Author: Kristen Chase

Santa baby. Literally.

There’s really not much you can do to make a baby cuter at the holidays, because the tree, the lights, the adorable little red sweater and well, it’s a party full of screaming ovaries. But add in the Santafier pacifier, and you might people spontaneously combusting from cuteness. From the folks who made the hilarious Mustachifier, we introduce you to the Santafier, a binky with a white mustache for your little Santa baby. Or hey, Mrs. Claus baby, pre-laser hair removal. Heh.   If you’re feeling extra festive, grab the full Santafier set, which includes the little Santa beanie cap and socks to help you complete...

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Fun emoji gifts: For kids or kids at heart.

Based on what you’d see in pretty much every text message on my phone right now, it’s clear that emojis aren’t just for kids. Yes, I might have even used one in an email the other day. I know I’m not alone in the grown-up emoji-lover camp, which is why I had a blast rounding up all these fun emoji gifts. Sure, kids would love them, well, most of them that is, but I’ve got a few of them on my wish list too. Here, a bunch of emoji gifts in every price range — yes even DIY — that would make fabulous...

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11 last-minute essentials at CVS that help you survive Thanksgiving weekend

As a busy parent, I greatly appreciate the idea of a one-stop shop for, well…everything. But as a busy parent during the holidays, I really appreciate it. This is why we’ve all been huge CVS fans around here, and we’re so happy they’re our newest sponsor. And yes, we’re all also fans of the gihugic money-saving cashback receipts. Laugh if you will; that’s free money right there! So before my trip north for Thanksgiving this year, I made a quick stop with my girls to pick up a bunch of pre-Thanksgiving essentials that you might want to have on hand too, from the big brand stuff,...

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5 smart, simple, pediatrician-recommended winter skin care tips for babies and kids.

With cold weather pretty much here for lots of us, and on the way for the rest of us (wah!), this is the time of year we start getting more reader questions about baby and kids’ skincare. I know it’s hard to weed through all the info; I’m sure you’ve read all sorts of things about what to do, what not to do, which of those lotions and potions in your medicine cabinet to use, and how to differentiate a minor skin issue from something that might require more attention If you’re like me, by the time you figure out what you’re...

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Winter is coming. Which just means Sorel boot season for some of us, and not a new season of Game of Thrones. (Sorry.)

You Game of Thrones fans are all “Winter is coming!” and when this non-fan (yes, I know) hears it, all it means to me is “Time to buy boots!” And yes, we’ve featured a slew of cool ankle boots already, but if you’re in the market for a new winter boot, then you’ll want to take a peek at the ones I’ve noticed some of our staff sharing with each other through email and Facebook. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: Our pick for the best snow boots worth the investment So, it all started when Lisa, our Director of Sponsorhips, sent...

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Unicorn horn headbands for Halloween or everyday. Because being a magical, mythological creature never goes out of style.

When these adorable unicorn horn headbands landed in my inbox over the weekend, I immediately forwarded it to Liz and said “Cool, right?!” which is why you’re seeing them right now. If you’ve got an indecisive little one in your house, or hey, want a little quick and easy Halloween something for yourself, hurry up and order one of these. The handmade unicorn horns from BrooklynOwl.com are actually something my kids would wear all year long because really, winter, spring, summer, or fall, they’re all-season creatures. Ha.   Related: 9 really creative, last-minute Halloween costumes for kids you can DIY They...

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Showing your thanks: 5 simple tips for making military care packages more personal

When my kids’ father was deployed for a few months to Afghanistan, I put together several military care packages filled with fairly typical items. Don’t get me wrong, they were definitely very appreciated by his unit! But it wasn’t until he returned home that I got the inside scoop on what soldiers really want in a military care package. Because this is so personal for me, and for several of our writers with military families, I’m really happy to have the opportunity to share some tips and tricks for how to make a military care package more personal, whether it’s for a family member,...

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Everything you need to know about Handmade at Amazon: Is it the Etsy competitor everyone says it is?

We started Cool Mom Picks shortly after Etsy launched, and we’ve been big fans ever since, discovering and happily sharing some of the coolest indie artisans and their handmade goods here on our site for nearly ten years now. So as huge supporters of the handmade movement and indie artist in general, it’s probably no surprise that our interest was piqued when Handmade at Amazon launched last week. So, we took a closer look to understand what it’s all about, and whether we think it’s something you’ll want to have on your radar, as a consumer, and for those...

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Cool handmade Halloween costumes for kids that can be worn long after Halloween. Like everyday if you’re our kids.

We’ve been huge fans of designer Courtney Chu of Courtney Courtney since she launched her fabulous dresses maaaaany years ago, but these handmade Halloween costumes for kids might just take the cake.   Courtney brilliantly upcycles t-shirts into dresses our own girls have loved and worn for a very long time. They’re stylish, comfortable, and wow, do they last. And now just in time for Halloween, she’s got these fantastic Halloween-inspired dresses, along with ideas on how to make them actual costumes. So smart! It’s hard to pick a favorite but I’m partial to Animal from The Muppets, which ironically is exactly what...

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Fayvel shoes let kids play their own shoe designer

It’s probably no surprise that when a pair of Fayvel shoes for kids arrived at my house, my brood went nuts. There may have been some fighting, actually. Designer Erin Slater was inspired by her own nostalgia for sticker collecting to create shoes that allow today’s kids to do just that, only on their feet. The final concept is brilliant: Shoes with velcro on the sides that allows kids to customize their pair with special patches known as Frieze tags. Think Jibbitz on Crocs, but way cooler. Way way cooler.  At least to me, anyway. As it turns out, it’s not just a gimmick. The sneakers are comfortable,...

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CoverGirl Star Wars MakeUp: We love you. (And yes, we know you know.)

I heard rumors about the CoverGirl Star Wars MakeUp line a couple of months ago, and now, it’s a reality. Yep, coming this Fall, you’ll be able to snatch up the CoverGirl Star Wars: The Force Awakens inspired line at your local drugstore. Sweet! I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect in terms of the color palettes. R2D2 gold? Darth Vader black? Padmé Amidala red that you only wear on half your lips?  But I have to say they look pretty fun, including lipsticks, nail polish, and mascara with very clever packaging. In fact, I might just have to snatch up one...

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RXActive resistance activewear: Could these pants mean less time at the gym and more calories burned?

The summer crunch has been tough on my workout routine, which basically means there has been no workout routine. Sigh. But with fall around the corner and my kids back in school, I’ve got my eye on the gym, though I still don’t want to spend half my morning there. That’s why I was pretty intrigued to try out the RXActive resistance activewear, which are supposed to help you burn up to 14% more calories during your workouts. Not kidding. These magical pants, as I’m calling them, are actually the brainchild of a team of New York University medical...

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Simple tips for getting kids to brush their teeth more independently. You know, beyond begging.

With four kids running around my house, that’s a whole lot of teeth to keep up with, and as much as I’d like to say my kids are always excited and enthusiastic about brushing their teeth on their own for those seemingly endless two minutes that’s recommended by our dentist, it’s just not true. Don’t even get me started about flossing. We’re thrilled to welcome our newest sponsor Reassurance Dental, which offers a dental discount plan that covers your entire family. It’s not dental insurance, but rather, a really affordable alternative; in fact, even if you have dental insurance, it can also act as a...

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Start your day with coffee and a laugh. Thanks, Emily McDowell.

I’m pretty sure that artist Emily McDowell is inside my head, because every single thing she makes I find myself nodding and smiling, maybe laughing, and then laughing some more. And that’s the case with her newest crop of funny coffee mugs which makes the line even bigger. And funnier. You’ve probably seen Emily’s hilarious reusable grocery bags and book totes here on Cool Mom Picks, which have all been big huge hits with our readers, and now, it’s funny coffee mugs. Personally, I think laughing over coffee is a perfect way to start your morning — or if you’re me, mid-morning, lunch, and late afternoon. Okay, sometimes after dinner too, which as you...

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8 tips for bringing even more imagination and creativity to store-bought toys.

We talk a lot about toys that inspire creativity and imagination, and the thing is, in a kid’s world, pretty much everything is a source of creativity and imagination. (See also: Pillow forts, scarves that become hula skirts, and monsters under the bed.) So as much as we’re all for handing a kid a blank sheet of paper and saying, “here you go, kid,” of course they like getting new toys as much as anyone. So I’m always looking for ways to help make my kids’ toys more fun for them — that is, if they don’t beat me to...

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5 fashionable things I’m coveting right now

It’s time for the big Nordstrom sale, which means up to 40% off on lots of goodies I might have kept on my wish list for a whole lot longer. Here, my 5 favorite fashionable items I’m crushing on right now that I hope you love too. CMP is a reward style affiliate.  1. It’s no secret that I’m an MZ Wallace junkie and for good reason; the nylon makes them great all weather bags. For summer, I need something smaller and preferably brighter, which is why this gorgeous blue satchel caught my eye, especially since it can be worn as a...

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A Kate Spade picnic blanket that comes complete with its own grass. Ants not included.

It’s finally the perfect weather for picnics, hooray! Eating al fresco of course isn’t complete without a picnic blanket, but this Kate Spade picnic blanket actually includes the grass too. Just in case that’s a little hard to find for you city dwellers. Related: 9 al fresco recipes for summer picnic perfection Okay, so it’s not real grass, but it looks pretty darn close, doesn’t it? The big difference is that it’s not itchy (sorry, grass) and it wipes clean, a helpful feature if you’re picnicking with children. Or heck, even adults, who might be a little clumsy with their wine sippy cup....

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7 smart, surprising ways to help you cut your spending right now

It’s probably no surprise that I have a penchant for shopping, but for about the last six months in particular, I’ve actually been trying to cut back, seeing as how we’ve now got braces, and summer camp, and hopefully a family vacation to save for. I’m not an overspender, but I admit I do make the extra trip to Starbucks for a coffee when I could easily just make a cup at home (there’s value in getting out of the house when you work at home a lot); and I do have a hard time passing up a hot pair of platform sandals...

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How to wear skinny jeans without flaunting a muffin top. No Spanx required…maybe.

I’ll be honest that after having four kids, I wasn’t sure I’d ever be adding skinny jeans to my wardrobe. While I eventually lost the baby weight (well, most of it anyway), the extra skin made me feel self-conscious. But with some careful shopping and lots of trial and error, I feel like I’ve at last mastered the art of wearing skinny jeans as a not-anywhere-near-size-2 woman. To show that you can do it too, I’m thrilled (like, super thrilled) to welcome AYR as our newest sponsor. They’re a really smart company that was founded to offer perfect fitting jeans, along with versatile, high quality...

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Another reason to love FashionABLE: Wallets!

Most of my friends, family, even my kids’ classroom teachers know by now that FashionABLE is my go-to for gifts because they’re all wearing something from them. Gorgeous scarves, fabulous totes, the list goes on. Well, now they’ve added wallets, I have to say might just be the gift from them I finally give to myself, and not just because they match their amazing leather totes I carry around daily. Okay, maybe a little.   As I just mentioned, I’m a huge fan of black and cognac leather, which is exactly what these handmade leather wallets are made from. But the size is perfect for...

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