Month: December 2011

Our favorite charities for that very last end-of-year tax deduction

As we come to the end of 2011, we all feel like we have much to be thankful for — good friends and family, incredible colleagues (sniff, we love you CMP’ers!) and amazing readers like you who have supported us for another fantastic year. As in years past, we’ve asked some of our contributors to share with you their favorite charities and the range is pretty amazing. Perhaps one or more of these will resonate with you, or just remind you to give to your own favorite charity, and squeak in one last generous act (and tax deduction) before...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest boys clothes and accessories

We found so many cool boys’ clothes this year, it may be the first year we’ve given boys’ clothes their own category! Enjoy some of these awesome editors’ picks, putting to rest the notion that only girls get the good shopping. Red 21 Boys Kristen: If there’s a piece that juxtaposes classic lines with modern style, it’s this rockin’ skull jacket from Red 21 Boys (at top). I’m always impressed with the quality of their clothes, which means years not weeks of washes and wear. Black Kite kids’ shirts Kristen: In the sea of blue and white (or some...

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Getting dressed up for New Year’s Eve without spending a fortune

It’s time to ring in the new year, which is a perfect excuse to get dressed up. Whether you’re waving goodbye to 2011 or running to greet 2012, your party deserves a little pretty. But don’t rush out and buy something you’ll never wear again; with just a few sparkly upgrades, you can turn your existing duds into a party-worthy look. [find affordable New Year’s Eve style tips after the jump] Jewelry is an easy way to dress up even your most basic jean-and-tee look — and for New Year’s you really can bring the bling. Stella & Dot...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest girls’ clothes and accessories

Finding beautiful girls’ clothes may be one of our favorite jobs at Cool Mom Picks. This year there were no shortage of great picks from small indie designers; and even some bigger brands we like got into the action. Tutu Du Monde Liz: The world’s cutest most beautiful, splurgey princess/ballerina/fairy dresses (at top), every one made by hand with exquisite details and not too much frou. Just don’t expect them to be relegated to the dress up box. Handmade Charlotte for Anthropologie Kristen: Maybe it’s because Rachel is a mom of many like me (5 kids!) or lives near...

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Congrats to our Cool Mom Picks 5 Days of Giveaways winners!

One of the most favorite parts of what we do here at Cool Mom Picks is giving away prizes, and a couple of weeks ago, we got to give away five big ones to five lucky Cool Mom Picks subscribers!  A huge congrats to Leslie T., Amy M., Molly B., Farrah S., and Heather R., who will soon be receiving some amazing prizes at their doorstep. Big thanks go out to B. Toys, Quinny, Martha Stewart Living, Scandinavian Child, and Playstation Move for providing us with the amazing giveaways! And thanks to you, our amazing subscribers, who allow our...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest new baby foods, kids snacks, and mealtime helpers

One thing we parents all have in common is the need to feed our kids. Here, our favorite foods, snacks, tableware, cookbooks, all to help make mealtimes a little easier and a little more fun. Green Toys dishes Kristen: I have a huge thing for Green Toys as toys, but wow, their new dishes and tumblers have been a welcome addition to our kitchen. Sturdy, safer than melamine, and eco-friendly too–I’m not quite sure you can get better than that. SIli Squeeze fruit puree dispenser Kristen: For as many squeezy-whatevers we go through a week, I’m soooo thrilled to...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest modern kids furniture

We’re such suckers for modern kids’ furniture, and this year there were some amazing new pieces. Here, our editors favorites of 2011 that we’d gladly furnish our own kids’ rooms with. So-Ro Cradle Liz: Simply one of the most beautiful modern cradles I’ve ever seen (at top). If you’re looking for a splurgetastic baby gift for a parent who cares about the modern baby gear matching the modern adult decor, this is your gift. mod mom toy box Kristen: What’s not to love about a gorgeous, modern toybox that’s designed by a cool momtrepreneur? Even better, if you’re like...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest baby clothes

Boy, baby clothes have come a long way from when your choices were pink onesies, blue onesies, or yellow onesies for “surprise” babies. Here, just a few of our favorite fabulous baby clothes picks of the year. Lucky babies. Fore!! Axel + Hudson Kristen: These awesome golf-inspired boys clothes (at top) are cool, not stuffy, and we love that they come in baby sizes too, right down to the hats. Freshly Picked Leather Mocassins Liz: They’re beautiful, handmade, and wear more beautifully with age. The one complaint: They don’t make them in adult sizes. (Hint, hint.) 77 Kids for American...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest kids’ art and decor

One of the fun things about planning for a baby is planning how to decorate the nursery. Then, planning on how to transition it from a baby room to a kids’ room. Allow us to present some of the coolest art and decor ideas from 2011. Creative Thursday Growth Charts Liz: We adore Marisa’s work which you might recognize from the nursery in Up All Night, or just from her wonderful etsy shop. This growth chart (at top) is a lovely improvement over the pencil marks on the door. Chooch Magooz Custom Artwork Kristen: I can’t say enough amazing things...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest music for kids

Picking our favorite of all the coolest kids’ music of 2011 is a little like picking among our children–so many incredible artists creating so many great albums, that even parents like them too. Here, Christina’s top ten kids’ albums of 2011 based on her voting for the Fids + Kamily awards. (So in fairness, some of these came out late 2010. If you’re a stickler for details.) Little Nut Tree by Dan Zanes (at top) Practically Ridiculous by The Jimmies Mind Of My Own by Frances England FLYING! by Recess Monkey Love Me For Who I Am by Brady...

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3… 2… 1… Subscribe!

We like to think waiting for the Cool Mom Picks newsletter each month is a little like watching the ball drop on New Year’s Eve, minus the champagne and glitter. (Although you can feel free to supply your own.) But our subscribers do get a lot to shout about, like this month’s giveaway. One lucky subscriber will win a $250 gift certificate to Magic Beans, one of our very favorite  mom and pop stores for baby gear and great kids’ toys. All the details on entering will come in your inbox next week. But every subscriber gets something great–like...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest baby gear

If you haven’t realized by now, babies come with stuff. Here, our top 10 of the coolest baby gear that we discovered in 2011. Some of it will be the newest new mama essential, some of it…well, a gal can dream sometimes. Bugaboo Donkey Liz: I have to give it to Bugaboo for creating a remarkable piece of high tech engineering, disguised as a swanky double stroller (at top). The best part, it’s really meant to grow with your family for years and years. Despite the high price tag, there was still a wait list when it came out....

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest books for kids

We all have a certain fondness for our kids’ books category. Finding wonderful books for kids is one of our favorite thing to do for all of you. Here, some of the very best books for kids that we reviewed in 2011. Shel Silverstein: Everything On It Liz: A posthumous book release from Shel Silverstein? Be still my Silverstein-loving heart. My kids love this one (at top) just about as much as Where the Sidewalk Ends, and that’s truly saying something. Buy it for every kid you know. The Man in the Moon by William Joyce Kristen: In an...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest toys for our kids

Enjoy these, our Editor’s top picks of 2011 for toys for babies, tots, and big kids too–all of which we think will keep kids happy for more than a few minutes. That’s pretty rare these days. And not a battery compartment in sight! Little Sapling personalized alphabet blocks Liz: I think this is just about one of the best baby gifts or shower gifts ever (at top)–they’re handmade, personalized, and they’ll actually be played with. After which, you’ve got a lovely heirloom. You can’t say that about tickle-me-anything. Breastmilk Baby Doll Liz + Kristen: We have to give a shout-out...

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Editors Best of 2011: The coolest jewelry and handbags

Each year, we love coming through our past year of archives to bring you some of our editors’ top picks. Today, we’re excited to feature our favorite accessories from the coolest baubles to the handbags we’re coveting. The Cambridge Satchel Liz: I’ve got to give it to any mom who starts her own company so she can better support her own children. But when that company happens to yield the affordable It Bag of the year? Well now I’m standing up and applauding. Loudly. And the colors? Loooove. Adeleshop Leather Clip Satchel Kristen: Lucky for me to have stumbled...

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Merry Christmas, cool moms!

From Liz, Kristen, and our entire Cool Mom Picks team, we wish you a very Merry Christmas! We’ll be back to tomorrow with our Editors’ Picks of the Year. But today, we eat! Merry everything, happy always! {The lovely letterpress card by Vandalia Street...

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Peace on earth takes on a whole new meaning with these bracelets

These beautiful bracelets are the bomb– literally, and figuratively, and I can’t think of a better way to spread peace than with jewelry that truly symbolizes just that. Back in 1973, bombs rained down on Laos, and after the Vietnam war was over, the bombs and their debris were left behind. Artisans began to collect the leftover scrap metal and form it into spoons and jewelry, a practice which spread and inspired Project Peace Bomb. They partner with these artisans to create unique bracelets made from the metal scattered throughout the ravaged landscape of Laos. Even better, when you...

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Christmas gift thank you cards – too early to think about them?

Okay so maybe I’m jumping the gun a little with the Christmas thank you notes, but hey–I know myself. Next week I’ll be carousing with family, New Year’s will hit, I’m back to work, and bam, no more free time. That’s when all the thank yous for all the generous holiday gifts for my family seem less likely to make it out of my hands. So I was poking around one of my favorite sites for custom photo cards, Paper Culture, and I had a great idea: It could be really sweet to make my thank you notes more...

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Still feeling the DIY spirit? Some of our favorite last minute holiday crafts and printables.

Here, just some of the great resources, websites, recipes and roundups we’ve found for the holiday season. You’ve still got a whole day of wrapping left! –The most beautiful printable gift tags –12 festive gift wrap ideas –6 easy holiday treats, no culinary degree required. –10 DIY holiday gifts for those crafty folks among us. –Print at home gifts to save you from overnight shipping charges –6 free printable gift tags [image via eat drink...

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Wolford Stockings – because New Year’s Eve is calling

Forget investing in a new LBD; if you have any hopes of getting out this New Year’s Eve and want to update your look, I’d invest in the accessory of the year: funky, sexy stockings. If you’re not familiar with the Austrian label Wolford, these are about the splurgiest, spendiest, most amazingly constructed stockings on the planet. Let’s just say there are pairs I’ve had for more than 10 years that still look great. So I was pretty happy to see that a lot of them are on sale up to 50% off right now. (One caveat before you...

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