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How many times have you heard “Mommy, I can’t sleep. There’s a monster under my bed!”

Or something like that.

My daughter has said that she’s afraid to close her eyes because of a bad dream. I tell her to close her eyes and ask her what she sees.

“A monster,” she says.

Well, the answer I was hoping to get was “nothing,” and in return I would tell her “then you’re afraid of nothing.”

Oh well. Nice try.

There’s been many a night lately where I hear that tiny, timid voice standing next to my bed in the middle of the night saying, “Mommy, I had a bad dream. Can I come in and stay with you?”

What’s a mom, or dad, to do?

There are a few options out there. I read somewhere once where a mom checked under the bed and in the closet and verbally shooed the monsters away to make bedtime go more smoothly. When I was younger, we had my younger sister pick a favorite book to slip under her pillow in the hopes that dreams about that story would visit.

How about sprinkling some dust to scare away the nightmare creatures?

I got an e-mail last week promoting a product from Herban Renewal called Shoo! Monster Dust — “a 100 percent natural anti-boogeyman powder to sprinkle around and under beds and in closets to SCARE AWAY those monsters and other things that go bump in the night.”

Hmm. That’s different. I found out a little more about the product. On the market for more than a year, it’s made of vegetable powder, tri-calcium phosphate (food grade), fragrance oil, water base colorant and glitter.

After you sprinkle it around the child’s room and/or bed, does it dissolve? No, it doesn’t, unless it gets wet.

If you want to vacuum it up after the sunlight peers through the window and your little one is out of bed, it can make a nice rug freshener, I’m told.

The Shoo! Monster Dust is available at www.HerbanRenewalInc.com and costs between $5 and $20. The website also features a variety of other soaps and products made with natural ingredients.

Well, I’ll close for now. If it’s nighttime at this point, good night, sleep tight and sweet dreams!