Category: Kitchen + Dining

Gathre’s bonded leather playmats are wipeable, waterproof, and so chic.

I can still vividly remember the playdate I had for my toddler the same week we laid new carpet in our house. You know where this is going, right? Within minutes, the mom’s mega-venti-grande-whatever coffee was all over the place. And yes, the stain is still there. What would have saved me then — and the countless other times my kids or their friends have made a mess all over the floor — are these chic bonded leather playmats by Gathre. These simple, waterproof leather mats are so pretty…and so functional! They can be used for everything from a picnic blanket to a...

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The world’s cutest tableware for kids: We have a contender!

When my kids first started eating solids, they often reminded me of wild baby animals — flinging food all over the place, trying to eat without using their hands, and getting all the gooiest stuff mashed into their hair. So I’m pretty impressed with the new kids’ tableware line from Marcus & Marcus  which offers cute, animal-inspired designs help our littlest ones learn to eat like, well, like little humans. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: 14 of the coolest baby gifts and gear we wish we had when we were new moms. The easy-to-clean, brightly colored collection was developed by two parents who know a thing or...

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A reusable tablecloth our kids can draw on? Yes, please.

With family picnics and outdoor parties on the horizon, I’m loving Jaq Jaq Bird’s Chalk Board Table Runner that gives kids — and adults, if we’re being honest — a creative canvas on which to doodle while they (cough) patiently wait for their food. It’s a much better way to keep kids occupied and in their seats than playing with their utensils. At 6-feet long, this portable table runner offers ample space for an entire group of kids to draw side-by-side. Or, hang it on a wall for some space-saving art opportunities. I even love that this table runner can be used to deliver...

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Make your dreariest mornings a whole lot brighter with these 5 mugs. (Coffee helps too.)

We could all use a little nudge to get moving some mornings, especially after a horrible night sleep with a teething infant or a sick child. And what’s way more helpful than a friend chanting “it takes a village,” or your partner reminding you “it’s just a phase,” are these get-up-and-go coffee mugs we found on Etsy. With these motivational mugs, you can get the affirmation you need that everything is going to be all right — and, really, it will be all right — and go seize the day, even on just 2 hours of sleep. (Coffee helps too.) Related: 9 beautifully...

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The SodaStream Power sparkling water maker: Is it really worth it?

I admit I have always coveted a SodaStream ever since I tried an earlier model at my parents’ house. However theirs seemed pretty big to me, and I live in a small apartment, where we’re supposed to subscribe to the rule about not owning single-purpose appliances (bread makers, panini presses) to cut back on clutter. But since becoming addicted to a different company’s fizzy water maker — until it fizzled out and was entirely discontinued — I leapt at the chance to try out the new SodaStream Power. Oh, was it worth the wait. The SodaStream Power is way sleeker than I was expecting, with a slim...

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Color-your-own placemats turn any table into the coolest restaurant ever

I’ve always been a big advocate of keeping my kids’ games and videos put away at the dinner table.  Especially in restaurants, which is why I have a special place in my heart for those that provide crayons to kids — in particular the smaller, more wiggly ones. So I think plenty of other parents will also be thrilled to discover the new OMY color-your-own placemats that we spotted at Toy Fair, from the same clever company that invented the artistic giant coloring posters our kids adore. I absolutely love these for dining out, dinner at the grandparents’ place, birthday parties, road trips, or just a way to make dinner a...

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Rainbow housewares to brighten up winter. Or any season.

January is tough on my but by February I tend to hit the doldrums. Yes, it’s actually light until (nearly) 5:20 so that’s in the plus column, but I start to feel like everything around me is gray, including the remaining snow piles on the sidewalks in New York. So I checked out the members sale at the MoMA store right now and the thing that struck me most were the increasing collection of beautiful rainbow housewares. The best part is that if you’re a member like I am, everything is 20% off right now. And if you’re not...

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Here’s to you, four-hour conference call survivors.

It’s not like I was thinking of you when I laughed my head off at this I survived another meeting that could have been an email coffee mug.  I mean, even if we do conduct business together, and we do have conference calls that seem to go on for hours, and we have sat through briefings that take longer to discuss than the brief took to write in the first place…no, I actually enjoy those things. And those calls where you wait for 14 different people even though a dozen of them never even say a word? Those are my very favorite. Of course I’m talking about other meetings with someone...

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Start your day with coffee and a laugh. Thanks, Emily McDowell.

I’m pretty sure that artist Emily McDowell is inside my head, because every single thing she makes I find myself nodding and smiling, maybe laughing, and then laughing some more. And that’s the case with her newest crop of funny coffee mugs which makes the line even bigger. And funnier. You’ve probably seen Emily’s hilarious reusable grocery bags and book totes here on Cool Mom Picks, which have all been big huge hits with our readers, and now, it’s funny coffee mugs. Personally, I think laughing over coffee is a perfect way to start your morning — or if you’re me, mid-morning, lunch, and late afternoon. Okay, sometimes after dinner too, which as you...

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5 fun ice cream gifts for hostesses. Who will officially now have the mostesses.

Okay, we’ve all been a little ice cream crazy around here, if you may have noticed — and on Cool Mom Eats too. But it’s not just a perfect treat, it can be the inspiration for a great hostess gift, should you be rounding out your summer with a few more lucky invitations to visit friends and relatives with a beach house or a coveted pool. Ahhhh. CMP is an rstyle affiliate     You can never go wrong with a classic ice cream scoop. A while back, Apartment Therapy’s The Kitchn handed out top ratings for best ice cream scoops and we...

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