Month: January 2014

How to decorate with tea lights: creating ambience, not a shrine

I’m a big fan of tea lights and votive candles around the house, especially in the winter months when the light is gone so early. I’ve started lighting candles at the dinner table with the kids, even to make a mac n’ cheese dinner feel a little more special–and you know? It does. But there’s a fine line between creating ambience and creating a scene out of Carrie. So here are some tips for how to decorate with tea lights that can warm things up when you need it most. And by the way, I totally cop to my...

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Stylish kids’ jewelry that’s safe to chew on. If you’re into that kind of thing.

My babies have all been big chewers. Part puppy, we used to say. So no surprise that CChewbeads s afe teething necklaces have been a huge hit with moms of little teethers. These 100% silicone beads are the safest of safe for your kids — no BPA, no phthalates, no cadmium, no lead, no metals. In fact, it’s the same material used to make pacis and bottle nipples. So now we’re flipping out over the new Chewbeads Juniorbeads line of safe, non-toxic kids’ jewelry — especially since my kindergartener still chews on sleeves and backpack straps when she’s lost in a...

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6 easy, delicious dinners to make from a single roast chicken

Gather around, mamas, I’m about to share one of my best family kitchen tricks: Roast a chicken on the weekend, serve for dinner, and shred leftovers to use in these super quick and tasty chicken recipes you can serve for the next few days. In about one hour of cooking, you can cover dinner for nearly half the week. Really. Just keep two things in mind: You’ve got to start with good roast chicken and there needs to be a lot. If you’re a family of four big eaters, roast two chickens to ensure that you’ll have plenty of leftovers...

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Free printable sewing cards for kids: Save them for a snowy day

If you’re in our neck of the woods, you are looking for lots of indoor activities to keep the kids occupied. While we recently rounded up 12 snow day activities for kids, here’s one more: Printable sewing cards for kids. And these are more than adorable–they happen to be free. Spotted at one of our very favorite craft sites, Handmade Charlotte, you pretty much just need good card stock, scissors, a needle and pin, and embroidery floss. All the instructions are on the site, but your kids will end up with pretty much the cutest sewing cards to play...

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Custom map artwork makes our heart thump for Valentine’s Day

Whether your heart is in San Francisco, Madrid, or some little town on the outskirts of Quebec, a piece of custom map artwork for your beloved would make a most heartfelt gift for Valentine’s Day. Created by Bombus — that neat London-based company whose wooden storybook letters we recently discovered — their bespoke framed artwork is sentimental without being sappy. Plus, how cool would it be to show the kids that Mommy and Daddy met right there?   Globetrotters who can’t settle on any one spot should check out their trio of hearts, shown above, or the round-the-world 16 hearts (though...

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Mmmmm….donut cake recipe

We have no problem pinning (and drooling over) all the outrageous birthday cakes that parents make for their kids on our Party Time Pinterest Board from time to time. But once in a while there’s an idea that looks beyond awesome–and is actually easy to make. So thanks today go to A Subtle Revelry for turning us on to the idea for a Donut Cake recipe adapted from a version from Catherine Newman (who we love). While you do use a bundt cake pan, this ten-minute cake actually tastes more like a donut, with the glazed frosting and sprinkles on...

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We’re head over heels for Willo Baby’s eco-friendly treasures for babies and mamas

You know we are always on the lookout for fabulous resources to support our goals of easy, beautiful, and natural living, but our latest one-stop shop find, Willo Baby, impressed us beyond expectations. We are totally kvelling over their collection of affordable, original, and thoughtful indulgences for baby and mama. Willo Baby’s wonderful new online shop of eco-friendly family items is curated by an L.A.-based husband-and-wife team who clearly know what they are doing — and most importantly, what they like. The finds at Willo Baby include sweet baby bibs and swaddles in stunning prints and fabrics, clever mobiles and wall...

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Baby Penguins: Two happy little books for Penguin Awareness Day

Yesterday was Penguin Awareness Day, but you probably already knew that. (Right.) Still, how fun is a day celebrating penguins? At my house, we read one of our new favorite picture books, Baby Penguins Everywhere by Melissa Guion. Here, Mama penguin has lots and lots of babies. She’s happy to be a mama, but taking care of a family is hard, and Mama could really just use a moment alone every now and then (maybe without having to lock herself in the bathroom, right?) , making this a playful story that my kids ask for again and again. And now,...

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Josephine: A children’s book as complex, vibrant, and endearing as Josephine Baker herself.

It’s clear that Josephine Baker is one of those few celebrity icons who transcends generations. My parents loved her, I loved her, and now my girls love her thanks to the new book, Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker. And despite it being a book for kids, if it weren’t for Christian Robinson’s wonderful illustrations, you might think it was an adult-targeted poetic ode to the legendary performer. Patricia Hruby Powell’s prose feels like jazz itself, dancing across the pages with a kind of defiant playfulness; the random line breaks, indentations, metaphors, erratic use of all-cap words are writers’ tools...

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10 of the most awesome alphabet posters for nurseries of any style

It’s no secret that we love alphabet posters around here, so we’ve rounded up some of our favorites from the past few years. Whether you like it when X stands for X-ray, X-wing, or Malcolm X, we’ve got an ABC poster you’ll love.   1. The Cutest French Alphabet Poster Pourquoi? Because it’s si mignon and that’s a fact. Also because it’s fun to see the bee under the letter A, for Abeille. 2. The Most New York Alphabet Order an entire set of Joanne Dugan’s funky alphabet decals (complete set shown at top) or just the letters you need to spell a certain...

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