Category: Around the House

4 of our new favorite green cleaning products that actually work

I tend to get headaches when I use strong chemical cleaning products, especially when I’m cleaning a small space, like my bathroom, which is why I really do favor green cleaning products under one condition: they have to work. And since it’s time for some spring cleaning around my house (actually, let’s be honest, it’s way past time for that) I’m excited to have had the chance to test out a ton of green cleaning products lately, and put together my favorites. Besides keeping the chemicals out of our home and our air, it’s nice to be able to give the...

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5 genius nursery organization tips, for new parents who could use a Starbucks right about now

Having a new baby is completely life-changing in the best possible way…and, in some harder-to-embrace ways too. (Looking at you, complete lack of sleep.) If you’re anything like me, a house that’s in chaos will make you feel even more stressed than those post-pregnancy hormones will, so getting organized will make a big impact on your mood. To help, I’ve rounded up some genius nursery organization tips that will let you focus more on your baby and less on finding your baby’s stuff. CMP is an rstyle affiliate At top: laundry folding tips | Two Twenty One Related: Eliminate clutter in your nursery...

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If toilets could talk: 9 funny things every parent wishes our homes could say to our kids.

We’re happy to be working with our sponsor Brother to bring you this post If we had a nickel for every time we told our kids to put away their shoes or pick up their toys, well, we’d be writing this from our yacht in the south of France while Jeeves served us lunch. Sorry to disappoint you but none of us are writing this from our yacht in the south of France. Yet.  But, what if our actual furniture, appliances, and garbage bins could talk? Or at least, leave notes for our kids, to give us a little break from the...

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How one teacher appreciation bouquet is helping keep a lot of kids safe. | Sponsored Message

This is a sponsored message from Teleflora   With Teacher Appreciation Week coming up May 8–12, and the end of the school year in sight, here’s one gift to help show thanks for your children’s teachers, while also supporting an important charity that’s keeping more school kids safe. Check out the bright Be Happy Bouquet with Roses from Teleflora. It’s a lovely way to express your gratitude to the teachers who are making a huge difference in your children’s lives. But even more, when you purchase this particular bouquet during Teacher Appreciation Week, Teleflora will donate 10% of sales to GLSEN, a wonderful educational organization that focuses on ensuring safe, LGBTQ-inclusive K–12 schools. With...

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Testing household hacks: How to clean the 5 biggest kid messes, from Sharpie on the wall to Play-Doh in the rug

There are some facts about the world that are simply not up for debate. Like: Humans breathe air, cats sleep exclusively on favorite black sweaters, and parents will always be searching for how to clean the big messes our kids make. So I took a look at 5 of the most common kid-made cleaning problems that I deal with myself all the time, and I white-knuckled it to put all those quick-fix cleaning promises and household hacks to the test. My goal: To show you what really works, and what isn’t worth your time when it comes to cleaning kid messes. Chocolate ice cream stain...

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9 genius art prints that reimagine Disney princesses as woke AF

On the outside chance you have been hiding out in a yurt without access to technology for all of 2017, you know there’s been a massive revival of women protests this year and it’s pretty incredible to witness. Women and girls from all walks of life have been woke to activism — including now, it seems our very favorite Disney princesses. Well, at least in the mind of one artist. Inspired by the Women’s March on Washington, comic illustrator and artist Amanda Allen Niday reimagined what Disney princesses would say as women’s rights activists in these amazing Protest Disney Princesses prints. Related: Tons of empowering gift ideas for...

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One quick laundry tip that will save you loads (ha!) of time

With six people living in my house, there are days when I feel like all I do is laundry. And that the baskets of dirty clothes just keep piling up. (Stop the insanity!) But there is one quick laundry tip has changed my life in a good way: My family quit using laundry baskets. Instead of tossing their dirty clothes in the baskets in their room, then spending a day lugging them up and down the stairs, sorting, and washing them, my kids now put their clothes straight in the washing machine when they change after their showers each night. After a...

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6 surprising things you should never throw away, because they make great toy storage solutions

I’m convinced my kids’ toys are spontaneously spawning in the playroom at night while we sleep. Surely I’m not the only parent who can’t figure out where all my kids’ toys have come from. As a result, I’m constantly in need of new storage options. My playroom is lined wall-to-wall with cabinets and storage bins to keep stuff organized, but over the years, I’ve found there are a few surprising household items that I never throw away, because they make great toy storage solutions. Here’s to free stuff that makes your life simpler and more organized. Because, we’re all for that. And...

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6 celeb-worthy, creative birth announcement ideas for twins + multiples. We’ve got you covered, Beyoncé!

First Beyoncé and Jay Z, now the Clooneys and Madonna? In case you haven’t heard, twins are seriously hot right now. So I’ve rounded up some super creative birth announcement ideas for twins with a little extra oomph — for those of you lucky enough to be in on the doubles game. I had so much fun finding these adorable birth announcement photo ideas for twins and multiples making their red carpet debut, but hey…if you’re expecting just one baby this year (like me!), we’ve got you covered too. CMP is an rstyle affiliate At top: custom birth announcements by Todd Borka Related: 15 creative birth announcement ideas way...

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We can’t wait to read our way through this 100 essential novels scratch-off poster from Pop Chart Lab.

Looking for a good book to read this winter? This classic novels scratch-off poster chart at Pop Chart Lab has your next 100 book recommendations for you, with the most satisfying check-off list ever. This framed art poster has 100 classic novels — books like Pride and Prejudice, Fahrenheit 451, Gone with the Wind, and Animal Farm — with covers partially covered in scratch-off gold. As you make your way through the list, you scratch off each one to reveal the whole cover. Feeling satisfyingly smug yet? Related: 7 books to help you feel fabulous right now (because shame is so 2016) Now, this is Pop Chart...

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5 creative ways to organize your kids’ books in less than a weekend

When my kids were little, their book collections were small and manageable. But as they grew, so did the mounds of books. It wasn’t long before their libraries turned into massive piles that made it challenging to find the one book they needed right-this-very-second. Sound familiar? But there are so many creative solutions for getting your kids’ books off the floor. I love these 5 easy DIY kids’ books organization ideas because they can easily be pulled off in less than a weekend — like, say, when you’re snowed in? Related: Storage solutions for kids’ artwork (goodbye, clutter!) 1. Repurpose kitchenware. A little sandpaper and white spray paint is all The Sweetest...

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10 cool non-candy Valentine’s Day classroom treats kids will love. And uh, parents will thank you! | Valentine’s Day Gift Guide 2017

Here at Cool Mom Picks, we’re huge fans of non-candy Valentine’s Day treats for the classroom. Not that there’s anything wrong with a little bag of conversation hearts or a cute chocolate kiss with your cards, but not every class allows candy Valentines — and not every parent welcomes them. So I tracked down some really cool and easy non-candy Valentine’s Day classroom treats for kids of all age to help you out. Because while there are no chocolate hearts here, with ideas this fun and creative, I’m pretty sure your kids will still skip home from school, excited about their V-day haul. CMP is an...

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12 seriously funny Valentine’s Day cards for couples who need a good laugh

Each year, we love digging up a collection of seriously funny Valentine’s Day cards. Because hey, not all couples are rom-com watchers and lovey-dovey card givers. If that sounds like you, check out these funny Valentine’s Day cards I think are hysterically honest, maybe a bit racy, and of course, a perfect way for couples with a great sense of humor to show their love. Or at least, for couples in love to show their sense of humor. Because funny is sexy in my book.   Related: 16 creative, inexpensive Valentine’s Day gifts for him, all under $35 CMP is a rstyle affiliate Show your sweetheart...

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18 non-lovey dovey printable Valentine’s Day classroom cards for boys (and girls!)

It can be a little tough finding printable Valentine’s Day cards for boys. Now that my son is 6, in just a year he’s gone from happily handing out heart cards to insisting on anything with a lightsaber, a zombie, or ideally, a lightsaber-wielding zombie. In other words: No embarrassing love stuff. I know there are a lot of other boys (and girls!) who second that emotion. So I searched the web for fun printable Valentine’s Day cards for kids who are over the sweet stuff, and not quite comfortable with those “you stole my heart, Valentine” messages. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: 19...

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3 cool ways to display travel photos that inspire you to take another trip soon

My husband and I recently spent two life-changing weeks in Seoul, South Korea, which means I have a zillion gorgeous photographs to show off to family and friends. On that 16-hour flight home, I spent some time scanning Pinterest and geeked out over these cool, creative ways to display travel photos. I can’t wait to get started on these projects. Once the jet lag passes. Related: The coolest travel journals for kids to help them remember every awesome moment As long as you have a steady hand with scissors, this travel photos map at Cut Craft Create (also shown at top) shouldn’t be too hard....

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8 awesome inspirational prints for little boys who could use some empowerment too.

As a mom-to-be, I’ve been looking for some inspirational prints for boys that I can hang on the nursery walls. After all, I’ve already started my campaign to create a compassionate son, starting with the essential feminist onesie, which was the first item I added to my baby registry. So as I look for artwork, I’ve been thinking beyond the typical superheroes, rockets, and robots (all of which I love!) that you tend to see “for boys” and seeing out inspirational prints for boys that will be a reminder to my whole family to work hard to raise a son who is smart, caring, and respectful. So...

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Cute photo Valentines that make up for the fact you forgot to send holiday cards.

In the 10 years my husband, kids, and I have been a family, I’ve managed to send out holiday cards exactly three times. These are not good odds. Like, if I were a team in the Super Bowl, bookies would strongly advise against betting that I would even remember to show up. Luckily, for all the parents, like me, whose packed schedules and busy brains preclude us from sending out holiday cards, there’s still a chance to make up for it in a big way: Valentine’s Day photo cards! And, with super-cute options like these that your friends and family are sure to love, maybe it’s okay to...

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How children can write letters to the president: An American tradition

Children writing to our president and the First Family has always been a wonderful and important tradition. And with the inauguration of a new White House resident today, this is a great time to get kids thinking about their own hopes, their concerns, the issues that are on their minds, and letting them write to the president about them. In our weekly link roundup post this week, we linked to an NPR article about the number of letters from children that President Obama will continue to answer, even after today. Some favorite letters I’ve seen: The girl who wanted advice about getting a nose...

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The hilarious adult coloring book for moms who need more HA than OM.

Full disclosure: I recently bought myself one of those fancy adult coloring books. I lined up my new colored pencils with their perfectly sharpened tips, total ROYGBIV rainbow. I colored for about 5 minutes and threw the dang thing in a drawer. Sorry not sorry, but it’s just too much pressure. It didn’t relax me at all. But then I learned about these perfectly snarky adult coloring books from Papeterie Bleu, like #MOMLIFE: A Snarky Adult Coloring Book, which gets me on a cellular level. As a mom, I have lived the pages of Threenager and Potty like a rock star, and...

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This cool Keith Haring wooden stencil set will inspire your kid to draw like…well, Keith Haring.

If your kids are anything like mine, there’s a good chance they may not recognize the name Keith Haring in the same way they might, say, Stan Lee or Matt Groening. After all, Haring was making his most major marks in the art world way back in the ’80s. You know, a time in ancient history during which, according to my 6-year-old son, I must have had to walk to school because cars hadn’t been invented yet. But even though the artist’s name might not yet ring a bell in those growing brains, his art will, all thanks to this cool Keith Haring wooden Stencil Set. CMP is...

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7 books to help you feel fabulous right now (because shame is so 2016)

Yep, I’m one of those suckers who dives head-first into the self-help section every January. Not only because I actually have a few days of leisure to read as long as I wish, but also because the cold, dreary weather makes me want to hit my reset button and make a little sunshine of my own. Here are some of my favorite self-help books that focus on laughs, positive steps, good health, loving yourself, and focusing on the things you can actually control. No impossible goals, fasting, six-hour workouts, tough love, or house-wide decluttering. Promise. CMP is an rstyle affiliate...

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Target’s new Modern by Dwell line is chic and affordable home good perfection.

I’ve always relied on Target for super affordable, stylish basics like tees, sweaters, swimwear. And it helps that they partner with designers I really love, but can’t necessary afford, to bring great fashion to me and others among the wallet-conscious masses. So when I heard about Targets new collaboration, partnering with Dwell Magazine, I was so excited. I’ve been a fan of the chic and modern home design aesthetic for a while — clean lines, Scandinavian influences, Frank Lloyd Wright — but it’s always seemed unattainable for my budget. Until now. Target’s new Modern by Dwell line arrives today, and with it comes cool architectural furniture...

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7 inspirational 2017 planners to help you own the new year like a boss.

If you’re anything like me, the end of 2016 may have hoping that 2017 will somehow offer something better than where we feel we are now. However that’s something that happens by planning and doing — not just hoping. Which is why finding inspirational 2017 planners may have even more meaning right now than it has in years past for lots of us. There’s nothing quite like opening the pristine white pages of a new day planner to make me feel like this year is going to be totally different and better than ever before. You know, the year I finish that novel,...

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12 cool thank you cards that will make even texting-loving tweens and teens pick up a pen.

It’s that time of year when your kids will be getting lots (and lots) of gifts, which means it’s also that time when we as parents try to teach our kids a little something about gratitude, and a great way to do that is by having them write out thank you cards. Real cards. With a pen. When my daughters were younger, it was easy to get them to sit down and write notes of thanks to family and friends. Now that they are 9 and almost 13, not so much. But getting tweens and teens to send out actual thank you notes (because, no,...

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Modern Christmas tree alternatives for small spaces. And, no pesky needles.

Full disclosure: I was at Home Depot the day after Thanksgiving, picking out the perfect tree that I’ll probably keep until it’s brown and desiccated on Valentine’s Day. I’ve got plenty of space for a gigantic Douglas fir, no family members with allergies, and a dog who can usually be persuaded not to eat ornaments. But, if you’re looking for a modern Christmas tree alternative that by-Christma-passes the needles, the sap, and the enormity of it all, we’ve found some fantastic and beautiful alternatives, many of which will last for years and help create new traditions all your own. Related:...

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Cool, modern Christmas tree skirts that go with your own home decor, not Grandma’s.

We’re pulling out the Christmas decorations and dusting off the ornaments around here, and I’m realizing that one easy way to spruce up my holiday decor is with a fresh, new tree skirt. But have you ever searched for a modern Christmas tree skirt? They’re nearly impossible to come by. So I’m delighted to discover the wonderful modern Christmas tree skirts new at Minted this year. The designs are so crisp and clean, they add just the right amount of color and fun to your holiday decor. (And don’t miss out on a discount code they’re offering, right now!) Related: 14 festive and fun advent calendars to count...

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Prime: The photography book of women who make us want to be better women.

Looking for a cool holiday gift this season? Well, we do have 350 cool gift ideas in this year’s holiday gift guide, including a whole category of empowering gifts for girls who are going to grow up to run the world. And now here’s one for those same empowered, amazing, inspiring girls, once they’re already grown up. Prime: Reflections on Time and Beauty is a photo collection of extraordinary women by famed portrait photographer Peter Freed. While there are plenty of photo books of celebs and notable women on the shelves, what’s special about these 130 stunning black-and-white photos of women is that they’re all unretouched,...

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The subscription box that shines a little light this holiday season.

Confession: The end of daylight savings is killing me. It’s dark by dinner time, the cold is creeping in, and the stress is high, and I just want to hibernate forever. One surprising thing that’s helping me? Candles. They add warmth, a beautiful scent, and a cozy feeling that keeps the darkness at bay. And I’ve found a subscription that lets you give this gift of light to yourself — or to a friend — this holiday season. With Vellabox, you simply sign up for one of three different plans, and this candle subscription box services ships one or more candles to...

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Personalize a Stokke Tripp Trapp chair — a very special holiday gift for a very lucky child.

If you’re looking for a truly special holiday gift for a friend, family member, or for your own little bundle of joy, we think that the Stokke Tripp Trapp Chair, now available with free personalized engraving, is a fabulous option. We’re big fans of the Tripp Trapp at Cool Mom Picks. It’s a classic (seriously, it’s been around since the ’70s), it’s nice to look at (Scandinavian style is just the coolest), and it transitions from one stage to the next — year after year — your child’s once-beloved highchair becoming their homework desk chair. So we love that this chair can now have a truly...

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10 modern, uplifting holiday cards that wish your family and friends everything good

It’s time for me to start thinking about sending out our Christmas cards again. Yikes! I haven’t even scheduled a family photo session and I still need to update my address book. School and work and sports — not to mention the major distraction of the election — has left me way behind schedule. But the thing is, this year more than ever, I’m wanting to send out the good vibes of love, warmth, and peace to my friends and family. Because we need it, right? These beautiful modern, uplifting holiday cards we found at some of our favorite shops go beyond the traditional Merry Christmas...

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