Category: Helpful Services

Not your mama’s flowers

Saying you love me with flowers is great, but on Mother’s Day, please don’t get me a smiling kitten n’ rainbow mug full of carnations and daisies. I’d much rather have a bed of bamboo accented by one gorgeous orchid, or maybe some sparkling glass bowls full of peonies. Please. The floral arrangements from Floral Art LA in the hip Abbot Kinney stretch of Venice really strike a chord with me, and that chord is Wow, I wish flowers never, ever died, because I want to look at this every day of my life. They offer classic and modern...

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For when a scribble is a heck of a lot more than just a scribble

If you’re anything like I am, you’ve probably got a lot of your kids’ precious artwork boxed up and you’re saving it for, well, who knows what. (Actually, if you’re really like me, then your kids’ glitter-encrusted volcano drawings and purple squiggle “princesses” are scattered about your house in random piles just waiting for a more organized person to move in and do something with it, but that’s another story.) Now that I’ve found the new offerings at Me Art, I know exactly how to preserve the precious memories of my kids’ blossoming artistic abilities – by having the...

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Where’s the fun? Goby knows.

I’m a somewhat nervous traveler, but unlike most of our kind, it’s not the flying I hate. More like I need to know exactly what we’re doing when. My husband, on the other hand, is happy to just plan “camping” and “figure it out when we get there.” Ack. Thanks to goby, a new online search engine dedicated to activity planning, I can now just smile with him, agree, and then turn to my laptop. Input your location, dates, and what sort of fun you want and Goby hooks you up with all the available activities, plus links to...

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TV, now without all that annoying TV.

Remember when there were 13 channels on the television and the youngest kid in the family was the designated remote control? Kids today will never know that pain. With 600 channels, Tivo, Hulu, and Google, there’s always something on. But sometimes it’s impossible to find what you’re looking for,especially when you need Yo Gabba Gabba at that crucial moment when dinner is burning and tiny minds need distraction. Luckily, we now have Clicker, which is basically a Google for online media. Clicker catalogs more than 600,000 episodes from over 10,000 shows, 20,000 movies, and 80,000 music videos all on...

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How many perfect moms does it take to screw in a lightbulb? None, because they don’t exist.

Faster than a speeding toddler. More powerful than loaded diaper. Able to leap from playdate to playdate in a single bound. It’s Perfect Mom! Yep, that was going to be me. I was going to achieve the perfect work/life balance as a working mom, and when I became a stay-at-home mom I was going to be perfect at that. And I failed miserably, or so I thought. Then I realized, when it comes to motherhood, there’s no such thing as perfection. Life coach and mother of two, Carley Knobloch, started Perfect Moms Finish Last to help moms deal with...

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Cooking for dummies (and smarties, too)

Put down that take-out menu–I’m here to tell you that yes, you can cook a complete meal without pulling out your hair. Sure, there are a million recipe sites out there, and some of them are fantastic, but what if you want instructions on a whole meal, from what to buy to what wine goes best? Well, then you head over to NoTakeOut and start browsing. Each meal is completely laid out from what to buy at the supermarket to what kitchen tools you’ll need. Check the prep time, bake time, and even the dessert suggestion before you get...

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Like the milk man of the super hip. But peas.

If you live in Los Angeles, you’ve got some mad cash, and you want someone else to deliver organic, healthy, super-fresh baby food to your doorstep… well, I’m a little jealous, actually. And Baby’s Belly is here to serve you. The brainchild of two Hollywood actors and parents, Baby’s Belly offers twice-weekly delivery of healthy, fresh meals for babies from 6 months through toddlers. And we’re talking really fresh–the peas are actually green, and the fish needs to be spooned into your kiddo within twenty-four hours. The Belly Big Kids selections read like the menu at a gourmet restaurant,...

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Sitter City loves military families

As a former active duty Air Force now National Guard wife, I have relied heavily on my own paid Sitter City membership to help me find reliable, experienced babysitters to help save my sanity – from the long duty days to a 45-day deployment. So I can’t tell you how excited I was to find out that they’re now offering free Sitter City memberships for military families, including active, reserve, and guard courtesy of Department of Defense. Simply click over to sign up and then enjoy access to hundreds of thousands of babysitters and nannies. Score! And if you...

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Scrapbook masterpieces, no skills required

Look, we’ve discussed my SIS (Scrapbook Impairment Syndrome) in the past. I’m okay with it. There are tools available for me to do pretty things with my pictures in other ways. But if I want a genuine photos-affixed-to-beautiful-backgrounds, scrapbook binder full of hand-designed pages, now I can get it. Pixtorie lets you upload your photos and then choose from various layouts from designers like Oh Joy! to assemble the perfect “simplebook,” the smaller, more affordable version of their designer scrapbooks. Right now colors and fonts on the various pages are fixed, but I’m told greater flexibility is coming down...

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Shutterfly Photo Books + Our Readers = Ooh, Creative.

Big congrats to Linda H, whose photo book of her first family vacation–to Hawaii no less–is the winner of our sponsor Shutterfly’s photobook contest. Of course we feel like she already got the grand prize with a Hawaii vacation in the first place, but now she’ll get to preserve the memories on free photo books, cards, a calendar and more. You can check out all of the photobook contest entries on the Cool Mom Picks Shutterfly share page, but there were a few that we found so inspiring, we thought we’d give them an honorable mention here. Plus we’re...

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