Month: October 2009

Want your kids to love reading? You need to love reading to them.

Evidently reading to your kids is more than just reading to your kids. And seriously pedigreed educational consultant Diane W. Frankenstein explores her concept of “conversational reading” in her excellent resource, Reading Together: Everything You Need to Know to Raise a Child Who Loves to Read. The idea is simple, and probably even common sense: Instead of just droning on, make the process interactive. So this reference guide includes specific books sorted by age, along with questions to help bring each one to life. There’s also a chapter on generic conversation starters that will work for almost any book,...

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Plates to mark the end of another year and hopefully, unfinished dinners.

When I was a new mom, I swore that I would never make tableware “an issue.” I would stick with neutral plates and bowls, basic silverware, and my kids would just deal with it. Right. As it turns out, serving dinner on “your special plate” can make all the difference between that dinner being finished by your children or by the dog. And one of the sweetest plates I’ve seen is the child’s birthday plate, courtesy of past CMP pick, Aedriel Originals. It’s a cool little birthday gift for the kid who doesn’t need more toys, and guaranteed it...

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Whoo makes the cutest owl softies? (Heh, sorry)

The first day of Autumn brings to mind leaves falling and stark naked trees and owls hooting at night. Crisp evenings and cold nights and noses with frozen snot-drips. (Maybe we won’t talk about that last one.) We found this selection adorable owl softies on Etsy, perfect for a cool evening of coziness bundled up in blankets. The gentle-owl softies from Nooshka (above) are highly distinguished. They do have a button, so probably not the best pet owl for tinier guys and gals. This long-legged Hoot owl from YooWhoo has crinkly wings and fun contrasting fabrics to interest tots...

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Bugs. They’re big with kids. Even when they’re not.

I have to admit getting a little flush of pride knowing my daughters are willing to pick up earthworms and tickle those pillbugs until they roll into tight little balls. At least for now. So I was happy to see that The Bug Book and Bottle is presented in a way to be appealing to all kids who are fascinated with things creepy and crawly and not just the boy kids. The bottle itself is more like a small plastic jar with airholes cut through the top. Smart, right? Open it up for a great illustrated field guide from...

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The best car seats for children – also some of the coolest.

Now that Wize has announced the winners of their best car seats for children, we’re glad to see two of our own favorites made the list: The Britax Roundabout and the Graco Nautilus 3-in-1. Both of which we love because they’re safe, they’re easy to install, and they’re not nearly as scary looking as most of the car seats out there. The third mention goes to the Montery booster seat by Sunshine Kids which I wasn’t familiar with, but when I cross-checked with the Car Seat Blog and saw they like it too, I was like ooh, cool. If...

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Socks in Box

I’m constantly on the lookout for fun little gender-neutral baby gifts. (I mean, what is it with all these moms who “want to be surprised” anyway? Can’t everyone be as impatient as I am?) One of my favorite new finds are the adorable bamboo-blend newborn sock sets from mom-run Hank & Jojo. These bold, stripey, retro, White Shadow-era knee-high socks come four to a box and by box, I mean one of the cutest reusable lunchbox-style containers you’ve ever seen. But don’t just buy them for the box. Buy them because everyone will ooh and aah and coo over...

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Foodzie is like Etsy for food. I’m doomed.

Do you hear that sound? It’s my hips expanding. I know I’m going to rue the day I discovered Foodzie, the marketplace for hand-crafted and artisan foods. Whereas my resolve is unwavering when I pass the fun-size candy bars in the supermarket aisle (Full of chemicals! I don’t need them!), how can I resist chai tea granola pecan bars or a box of bacon candies? Why, not only are these artisan candies and snacks made from the finest ingredients, I’d be supporting small businesses. It’d practically be an altruistic act, is my point. Of course, if your sweet tooth...

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Oh! what a cool book

Browsing the Picasso Museum gift shop in Barcelona last week (I know, totally rubbing it in) I came across the most wonderful little book called Oh! by Josse Goffin. I had an idea that my two year-old wouldn’t be able to put it down and indeed, that’s just how it’s played out. Each spread has a colorful, happy, quirky illustration of one thing — say, a smiling moon — but when you open a flap it reveals the moon transforming into something totally new and wonderful and weird, like a snake holding a paddle ball racket. Each page conceptually...

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The winner of The Bump’s Best Fashion Blog is…Cool Mom Picks!

You guyyyyys… We’re so so grateful so many of those of you who rallied and voted for us as The Bump’s Best Fashion Blog for moms. But because we want you to have more to show for it than carpal tunnel, we’re turning over our prize, the $100 Pottery Barn Kids gift certificate, to one of you. It’s the least we can do. (Details below.) We have to say though, that one of the nicest things about this was being introduced to the other finalists, who will definitely keep you moms and future moms looking and feeling fabulous: Bumpwear...

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All-natural gummies that won’t get your house TP’d on Halloween

My kids still recall with disdain the house that gave out unsweetened popcorn balls and apples one year for Halloween. I understand the desire to offer something less junky, but a safer bet against toilet paper in my trees might be some of the all-natural, Vitamin C-packed gummy candies we’ve found. No, they’re not a substitute for vitamins. But a better alternative to straws filled with pure sugar? You bet. Yummy Earth is no stranger to Cool Mom Picks, and this Halloween, add their treat-sized Organic Gummy Bear Snack Packs (above) to your trick-or-treat stash. These little guys are...

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