Author: Kate Etue

14 creative gift wrap ideas to make your nice list feel super special this holiday season

The simplest handmade gift can feel like it’s worth a million bucks if you’ve taken the time to wrap it with love. So we’ve pulled together some stunningly creative gift wrap ideas from the best of the Web to help you make your loved ones feel extra special this Christmas.And they don’t have to be hard! My grandmother was my style icon. She believed that, although what’s on the inside matters more, what’s on the outside still matters quite a bit. In other words, she taught us not to be lazy with details. I think that’s especially true when it...

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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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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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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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Gorgeous custom photo decals for your walls that happen to be eco-friendly too

I love having a really nice camera built into my phone. I get to capture so many memories of my kids’ childhood that my mom didn’t because we only had twelve exposures on that roll of Polaroid film, so they had better be good ones! The only problem is that I now have thousands of photos on my computer, and not enough room on my walls to hang them all. What’s a mom to do? Paper Culture is saving the day (or at least the decor) with their new eco-friendly wall clings. This company has been a favorite of...

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We predict your kid’s next favorite book will be an atlas. Really.

Lately my kids and I have been snuggling up on the couch in front of the fireplace and browsing through a stunning new coffee table book featuring exquisite hand-drawn maps of countries around the world. It’s delightfully wonderful. I really, really love it. Maps, by Polish artists Aleksandra Mizielińska and Daniel Mizieliński, is a lavish collection of 52 maps of countries from every continent around the globe. But you’re not just getting topography and political markers with this book. The pages are filled with winsome illustrations of cultural icons from that region. Germany’s map, for example, shows a girl...

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Turning kids’ artwork into stuffed animals. As cuddly or scary as you (or they) want.

I’m always looking for cool ways to preserve my kids’ artwork. Sure, we’ve got plenty of it taped up in the kitchen, plus boxes of the really great stuff stored in the hall closet. But now my kids are going to be able to sleep with their favorite drawings at night as they transform into stuffed animals. I’m not sure who’s more excited, me or them. We’ve found services like this before, with companies like Art2Believe and My Pretty Monsters and now there’s one more (because there can’t be too many): Budsies. Budsies is pretty sensational. The company started because one big...

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Move over, Fancy Nancy. The Fairy Birds are here.

My daughter is at that sweet age where she’s still fascinated by all things “fancy,” which equals “grown-up” to her six-year-old mind. She loves a great fairy tale, but she’s getting a little tired of the damsels in distress. So I’m sooo excited that this week I found a brand new book that has totally captured her attention–and we get to give you a first look at it here.  Fairy Birds by twin sisters Heather Fujikawa and Heidi Andrews tells the story of how girls grow up to become fairy godmothers–a novel idea if I’ve ever heard one. The...

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Trendy specs that give back to kids in need

For some reason, finding cool eyewear at decent prices is one of the great impossibilities of our time. Sure, you can clip coupons for the discount optometrist in the mall, but you’ll never find affordable, straight-from-Paris frames or those to-die-for vintage shades. That’s why we’re such big fans of this online company with seriously sweet eyewear and a mission we love. The philosophy behind Ivory + Mason is similar to so many other products that give back, most notably Warby Parker.  You get gorgeous eyewear, fair prices, and for every pair of frames you buy, they’ll give a pair to a...

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Awesome kids’ room organization solutions with a Japanese flair

I can totally justify buying new things to decorate my kids’ rooms if they’re useful. And we’re all huge fans of bins for storage. That’s why I’m completely falling over these adorable Japanese storage solutions from an awesome online shop. I might even clean up while my kids are at school, just for fun. (yikes) Remember the cute unicorn and gorilla storage bins we mentioned a couple weeks ago? Well, now My Sweet Muffin (possibly my new favorite online shop) has brought us some sweet and functional designs from Japan that will make your heart–and kids’ rooms–happy. Their Small Collapsible...

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Zoobean: Personal book recommendations for your one-of-a-kind kid

Finding just the right books for your child can be, well, challenging–especially if your kid is as finicky about what she reads as what she eats: No peas, broccoli, or dumb princess books, thank you. So I love this cool, custom service made to create your kid’s dream reading list. {EDITED TO ADD: Zoobean is currently not taking on any new subscribers.} Hooray for Zoobean. Created by a mom-and-dad duo who were struggling to find kids’ books with biracial main characters for their son and daughter, this book-curating subscription service does the searching for you. Also perfect for those...

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Booties that will warm your baby’s toes (and your heart)

We’re always excited to find global nonprofits that empower women and their families rise to above poverty. Now we’re especially happy to find one that supports that mission in the form of adorable baby gifts that we’d buy even if they weren’t doing so much good. (But they are.)   So here’s a story we love: Kohl Crecelius was an avid snowboarder and surfer dude. But when his brother taught him an unlikely hobby–crocheting–Kohl was instantly hooked (heh). He immediately taught two of his buddies, who were also hooked. Now we’re hooked. Because when Kohl traveled to Uganda in college, he discovered unimaginable...

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Storage so cute, you’ll be tempted to buy your kids more toys

We’re big fans of the clever, charming designs over at 3 Sprouts. I mean, have you seen their adorable warthog hoodie towels and their fun walrus bathtub storage caddy? Too. Cute. Well, 3 Sprouts has combined modern and playful once again–this time with a new collection of kids’ toy storage boxes. At my house, the kids’ playroom has a way of encroaching on the living room. I frequently find myself tearing hrough the house, stashing toys away just as guests are headed to the front door. That’s why I love these stylish storage boxes from 3 Sprouts. They’re both efficient–hey,...

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Adorable printable chore charts. Whining not included.

I’ve used, and subsequently retired, countless chore chart systems for my family, mostly because they end up being just a bit too involved for my busy life. But these simple, printable charts might just be exactly what I’ve been looking for. I figure if mom of four Gennifer Bursett designed these printable chore charts, then they’re worth giving a try with my own foursome. What I love about these in particular, aside from the direct DO YOUR CHORES reminder (which I find myself saying all too often), is that they’re a blank slate, allowing you to add or remove different chores whenever you...

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