Author: Kate Etue

The best group card games to play with the whole family: Game night, bring it.

Now that Thanksgiving is in the rearview mirror, it’s really starting to feel like Christmas to me. And as much as I love the shopping and the hot cocoa and the decorations, my favorite part is the parties. Instead of sending the kids to the playroom to watch a movie while the adults hang out this year, I’ve found some really fun group card games that the whole family can enjoy together. From competitive strategy games for the geeks in all of us, to light party games that are more about having fun than winning, these are our favorites. Of course,...

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The papercraft book that makes Christmas crafting so, so easy.

Houses up and down our street are starting to turn on their holiday lights, and it’s beginning to look at lot like Christmas in our neighborhood. My craft-loving kids would like for us to DIY everything holiday around here — cotton-ball snowmen, reindeer food, glitter wreaths…you name it. So when I discovered Papermade’s new book Paper Holiday, I knew I’d hit the holiday craft jackpot. The book includes 20 Christmas ornaments you can make in about 10 minutes each — just punch-out, fold up, and hang on the tree. No scissors, glue, or tape required. It even includes paper hooks. The ornaments are definitely Christmas specific,...

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We found 5 fab waterproof boots that also keep you warm this winter

Weather experts from Europe to the US are warning us to brace ourselves for the coldest winter in years…again. So, when life gives you snow, I say go shopping for a great pair of snow boots! When it comes to a good snow boot, I want something that will keep my feet warm and dry when I’m trudging through snow and slush, or just tip-toeing through those massive puddles that accumulate at street corners after a storm.  But I want them to feel comfortable and look at least as cool as I can in sturdy winter boots. Not too much to ask, right? So I’ve...

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The best Cyber Monday deals from 150+ of our favorite shops big and small. Yay for savings!

If you’re looking for some of the best Cyber Monday shopping deals and discounts around the web today, we’ve we’ve put together only the biggest and best (sorry, get $1 off purchases of $100 — no room for you here) all from our favorite shops! We’ll continue to update the post with new deals all day long, so be sure to check back, and follow us on Twitter where we’ll be tweeting ones you don’t see here. And don’t forget to check out our 2016 Holiday Gift Guide for even more gift ideas featuring indie designers and small businesses. There are some great discounts in...

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The best Small Business Saturday deals: 75+ ways to save big while you shop small.

We love supporting our favorite small businesses every day of course, but to encourage you to make the most of Small Business Saturday, so many of them have offered up the best shopping deals and discounts today. We’ve rounded up more than 75 of them for you right here and we’ll even keep updating the post as more roll in — and be sure to follow us on Twitter where we’ll be tweeting them all day. What’s more, be sure to shop our 2016 Holiday Gift Guide for even more gift ideas from indie designers and small businesses, lots of which include their own discount codes too....

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Bring on the bling with these 7 metallic and jewel-toned coats for kids.

I don’t know about the rest of the country, but down here in Nashville we went from about 80-degree days to 30-degree mornings overnight. And before I knew it, I was fumbling through our coat closets to pull out last year’s jackets for the kids to bundle up in on their way to school. And now, I’m scanning all of my favorite shops online to find some great deals on new winter coats for this year — since the 3/4 length arms on last year’s coats won’t quite cut it when the really cold weather hits. Since winter weather can be so dreary...

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Beyond thank you and please: 7 manners all kids should learn for holiday entertaining (and that we’re not all teaching)

Please and thank you — important stuff, right? I’ve always believe that courteous kids grow into nice adults and we all need more nice in the world these day. But that’s not where etiquette begins and ends. So with the holidays here, and lots of entertaining and mingling coming up on our calendars, we’ve started talking in our home about some of the manners that we want our kids to know, so they can be fantastic guests and hosts. I’m sharing them here with the hope that maybe our ideas will help some of you too. Top: Please and Thank You poster at TanyaGDesign on Etsy I know...

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10 modern, uplifting holiday cards that wish your family and friends everything good

It’s time for me to start thinking about sending out our Christmas cards again. Yikes! I haven’t even scheduled a family photo session and I still need to update my address book. School and work and sports — not to mention the major distraction of the election — has left me way behind schedule. But the thing is, this year more than ever, I’m wanting to send out the good vibes of love, warmth, and peace to my friends and family. Because we need it, right? These beautiful modern, uplifting holiday cards we found at some of our favorite shops go beyond the traditional Merry Christmas...

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Fitness tips for cold weather to help keep you on your routine: Because winter is coming (but pecan pie belly could possibly be avoided)

The winter can definitely put a damper on anyone’s fitness routine, which is why we’re putting together some really helpful, realistic, cold weather fitness tips to help you out as things get chilly. Between the can’t-resist holiday foods and the bitter cold weather that will be here before you know it, we’re all going to be more inclined to stay home and just eat our weight in comfort food. I know first-hand that the struggle is legit and following all the expert tips are easier said than done. That’s why I’m here for you! We’re in this together, mamas! So check out...

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Fantastic Beasts movie review: The magic is back, but is it okay for young kids?

We Harry Potter fans have waited very patiently. As in, it’s been five years (yes, really) since Deathly Hallows Part 2 came out. But friends, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is just out in theaters, living up to the magic we expect from J.K. Rowling’s universe in every way with blow-your-mind imaginative worlds, multiple layers of meaning that will spark interesting conversations with your kids, outstanding performances, and some impressive action scenes that will truly thrill. I still remember that breathtaking feeling I got when I first saw the grand hall at Hogwarts and the shops on Diagon Alley, and it’s the same feeling with the reveal of...

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How to make a DIY Thankful Turkey with your kids in 4 (very) easy steps.

Our favorite crafts around here are simple ones that don’t require an MFA, and it’s a big bonus when we don’t even have to head to the craft store for supplies. And if these crafts help us have conversations about the world around us, allow our kids to get in touch with nature or our community, or teach them the importance of gratitude, then even better. This cute DIY thankful turkey craft is a very easy and fun craft that fits all these categories. I’ll be making these with my kids this year while we wait for our turkey to cook, because we really do have...

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8 ideas for hosting an awesome Gilmore Girls watch party that even Lorelai and Rory would want to come to.

You may have heard Gilmore Girls fans across the globe collectively freaking out over the revival event coming to Netflix Thanksgiving weekend — Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. We will, of course, be watching while Rory continues to figure out her life and career, Lorelai struggles to understand her relationship with Luke, and both of them eat way more junk food than anyone ever should. Of course, these four episodes will be so much better if you watch with friends, so we’ve collected some fun and easy ideas to help you throw an epic Gilmore Girls watch party. These are low on the DIY component,...

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The very cool new color-your-own dress for kids could be the hit of the holidays

Who knew coloring would have become such a huge trend in 2016?Maybe it’s a welcome break from so much screen time or just a way to keep ourselves sane in a crazy year. Because now our girls can even color in their own clothes, with the Christmas-themed Tons of Fun Color-in Dress by Who’s Little? for ModCloth. Do you know how much I would have freaked out over a color-your-own coloring book dress when I was a kid? I’m pretty sure my daughter will too. Related: We’ve got 21 of the coolest coloring books for adults. Pass those markers over, kids. The dress is made...

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Cool ways to tie scarves: 7 videos that make it easy. Winter style, check!

Forget sweater weather; for me, fall is all about scarves. They’re always on trend, and to top it off, they’re practical, which is important to me. (#momlife, yo.) Having a couple of scarves in your closet gives you a lot of affordable ways to spruce up your wardrobe for the season, but the key to looking stylish is knowing how to wear them. So to help you get ready for winter, I found these 7 terrific video tutorials that offer lots of cool way to tie scarves. Thanks to these women, I feel like I have my own personal stylist! Only, free. Related: Fall accessories with big style that...

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These 6 new books for kids about the arts are sure to inspire young painters, musicians, and writers.

I’ve noticed a trend lately among the hundreds of children’s books I receive for review: stellar new books for kids about the arts. We tend to promote a lot of STEM toys, books, and opportunities for kids because we’re passionate about science and technology and the digital world our kids will live and work in. But we still love to find great books for kids about the arts that can inspire young painters, musicians, and writers too. These 6 books for kids about the arts will encourage your littlest ones to try their hand at creativity, or they can be used to supplement your elementary-age children’s...

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Adorable knit bunny, deer and unicorn winter hats for babies from Oeuf NYC. Because, of course you need this.

When you find a gift as adorable as these handknit animal hoodies and winter hats for babies from Oeuf (pronounced uh-f, it’s French for “egg”), I think it’s completely appropriate to ditch any baby gift registry suggestions and go rogue instead. I mean, what friend could blame you for skipping the bottle cleaner when these are an option? These knit hats and hoodies are hilariously charming and sweet, with a whimsical sense of modern style to them. Seriously, buy the unicorn hat instead of the diaper pail liners. You won’t regret it. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: The Baby Registry Essentials...

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The Journey by Francesca Sanna: A powerful look at the refugee experience, for children.

My kids hate to see me cry, but there have been times when I’m following the Syrian refugee crisis that I can’t help it. They’ve caught me looking at the haunting photo of Omran Daqneesh in the ambulance, seeing the tragic body of 3-year-old Alan Kurdi on a Turkish beach, and watching desperate mothers and fathers trying to get their families to safety while “reporters” trip them as they run from armed guards. But, you know, I think it’s a good thing that they see me cry at images like this. As strongly as I feel about it, I’ve still struggled to explain the Syrian...

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Move over family movie night — we found 4 fun art activity books the whole family can enjoy together.

In an effort to reduce screentime at home, especially with Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks around the bend, I’ve been stocking up on some arts and crafts-type activity books for kids. Instead of everyone sitting on the couch, looking at their own devices, now we sit around the kitchen table and work on these projects together. And yes, of course, it’s blissfully peaceful and it happens every single night. Heh. In reality, though, sometimes I just pass an art activity book over to my kid to keep them busy while I’m working on something else. There’s no craft supply shopping or Pinterest-searching required;...

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Gathre’s bonded leather playmats are wipeable, waterproof, and so chic.

I can still vividly remember the playdate I had for my toddler the same week we laid new carpet in our house. You know where this is going, right? Within minutes, the mom’s mega-venti-grande-whatever coffee was all over the place. And yes, the stain is still there. What would have saved me then — and the countless other times my kids or their friends have made a mess all over the floor — are these chic bonded leather playmats by Gathre. These simple, waterproof leather mats are so pretty…and so functional! They can be used for everything from a picnic blanket to a...

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6 cool digital election night party invitations to precede the pizza, booze, and Pepto Bismol

The last time I hosted an election night viewing party with friends was back in 2000 when our friends resignedly left around midnight, with no winner decided. (It’s a good thing or they might have been camped out on our living room floor for a week.) I haven’t held one since, but since this year’s election night could be an historic moment for our country — and the end to an incredibly stressful election cycle — I’d like to share it in the comfort of some like-minded friends. I’m sure I’m not alone here. So I took a look at some digital election night party invitations...

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