Author: Nicole Blades

Because Of Them, We Can: Where kids honor our Black History heroes, charmingly

To be honest, Black History Month is year round for me. As a black woman, especially one living in the U.S., I’m reminded of and inspired by the endless contributions of black people to the collective betterment of this nation on a daily basis. And now, as a mother raising a brown boy here, I’m even more grateful for Black History Month to help me educate my son about the expansive history of African Americans. One remarkable non-profit campaign that I’ve leaned on to introduce him to new, significant heroes is Because Of Them, We Can. What started as a visual project...

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The end-of-summer bucket list: 9 fun, easy ways to get in some last-minute fun in August

Hey, wait a minute. Is that you, August? How did you get here so fast? I know I’m not the only one who feels like this. Wasn’t it April just yesterday? Instead of trying to wrap our collective heads around the theory of relativity, let’s focus on how we can drain every last drop of fun out of this summer with our kids. Because in a blink, they’ll be back to school and we’ll be back to packing lunches (oh. yay.) again. Unless you’re one of those families who already has kids back in school, take a look at what I think...

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Painting For Peace in Ferguson: A children’s book with a message of hope and community

This past Sunday, August 9, marked one year since the death of Michael Brown and the subsequent uprising in Ferguson, Missouri.  Despite the many months that have passed, trying to make sense of the heartbreak and horror of everything that’s happened in this country recently remains a challenge for so many us. Processing the racial injustice, the hate, the death and devastation is difficult, to say the least. And as parents trying to explain any of it to our children — so many of us don’t even have the words. This is where the children’s book Painting for Peace in Ferguson can...

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Planning family resort vacations: 6 essential questions to ask yourself before you book.

So, you want to go to a resort with the fam on vacation? Lucky you. I just did it and I can help! But first know, that as with most anything that involves tiny humans, tweens, teens — or any combination of them — you’ll need a clear plan. And the best way to start building one is to ask yourself an important question: What kind of vacation do you want to have? Are you going for easy or adventurous? Do you want it to be laid-back or structured? Basically, what’s going to leave everyone giddy and smiling? (Except for maybe any moody,...

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7 fun, funny and fab book totes for all your summer reads, whatever your style

Along with sunshine, cloudless skies and seriously earned chill time, this time of year also brings with it the celebrated Summer Reads season. You know, those great books filled with thrills, mystery, laughs, romance, history, and frolic that everyone is saying you absolutely must read this minute. We’re all for it; let’s turn those pages! But first, how about nabbing a cute book tote to stash all that summer reading? Hey, if you can’t put your book down, might as well take it with you. So we’ve got 7 fun, funny and fashionable book totes perfect for trips to the library or honestly,...

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Cute, cozy, durable pajamas for kids: Our tried and true favorites. Let the snuggle party begin.

According to that rascal of a groundhog last week, it looks like winter will be sticking around the Northeast for six more weeks. I’m pulling out my Silver Linings Playbook, and choosing to see it as an extension on snuggle parties with my youngster. And everyone knows that warm, comfy PJs are an absolute must for proper snuggling.  So here are 6 cute and cozy — and above all, durable — pajamas for kids I love, from baby up to school age. We love that they are built to last (no holes in the knees after two wearings, yay!) and because...

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9 outstanding Black History Month books for kids of all ages

Black History Month is the perfect time for us to widen our scope on the lives of Black people in this country and their ongoing contributions to its advancement. In school, our kids typically learn about the impact that people like Martin Luther King, Jr., Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, and George Washington Carver had and continue to have on our lives. But there are so many more people — unsung heroes, revolutionaries, artists, writers, activists, and everyday citizens — who have done remarkable things that deserve the spotlight as well. To honor them and their work, here are 10 excellent...

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American Museum of Natural History and J. Crew make history with cool science t-shirts

When I took my son to the American Museum of Natural History in NYC last summer, I realized that I’d forgotten how full of fun and wonder museums can be. The fab collection of museum-inspired science t-shirts for kids from J. Crew for AMNH is bringing it all back–for him and for me. The six designs are largely gender neutral and integrate fun science facts. How long are a T. Rex’s teeth? What will you find in the Hall of Gems? I’m not going to tell you. But the shirts can lead you to the answers.   Related: Rock star science shirts for rock...

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4 fantastic books for kids about MLK to help educate kids while you celebrate

Today we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and his innumerable contributions to this nation’s history and advancement and books for kids about MLK can be a great way to help little ones understand the importance of the day. Although it’s a holiday in most states and therefore, understandably, a day to relax, I do like that many Americans instead treat it as a “day on” and seek out ways to volunteer in their communities and participate in one of the Day of Service events scheduled across the country. It’s an excellent opportunity to usher in the concept of service to...

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A twist on holiday photo cards that’s shiny and bright (and pretty darn neat)

Holiday photo cards have become such indelible parts of the season, they’re right up there with shiny wrapping paper, gift-giving, Cyber Monday sales, and gingerbread lattes at Starbucks. (Take a seat, PSL™, you’ll have had your time by then). Since some of you are already asking us about cool holiday photo cards–and we bow down to you–the first really newsworthy ones have come across your desks. This year, the talented folks at Artifact Uprising, whose gorgeous photo books our readers have all gone nuts for, have added a cool twist to the usual holiday greeting tradition with a clever new 3-in-1 Photo Card. It’s...

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