Month: July 2009

Personalized children’s books you could hang on the walls

I’m pretty sure there’s nothing most kids love more than seeing their name or likeness in anything, hence the slew of personalized books that cram my daughter’s bookshelves. Her most recent birthday gift was a personalized book found at MJM Books, a cool company founded by three brothers. (Matt, Jeff, and Mike – get it?)  What’s special about these custom books is that they incorporate real artwork by real artists – no clip art or photoshopping at all. The cute stories all made to order and printed on recycled paper, seamlessly infuse your kiddo’s name and likeness; all you...

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Tastier than a Chia Pet

Remember Chia Pets? I remember blowing my allowance on one of those back in the day. Alas, they seem to have gone the way of Sea Monkeys and X-Ray glasses; momentarily entertaining, but ultimately kind of disappointing. Well it turns out that chia seeds are actually something called Salvia, and a very special variety of Salvia is now trademarked as Salba. Why do you care? You care because Salba is a veritable superfood–8x more Omega-3s than salmon, 6x more calcium than milk, 6x more iron than green beans, more fiber than flax (and yes I’m obsessed). Salba’s nutritional profile...

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Organic baby food that’s so good you may want to get some for yourself

Recently Liz and I attended the Fancy Food Show in New York where we found Tasty Baby, a line of frozen organic baby foods that may just cause me to exceed my superlatives usage quotient for the day. How do I know that this baby food tastes amazing? Because I inhaled a cup of Bangos (banana + mangos) while standing at the booth and then brazenly asked for another one — despite the fact I have no babies. This mom-run, eco-friendly, and very charitable company offers products for every stage of development, all of which are gluten-free, unsweetened, and...

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The timeless summer dress of 2009

The first thing I thought when I saw the little audrey in the city dress was that I really really want one in my size. This black and white micro-polkadot dress is classic and cute in all the right ways. Blue Sky Rocket has a new selection of gorgeous handmade mod dresses and skirts that are the perfect antidote to the excessive use of pink and purple found in most girl’s clothing. Check out the adorable noir sundress and cherry reversible wrap skirt, both of which would be welcome additions to my daughter’s pants-filled wardrobe. Especially appealing is that...

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Toy storage, cubed

We recently finished our basement, and having a spiffy designated playroom for the kids has done amazing things for my sanity. Now it’s time to find storage for all the toys we so eagerly transferred there. In my search for the perfect playroom storage solution, I happened upon dad Dennis King’s fantastic looking wooden storage cubes. Made by hand from reclaimed wood and finished with natural materials, these smooth-edged rustic squares will look great in pretty much any space. You can stack the storage cubes on top of each other like shelves or even flip them over and use...

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Bugs on a wall

When it comes to kid’s room decor, I never considered bugs and small crawly critters as a theme, mostly because aside from a few cute ladybugs, I’ve yet to see too many designers do something wall worthy with beetles, grasshoppers, or frogs. That is until I found the awesome origami bug wall decals from Byrdie Kids Graphics. This set of 8 small critters would be a fantastic addition to any baby nursery or kid’s room. Just choose your color and you’ll get the application kit, which includes instructions and a test decal (very smart!). If only all bugs were...

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This build-your-own solar kit isn’t rocket science

We’re a crazy homeschooling family, minus the denim jumpers and 65 children (Kidding! Kidding!)  and I’m always on the lookout for ways to teach the kids things without boring them to tears with text books and lectures. The 6 in 1 Educational Solar Kit is now a part of my educational bag of tricks — a fun, kid-friendly way to demonstrate how solar power works. It took me just a few minutes for this mechanically-challenged mama to put together a little solar-powered windmill which, thankfully, was no harder to assemble than some of my son’s Lego contraptions. Even better...

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Dish soap that turns your kitchen sink into an aromatherapy spa. (Except for that whole doing the dishes part.)

I have heard nothing but raves about Mrs. Meyer’s household cleaners and I have no idea why it took me so long to try them out myself. Because, now that I have, just you go ahead and count me in among the ravers. Washing dishes is literally my most despised of all chores, and the fact that the lavender dish soap made me kind of almost sort of look forward to it, is the biggest compliment I can give it. Aside from being (mostly) natural, biodegradable and phosphate-free, it is literally the best-smelling household cleaning product I have ever...

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Top rainy day activities for kids (or when the temp hits 110 in the shade)

When the thunderclouds roll in, digging up rainy day kids’ activities to keep the brood entertained indoors isn’t so easy. Especially when all they can think about are beaches, bikes and bothering each other. So we thought it was high time to revisit some of Cool Mom Picks’ favorite past ideas for cool indoor fun. A craft a day keeps the remote control away Crafts are of course the first thing we think of for rainy days or brutal heatwaves. I absolutely love the all-inclusive, adorable and affordable craft kits from the Little Experiences, like the Rocket kit (shown)...

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Light switch plates – the most neglected part of your child’s room decor

My friend tells me she’s looking for some robot-themed stuff for her baby boy’s room and I start poking around Etsy for her. Next thing you know, I’m drooling over these robot light switch plates from Robot Candy. One is cooler than the next, from the classic 50s robot to the kitschy Japanese telephone robot to the storybook quality of the Italian Nando Robot. (At least I think it’s Italian. Is it?) Each one is handmade by the Portland based shop out of a recycled light switch plate and vintage art. And if robots aren’t your thing for some...

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