Month: October 2012

Etsy Gift Cards! Whoo! We’re officially thinking holidays now.

In Italian, “Etsi, finalmente!” translates rather perfectly into, “Oh, yes, finally!” Which was pretty much my exact sentiment upon hearing that the famously uber-cool online marketplace Etsy is now offering gift cards, just in time for the holidays. [don’t miss a great limited time offer after the jump!] Rejoice fellow Etsy fans, the site now offers a “Choose Your Own Adventure” Etsy gift card that can be emailed to a friend or printed out the old-fashioned way. I know I have a very soft spot in my heart for Etsy, having purchased a one-of-a-kind painting from an artist in Israel last year...

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Pantone’s spring 2013 colors are announced and we’re not feeling blue about it at all

Pantone just announced their hot spring colors for 2013. While we’re barely into fall, I think those of us who care about such things (me!) have a few more reasons to think about the end of winter. While all the colors range from what they call “dynamic brights” and “novel neutrals,” I find them all really lovely and mostly very wearable. I love Lemon Zest, but personally, I have to limit it to handbags and shoes. Fortunately, the top two colors that are being used by more designers come spring, Monaco Blue and Dusk Blue, are going to give...

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My First Year posters and cards: second babies everywhere, rejoice!

As a mom of three, I had the best intentions of chronicling my children’s milestones–and the worst follow-through. I know I’m not alone here. If you’re expecting Baby #2 or #3 now, you’re in luck. I found a new approach to documenting all those sweet milestones that I think you’re really going to appreciate. If I’d had one of the new and wonderful My First Year Cards or My First Year Posters from Strange Birdy Studios, I think I would have been set. With space to fill in baby’s key milestones over the first year, they’re simple to keep up with and make...

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5 gluten-free, allergy-free Halloween sweets that take the trick out of the treat

Sure, I may be a nerdy health-food mama, but Halloween doesn’t faze me too much. A candy binge one day a year is no biggie–especially with so many all-natural candy options and fun home recipes for yummy, wholesome Halloween treats. Still, candy can be scary for kids with food allergies (and their parents). So check out my favorite source for gluten-free and allergen-free candy, as well as a few of my favorite allergy-friendly picks that any trick-or-treater will love. Stock up and rest easy knowing that all kids in your ‘hood will have equal opps to crack out on sugar this Halloween....

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Handmade dolls for people who like weird handmade dolls. Which includes us.

Striped or polka-dotted, these lovable handmade dolls have us mesmerized. Each adorable polkadottydoll is entirely unique, handcrafted in cotton without a pattern in black and white according to Alberta artist Lynda Black’s imagination. They’re nicely sized, bottom-weighted to sit on a shelf, and…sweetly mesmerizing. I mean, check out those eyes. The listings don’t mention it, but judging by the buttons and threads, these little dudes probably aren’t for ages 3 and under. Still, we know that black and white are colors most interesting to babies, so maybe just put one on the shelf for later? Like, maybe your shelf?...

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Star power: these customized constellation pendant necklaces really shine

I’ve said before that I love Braille jewelry as a more subtle option for mom jewelry than traditional printed text. I’m feeling the same way about these handmade pendants. Do they look just like dots to you? Look again… In fact, these are hand-drilled constellation pendant necklaces, which I think are a cooler way to wear your baby’s birth sign without some cheesy illustration or a typical astrological symbol. Shown here is Scorpio, but there are 11 more to choose from, of course. They’re all made in Brooklyn by artist Julie Nolan, who bases her designs on a Swiss calendar...

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The terrible tale of a trick-or-treater’s worst nightmare: no candy!

Of all the scary things my kids might face on Halloween night, one thing looms most terrifying in their minds: the prospect of trick-or-treating at homes with no candy left to give. (Yes, First World Problems, I know.) Which is why this little Halloween tale is a true horror story to their young minds.  The Trick or Freaks is a clever, independently printed little rhyming story with a mystery built into it: Who has taken all the Halloween candy?  No, it’s not exactly Hitchcock, but hey, it’s just about as dark a story as I dare to read to...

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Welcome to The Studio: a brilliant resource for budding artists, scientists, chefs and their parents

It’s no secret that we’re big fans of Kiwi Crate here at CMP. We love the concept: a subscription service for kids that sends out monthly boxes filled with superfun, educational activities. But now, we can also benefit from the creative minds behind the wonderful Kiwi Crate kits without spending a dime.  The Studio is a brand new online directory that’s packed with more than 500 projects, recipes and activity ideas to keep your family’s creative juices flowing. I’m already obsessing over all the Halloween ideas. My kids would go batty (heh) for the 3D Yarn Spider Web.  But The Studio’s...

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The All for Children Collection by H+M and Unicef means one more for all

We love shops like H+M which offer stylish but still affordable clothing–especially for our kids who we know won’t be wearing that pair of jeans for another six years. But we’re especially excited when we learn that the same shops are committing big time to sustainability and the lives of children in the countries where they operate and own factories. Because let’s be honest, in this economy, parents don’t want to have to to choose between great prices and stores with ethical manufacturing processes. So yay for not having to choose! I am so delighted to learn about the...

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Juice boxes filled with juice, not sugar. Imagine that.

I’m already a big fan of the Honest Tea drink pouches for kids, which are a special treat around my house. But now they’ve made a big adjustment to the ingredients which means these already healthy drinks for kids now have even less sugar than they did before.  Along with the pretty package redesign, there’s a great change on the inside. The folks at Honest Tea Kids ditched the organic cane sugar for juice, which dropped the drink’s already low sugar count even lower. Try 9g per pouch–by far the lowest out there when it comes to juice boxes for...

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5 geeky, spooky, and altogether kooky cookies for Halloween

Get out the flour and sugar. Crack the eggs (better use than egging the grouchy neighbors, trust us). Monster mash everything up. And then select the perfect creepy cookie cutters for a very happy Halloween snack. First we brought you NINJAbread Men. Now we’re digging these GingerDEAD Men! Just cut out the shape with one side and impress the bones with the other. Mmm…crunchy. Future mad scientists might enjoy the four fun shapes in the Labcutters Science Cookie Cutters. Some iced beakers and test tubes would be the perfect accompaniment for chemistry homework. Baking involves tons of science, you know. Don’t...

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The spookiest DIY spiderwebs for Halloween

It’s been nothing but Halloween crafts in our house for the past week, but with still another week to go, I’m stockpiling ideas to keep the kids busy. Next up on my list: these adorable spiderwebs that only require scissors and paper.  You won’t believe how easy these DIY spiderweb kirigami Halloween decorations are to make, and how cute they’ll look hanging on your window or strung together in a fun banner. If you don’t have origami paper, you can cut the paper you have into squares. Then you and your kids can follow the simple instructions and boo! You’ve...

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New! The perfect party decor kits from Minted.com. Now your parties can look like Those Parties without much effort at all.

We’ve loved the beautiful cards and invitations from Minted.com ever since we discovered them on day one, so it makes perfect, brilliant sense that they’d evolve from cards and invitations, and launch a gorgeous new Party Decor line. Hooray! Plus, like all their items, these are also sourced from talented indie designers, many of them moms themselves. Back as one of our favorite sponsors (yay!) we love that we have the opportunity to pick some of our very favorite party themes and designs from the new Minted Party Decor line. They’re perfect for busy parents like us who are...

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Huggalos: the huggable friends helping families heal

No matter how hard we try, there will be times when our kids will be scared or sad and we won’t be right there with hugs. From overnight trips to hospital stays, we found a great, snuggly friend to help keep a kid’s heart warm when they need it most. And as a bonus, 20% of proceeds will go toward breast cancer research during the month of October! The Huggalos were invented by mom Donna Broder to help her son transition to preschool, but the idea has blossomed into a wonderful way to help kids with family members overseas,...

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5 tech picks you won’t want to miss this week

From everyone’s favorite droid to the only phone compatible with LEGOs, here are a few of our favorite picks from the last week, just in case you missed them. 1. Would you give your preschooler a cell phone? We never thought we’d say yes until we saw this. 2. It was tough, but we tracked down the four best Halloween apps for kids. All treats, no tricks! 3. Star Wars geeks, you don’t have to bargain with Jawas to get your hands on the cutest droid this Halloween. 4. Turn your Instagram and smart phone photos into holiday gifts...

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Block party: printables that let you create your own mix-and-match stackables

It’s nothing new to us mamas that kids love blocks. But it’s double the awesome when kids get to build their own. And that’s where Olliblocks come in. These adorable children’s blocks are assembled by you and your child. All you need to do is download the PDF, print, adhere the paper to 1.5″ or 2″ wooden blocks, and start mixing and matching. They come in three sets of characters: animals, girls and boys. Get your little one’s favorite for $5 each, or download all three for $12.                                                                                                      ...

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9 of the coolest, easiest no-carve DIY pumpkin decorating ideas that your kids can actually do

It took a while for me to get the appeal of no-carve pumpkin ideas. However every year, we grab some pumpkins in anticipation of carving them into fabulously silly or scary faces–then reality hits, and I remember that carving pumpkins involves my children wielding sharp, pointy things. And a guarantee that we will all be covered in pumpkin gunk in about ten minutes. And studded with sticky, slimy seeds. Now I get it. A lot of the no-carve pumpkin ideas that I’ve seen on the web are uh…advanced, to say the least. So here, I’ve rounded up a bunch...

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Personalized animal art prints for every kid, from Althea to Zephaniah

Can’t find an “K is for Kunegunda” art print for your little one’s nursery? We’ve got just the thing. You can even add a special message for baby Kunegunda, if you’d like. Kustomizing is kool, you know. The Wee Alphas Personalized Prints from Wee Society are one of the most customizable options we’ve seen for high-quality baby name artwork. Each letter of the alphabet is represented by a different adorable animal whose shape is a sly nod to the letter. But everything else on the print? Well, that’s up to you. (Yeah, I thought you’d like that.) You choose...

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Method soap: cleaning your hands, your dishes, and now, your oceans

Every square mile of our oceans has an average of 46,000 pieces of plastic swirling around there. It’s killing nearly one million sea birds a year that swallow it, and another 100,000 turtles, dolphins, whales and sharks. I don’t know how to say it any other way, but that’s disgusting. So I’m so delighted to see that none other than Method is doing something good about it. For more than a year, Method has worked with volunteers from Hawaiian environmental groups to scour local beaches and collect (by hand, no less) more than a ton of plastic. With help...

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Crazy legs: the funnest kids’ socks, tights and leggings for fall and winter

My girls have fallen in love with funky socks. I figure it was bound to happen. And truth be told, I think it’s better than falling in love with those flower headbands that are bigger than their heads. Lucky for them, funky socks and tights are all the rage right now. And since I can justify spending a little more on socks–at least now that I know we get about three years and two kids out of them–here are a few that I know they’d go crazy for. Luna Leggings I love this company that we discovered earlier this...

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