Author: Kate Etue

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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The Girly Girl Doll Company: Redefining what it means to be girly.

My daughter isn’t what you’d typically call a “girly girl.” Her favorite clothes are athletic wear and she can hold her own (and then some) with the neighborhood boys in a game of flag football. But she still loves to dress up and has a collection of dolls that has taken over her room. She may not wear sparkles and bows, but she’s still a girl in every sense of the word. So I was really excited to find out about the Girly Girl Doll Company, which is redefining what it means to be “girly” in the best possible sense....

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Mattresses in a box? We’ve tried them. Here’s what we think.

I’ve been needing a new mattress for a while now, but the idea of spending $2,000 (or more, yeesh!) on a traditional box spring and mattress set has kept me from heading to the stores to try them out. Because with multiple kids at home, there are a million other things I could spend that money on. Of course, I too have been seeing all the ads over social media for the much cheaper bed-in-a-box companies that ship mattresses right to your home. So, Kristen and I took on the hard job of sleeping (er, mattress testing) so we could share our thoughts on which...

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Freshly Picked Marketplace: The new indie marketplace you need to bookmark for your holiday shopping

When Kristen and Liz started Cool Mom Picks, their desire was to highlight cool, indie shops that make innovative products with fresh ideas for kids and families. A decade later, that’s still our driving passion, and the chic handmade baby moccasins at Freshly Picked is one of our favorite indie shops to recommend for baby gifts. We’ve always loved Susan Petersen’s eye for style, and now she’s using that to highlight other small businesses too, with the Freshly Picked Marketplace. This online community is a hub of small shops curated by Susan, and when I browsed through the site I immediately added gifts from each one to my holiday shopping...

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Cool custom temporary tattoos from Love and Lion that we want for our special events. (Or, heck, just any event.)

We’ve seen plenty of tutorials from crafty bloggers on how to DIY temporary tattoos, but they’ve never turned out quite right. I recently discovered the insanely creative indie temporary tattoo company Love & Lion out of my hometown Nashville (whoo, Nashville!), and now I’m hooked. In addition to the readymade tattoos they sell, they create stylish and witty custom temporary tattoos — so much fun for friend’s bachelorette party, announcing your pregnancy, celebrating your third 39th birthday, or just that moms’ night out that you so desperately need. They even have temporary tattoos for kids, like Big Bro or Sis and custom pirate tattoos (naturally). Related: We...

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7 fun political activities for kids to do on election night. No mudslinging included.

This election in particular has been a tough one for me to wade through all the issues with my kids, so I’ve been getting creative with how I’m involving them in our family’s political discussions. I’ve been implementing Kristen and Liz’s great tips for talking politics with your children in a nasty election year, and I’m also planning to take mine with me when I vote so they can see firsthand what that experience is really like. I’ve also been looking for some fun political activities for kids to help mine get a little involved and learn a thing or two about our election process....

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George and Georgette’s cool kids shoes have an even cooler social mission

There are a lot of things I want to do as a mom, but a big one is to raise the kinds of kids (and eventually, adults) who think about others’ needs before their own. It’s something we talk about a lot in our house — especially around the holidays — whether it’s finding the time to volunteer, donating items to those in need, or even buying for ourselves from companies that are finding ways to give back in a big way. So when I find companies that are doing really cool things that can broaden my kids’ sense of compassion, I’m...

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Super easy last-minute Halloween costumes for kids that you can make in 10 minutes or less.

When my kids were small I somehow had the time to make their costumes by hand — things like princess dresses, a lion, and one amazing Nacho Libre costume. However, last year I literally pulled together a costume for my oldest in about 5 minutes before our friends came over to trick-or-treat with us. And his Halloween was just as awesome as ever. So, whether you’re the DIY master who’s gotten too busy this month to make something from scratch, or you have a kid who can’t make up his mind about his costume and now you need something stat,...

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Celebrate Everything by Darcy Miller: The party planning guidebook so inspiring it will make you celebrate…oh heck. Tuesdays.

The holidays are fast approaching, which means it’s party season! I’m thinking all about Halloween this week, but before you know it we’ll be planning New Year’s parties. Not to mention the, oh… 1,285 family birthdays that my family seems to celebrate in November and December alone. I could use a little fresh inspiration to make each of these parties really special, and I’m finding lots of it in the wonderful new party idea book, Celebrate Everything, by Martha Stewart Weddings editor and party planner extraordinaire, Darcy Miller. Whether you’re looking for something as simple as a fun cocktail recipe, a jolt of inspiration for a central...

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The handmade, organic Frida Kahlo doll: Art history degree not required.

The first-ever gift I gave my daughter was a beautiful handmade doll I found on Etsy, and ever since then I’ve had a thing for gifting my kids one-of-a-kind dolls. Of course, she has her fair share (and then some) of American Girl everything, but when I find a keepsake like the handmade, organic Frida Kahlo dolls made by Mexican artists Maroma + Arte, I feel compelled add to her growing collection. She certainly doesn’t need another doll, but I really want her to have this one. And a little lesson in art history and female empowerment to go along with it won’t...

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9 easy Halloween games for kids that will make your party the best on the block

I’m barely getting to the store before all the good candy is gone, so I’m definitely not looking for over-the-top complicated crafts and activities that are going to impress my friends at our annual Halloween party. And when I’m charged with bringing the games for the classroom party, too, I want easy and fun. So, I’ve been searching for simple games my kids can play with their friends at school and before we head out for trick-or-treating. These Halloween games for kids are easy to pull off — most are printable — and are actually a lot of fun. You can choose to give...

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