Month: November 2013

6 delicious Thanksgivukkah recipes for a once in a lifetime meal

This year marks the first Thanksgivukkah–when the first day of Hanukkah falls on Thanksgiving day–since 1888. That pretty much requires amazing Thanksgivukkah hybrid dishes, considering the next one isn’t going to happen for another 78,000 years or so. Traditional Hanukkah foods like donuts, fried potato pancakes, apples, and sweet potatoes pair perfectly with classic Thanksgiving ingredients (like uh, apples and sweet potatoes), which means that Thanksgivukkah has opened the doors to the ultimate holiday food mash up. Donuts meet cranberry sauce. Latkes and turkey. Challah for stuffing. Yes, yes, yes! Check out these six ultimate Thanksgivukkah recipes for a...

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9 of the most wonderful Advent calendars to get you ready for the Christmas countdown with a smile

Even procrastinators like me should start thinking about our annual Advent calendar since, with Thanksgiving falling on the 28th, we’ll still be eating turkey when December begins. Fortunately, there are loads of cool-looking Advent calendars you can order, print, or DIY now. December 1st will be here before you know it. –Christina 1. Colorful modern papers from libelu become a modern advent calendar made of cool-looking triangular packages in which to hide little treats for the kids. ($40.07, ships from Germany) 2. Such adorable laser-cut cherry wood ornaments decorate cotton drawstring bags on Peppersprout’s Woodland Ornament Advent Calendar. A definite splurge, but...

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Holiday card guide: 6 beautiful, foil-pressed options for every style

Don’t miss a big exclusive discount below! For as much time as we spend capturing the perfect holiday photo, you can bet we’re pretty picky when it comes to our holiday cards. That’s why we love our sponsor Minted (since long before they were a sponsor, that’s how cool they are) and how easy they make choosing the perfect card that’s sure to wow the lucky recipient. This year, they’ve launched an exclusive line of foil pressed cards (like the one above by Lehan Vinker) that add a beautiful touch of festive shine to their already gorgeous offerings, all customizable with your...

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Babies’ and kids’ toys and gifts on major sale just in time for holiday

Don’t miss a big discount and a special offer just for our readers We’re always sad when one of our favorite indie shops close, but it’s nice to wish the owners well as they are off on other pursuits. It’s also nice when we get to pass on big savings to all of you, as they clear out their baby and kids’ gifts. Cattiwampus has been a top pick of ours for years now, and now you have a great chance to scoop up some cool deals–as in, 30% off, plus an extra $10 off if you spend more than...

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The Thanksgiving Leftovers Kit and Free Printables: Just add turkey

I had a friend who always said “it’s not a dinner party unless there are leftovers” and Thanksgiving is probably the most perfect example of this. So I think this is the most genius idea to get your leftovers home. Unless you want six pounds of stuffing in your fridge? At TomKat Studio, makers of tons of cute printables (like these personalized party printables), they’ve just come out with a limited time 67-piece Thanksgiving Leftovers Take-Home Kit. For just $29.99, you get eight each of Chinese style take-out boxes, pint containers, mini containers, and even jute twine to wrap it...

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Dried flower arrangements for people who don’t even like dried flower arrangements

I am a real, live, blooming flower kind of girl. I don’t mind the short-lived nature of them, just to have something fragrant and alive around the house if only temporarily. But when the weather gets cold and the imported tulips in our local bodega get more and more gangly and small, I can see the value in a gorgeous dried flower arrangement and I think I’ve found the nicest ones. Flores de Sol on Etsy chooses modern, tasteful dried flower designs that don’t pretend to be live ones. A thistle mound, an assortment of dried hydrangea with berries and poppy...

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Glow on: 3 natural skincare oils worth the splurge

Motherhood has definitely taken a toll on my skin–especially the chronic lack of sleep. Remember that gorgeous glow of youth? Sigh. Me too. Which is why I am such a huge fan of skincare oils. Ready to glow? Skincare oils hydrate and protect the skin amazingly well, without leaving it looking like you’ve just run a half-marathon. Oils also work great in conjunction with your anti-aging cream, as they help your skin absorb all of the cream’s beneficial ingredients. Now, the best skin oils contain pure essential oils with no fillers, which means the good ones don’t come cheap. But...

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Make-ahead Thanksgiving recipes for a delectably easy menu.

If you’re as busy as I am — and I’ll bet good money that you are — you’re starting to feel the crush of the holiday season. Take a deep breath: everything will get done, and with a little planning you can have some fun, too. Even while cooking. The trick? Relying on make-ahead Thanksgiving recipes. Whether you’re bringing one dish to Aunt Wanda’s house or are responsible for the whole shebang, these classic Thanksgiving day recipes will pace your holiday cooking so that you can breathe easy and enjoy the ride. A Thanksgiving-must, stuffing is one of the...

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Kid style: How to wear tutus out in the real world

Don’t miss an exclusive discount for our readers! I once feebly resisted my children’s love for tutus, until I realized that they could be way more than the beginnings of a fairy princess outfit. Tutus are now on trend as outerwear, as in publicly appropriate skirts. So we wanted to help you out with a few ways to wear tutus in a cool, stylish way, on behalf of our awesome new sponsor eden & zoe, whose gorgeous kids clothes we’ve been drooling over for ages now. Including, yes, their tutus. Think of the multi-layered, lined Alessandra tutu in black, white, or...

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15 of the best Hanukkah gifts for kids in every price range

This year, zomg THANKSGIVUKKAH. I can’t believe I have to get ready for Thanksgiving and Hanukkah all at once, and I’m sure I’m not alone. So we’re kicking off the season with our mini guide of some of the best Hanukkah gifts for kids. While of course all the toys and games and gifts we feature on Cool Mom Picks make perfect Hanukkah gifts for any kid, these 15 are the special ones we’ve tracked down just for Hanukkah revelers. And only the cool stuff, promise. Hey, you can giftwrap while the pumpkin pie bakes. –Liz Engraved wooden dreidel ($3.50,...

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Love: Perfect in any language.

Looking around Etsy for more cool Hanukkah gifts, I was so happy to discover an Etsy shop doing the most beautiful work with embroidery hoop art. (And you know how we like the embroidery hoop art.) Whatever you celebrate, there’s probably something here you’ll adore. At Buligaia, artist Adia Berkovich makes hearts that spell love in any language, and they are just so stunningly done. The Hebrew love art is such a sweet Hanukkah gift, plus you can customize it in any colors you’d like. I love how perfectly she cuts the felt to form a heart with the letters, then hand-appliques...

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A fun new alphabet book that will give your kids a feel for the ABCs

Learning the alphabet is one of those huge milestones in your child’s life, so much so that you should be ready to brag she second they’ve sung the song right for the first time–and probably the millionth. If you’re looking for some variation from basic board books and TV shows in your teaching the ABCs routine, you’ll want to check out this very cool new book. There are some great alphabet books out there–check out the awesome photographs from ABC NYC for some big-city letter play–but what makes Alphablock by Christopher Franceschelli stand out from the crowd is that each letter is die-cut,...

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A socially conscious marketplace curated by TOMS. In fact, it’s called TOMS Marketplace.

Mamas, get ready to handle all your holiday shopping in one place. Our pals at TOMS have done the hard work for you, curating a delectable marketplace of jewelry, accessories, bags, apparel, home decor, tech, and more. This is the good stuff too. And with their usual flair for warm fuzzies, they let you know with each purchase exactly how you’re making the world a better place. The TOMS Marketplace brings together more than 200 products from over 30 companies, each carefully chosen for their contributions to those in need–and their outstanding style. You can shop by gift category, by...

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Don’t wake the sleeping reindeer

Feel free to skip all the snowman Christmas sheets and red and green duvet covers because I have found the best Christmas pillowcase ever. Oh the fun I plan on having with the reindeer antlers pillowcase. Talk about awesome photo opps. (Original holiday card idea, anyone?). They’re screen printed by hand and shipped from the UK, so order now and you’ll have it in time for loads of holiday entertainment. At the expense of your adorable sleeping children. -Kristen You can purchase the reindeer antlers pillowcase at Erinnies on...

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Zazzle: Custom gifts for the holidays that go way beyond mugs and calendars. Way.

Featured Partner If you’re looking for a way to put a personal touch on your Christmas or Hanukkah celebrations this winter, we were surprised to learn that our latest sponsor, Zazzle (yay, Zazzle!), has really upped their game this year. In a big way. There’s a huge new selection of everything related to holiday cards–from stationery to return labels and even custom postage stamps–plus amazing custom gift ideas. We were really surprised ourselves to see what the site has become, and think it will be a great, affordable resource for our readers this year. We discovered they have millions (literally) of...

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You won’t need a second mortgage for this dollhouse

Once you enter the land of American Girl, it’s not easy to come by real estate that can accommodate dolls of her stature. But we’ve found a doll house on the market that is just the right size for her and a couple of friends. And you won’t even need to take out a second mortgage to afford the closing costs. This isn’t your regular little ol’ doll house with itty-bitty rooms. Our Generation’s Wooden Dollhouse is three-and-a-half feet tall and over three feet wide. Think of it as the McMansion of doll houses, minus the four-car garage. I know more...

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Celebrate Veteran’s Day by helping the people of the Philippines with Team Rubicon

With the recent devastation in the Philippines and today being Veteran’s Day, we couldn’t think of a better way to honor those who have so bravely served our country and send help to those who need to most than sharing our friends from Team Rubicon’s latest mission, Operation: Seabird. Just yesterday, they deployed 18 former veterans and first responders to provide relief to the typhoon-swept city of Tacloban, Philippines to provide search and rescue and triaging support. If you’re not familiar with Team Rubicon, they are an amazing non-profit that utilizes the skills and experiences of military veterans to...

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Momma Love: A beautiful book on how the mother half lives

You may remember a few months ago when Princess Kate walked out of the hospital holding sweet baby George in her bespoke blue dotted dress looking absolutely gorgeous, and yet all the world could talk about was the post-baby bump. Perhaps we’re all a little too hard on ourselves, moms. We seem to expect perfection at every turn because that’s what think we see so often in the media, but it’s not real life. Still, the real life of mothers should be celebrated, and that’s what photographer Ali Smith has done in a beautiful new coffee table book specifically...

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Gifts from Ordinary Mommy are something pretty special

Sometimes a gift comes to you, and you can tell before you even open it that it’s going to be really special. From the hand-lettered mailing label to the Swiss-dot mini clothespin and vellum gift bag, you can totally feel the love that went into making even the smallest package from the Etsy shop Ordinary Mommy. Faith Lex, a mom (obviously) from eastern Pennsylvania, designs exquisite felt animals and accessories and sells them at her Ordinary Mommy Etsy shop. These whimsical little guys would make perfect ornaments for your Christmas tree, would be darling tied onto Christmas gifts, or they’d be...

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Calling all germaphobes: booger-free shopping carts, swings, and high chairs

I have a confession to make: I used a grocery cart cover obsessively with my first child. Now that that’s out of the way, I have another confession to make: I never used one with my second kid. And with my third? Not a chance. But the germaphobe in me would have loved to. I just couldn’t stand carrying that big, bulky thing around. But now there’s a very cool option available–and I definitely would have taken this with me everywhere. If only the Cool Wazoo had existed way back when! This intriguing new product isn’t just a shopping cart cover....

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