Author: Stephanie Slate

Tiny personalized nameplate rings from Julian & Co: proving good things really do come in small packages

For all the complaining I may do about tough days with my kids –the temper tantrums, the homework, the incessant snack preparation, and on and on– there’s not a gift that makes me smile bigger than anything personalized with their lovely names. Especially jewelry. Being able to keep my littles close to me and think of them when they aren’t around makes me blissfully forgetful of the last angry thing they shouted at me as we got ready for school in the morning. That’s why the new Tiny Nameplate Rings from mom-run CMP favorite company Julian & Co. would...

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This cute and crafty DIY calendar kit has us in stitches. Literally.

I’ve always been pretty crafty. Problem is, I’ve also always been kind of unmotivated to gather up all the materials required for said craftiness. So I’ll get these great ideas for homemade holiday gifts and then never follow through. Until now! I’ve found an adorable embroidery DIY calendar kit from Heather Lins Home that will leave me with no excuses but to cross-stitch my heart out as soon I get my hands on it. The 2014 Year in Stitches Calendar Kit comes with everything you need to stitch your way through the months of the year. All twelve months...

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Personalized paper dolls: Coolest gift in the world. Ever.

Little kids can be tougher to buy gifts for than it might seem. Either they want absolutely everything, or they can’t think of one thing they want. Which is why I’m flipping out over the personalized paper dolls from Sandy Ford Design. What are they? Basically the coolest gift in the world. You send in an image of your child and within 48-hours get a JPG of a doll that looks exactly like her (or him), along with 5, 10, or 20 outfits. Never fear if you’re not the DIY type; you can order dolls and outfits printed and ready to...

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This Mixtape Stamp Activity Kit is even cooler than the mixtapes of our youth

My kids complain because we never use wrapping paper at Christmas. We’ve been using the same reusable fabric for all our gifts since they were born, but I think I’ve found a little something from CMP Fave Yellow Owl Workshop that might make me reconsider. The Mixtape Stamp Activity Kit is begging for presents to be wrapped in brown craft paper. Wrap ’em up, skip the ribbons, and decorate them with one of these awesome natural rubber stamps and the included blue ink pad. Adorable. Plus it’s just so darn cute to imagine filling in the “to” and “from”...

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Dasher, Rudolph and this guy: an adorable personalized reindeer ornament for the tree

You know Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, and the rest, but now there’s a reindeer lovelier than all of them. (I know I haven’t technically seen any of them, but surely it’s tough to look good after a day spent traveling around the world.) CMP fave Paloma’s Nest has a custom Christmas ornament so simple and beautiful, I think even Rudolph might soon have competition for most famous reindeer of all. Their Personalized Reindeer Ornament would be such a lovely addition to a family Christmas tree this year. Cut from a piece of wood and bedecked in a crisp, cotton ribbon that...

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Calling all germaphobes: booger-free shopping carts, swings, and high chairs

I have a confession to make: I used a grocery cart cover obsessively with my first child. Now that that’s out of the way, I have another confession to make: I never used one with my second kid. And with my third? Not a chance. But the germaphobe in me would have loved to. I just couldn’t stand carrying that big, bulky thing around. But now there’s a very cool option available–and I definitely would have taken this with me everywhere. If only the Cool Wazoo had existed way back when! This intriguing new product isn’t just a shopping cart cover....

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Classic wood toys that don’t cost a billion dollars

I admit it: I am obsessed with wood toys, despite the fact that, cost-wise, I can get a gazillion plastic toys for one fab wooden toy. Wood is a little more mainstream now in the world of baby toys, but I find the prices haven’t decreased much. But CMP fave Skip Hop has been introducing affordable wood toys to the market…and I couldn’t be more enamored.   The latest Skip Hop wood toys, the Giraffe Safari line, have totally captured my heart. For starters, I am crazy in love with the origami-esque Fold & Play Book and want it for myself. And the little Flip...

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The FashionABLE birthday sale: You get the gifts, and so do women halfway around the world.

Three years ago, a small company was founded that would forever change the lives of so many women and mothers in Ethiopia. You may already know how much we love FashionABLE, their beautiful handmade scarves and leather goods, and everything they’re doing to bring women out of poverty to create better lives for themselves. Now it’s time to celebrate their third birthday in style, with a super awesome sale this week only. Starting today, FashionABLE will be celebrating three years with a sale on every beautiful item in their shop including their new fall collection. Every writer from Cool Mom Picks got one...

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Birthday parties every weekend? You’ll want to have these cards up your sleeve.

My daughter has been prancing around the house lately claiming she’s the Princess of Parties. She’s been invited to a bazillion birthday parties since school started and it’s clearly going to her head. I generally try to get my kids to make their own cards for their friends, but with all the parties, it’s a bit of a sweatshop around here. So the Princess of Parties and I are opting for some top-notch help.         The amazing greeting cards from Dear Hancock Paper Goods are fantastic to keep on hand. Each one is lovelier than the next. I swear,...

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Mamas & Papas Armadillo stroller review: minor investment, major ride

I’ve been noticing a trend lately away from some of the fancier budget-breaking dollar strollers and toward excellent quality strollers that do everything you want, but still leave room in the budget for other things. (Like, say, an iPhone 5s.) It’s not that I’m not into the fancy-schmancy strollers–because I am–it’s just that sometimes we parents want more than just a stroller. And the latest stroller from CMP fave, Mamas and Papas, is just that kind of budget-friendly baby ride. The Armadillo stroller (and yes, the name sounds like it could be from Bugaboo) has a lovely array of bright canopy and...

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The Mountain Buggy Cosmopolitan Stroller is a seriously posh ride

With my youngest almost three years old, I’m almost out of the stroller world. I admit it: that bums me out. Because I loooove strollers. Especially the strollers from Mountain Buggy. I’ve fallen hard for their newest one, because it’s pretty much perfect. Hey…can I borrow your baby?   The Mountain Buggy Cosmopolitan stroller is a new look for Mountain Buggy with the same reliable performance and a super-smooth ride. For starters, the denim fabric is stylish without going over the top. Available in three bright color options for the cotton inner lining, the subtle denim outer fabric is a very cool...

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Ergobaby Swaddlers: bringing adorable baby burritos to a bedroom near you

Every time I get to review a product intended for a tiny baby, my heart skips a beat. I love tiny babies. I really do. And though my three are much more than enough for me, I still get wistful when a great baby product comes to my door. Especially when it’s something new by a CMP fave like Ergobaby.   The new Ergobaby Swaddler is a lovely addition to the product line of a company that has been calming babies for years. And just like their celebrated carriers, this swaddler aims to keep babies’ hips and legs in a proper...

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Kinderwagon Hop: At last, a double stroller you can take anywhere

What is it about strollers that makes a big kid want to ride in one as soon as there’s a little kid in there? Nothing like a second baby to help you understand the need for a double stroller, even if you thought you were out of the weeds on that one. Fortunately there’s a fabulous new double stroller perfect for those who don’t want to pay the big bucks for a super fancy one.    We first checked out the Kinderwagon HOP Stroller earlier this year and have been waiting ages for the revamped version to be available. And now...

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Printable personalized school labels: No, you can’t stick one to the head they’d lose if it wasn’t attached

With kids heading back to school (um, where did summer go?), it’s time to start that long process of putting their names on everything they own. And that’s where school labels makes it so much easier. Especially this DIY version which can save you a ton of money, and let you have some fun in the process. Sometimes (like when you have a whole lot of children) investing in a whole bunch of labels when you’re also buying new school supplies, clothes, gym uniforms, and shoes can seem a little daunting. So that’s where the Printable Personalized Label Set from the...

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Ergobaby X-tra: The baby carrier we love now with a little extra awesome.

My first son turned me into a hard-core babywearer when he made it mighty clear that he hated riding in strollers or car seats. We’d travel everywhere with nothing but our Ergobaby carrier and a diaper or two. Magic! So my ears perked up when I heard that Ergobaby’s got a new carrier…with even more appeal. Although the size of the Ergobaby carrier was never an issue for my husband or me, we definitely had friends and family who could have used a few extra inches on the straps. And that’s precisely what the folks at Ergobaby were hearing...

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How to stop your kids from drawing on the walls? Actually, don’t.

There’s probably not a kid in existence who hasn’t dreamed of drawing on the walls. Okay, most of them actually do it at least once in their lives. Now imagine you loved the results. That’s where CMP fave Wee Gallery comes in.     Their new Dress Me Wallpaper is designed with artistic kids (or adults) in mind. Sweet black-and-white images of Wee Gallery’s distinctively adorable characters adorn the paper, but they’re missing something: clothes. So kids get to design their own outfits for the bunny, fox, and piggy. Serious fun. Now I probably wouldn’t introduce this wallpaper into my home if there...

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New Mountain Buggy MB Mini stroller review: possibly the only stroller you’ll ever need

When I’m out and about with my three kids, the last thing I want to worry about is whether or not my stroller will be able to handle whatever it is we’re doing that day. Will it fit through the doorway at the bank? Will it get stuck in rocks, mud, sand, or snow? Will it fold up easily and fit into our car? I have always been a huge fan of Mountain Buggy strollers, but now I love their strollers even more with this clever new addition. The new MB Mini is a perfect stroller for anyone looking...

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Now you and Seth Rogen can send a funny birthday card together. For charity.

The next time you need to send a birthday card to someone special, wouldn’t it be even better if you got Seth Rogen to help out? Because you can.      Thanks to Treat, the greeting card service from Shutterfly, Seth has joined Treat’s Celebrity Birthday Card Collection to create a pair of funny cards ready for easy customization. You can even add a photo. Better than that, though, is the fact that Seth’s card makes a donation to Hilarity for Charity. So you’re not just giving a card, you’re helping to raise money and awareness for Alzheimer’s. Which,...

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The best bag for vacationing with baby…and baby’s 14 tons of stuff

I consider myself a pretty light packer, but traveling with kids can make an overpacker of the best of us. Especially if a baby is involved. Those tiny people sure don’t travel light. Luckily, the wise folks at Phil & Ted’s have found a way to make packing tons of stuff a total breeze.   Phil & Ted’s new Universal Travel Bag is designed to protect and carry all of the baby’s essentials (and then some). First and foremost, it’s a stroller bag. Because of its unique wrap design, this bag is adaptable to almost any stroller you want to pack. It’s...

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Bugaboo’s game-changer: the new all-terrain Buffalo stroller

I have always loved Bugaboo strollers. They’re lovely to look at and easy to push. The design is always exceptional and functional. And they’ve got pretty darn good street-cred. But until now, my existence in a city that’s covered in snow for at least half the year has kept my lust in check.   All of a sudden, however, the all-terrain Bugaboo Buffalo stroller has charged onto the stroller scene and I’m ready to forget everything I ever thought I knew about Bugaboo strollers. The Buffalo is everything the Cameleon 3 is, only–in my humble opinion–better. It’s bigger (literally–the seat is higher and...

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