Category: Helpful Services

Designer email templates – A busy mom’s lifesaver

This post is sponsored by Yahoo! Mail, which is encouraging families to stay in touch via email – which we think is pretty cool. I do my best to pop a handwritten note to friends and family, especially on their birthdays or when they’re kind enough to send a gift for my kids, but I’ll be honest, since adding my fourth child, it’s become much more challenging. Let’s just say it can be hard to even get my bills in the mail, let alone a note. (Shhhh, please don’t tell Emily Post. Or my mother.) Since discovering the joy...

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Enhancing the bromance

Only in New York. It might be a cliche, but it’s true. Especially when it’s the one city offering a new online service that provides the men in your life with a menu of options to send their homies thoughtful thank you gifts of beer, beef jerky or a Top Gun DVD. So why are we telling you? Because we know that women are the ones who have to say, “uh honey…did you ever thank your cousin Al for that thing he did for us?” The website at Thanks, Bro has a very simple multiple choice order form where...

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A guide to responding to those really bad emails from family. (You know the ones.)

We’re happy to be working with our sponsor Yahoo! Mail, who’s helping encourage families to stay connected via email. Which, as we know, is a good thing! While email (and email etiquette) seems to have been around for a million years or so, oddly, we all still have those well-meaning folks in our lives who insist on filling our inboxes with chain letters, photoshopped pics passed off as real ones, and dated news about the Y2K virus. (Oh noes!) While even the best of us might be tempted to get a little snarky with our responses from time to...

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How to turn your email box into a baby book

We’re happy to be working with our sponsor Yahoo! Mail, who’s helping encourage families to stay connected via email. Which, as we know, is a good thing!When my first daughter was born, I was pretty diligent about keeping up her baby book. I even had a blank journal that I kept all sorts of notes in as well – first smile, first tooth, first poop in the bath tub (heh). But when I added my second–and then my third and fourth kid– I couldn’t even find the time to jot down notes to myself let alone notes about the...

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Turn kiddo castoffs into gorgeous keepsake art

I’m in a period of mega-emotion when it comes to the idea that my almost 4-year-old and about-to-be-1-year-old are past the wee little onesies. Every weekend, I sit down with a pile of old clothes from the garage–which is rapidly turning into a baby clothing repository (who needs space for the cars, anyway?)–and attempt to weed them out. It’s slow-going. I just wish I could frame those sweet pink cardigans and teensy duck-covered pants and keep them forever, you know? Fortunately, it can be done–and in the sweetest, prettiest, most contemporary way ever. The Great Remember is a Brooklyn-based company...

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The Giving Effect – Spring cleaning meets targeted giving

Every year at about this time, I start digging out my kids’ closets, then the other closets, and before I know it, I’m on a veritable sort-and-chuck rampage. When the dust settles, I usually have an entire carload of garbage bags ready to go to charity. Usually I drop off at the big national charity that’s got a donation dumpster right down the road. But. I don’t ever do cash charity donations to “whatever’s closest,” so why am I doing that with my stuff? Probably because–until now–I didn’t know about The Giving Effect. Just  input your zip code on...

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Cool Mom Picks is voted the most trustworthy product reviews for parents. Um, wow.

We were nothing short of thrilled to find out that we’ve won a Cribsie Award for the most trustworthy product reviews for parents. Thank you Cribsies! Considering more than 135,000 total votes were cast, and our formidable competition included Daily Candy, AOL’s Parent Dish, Babble, and Lil’ Sugar–some of our favorite sites too–we really are blown away. Head over to the website and see the winners in more than 60 categories, including lots of brands you might be familiar with from these pages. (You Cribsie voters have good taste!) Thank you so much to those of you who voted...

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Online meal planner? – Reader Q&A

I am looking for an online meal planner and shopping list generator…any suggestions? As I sit down to plan the meals out and do up a shopping list, I think to myself, there has to be a digital way to do this. -Aine If you really want everything from soup to nuts (heh), check out Relish. For a totally reasonable monthly fee, they’ll email you recipes each week from which you can pick the ones you want to make for your family. After scaling the recipes to fit your family size—-an awesome feature if you have just one child...

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3 tech tips for getting organized for the new year

Not surprisingly, one of the biggest New Year’s resolutions for all kinds of folks is getting organized. But for moms, we’d imagine it’s the biggest of all. (Even us, we admit it!) Can you ever be too organized? So we’re thrilled to be working with AboutOne.com, a cool family management site that we discovered last year, that really helps make a mama’s life easier by storing all your family’s important info in one safe, accessible place. Did we mention safe? In this newfangled online world, there are actually a ton of easy, affordable ways we’ve discovered that technology can...

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Bid, borrow or swap your way to a fabulous wardrobe

If eBay, Net-a-Porter, Rent the Runway and Gilt Groupe (all of my favorite shopping websites) had a baby, their progeny would look like I-ELLA.com. Launched by a fashion-obsessed entrepreneur in New York, I-ELLA weaves enough elements into the shopping experience to make my head spin (in a really good way). Here’s the gist. I-ELLA translates the social aspect of shopping with friends to the online setting by letting you “share” your closet with the rest of the invitation-only community, which includes celebs, models and assorted fashionistas. Once you post your new or gently worn goods on the site for...

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