"Dancing With the Stars" co-host Brooke Burke and I were all smiles at Cecconi's West Hollywood last week while talking about our kids. And specifically, about our kids' teeth.
"I like to make it fun," Burke said about getting her four children (ages 2-10) to brush their teeth. "They come up to me and say, 'Smell my breath.' "
Like me when I'm getting CC to brush, she also pretends to wince a little at untamed baby's breath. The kids laugh, of course, but the message comes through: Good oral hygiene is important. That, and it makes your breath smell minty fresh -- or fruit punchy, depending on the toothpaste.
Burke has teamed up with Oral-B, which is offering 50% off select Premium Power toothbrushes through Oct. 31, while also donating $25,000 to Operation Smile, an organization that provides free surgeries to children with cleft lips and cleft palates.
"I'm blessed to have healthy children," Burke said, but she wanted to get involved personally to help other children as well.
This partnership marks one of several connections that makes Burke a busy mom. In addition to working with Oral-B and co-hosting ABC's "Dancing With the Stars," she also runs mom-friendly website ModernMom.com.
How does she juggle all of the responsibilities? (I had to ask. I'm nosy and looking for tips.)
"Balance is a funny word," she said. As moms, "we have to be open to making it up as we go along."
"I talk openly about work," she added, "why Mommy works."
That said, she also makes time for the necessities that come with having a happy home life. "I take the kids to school," she said, "and I'm committed to obligations and priorities like family time with family."
Places where Brooke Burke likes to take the kids in L.A.:
* Santa Monica Pier (but not on the weekends or at night, she cautions)
* Paradise Cove in Malibu
* Douglas Park in Santa Monica
* Self-Realization Shrine & Retreat in Pacific Palisades
* The Grove (trolley rides)
Note: Oral-B provided a gift bag for all attendees.