Month: June 2013

It’s summertime…and subscribing is easy.

We want to make your life easier and breezier. And all you have to do is become a Cool Mom Picks subscriber. In addition to all the cool picks, helpful reviews, and fantastic discounts on our regular site, our subscribers can look forward to extra special offers including a monthly subscriber-only giveaway like this gorgeous Deluxe Americana Basket from Culture Baby worth $300! What a great gift for a summer baby, right? Subscribing is easy and free. Just click here, enter your email address in that handy little box, and look forward to a more summery, sunny...

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

Here are 5 of our favorite picks from this week just in case you missed them.   1. A budget laptop for kids that the whole family can use. Score! 2. One of our favorite kindie rock stars now has an app and we’re in love. 3. Facebook charges for messages? You’ll want to read this. 4. The best kids’ downloads on Kindle FreeTime Unlimited, all free. Not a member yet? You should be. 5. An entirely waterproof phone. Need we say...

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Shine and the Moonbeams’ debut CD: The one our kids have been waiting for for 2 years. Really.

Ever since Shine and the Moonbeams turned an entire room of kindie-music industry folks into speechless putty at Kindiefest 2011, I’ve been anxiously waiting the release of their first full-length CD. When you consider that lead singer Shawana Kemp’s voice is featured on three of my top five kindie songs of 2012, well, that should give you an idea how ridiculously happy I am that the wait is over. And if Shine and the Moonbeams is new to you, keep reading to find out what makes their sound so special. [Win a free copy of this amazing CD: details after the...

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The best (and easiest) Fourth of July party ideas and printables

I love me some red, white, and blue around Independence Day, but I’d rather not break too much of a sweat prepping for our Fourth of July festivities. It’s hot enough as it is! So here’s a few perfectly easy, perfectly patriotic ideas for your July 4th celebration. Then all you have to do is kick back with a cool drink…and leave the fireworks to the pros. –Christina This free printable Patriotic Subway Art (above) would look great leaning on the picnic table, or even just in the entryway of my house. Or follow The 36th Avenue’s links to find out...

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The super pure moisturizer that’s great for kids’ eczema…or fickle grownup skin

I always look for facial moisturizers that are oil-free and chemical-free. So that basically leaves…uh, water. Until now. This amazing, natural, one-ingredient spray not only treats eczema and dry skin for babies, kids, and adults, but it also makes my face totally glow, without any of the cystic acne I usually get from oils. You might say I’m…coconuts for it. Heh. CapriClear has only one ingredient: fractionated coconut oil, also known as caprylic triglyceride. Basically, you get the benefits of coconut oil without the scent and waxiness, leaving a clear, pure, all-natural spray that’s non-staining, odorless, and a great...

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Gorgeous Danish kids’ furniture that we can covet, if not afford.

Great design doesn’t need to end in the living room. It can continue into the kids’ room, much to our surprise. When I designed my kids’ bedroom, my whole goal was to mix great design with childlike moments. These chairs would be perfect for their space. Utzon Kids is a Danish company that makes exclusive, made-to-order modern furniture for kids, but the pieces would look just as great in an adult living space as they would in a child’s bedroom. All pieces are made in Denmark, using only natural materials. You can choose from a variety of colors and...

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Stars, not so many stripes — tasteful hostess gifts made for July 4 weekend.

Should you be lucky enough to score a Fourth of July party invite somewhere in the vicinity of fireworks–or better yet, a whole weekend at a beach house (can you tell I’m dreaming of this?)–we’ve got a host of star-themed hostess gifts that are perfect. A little different. And definitely not cheesy. That smell? That’s a blend of good etiquette and freedom, baby. –Liz Star Tea Towel Set by Anna Joyce Stars and dots are just a little more original and practical than stars and stripes, aren’t they? ($28, BRIKA) Custom Constellation Spoon This may be one the coolest...

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5 of our favorite Pinterest pins this week

Obsessed with Pinterest as we are? Follow us! Then check out 5 of our favorite Pinterest pins from this week that you might have missed. 1. Our Editor Kristen has her eye on this gorgeous, affordable bracelet and we can see why. 2. Who knew the best homemade guacamole could be so easy to make? You’ll want to pin this recipe right now. 3. Coolest kids’ t-shirts ever. In fact, we want them in our size. 4. You soooo need these, Game of Thrones fans. 5. All you need is construction paper, tape, and a sunny window to make...

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When you chomp upon a star: unique handmade teething toys

Move over, Sophie the Giraffe. There’s a bright star of a new chew toy in town, and it’s handmade, eco-chic, and…deliciously pointy.  These luscious fabric balls from Timo Handmade in Israel are a sparkly new addition to the galaxy of chewy-but-pretty baby toys. Each star-shaped toy is around six inches across, handmade in Tel Aviv of new and vintage natural fabrics. They’re safe to chew, baby-sized, and oh-so-pretty, sure to get quite a few oohs and ahs at a baby shower. In addition to nifty, nubby stars, Timo also makes some pretty funky rabbit, bird, and mouse dolls (like that...

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Web Coolness: Vintage Sesame Street, July 4th eats and cool IKEA hacks for kids

Here are some things we’ve liked reading around the web this week. We hope you do too.   When Oscar was orange: Design Mom takes us back with the first Sesame Street episode. A great post from our editor Liz in defense of kids’ music. (The good kind.) And we love Stefan Shephard of Zooglobble’s A Kindie Manifesto–which lays out why kids’ music IS important for kids.  This Summer Camp Word Game printable will make for some zany Mad-Libs type notes from your little camper. Our Editor Kristen shares what she thinks is the best lesson you can teach...

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A Batali cookbook. From a different Batali, or two.

As a New Yorker, Mario Batali is everywhere, from the impressive Eataly and the tantalizing Otto to the places a little farther out of my budget. Batali is known more for his amazing cooking than just his TV personality, and the word on the street is that Batali is also a fairly normal, cool, NYC family man who goes around town doing his thing just like the rest of us…well, maybe not just like us. So we were stoked to hear the chef has just released a fabulous new cookbook, which stands out as pretty special. And those with...

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A celebration of motherhood firsts: tips for traveling with baby on the first vacation

This post is part of a monthly series with our Baby Shower Gift Guide sponsor, babyGap celebrating motherhood firsts. And there are lots! The first time you travel with baby doesn’t have to be horrible at all. (Or…as horrible as you think it will be.) We’ve all been longtime advocates of traveling with your kids early and often. It’s something you’ll never regret, whether you’re flying across country or making daytrips to the cousins’ house. Here are some of our top baby travel tips, from years of experience of traveling with children under 12 months. Ask us if you...

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An all-natural, organic solution to those pesky summer itchies

When I was a little kid, I just scratched mosquito bites until they bled. Like a boss. But now that I like to shave my legs, wear breezy dresses, and not look totally grody, I’m super excited to have found an all-natural salve to help calm the itchies. And it’s great for kids and pregnant women, too. I’d been waiting to test Anti Itch Balm until I had, you know, an itch. A very helpful mosquito heard about my plight and proceeded to spend an entire night in my bed. I woke up clamoring for the little pot of...

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5 no-bake summer desserts for when it’s already hotter than an oven

The heat of summer is on, so I’m turning the heat of my oven off. I’m bidding a temporary farewell to cookies, cakes and brownies until the weather cools down, but fear not, there’s plenty of dessert to be had with these 5 no-bake, all-time-great sweets. Icebox cakes, puddings, cheesecake, oh my! It’s going to be a cool, delectable summer. –Stacie   This Strawberry Milk Cheesecake (above) from SprinkleBakes is proof that bakeless doesn’t mean slacker. How gorgeous is this? It’s a little bit involved, I’ll admit, but it’s also the perfect no-bake solution if you’ve got a summer birthday party...

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Take a ride on the Peace Van: hand knitted toys and rattles with purpose

If you’re into peaceful babies and peaceful communities, you’re going to love this sweet collection of hand-knitted rattles and toys that helps artisans in Bangladesh rebuild their lives. The toys and rattles from Kahiniwalla are all hand-knit of 100% cotton by artisans at Hathay Bunano in rural Bangladesh. They’re so fabulous we even included them in our 2013 Baby Shower Gift Guide. The program centers on providing livable working conditions and fair trade wages in rural areas so that women aren’t forced leave their families to work in larger and more dangerous garment facilities. Each piece is carefully designed...

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High quality, kid-friendly SPF to go. Ooh la la.

I tried carrying a tube of sunscreen in my purse once. Once. And then I got a new purse. So I’m head over heels for individually packaged, safe sunscreen for kids that even I can’t spill. Bonus: it works. And smells great. [Don’t miss a chance to win this wonder sunblock, after the jump!] If you’ve ever wished for a kid-friendly sunscreen that can’t be spilled, can fit in your pocket, and actually works, we’ve got good news. These Sun Protection Wipes for kids from Le bébé Coo are practically perfect in every way. Each box includes 40 packets, and each packet includes a...

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Geek-tastic babies, your wardrobe awaits.

We discovered the awesome pop culture baby tees and onesies from Austin artist Kayo Master over a year ago, and loved them so much (zomg, that Princess Leia onesie?) that we featured them in our Baby Shower Gift Guide. Since then she’s expanded her line, with some awesome new designs and even some baby gift sets than any geeky mama will swoon for. With Dr. Spock, Captain America, Mr. T, and a huge host of baby Star Wars characters in training (sorry…Star Wars inspired characters) you can find lots of these cool handmade Kayo Master baby clothes at BRIKA...

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Take some of the guesswork out of shopping for carpet with the new FLOR Possibility Studio

I’ve been itching to replace our dark, faux-Oriental rug in the family room for years. As much as I love shopping from the comfort of my home online, there are times when I could use the advice of a real, live sales associate to talk me through options, color choices, and patterns. You know, so I don’t end up with another dark, faux-Oriental rug. So I’m excited to discover what cool modular-floor carpet tiles company FLOR has just started doing to personalize the online shopping experience, and help insure that everyone loves their floor. Or FLOR. [Don’t miss a...

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The walls are alive with the sound of music

This collection of prints in bright colors will make you as happy as a nun on an Austrian hillside. But if you’re not a Sound of Music fan (cretin!) there’s so many other wonderful prints in this super Etsy shop we found. These lively, vibrant prints from Ali G Douglass, an Asheville-based artist, are based on her gouache paintings and printed in archival inks for art that lasts a lifetime. And what’s great is that they’re perfect for that very thing, going beautifully from a nursery to that between-little-kid-and-tween time. Frankly, if my kids were sick of them, I...

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Space boy to the rescue! Or…to the lunchroom!

As I start to take inventory of our end-of-school-year bento boxes and food storage options, I ask myself, where did all the freaking lids go? Then I quit complaining and start looking for replacements. {Don’t miss a great limited time offer after the jump!} I cannot hold back my love for this spaceboy lunch bento box. It’s not cheap, but it is on sale for a limited time, and it is adorable. And hopefully the lid makes it back home this time. Made from BPA-free plastic with EU standards (always reassuring) the design isn’t only cool, the 6″x5.5″ size...

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