Author: Lexi Petronis

You recycle, you upcycle…and now you can Hipcycle

There is nothing that gets my inner MacGyver going more than upcycling. The creativity it takes to see something useful in a random everyday object–love it, not to mention the fact it can be an earth-friendlier way to shop. It totally explains my current bag of choice: it’s woven out of seatbelts and utterly indestructible, no matter how many leaking sippy cups are in it. It’s also the best conversation starter practically ever.  So this brand-new upcycling site has got 100% of my attention. The just-launched Hipcycle has some of the coolest upcycled gear I’ve seen in a long time–all...

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Supercute superhero dolls

Sometimes it feels like we’re in the middle of a plastic doll takeover. Those little dudes are everywhere (pretty sure most of them are in my living room) I am more convinced than ever that the last thing the world needs is another plastic guy. These handmade superheroes just might save the day. Hand-knit with the softest cotton yarn by a mom who’s been there, these little superhero dolls by Dents de Loup are totally adventure-ready. There’s nothing artificial about them, and they remind me of Teeny Little Super Guy from “Sesame Street”–a retro superdude with lots of heart and ’70s-sass. The...

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Kids costumes that look handmade (because they are)

I did this thing last year where I decided it to hand-make my daughter a Big Bird costume for Halloween–feather by feather. I’m not a natural costume-maker, so the whole thing was imperfect–but it was fun to make and she dug it. This year, time constraints and other crazy life things make it not so possible to attempt such a feat, but I’ve found a pretty great substitute. The line of kids’ costumes from Pure Play Kids are as close to homemade as you can get–because they are. From the train engineer costume and construction worker costume to queen and princess, each...

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A breakfast that you can squeeze into the morning

I started a new job right about the time my little guys went back to preschool. The rush to get everyone where they need to be has made our mornings a little, uh, more hectic than we’re used to. And while I do manage to give the kids a good breakfast in the morning, I cannot remember the last time I actually did so for myself. Fortunately, these new organic smoothies are a step in the right breakfast direction. The HappySqueeze pouches are the ultimate eat-on-the-run food, since you just pop the top and start slurping.  Organic, low in...

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Monster tees for your monster dude

Lots of mamas to boys have a common complaint: not enough awesome boy clothing in the world. But you know what? Around here, we see more and more evidence that boy clothes are starting to rock. Like these, for example, from a most unexpected place. The boy clothing from Hanna Andersson is just too rad. I mean, look at these Go Monsters thermal tees: soft, washed cotton with graphics of monsters that are neither cutesy nor scary. The perfect blend of innocent mischief and mayhem, blended into a super-comfy shirt. And I would be lying if I said I...

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Indian Prints

Indian patterns are totally (and beautifully) on-trend right now– we wrote about Ikats and other beautiful prints a few months ago, and our allegiance has yet to waver. Especially since we saw these lovely designs. Hammocks & High Tea‘s new “Dreamweaver” collection is as gorgeous and global as can be. It’s a whole line of accessories made up entirely of handcrafted and eco-friendly fabrics, printed with water-based, solvent-free inks: tea towels, napkins, pillows, totes, and scarves. I’m especially taken with the dopp kits. All the prints are produced to evoke the beautiful texture of traditional ikat weaving, and depending...

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Practical kids furniture or delicious eye candy? How about both?

I’ve been on a self-imposed no-new-furniture diet lately–we kind of either have to buy a new house or knock down a few walls at this point–so this brand-new line of gorgeous kids’ furniture is absolute eye candy. Which may turn to in-my-house candy if I’m not careful. Launching this very second on the invitation-only Fab today, Wadaly is the coolest blend of modern, high-end, and whimsical. That’s uh, emphasis on high-end. I’m seriously dying over the Cloud Bench, an amazing storage trunk with pop-out cloud drawers (shown) and the House Bookcase; but for little kids, the Crib + Changer, the...

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Thank-you cards that your kids will love to write

My mom was amazing with personal notes–she always produced the loveliest card, written just-so, perfectly on-time, for every occasion.  Her mastery of the art form skipped a generation. But the good news is that means my kids have a fair shot at note-writing expertise–and these adorable new educational cards can only help. Letter Learning is a line of educational greeting cards for kids, invented by teacher and mama Ellen Richard. There’s a card for every occasion–from birthdays to party invites to “just because,” with cute illustrations and pre-made words that kids trace out so that they’re “writing” while learning to write...

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Can you tell me how to get, how to get this really cool sign?

My kids love Sesame Street. Hey, I love Sesame Street. So we have a lot of Sesame Street decorations around our house–if by decorations we mean random books on the floor and half-dressed Muppet dolls. But we all really love the looks of this totally personalized Sesame Street inspired sign. Michelle Knox runs a shop selling custom invitations on Etsy but it turns out she’s also pretty rad when it comes to kid decor. She and her husband whipped up a personalized Sesame Street sign out of pine for their daughter’s themed party and it stole the show. So now you...

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Eco-friendly felt name tags – back-to-school awesomeness

I’ve been staring down the task of tagging a bunch of different items for my daughter’s foray back to school. I don’t know if it’s because she’s now a pre-K-er–a.k.a., one of the “big kids,” (sniff)–or if that eau de Sharpie isn’t my favorite scent in the world. Either way, I’ve been putting it off. Not anymore, thanks to these adorable personalized felt name tags. Hand-stitched on soft crafting felt and available in 17 different colors, these, personalized nametags from Chloe in Style are as cute as can be, and totally reusable. Of course you’re not going to buy...

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Exclusive: The Appaman Fall 2011 collection is here. Prepare to drool.

Every year right about now, I am so excited to whip out my fall wardrobe that I start wearing my new sweaters in hopes of forcing the weather to get cold. It’s always too early, which results in an extra-sweaty couple of weeks. I would not put my kids through this uncomfortable process, but getting an exclusive sneak peek at the just-released-today Fall 2011 collection from CMP favorite Appaman has made me very seriously reconsider.   If you’re not familiar with Appaman (what?!), they’re a Brooklyn-inspired, urban-adorable, and utterly wearable clothes line — in other words, ridiculously cool street...

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Getting organized just got a whole lot cuter

In the name of back-to-school for the kids and a new full-time job for me, it is high time to get the bills, to-do lists, paperwork, random photos and kiddo artwork into some kind of workable order.  Yes, I’ve said that about 87,000 times this summer alone. But this time I really, really mean it. After all, I didn’t have these cool stick-ems before. Stickr pockets from BUTCH & Harold are going to help me seem more organized than I am–which, in my book, is almost as good as actually being organized.  For $14.95, you get a packet of three adorable...

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Because every child deserves a loving “om”

It was only upon attending an awesome preschool class a few months ago that my daughter learned there was a difference between “yoga” and “yogurt.” Now, she is a huge fan of both. Presumably for different reasons. That’s why I was excited to introduce her to these adorble kids’ yoga mats–designed by a real yoga teacher mama. The Little Yoga Mat is a pint-sized mat for kids. Each is just a quarter of the size of grown-up mats, so they’re lightweight and easy for small bodies to carry, put down, and use. They’re gorgeously designed in chakra-friendly colors (so pretty),...

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“Mominate” a do-gooding mama to win $5,000 for her favorite charity

Moms are a busy lot. And when we’re not tending to scrapes, taking kids to library story hour, and finding random tater tots on our person, some of us are doing stuff like– oh, changing the world through charitable initiatives and smart business ideas. You know. No big whoop. Actually, it’s a huge whoop. That’s why Babble is now taking “mominations” to find mothers who are working to make a difference in their communities and around the globe in all kinds of ways. Like Jennifer Ramo, who secured federal funding for before-school breakfast programs for students without enough food to...

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How to make MYHABIT your habit

I love shopping for clothes. But what I really, really love is shopping for clothes and getting a great deal. That’s why finding out about this private fashion deal site set off my Pavlovian response–just subtract the drool. Oh, who am I kidding; add the drool back in. Especially considering they just launched an entire section for home decor too. MYHABIT is the private fashion deal site by Amazon. Think Gilt or Rue La La, but with at least 60% off designer clothing for men, women, and kids, plus free shipping (always!). The brands are rad, trending toward things...

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Renting a maternity dress? Totally.

When I was six months pregnant with my second baby, the company I worked for was putting on a big, fancy shindig. Said shindig required me to go on a stage and speak in front of 800 people. I started to stress–mostly about what to wear. I wanted a stylish, non-mall-bought maternity dress–but I didn’t want to spend tons of cash on a frock I wouldn’t be able to wear ever again, no matter how designer it was. Mine for Nine, where were you 18 months ago? The site is a treasure trove of maternity dresses that would normally...

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The case of the disappearing boo-boos

My daughter is in the beautiful beginning stages of tree-climbing, which has left her with the usual variety of not-at-all-serious scrapes and bruises. I think she loves finding a new boo-boo to cover up with a Band-Aid as much as she loves trying to climb the tree.  Problem is, we just discovered she has a mild latex allergy–her favorite bandages are now off-limits. Luckily, there’s something new for her to use on her miniature bumps and bruises. Boo-Boo Cover-Up has the healing power of ointment mixed with the camouflaging capabilities of a bandage. It looks like a tube of concealer,...

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The most helpful site for NYC mamas in search of… well, everything

I didn’t have kids yet when I lived in New York, but if I did–or should we ever happen to move back (could happen!)–I’d need some help getting it all together. A toddler bed to fit in a Manhattan apartment? Recommendations for a fabulous nanny? A gently-used city stroller for two? These are things for which you could turn to anonymous classified sites, but would you really want to when there’s a safer, more trustworthy alternative? Blueleo is a site filled with classifieds specifically for parents in the NYC vicinity, including Westchester, New Jersey, Long Island, and Fairfield. In...

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Social Goodies blends great shopping deals with great causes

I don’t know about you, but these days, my inbox is totally overwhelmed with messages from good-deal sites. Don’t get me wrong, they’re all awesome deals–I’m glad I signed up for all of them, and wish I could nab every bargain. But for me to sign up for a new one these days, it has to be different from the others. That’s why Social Goodies is rocking my casbah. Social Goodies is the newest in daily-deals sites–but with a twist. Every day, there’s a new, awesome deal up for grabs, like $12 for $24 worth of trendy sunglasses from 80’s...

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3 insanely crazy high-end cribs. Prepare to gawk.

At the end of the day–and there really is an end of the day, when baby has no choice but to conk out, at least for a little while, anyway–all you really need is a good, sturdy crib so that your little one is safe and snug, right? Well, maybe not. For some parents, crib aesthetics figure prominently into the equation. Maybe basic is too boring? Maybe they’ve got a million dollars that they need to spend before midnight to win a Japanese reality show contest? In which case, these cribs really up the ante. At Nurseryworks, unique cribs...

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