Author: Barbara

Mobiles for when babies outgrow the black and white

While I will always have a soft spot in my heart for those high-contrast, abstract-shaped, infant mobiles, admittedly they don’t age well as your child gets older. The folks at CMP favorite Petit Collage have the perfect solution for that quiet corner of your kiddo’s room, or the bland area above your landing, or any place that needs a pop of color and little bit of movement. Their gorgeous cut paper mobiles are made with thick cardstock, stitched with cotton thread, and printed in delicious colors. And there’s not a zig-zaggy test pattern among them. All mobiles come fully-assembled and ready...

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Fresh flowers for every outfit

It happens again and again: one dress-up lap around the living room and the creepy faux-metallic paint on your daughter’s “jewelry” is already flaking off and the molded plastic clasp has begun to warp. It’s not always easy to find dress-up accessories that don’t look (and act) like you bought them from a gumball machine. And then someone showed me the fantastic, hand-crafted, textile dress up delights offered by artisan momma Rebekah Desloge.    The Crocheted Flower Necklace is a sweet addition to the dress-up madness in your home, and would make such a great gift, as well. The leaves and...

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Just what the future doctor ordered

There’s something that seems to be universally fascinating to kiddos, generation after generation, about playing doctor – and by that, I mean the kind with stethoscopes and tongue depressors and a plethora of toilet paper “bandages.” My childhood doctor kit was molded plastic and lasted one weekend. What I would have given for one of these. The gorgeous Wooden Play Doctor Set by Australia’s Miss Yesterday is made of different renewable timbers and includes a stethoscope, syringe, thermometer, tube of antiseptic lotion, and two “blister packs” of pills. It’s finished in a rich, eco-friendly clear oil, and it’s suitable...

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Well, here’s one way to eat more cleanly – clean what you eat

Summer means more fresh produce, more smoothies, more road trips, and more buying and eating on-the-go. It’s the perfect time to stop by a road stand or a Farmer’s Market, but then there’s the whole “Who touched this apple last?” thing. And more importantly, the “What did YOU touch last?” thing. I think the food-grade, biodegradable food wipes from Eat Cleaner are pretty nifty. Designed by mama and food writer Mareya Ibrahim, just tuck a few of these little “Grab-n-Go Produce Wipes“ in your bag or in your car for so you can clean off those apples without wiping them...

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Gardening. You know, for kids.

I’m not the best gardener — my entire vegetable haul, from June to September probably equals little more than one large salad — but gardening really is good for the soul. And, there are always gardening chores that even the smallest kiddos can do, even if it’s just pulling weeds or digging a hole. Smear on some sunscreen, pull on some gloves, and dig in! The super cute, super durable children’s gardening gloves from Ethel Gloves might just be the thing to lure your little ones into the fresh air in early spring. Made with breathable stretch fabric plus a...

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From piggy banks to paychecks, one chapter at a time.

I’d prefer one dozen versions of the “where do babies come from” talk with my kids before I’d sign up for even one “and this is how money works” discussions. I can cheerfully rattle off twenty-seven slang terms for body parts, but ask me how something amortizes and I break out in hives. Piggy Banks to Paychecks: Helping Kids Understand the Value of a Dollar, written by accountant and financial consultant Angie Mohr, explains it all to help me explain it to my kids.      Each chapter focuses on an aspect of financial savvy, from learning how to explain earning,...

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Burp cloths with a secondary purpose

Two important things for new mamas to know: not everything useful has to look utilitarian, and there will be many, many uses for burp cloths. I can justify buying gorgeous ones–despite their intended use–considering how much time they’ll spend on my shoulders, across my lap, or clutched in Baby’s hand. With the photographic evidence to prove it. Well here’s one more reason to justify the expense: when it supports an amazing organization. Ella Sophia & Co., a new shop launched by new mama Erika Hodge, offers colorful, extremely absorbent burp cloths made in Nepal by a Nepalese fair trade organization....

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So uh, we understand that sometimes new moms have questions?

How much allowance is too much? When can kids start playing video games? Will it kill them to eat dessert first? All important parenting questions, but the first few months (and really, for the first few years) you won’t care about much more than the basics. What I needed — and most new parents need, too — is some easy advice that can be read with both eyes at half mast. New mama Erin Bried, author of the advice-ful How To Sew A Button, went looking to seasoned moms for some solid, time-tested tips on soothing, feeding and general...

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Yes, girls like dinosaurs too.

Both of my kids were huge dinosaur fans from the moment they discovered the magic of the enormous T. Rex at the Museum of Science in Boston. One look at those glinty eyes and tiny hands, and they were hooked. And while I was able to find a lot of plastic, rubber and wooden dinos to fit the bill for for playtime, I quickly discovered that even dinosaurs reside in a mostly gender-specific universe. Recently, a reader asked us to track down dinosaur dresses for girls, and for those of you nodding your heads vigorously in agreement, I’m happy to...

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The Hunger Games is coming. Bring the baby!

I remember the early baby days, when finding the time to see a big release movie like Hunger Games was even less likely than or showering regularly. Just getting out of the house seemed so exotic, and often too daunting.  I wish we had the new Bring Your Baby Matinees back then.    Just launched by TheBump.com and AMC Theaters around the country, Bring Your Baby is a screening specifically designed for movie-hungry parents and of course, their babies. Park your stroller with the “valet” and grab a seat for a grown-up movie in an actual theater. If your baby makes normal...

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