's books on a shelf and a few steps leading up to a stage to move about or put on a show as Ella did. No gimmicks or intentional distraction - it felt like home. Dr. Lloyd and his assistant Donna were endearing, patient, smart, helpful and even funny. Besides Ella's sudden panic attack and disappearance (I had to hold my hands over her eyes in order for her to open her mouth - her rules) I kept reminding her to do this:
and all four of us managed to get through the teeth count (20) and a bubble-gum flavored teeth cleaning. Her teeth were in perfect condition and we both left the office with two big smiles on our faces. The ladies at the front desk were exceptional and friendly as can be (most likely because they don't deal with insurance companies) and made Ella feel so good about herself. I loved this place. It is truly a blessing to find places to take your children that reflect your lifestyle and share the same values as your family. Have you found golden spots for your family? Please share - I would love to hear about them.