Author: Julie

Sweet and simple: Apropos Roasters gifts and stocking stuffers

If you’re like me, there’s a bunch of people to whom you’d like to give a little something for the holidays, but they aren’t quite up to the level of say, a cashmere sweater. I usually whip up some handmade holiday food gifts in the kitchen, but to save time this year I might let Apropos Roasters do some of the work for me instead. I love their selection of individually packaged coffee, tea, and hot chocolate gifts, wrapped in plain brown paper and adorned with cheery stamped images and messages. So great for holiday gift giving to co-workers, carpool,...

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You can haz kittens and cupcakes on National Cat Day

I miss many things about working in New York, but today I have a totally unexpected and thoroughly awesome reason to miss my old office. Or one in Seattle and San Francisco too. Because today it would have been filled with kittens and cupcakes. Private driver service Uber has teamed up with meme site Cheezburger today on National Cat Day to deliver kittens and cupcakes in New York, San Francisco, and Seattle. $20 will get you fifteen minutes of kitten snuggles, plus cupcakes from Ace of Cakes, yum. Local shelters will provide the kittens (to borrow), and Uber will...

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Zombie prints with just the right amount of bite

Sure, Halloween is coming up, but around here we’re zombie fans all year long. So it’s no wonder these bold, fun prints caught our attention. All those times we’ve watched our kids perch on the diving board and refuse to jump in? Maybe they weren’t worried about swimming safely to the ladder. Maybe they were picturing zombies lurking at the bottom of the pool.   And when we spend the day making a snowman, only to wake up the next morning and find it gone, maybe it hasn’t melted after all. Maybe snowmen are actually zombie popsicles. Or maybe...

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Wooden watches that make you want to wear one again.

One of my favorite trends in accessories is the use of wood in unexpected ways. We’ve featured tons of cool wooden bracelets, necklaces, and earrings, and I’ve probably bought one of each. I find wood just so warm and versatile, it’s durable, and it shows detail beautifully. I’m equally enamored with the wooden watches from Silvano. Talk about unexpected. I’d never considered buying a wooden watch before, and now I can’t get these off my mind. Made from sandalwood, maple, and bamboo in beautiful natural colors, these analog and digital watches for both men and women are gorgeous accessories...

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Grammar police: Your mugs are here.

We all have our pet peeves, and one of mine happens to be spelling and grammar. Even a text message with they’re/there/their used incorrectly is enough to make me cringe. (To say nothing of all the pitches we receive daily that assure us “mom’s will love this!”) That’s why this set of mugs would be perfect for starting every grammatically-correct day. I love how the Grammar Grumbles mugs from The Literary Gift Company illustrate the proper use of two/to/too and clarify that no one will actually die if they don’t get what they’re yearning for. (It’s a figure of...

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Colorado flooding: 4 ways you can help

Our family moved to Colorado in 2005, and as cheesy as it may sound, I fell in love with the natural beauty of this state. We’ve camped in Glenwood Springs, hiked in Rocky Mountain National Park, and zip-lined at YMCA of the Rockies. I ran my first half marathon in Estes Park, and I’ve been doing triathlons in Boulder since 2009. I never dreamed of doing such things when I lived in New York; Colorado has transformed me. Now Colorado has been transformed by rain and flooding. The pictures and videos document the unbelievable destruction, and the statistics are...

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Calling all runners! Team Baby Buggy needs you for NYC Marathon 2013

We’ve been huge supporters of the amazing charity Baby Buggy since we discovered them in 2011, and we’re always ready to help spread the word about the wonderful services they provide. They’ve got a huge challenge ahead of them this fall, and we’d be thrilled if any of our runners, er, readers would like to join their NYC Marathon team. The Baby Buggy 2013 ING NYC Marathon team, that is. They’ve got a few more spots to fill between now and September 15. (The race isn’t until November 4. Plenty of time to train!) Entries in this race are...

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You know who wins with fair trade soccer balls? Everybody.

We’re big fans of supporting fair trade at Cool Mom Picks, and it’s always fun to find new artisans whose creations we adore. Personally, I love buying fair trade items because responsible purchases make me feel even better about shopping, which is already one of my favorite feel-good experiences. But our latest fair trade find is one I never anticipated: fair trade soccer balls. We first discovered Senda Athletics when they were called Fair Trade Sports, and wow have they grown since then. It was started by a lifelong soccer player who, like me, hadn’t realized the conditions under which many...

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Instant heirloom toy boxes, now on sale

We love it when reeeeeally wonderful things go on sale…especially when we’ve been eyeing them for months. Naturally, we want to share the joy with our readers, and this fantastic opportunity is one we’d hate for you to miss. The gorgeous Owyn Toy Box and Maude Toy Box (pictured above) from Mod Mom Furniture are two of our favorite kids’ furniture pieces ever. The design is beautiful, and the craftsmanship makes these toy boxes instant heirlooms. The finish is water-based, the shipping is free, and they arrive fully assembled. Amazing. Plus, Mod Mom Furniture donates 5% of the retail...

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The only thing better than a cupcake? A cupcake tucked into this gift box.

It’s still a little toasty outside for me to consider baking, but I’m busy lining up recipes for when the temperature takes a dive. And because I usually bake more than my family can eat, I’m also collecting creative ideas for sharing my wares with friends and neighbors. One of the top finds on my list: The printable retro oven cupcake boxes from Claudine Hellmuth’s Etsy shop. Just download the PDF files, gather the materials on her list, print and assemble. Plus, there’s a link to a super detailed how-to video. You can even omit the cupcake tray and...

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