Month: May 2010

Practical parenting. Period.

Do you suppose our parents agonized so much over what kind of parents they were as we do, today? Probably not. And yet, I hate to cast aspersions on folks genuinely seeking guidance on the right way to raise little people into fabulous adults. It’s what we all want, right? It’s also why we all thought “good job!” was the magic phrase… right up until studies informed us that “good job!” was, in fact, ruining our kids. Whoops. Never fear; Ellen Galinsky’s Mind in the Making: The Seven Essential Life Skills Every Child Needs is where data meets common...

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Save Handmade – CPSIA Update

We’ve been following the Consumer Products Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) and its negative effect on the handmade products and small businesses we love, ever since the very beginning. And so, we wanted to pass along some updates, so that you can help us save handmade – and protect the interests of hundreds of thousands of craftspeople, parents and shoppers like us, who will suffer if this misguided act passes. After all, if only the big made-in-China toy companies can afford to comply with the CPSIA, those are the only toys that will be available for your kids to play...

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Summer means lollipops and monsters

As the air grows warmer, a slow smile spreads over my face. I’m not thinking about beach vacations or barbecues though. No, the thought balloon over my head says, Soon my kids will wear sandals, and I won’t have to hunt and wash and match all these godforsakenly irritating itty bitty socks. The new spring 2010 collection at Stride Rite will make those sun-starved piggies look and feel fabulous. I can’t say enough wonderful things about the newest kids’ shoes by Robeez (yes, they’re owned by Stride Rite now), especially the Lollipop Monsters that had a gaggle of teen...

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Fishy fishy on the wall

So, aside from the cluster of dirt smears from his heels, my kid’s bedroom wall is a little lackluster. And why, by the way, does he feel the need to kick his dirty little feet against the wall every night while he sleeps, anyway? I’m loving the look of the neat paintable wall décor from the Bay Area mom-and-pop team at Wallter. These stick-on pieces aren’t decals; they’re tactile, geometric, pre-primed wood, and they’re ready to be painted in whatever color-scheme your little heart (or your little kid) desires. And they adhere easily with a peel-on backing and stay...

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Get a green nursery no matter what color you paint it

Back when my son was born, saying that you wanted a green crib meant you were literally looking for a crib that was painted green. I’m really thrilled now that more and more companies are offering eco-friendly options that are stylish too, like the new IoLine crib from Kalon Studios. The IoLine crib is made with all-natural, non-toxic bamboo with sort of a mod-meets-mission vibe. Open, geometric patterns on all sides give you a great view of your baby, and him a great view of the world around him. The collection also includes a changing trunk with great storage,...

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Oh Sweden, stop making me want to go there.

I spent my entire morning browsing the modern Swedish design shop for kids, barnvanligt, and not even the beautiful spring day was been able to tear me away. While the organic cotton robot pillows (below) sucked me in, I think what I need most in the world right now are the ABC paper cups Genius! They’re like beverage holder, party decor, and preschool-appropriate entertainment all at once. Each box evidently comes with 30 vibrant cups made of recycled paper, including all the letters and two hearts–although that math doesn’t quite add up. Who knows, maybe there were two more...

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D is for Duuuuuude

There’s some sort of unspoken rule that a baby can’t be born until someone has purchased the little dude or dudette an ABC book. But let’s say you know some hipster, emo, goth, inked, or punk parents. Calming pastels and fuzzy bunnies are going to totally clash with that Clash onesie and those tiny checkerboard Vans. Allow me to introduce the Alternative ABCs by Dave Parmley, Eric Ruffing, and graphics by 13th Floor Designs. This totally sick board book is ready made for rock star parents and their cool little future guitarists and skateboarders. B for Bear? No way....

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Princess Katie & Racer Steve could’ve named their new CD, Super-Gigantic-Amazingly Cool

There are days when I feel like a constant killjoy to my kids, but just as our day is flushing down the proverbial toilet, I try to remember one thing that can usually turn things around: Fun music that knocks our socks off. Our latest mood-changer is the ever-peppy, totally entertaining offering from Princess Katie & Racer Steve, Tiny Cool. We at CMP have been fans of Princess Katie & Racer Steve’s first CD and then the second CD, and Tiny Cool gives us more to love from this ready-for-their-own-cartoon, husband-and-wife pair Steve Borne and Katie O’Sullian. Part dance party, part...

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Do you have a quotable kid? (Of course you do!)

Certainly you have a whole list somewhere of all the funny things your kid has said. My youngest daughter named her stuffed horse Puke Bok, and the oldest has been known to say things like I’m not licking the gingerbread house..I’m just kissing it. If your own kid’s sayings are funny even to people who aren’t reading your blog or your baby book, consider sending it to Kico Kids for their second annual Quotable Kids t-shirt contest. One of our favorite boutique children’s brands, they’re compiling their favorites and putting each one on a limited-edition tee by Japanese illustrator...

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When you care enough to send the very most completely awesome

Imagine a land where the world’s hippest Indie designers line up at your door to throw sketches at you for… whatever. Your daughter’s birthday party, your best friend’s shower, your “I Finally Lost the Baby Weight” champagne brunch. Okay, now imagine you don’t have to stand there in your pajamas and awkwardly offer them coffee as you sort through the portfolios. You just browse a website. This land is called pingg. For those of you already familiar with the free e-cards of pingg, you might agree that it’s the super cool lovechild of Hallmark and Etsy– with a dash...

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