Month: September 2011

4 ways to make your grandparents happy on Grandparents Day

The cool thing about Grandparents Day is that if you have grandparents like my kids do, it doesn’t take a whole lot to make their day. So on the outside chance you were a little busy this week with back-to-school and Labor Day and hurricanes and things–and didn’t even realize it was Grandparents Day–we’ve got three quick, easy ideas to help you let Grandma and Grandpa know you love them. 1.Interview Them Make up your own questions in a blank journal, or use a book like Between You and Me Grandma/Grandpa from Sand Dune Publishing which offers the prompts...

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Celebrating our National Day of Service with kids

Today is a tough day for a lot of us, especially those of us in the New York and DC areas who lived through the horror of 9/11 ten years ago. But we do love how it’s been turned into something positive as a National Day of Service. We thought it was a good time to point you towards some helpful past posts that we’ve published: Quick, Easy Ways to Volunteer With the Kids While They’re Still Young 9/11, a Day to Remember Through Service 9/11, A Very Good Day for Doing Good National Family Volunteer Day They’ve got...

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Thank-you cards that your kids will love to write

My mom was amazing with personal notes–she always produced the loveliest card, written just-so, perfectly on-time, for every occasion.  Her mastery of the art form skipped a generation. But the good news is that means my kids have a fair shot at note-writing expertise–and these adorable new educational cards can only help. Letter Learning is a line of educational greeting cards for kids, invented by teacher and mama Ellen Richard. There’s a card for every occasion–from birthdays to party invites to “just because,” with cute illustrations and pre-made words that kids trace out so that they’re “writing” while learning to write...

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If you’re going to wear a ponytail, might as well rock it

Prior to chopping all my hair off a few months ago, I was the queen of the ponytail. I used to feel bad about pulling my hair back on a daily basis, mostly because I could never quite master making my ponytails look like anything more than an afterthought rather than a style. Too bad I didn’t discover these beautiful hair accessories sooner. The mother-daughter team behind Eden’s Wake hand creates each of these beautiful flower hair clips from chiffon, with details like lace and black beads. I think it would look just fabulous clipped just slightly angled above...

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Cute cloth diapers for under $10. No, really.

I love cloth diapers— they’re cute, they’re eco-conscious, and they prevent a traumatic gelsplosion from an accidental disposable in the washing machine. But with most of the pocket diapers I favor clocking in at $19.95 each (or more!), it was always hard to build a solid stash. So here’s the cool thing: We found a collection of All-In-One pocket diapers that can take your baby from newborn to potty training, and they start at just $9.95 each. The company is GoGreen, a WAHM-run enterprise out of Boulder, CO. I found the collection of cloth diapers to have excellent quality and...

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Can you tell me how to get, how to get this really cool sign?

My kids love Sesame Street. Hey, I love Sesame Street. So we have a lot of Sesame Street decorations around our house–if by decorations we mean random books on the floor and half-dressed Muppet dolls. But we all really love the looks of this totally personalized Sesame Street inspired sign. Michelle Knox runs a shop selling custom invitations on Etsy but it turns out she’s also pretty rad when it comes to kid decor. She and her husband whipped up a personalized Sesame Street sign out of pine for their daughter’s themed party and it stole the show. So now you...

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Little Rue is made for kids and their grownups

I don’t know about you, but I’m totally addicted to all the flash sale sites out there. These days you can snap up everything from design-y coffee tables to contemporary art at awesome prices. Now, one of my favorites, Rue La La, has launched a a sister (or should I say daughter) site for stylish and adventurous families, with a charity angle we love. Little Rue is the newest launch from one of the original flash sale leaders. I love browsing Rue La La for deals on fancy jewels, weekends at the Canyon Ranch spa in Arizona and Orrefors...

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Web Coolness – Important causes, dolled-up ponies, and our very own Cool Mom Picks Readeez

Here are some things we’ve liked reading around the web this week. We hope you will too. We’re cracking up over these pop-icon inspired sculptures by Mari Kasurinen that use My Little Pony as the muse. Cool Mom Picks has its very own Readeez! Many thanks to Michael Rachap for creating this for us. Chicago bans crib bumpers making it the first city to do so. Who’s next? This smile-inducing video from Operation Smile’s medical mission to Brazil is our feel-good pick of the week. For this weekend and beyond, an important post about teaching our children about 9/11....

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Making mail magical again. Real mail. Remember that?

No more pretending the Anthropologie catalog is a special delivery–kids deserve their own mailbox surprises. So I’m happy to have found a fun new service that combines original art and stories with good, old-fashioned stamps. Abe’s Peanut is an original venture by two sisters who loved sending postcards as kids. Bringing together professional artists and storytellers, they create a different story each month told through four postcards. It’s not cheap, but it is a super birthday gift, considering your child will receive a hand-addressed, gorgeously designed postcard about once a week.  And there are no batteries, no disks, no...

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Swankifying the booster seat with Clek

One of the biggest complaints we hear about kids car seats and boosters is how ugly they are. Yes, I know safety is the biggest priority, but once we check that off the list, I would prefer not to have a ginormous thing squarely in my rear view that’s covered in neon zoo animals. Well yay for Clek which is upping the style quotient in the booster department with a limited edition offering that sure is swanky. The Oobr Booster, reviewed here last year, is practical as it is safe, made with an amazing range of safety features, a...

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One little two little three ballerinas

As a homeschool mom, I’ve got plenty of creative ways to teach numbers and counting to my littler ones. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t more creative options out there, like this one from artist and mom CarrieSue Gustafson who I recently discovered on Etsy. I’m completely smitten with her clothespin number dolls, which she handpaints as adorable ballerinas complete with leotards, tights, and teeny pointe shoes. They’d be such a sweet addition to your daily math lessons, or just for good old pretend play, which might be just as important for the little ones. Maybe even more. -Kristen...

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Muslin swaddlers get as pretty as they are practical

If there’s one baby product that’s made a name for itself in the last few years, it’s the cotton muslin swaddling blanket. Yes, we’ve been tracking down the best ones for quite a few years now, but they’ve never been as beautiful and adorable as they are now. The gorgeous new muslin swaddlers from Little Giraffe are so pretty, they’re kind of making me want another baby to swaddle. (Let’s keep that under wraps, though. Pun intended.) They’re the same big swaddling blanket size we’re used to, but I’m really in love with some of the prints. Particularly the...

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How to turn IKEA into MyKEA

I’ve got a love/hate relationship with IKEA. I love it, because it’s reliable, dependable, and honest. I know what I’m getting, and there are no surprises. I hate it at times, for all of the same reasons. IKEA furniture can be dreadfully boring. Sometimes a room calls for more punk than practical. What to do? Thankfully, MyKea offers a solution that rocks awesome. It’s like Threadless meets Ikeahackers. Pick an artist’s motif, and then choose the piece of furniture to cover. The result is an artistic, colorful set of decal stickers that are professionally produced and made to fit....

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Yay Zara! One of our favorite offline stores goes online.

Recently, I wrote about Zara and what a fantastic option it is for affordable, European-styled kids clothes, and how amazing their sales can be. The one downside: no online shopping. So 2002! Well now Zara has gotten their e-commerce capabilities as 2011 as their styles, and mamas, if I have one word of advice about that, it would be rejoice. Starting today you can shop their collection of kids’ clothing and baby clothing right from your ‘puter, just in time to fill out the rest of those back-to-school needs. I am in love with so much of it I...

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5 alternatives to peanut butter for a peanut-free classroom

I really do consider myself lucky that my kids don’t have a peanut allergy. And I consider myself more lucky that so far, kids in their classes haven’t had any that would require banning it from the classroom. Still, I know we won’t always be so lucky. And with more and more schools and after-school programs banning PB, I’ve put together a few options for you parents who might be trying to balance a peanut-loving kid with a peanut-free classroom this year. Justin’s Nut Butters I am such a huge fan of these organic nut butters (above), with flavors...

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Gorgeous baby clothes that are neither baby pink or baby blue

I never understood why 90% of baby clothes are either pastel pink or little boy blue. Don’t babies have the right to exercise their fashion sense as much as the rest of us? [don’t miss a fabulous giveaway after the jump!] We fell in love with ridiculously soft baby clothes from Paige Lauren Baby a while ago and we knew she had an eye for color when she came out with her new candy-colored summer collection. But her new fall threads prove that she’s onto something new in the baby clothing department. The new autumn/winter collection of baby clothes...

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I vant to suck your homework

If you haven’t yet settled on a new backpack for your older kid yet, I think she’ll probably love this one– at least if she’s a fan of Twilight, or vampires, or True Blood. Which she is. As required by law. The Vampire Orthodontics backpack at Threadless totally cracks me up. Designed by artist Ilia Ovechkin and handcrafted thousands of miles from Transylvania (that’s, the USA) it features a set of vampire fangs covered in braces. Who knows, maybe Edward Cullen wore braces at some point 90 or so years ago to get those choppers looking so perfect. I...

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A loafer to love

Say goodbye to white pants and linen, mamas. Just fold it it up, put it in up on the high shelf of the closet and slowly back away. I know you can do it. But on the bright side, get ready to welcome all the really wonderful fashion choices coming your way for fall, like bright colors, menswear for women, and the resurgence of penny loafers. Hey! Here’s a shoe that happens to combine all three. I remember when I was a wee lass, the other kids putting actual pennies in their loafers for good luck. (One rebel in...

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Look what these kindie bands did this summer, Part Two

Did I mention that there were a lot kids’ music releases this summer? If you saw Part One in our review of great kindie releases yesterday, you’ve read—and hopefully heard–of new stuff from Caspar Babypants, Belle & Sebastian and The Hipwaders. Now, even more great releases of this summer that you’ll want to add to your collection of kids’ music. –Christina Indie-pop music loving parents with fond memories of jumping around a dark sweaty club while a band rocks out on stage will have a blast pogo-ing around the playroom to egg’s Hard-boiled. Lots of guitar and drums, LA’s...

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Make lunch less of a chore with the world’s cutest personalized lunchboxes

School’s back in session, and I’m back into my daily routine of packing lunches for my sons. I’ve been trying to think of ways to make this less of a chore, and I’m pretty sure I’ve found the answer. {don’t miss an exclusive discount after the jump!] Each of these uber-cute retro preppy personalized lunchboxes from Pencil Shavings Paper is made of lead-free tin and covered in a printed, laminated high-tack adhesive. You can choose from gingham (my fave), chevrons, polka dots or stripes, and each box can be personalized with your child’s name or just an initial. But...

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