Author: Roxanna

A simple tote bag with a powerful mission of hope from ESPEROS

We love it when a favorite company is back on the scene with a new product, especially when that product does a world of good for someone in need. ESPEROS provides education for disadvantaged children while making gorgeous and practical bags. The company has a simple mission: One bag. One child. One year. {Keep reading after the jump for a chance to win a new ESPEROS tote!} When you get one of the simply practical (and yes, cool) bags by ESPEROS you give back, and you do it in a big way. Because every ESPEROS bag sold provides a...

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Clever photo gifts aren’t just for grandparents, you know. 5 great photo gift ideas that kids will love.

When you think of custom photo gifts, most people probably think of calendars for Grandma–sweet, but a bit predictable. So why not use photos to make gifts for the littlest members of your family too? Kids love to look at faces–especially familiar ones–so we think it’s a terrific idea to make custom photo gifts for our kiddos. For a few years, we’ve happened to love the quality of Pinhole Press holiday cards and photo products, so we’re thrilled to see some of the amazing new products they have out just in time for the holidays. Check out the collection...

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ABCs from a time when B was for Balloon, not Boy Band

My mother-in-law is amazing at keeping childhood treasures — we have everything from my husband’s toy car collection to original copies of his favorite children’s books — and we treasure this vintage ephemera so. I love that these old toys and books are just as beautiful and appropriate now as they were back then, because childhood is truly timeless. Sometimes I wonder if these books will still be around when my kids have children of their own. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Which is why, while we definitely hang onto these old toys and books, I simply cannot imagine tearing...

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4 of the coolest superhero invitations for your little dreamer

I’m a big fan of superheroes, and therefore, cool superhero invitations. I’m pretty sure your kids are too. I love seeing my kids practice being good people while pretending to be courageous, powerful and strong. I mean, sure, sometimes they also pretend that they can fly from the couch to the side chairs (“nooooooo!”) but as long as the kids don’t try to defy gravity, superhero play is A-OK at our house.  Know what else I’m a fan of? The pop graphics that superheroes like to wrap themselves in. The bright colors, bold words and multiple exclamation marks are...

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Gift wrapping made easy (and pretty!)

Have you ever been to a white elephant gift exchange? Then you know how everyone goes for the box with the prettiest bow, even though we all know that’s the one that has the stale apple and branded notepad in it. That’s because presentation counts when it comes to gifts — pretty packages are irresistible. They make the recipient feel special, which is the whole point of gift giving, if you think about it. But there’s nothing worse than running out to buy a gift, and then having to run out, again, to pay for overpriced gift wrap and...

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Fourth of July crafts and DIY projects for the family

Earlier this week it was fun finding some of the most beautiful Fourth of July printables and decor, and now for you DIY’ers, I’ve rounded up fun Fourth of July crafts so you can celebrate America’s 236th birthday party in style. Whether you’re firing up the grill or not. Independence Day is a great day for family fun: the kids are out of school, chances are there’s a parade nearby, and the sky will soon be filled with fireworks. Days like this only happen once a year–let’s make it special! –Roxanna I always suspected candy buttons were easy to...

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Fourth of July party printables and decor to make your cookout a standout

I love Fourth of July parties, but not all Fourth of July party decor. Beer, hot dogs, fireworks and vintage Americana are good. Red white and blue painted garden gnomes, not so much. I’ve tracked down these cool, classy options for festive decorating including some easy printables. Couple that with a hot grill and add some sparklers, and now there’s no excuse not to celebrate America’s birthday in style. –Roxanna Beer is the official drink of summer, but gets far more fun with these patriotic beer bottle labels which add an unexpected touch of retro charm to your brews....

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A babysitting coop that’s smarter than your average babysitting coop

Babysitting coops, in which a group of parents agree to exchange babysitting services with each other aways sound like a great idea — until you realize that someone has to keep track of who babysat whom and manage a complicated point system. And then there are those times you need a sitter, but none of your neighbors are around. Enter a smart service called SittingAround. SittingAround is a valuable online source for your babysitting coop, and more. You create a mix of trusted parents (or join an existing one) who are willing to trade babysitting hours with you, along with...

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Girls’ birthday party ideas – Little Red Riding Hood or Alice in Wonderland

Girls’ birthday party ideas can still be girlie, even if you want to avoid the same old princess theme. Which is why I instantly fell in love with the downloadable, customizable party kits at Creative Little Stars, based around classic storybook themes. And they’re super affordable too. Any party planner worth her salt will tell you that setting the mood is 50% of the party. (Planning for fun is the other half of course!) And any mom planning a kid’s birthday will tell you that paying a fortune for them is not ideal. Through Creative Little Stars, for less...

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Zutano boys’ clothes now as close as your nearest Tarzhay

Mamas of brand new little boys, I have good news for you: Beloved children’s clothing designer brand Zutano has a new collection available at Target — and it happens to be adorable. We all know how hard it can be to find cute clothes for boys; the Zutano for Target collection is coordinated so you can have fun mixing and matching unique outfits. And since all pieces cost between $4 and $12 you can put together a bright and happy designer layette for your precious baby boy at great prices. The one down side: Zutano Blue runs just to 9 months, so...

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Sunny days, sweeping those clouds away

My kids have tons of cheap sunglasses — they’re fun and perfect for when they’re playing spies, but I know they’re not ideal when we’re in the sun. In fact, they always seem to “borrow” my expensive sunglasses when we’re outside. Hm, I think they might be on to something. What’s the point of wearing flimsy sunglasses if you’re still going to squint when you’re in the sun? Exactly. The Bubble sunglasses for kids by Julbo are certainly not cheap at $40, but if you’re concerned about eye safety, they’re definitely worth the price. The glasses are covered in...

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Easy retro cupcakes for modern parties

Everybody loves cupcakes, but decorating them can be majorly intimidating. You can always outsource, of course, but spending a fortune at a fancy bakery for a kid’s birthday isn’t very appetizing either.  This is why I’m in L-O-V-E with these adorable Belle and Boo cupcake wraps; they add a touch of whimsy with very little effort. And they’re perfect for either a boy or a girl — what could be easier? Now you don’t have to stress in order to serve homemade cupcakes you can be proud of. Just slip these over your lovingly made but lopsided creations and...

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Latino cool for the little ones

As a Hispanic mother, I know first-hand how difficult it is to find children’s products that celebrate our culture without being cheesy. Sure, it’s easy enough to find products for Spanish learners in the US, but there’s more to growing up Hispanic than the ability to roll your Rs and I want my children to appreciate that as early as possible.  I love the t-shirts at Dos Borreguitas because they strike the perfect balance between all-American hipness and Latin tradition. The designs take advantage of the playfulness of the Spanish language and twist traditional sayings into clever designs. My favorite...

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Can’t find the perfect baby bedding? Design your own.

Decorating the nursery is one of the best–or most frustrating, depending on your point of view–rituals of pregnancy. Whether you’re a perfectionist that knows exactly what you want and can’t find it anywhere (oh, how I feel you!) or are seriously design-challenged, we’ve found a great online tool that helps you visualize your dream nursery and have a lot of fun while you’re at it. The Nursery Designer by Carousel Designs is a cool online tool that lets you design your own custom crib bedding online, right to the smallest detail. You can mix and match fabrics freely or...

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Quilts for the design snob in all of us

When I think of quilts, modern isn’t the word that jumps to mind. Cozy and comforting? Yes. Hip and fresh? Not really.  So when I came across the quilts made by Etsy seller Deer and Hippo I was delighted and more than a little surprised by just how at home they would be in the most modern of nurseries. They’re just the thing to add a bit of warmth to baby’s room. Each quilt is a one-of-a-kind heirloom piece meant to be loved and used for many years, just like a traditional quilt. But unlike a traditional quilt, these will...

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The new Petunia Pickle Bottom layette is here. Just in time for spring!

Our youngest will be in preschool this fall, and I don’t miss the diapering–but I will admit to a moment (or two) of weakness when I saw the brand new spring layette for babies 0-9 months by mom-favorite brand Petunia Picklebottom. First amazing bags, then Ergo baby carriers, then iPhone covers–and now clothing. Makes sense to me. Why shouldn’t the company with some of the most beautiful textiles start making some of the most adorable spring outfits ever? Here, some of my favorites: [get a glimpse at the gorgeous new designs after the jump!] I love the fact that...

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Hot trend alert: Chevrons are for kids!

Chevron stripes have been one of the hottest design trends and far less polarizing than the moustache. Chevrons are literally on every available surface, and I’m still in no mood to give them up–they just make everything look so fun and fresh. Whatever you call them, chevron or zig zags, these stripes are here to stay. Here are my favorite ways to see them on kids. It’s birthday party season at my house, so I’ve had my eye on these little bitty party favor bags by Whisker Graphics — the bold colorful zigzags make them perfect for parties. This simple...

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Making your own bouquets look like those pricy ones. You can do it!

Artfully arranged flowers are one of life’s most fleeting luxuries. Since I’m not an heiress, I pick up flowers at Trader Joe’s or the grocery store when I do my weekly shopping — the flowers are inexpensive, and a flower’s a flower right? The only problem is that when I get home with a bunch of flowers I have no idea what to do with them. So I plop them in a vase (as artfully as possible of course) and wonder why they never look as nice as professionally arranged flowers. Now they do. When I learned about the Flower...

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Stylish boys’ clothes. No trucks.

I know you’ve heard that old complaint about how boring it is to dress a boy. I hear it all the time, and I think it’s nonsense.  Sure, I can’t dress my sons in adorable outfits that I wish I could steal for myself; let’s say we have different taste in clothes. But there are still plenty of options to allow them to develop their own sense of individual style, which may not necessarily involve trucks, motorcycles or hockey sticks. [see some gorgeous boys styles after the jump!] This is we’re such big fans of Bobinette round these parts:...

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The perfect board book for baby’s first Valentine

If you’re looking for a ridiculously adorable Valentine for your baby too young for sweets, we’ve got just the thing. And it’s not edible. But that doesn’t mean your baby won’t try to eat it. Created by Joyce Wan, the artist behind Kiwi and Pear, We Belong Together a board book with a simple message: sometimes love is as simple as peanut butter and jelly–it’s just meant to be. It’s a soothing message that the youngest children (and their parents) will appreciate. The board book features sweetly illustrated pairs that go perfectly together like cookies and milk or marshmallows and cocoa, and...

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