Month: January 2012

Old-fashioned modern dolls

I grew up playing with muñecas de trapo (rag dolls) so when I saw the new modern doll line by Cool Mom Pick favorite Petit Collage I was instantly smitten. They’re just like the dolls I grew up with — except that, well, they’re not exactly made of rags.  Far from it, actually. The fabrics designed by Petit Collage are so pretty and whimsical that you almost forget these dolls are toys meant for children. But they are! And how beautiful would they look on a shelf until your baby is old enough to take good care of them. There are three...

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Beastly and silly coloring fun? Yes, please.

Open ended coloring books are simply divine. They give children (and adults–I admit, I love to color!) just enough of a prompt to get things going. The finished pages from your kids are pure magic. In the case of My Beastly Book of Silly Things: 150 ways to doodle, scribble, color and draw, the pages keep getting more and more awesome.  Draw owners that look like their dogs, a boy and his boogers, and more, more, more. This is not your ordinary coloring book.  Author/illustrator Vincent Boudgourd has such a unique style that is equal parts imagination and whimsy....

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A sweet new line for tots and tweens–hold the bling

When I go shopping for my nieces, I often find myself wishing I could just shrink my own wardrobe for them. There are so many brands out there that feel it’s necessary to splash sequins all over their duds or plaster them with silly little sayings. Thankfully, there’s a new girls-only brand designing adorable clothes that have neither bling nor catch phrases. The label Millions of Colors is an all-girls collection of super-cute separates for mini-sophisticates ages 2-12. Frankly, there’s nothing I don’t want from this label–for myself. The winter collection is full of pretty cardigans, chic tweed coats...

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The best baby carrier for a new parent (who’s new to baby carriers)

One of the most frequent questions I’m asked by pregnant friends is what is the best baby carrier to get. Okay, so not everyone is going to want a hundred million carriers (as I have apparently needed over the years, ahem), but it’s still tricky for me to pick just one. My favorite answer for mamas looking to carry newborns, though, is a stretchy, comfy wrap that’s easy to use, like the Baby K’Tan carrier. Especially now that they’ve got a great new carrier available. Designed to have all the flexibility and comfort of a typical stretchy wrap, it’s...

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Pearls & Popcorn – Parisian kiddie style now available stateside

I often get stuck in a rut when it comes to buying clothes for my kids. I automatically order their jeans and sweaters from big name chains and then am continually disappointed about the fit or the fact that a hole appears after only a couple times on the playground. With the U.S. launch of a beloved French kids’ label, I’m now vowing to branch out and buy some basics from somewhere besides the mall. The French children’s wear brand Pearls & Popcorn launched in the states at Bloomingdale’s in the fall and is now available online through their...

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A Dolphin Tale

“I got water in my eyes!” my son wailed.  But he wasn’t crying. Actually, he looked like he was trying to cry and couldn’t. “Doesn’t hurt, does it?” I said smugly.  And he shook his head no. A perfect chance to pitch a fit, lost to products that actually live up to their tear-free claim. Oh, and did I mention they’re also hypoallergenic, all natural, and organic? I’ve got to admit– Dolphin Organics impressed the heck out of me. The number one reason? Transparency. Each bottle is dominated by a large, clear label showing every single ingredient and its...

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A convertible stroller blankie that changes with the seasons

After a very generous stretch of unseasonably mild weather in New York, the freezing cold is here (sigh). Rather than pretend I live in LA, I have to take winter seriously this year since I have a new-ish baby to keep warm. Thankfully I found a new stroller blanket from 7 A.M. Enfant that feels like the coziest puffer coat and can still be used when it finally does get warmer again. [don’t miss a great giveaway after the jump!] Since strollers are the main mode of transport for us city moms, I make sure whatever is attached to...

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From the gulf stream waters to the redwood forest

My kids have always been fascinated by maps and globes, which I think is great. One of my greatest dreams is to raise children who love travel. So we love looking for postcards, artwork, and books that commemorate some of the places we’ve been. But I haven’t seen anything like this incredible papercut art. Layered papercut art from Crafterall would be cool if you don’t even realize they’re topographical maps and not abstractions. There’s everything from New Hampshire’s Lake Winnipesaukee where I spent my summer camp years, to the great island of Manhattan to a gorgeous blue and white...

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The non-petroleum jelly that stole my heart (and lips)

Is petroleum jelly safe? Well, let’s say since having children, we’ve switched to kinder, gentler beauty products. No sulfates, no parabens, no horrible-things-that-might-cause-cancer-or-dye-the-children-pink. The one product I couldn’t let go of was petroleum jelly. But I’ve finally found a way to kick the habit, thanks to Live Clean Baby. I grew up with petroleum jelly. On my nose during the winter, on my lips at night, on my burns and scrapes. My mom always had a big tub in the bathroom for any job that couldn’t be accomplished by lotion and Chapstick. And then one day we learned we...

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LegalZeal – Great help for small business owners.

We know a ton of our readers are small business owners, just like we are. And we know first hand how confusing all the legalese can be when you’re getting established. I’ve badgered accountant friends for info and lawyer friends have helped me distinguish an LLC from an INC from a DBA. Or at least enough to know which one to use. There’s that one big online site out there for legal help, but we’ve found out that “help” may come with a lot of (big) hidden costs. So I’m glad to see a new site made especially for...

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Cool Mom Picks in Martha Stewart Living!

Well of course you all know we already love Martha Stewart Living, but we now have an extra- special thing for the February issue, since you’ll find Cool Mom Picks in it. What a huge, huge thrill for us! Check page 30 for our tips from us on putting together a theater in the box to keep the kids entertained on foul weather weekends. We’ve included a lot of Etsy favorites, plus some who might be new to you and they’ve photographed it and art directed it all so beautifully. Of course.     It’s a fabulous issue, so we’d...

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I need your scarf to keep me warm

I am not liking this cold snap in the northeast. Not one bit. So it’s not surprising that I’ve got scarves on the brain. The handmade merino scarves from Etsy’s ScarfGuy (love that) are so classic. Handthreaded, handwoven, and hem stitched by Ohio’s Fred Ullom, the styles are more classic than trendy with plaids and simple color combos from more subtle to bold. I’m hankering for the white/violet/elderberry shown here for a pop of color from my charcoal coat, that might keep the cold out as much as the merino wool. Or so I can hope. –Liz Find handmade...

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A nursery that smells like…well, not the diaper pail.

My 8-month-old son’s nursery really stinks. He’s very prolific in the poop department, which means a Diaper Dekkor full of smelly diapers. Thankfully, I discovered a new spray that literally spritzes the stink away without icky chemicals. The spray is aptly called Kiddo Stink Away Spray and it’s from the toxin-free, aromatherapeutic skincare line Hellomellow which we fell in love with a couple years back. I’ve been spritzing it after every diaper change and it really works. My son’s room now smells like a delicious mix of essential oils rather than a public restroom. Nice way to start the...

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New Year’s Resolution Help: Healthier snacks for the whole family

If you’re anything like me, your diet consists of the meal you’ve made for yourself and then all the leftovers you nibble off your kids’ plates while you clean up the dishes. So if your New Year’s resolution is to eat healthier and be a little more mindful of the things that end up in your mouth, chances are starting with your kids’ plates is a good to place to begin. And don’t we all want to see changes not only for ourselves but for our whole family?   Since a handful of almonds and a square of cheddar cheese...

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Charity begins in your t-shirt drawer

We love finding ways to make our purchasing dollars do good in the world. Now we have another one to add to the list, along with Tiny Revolutionary,  Jedidiah, and do-gooder deal site Pure Citizen. Welcome, Sevenly! Each week, Sevenly sells one gorgeously hip and huggably soft t-shirt. And for each shirt sold, $7 goes directly to that week’s charity. That’s one design, seven days, seven dollars. Super easy, and super effective.  They’ve already donated more than $171,000 to charities like Drop in the Bucket, War Child, Water.org, and CURE Childhood Cancer. And the shirts are fair-trade, American-made, cozy-soft...

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Cleaning dirty pacifiers on the go with Dapple SurfaceWipes

My 8 month-old is going through the slobber-filled teething stage. That means a lot of wiping his drooly chin and giving him plenty of teething toys to alleviate some of the pain. One thing that I find incredibly frustrating is when he drops those teethers on the dirty sidewalk or restaurant floor and wondering how to clean them. Yes, I know that the more kids you have, the more you’re probably comfortable just wiping it off on your jeans. But for those of you clean freaks (like me), allow me to present the food grade wipes from Dapple. All of the cleaning products from Dapple use...

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New Year’s Resolution Help – More family time

One of the biggest resolutions we’re seeing this year is a commitment to spend more quality time with family. The reality is that even for a homeschooling mom like me, our lives are so busy and interests so varied, we have just as much difficulty wrangling everyone into the same room for some downtime as any other family. So in an effort to bring more cohesiveness and fun to our family unit (without a lot of groans and eye-rolling), I’ve pulled together five ideas to get us all together in the new year. –Christina {photo} Food for thought Since...

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Sir scratch-a-lot

When my first daughter was born, I had absolutely no idea that babies scratched themselves (oops!), so I found myself putting socks on her hands to protect her face. Brilliant for about two minutes until they’d fall right off. Too bad they didn’t have these adorable baby mittens back then. I’m grabbing a pair of guavamitts for all my pregnant friends because they’re the handiest little invention I’ve seen in a long time. The cool, modern prints (on both sides!) combined with the bamboo and organic cotton fabric make them super soft and comfy for newborns, plus the velcro...

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Web Coolness – Resolutions to keep, an unusual alphabet, and L.A. family fun

Here are some things we’ve liked reading around the web this week. We hope you will too. We love this clever alphabet video that is cool enough for us grown ups to enjoy too. Love this post: Make New Year’s Resolutions you’ll want to keep. Overindulged this holiday? Kristen lists smart ways to meal plan your way to weight loss. We’ve got 4 great ways to get more organized using tech on our sister site, Cool Mom Tech. Leftover candy canes become sweet treats in this tutorial from The Artful Parent. (Quick, before they get stale!) Kids plus stickers –...

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New Year’s Resolution Help: Drink less with these great mocktail recipes

We’re continuing our series on help for the biggest New Year’s Resolutions with one that we’re seeing a lot of from our readers this year: Cutting back on the booze. Whether you’re trimming the budget, slimming down, or maybe even popping out (!) with a bun in the oven, I’ve put together a few thirst-quenching mocktails that are heavy on flavor and light on liquor. I have a feeling with this great list of drinks, you’ll hardly remember what you’re missing.-Molly Rosemary Citrus Spritzer I have a serious weakness for those little Christmas tree-shaped rosemary bushes that show up...

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