Tag: charity + causes

The best resources to help you talk to your children about tragedy, like the Orlando shooting.

This is an update of a previously published post   It’s been somber mood around here over the past 24 hours, as our hearts go out to the loved ones of the 100+ innocent people tragically murdered or wounded at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando on Sunday morning. My own 10-year-old daughter Thalia drew the broken rainbow heart image above in response, which I think captures so much of what we’re all feeling about this despicable and senseless act. (I shared my story of how it came about with Cosmopolitan, and you can read more about it there.) There are far too...

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New from babyGap + Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation: a sweet collection with a big mission

It’s summertime, and lemons are everywhere. I’m making pie. Beyoncé’s making music. And now babyGap is partnering with Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF), an organization dedicated to curing childhood cancer, with an exclusive collection of baby and toddler summer essentials. ALSF was named after Alexandra Scott, who lost her battle with cancer in 2004 at the age of 8. The foundation, which has evolved into a nationwide non-profit, sprung from a front yard lemonade stand and her mission to raise money to find a cure for all children with cancer, like herself. Related: The absolutely remarkable things you don’t know about St. Jude’s hospital, but should. This babyGap...

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The new TOMS shoes let you dip a toe into the political process

You may be vaguely aware that another US presidential election season is upon us, unless of course you’ve been sequestered in a Himalayan yurt somewhere, totally unplugged until just this very second. (In which case, hey! Thanks for making a visit to Cool Mom Picks one of your first stops!) While we can all agree that the next several months should be…interesting, to say the least, leave it to TOMS Shoes to turn our civic responsibilities into some generous do-gooding with the new election edition TOMS shoes. You’ve got your choice of two styles, featuring a patriotic pattern of either Democratic Donkeys or Republican Elephants....

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Your kids will fall in love with these mini dolls on a big mission

You may remember Cuddle and Kind’s beautiful hand-knit dolls, which we featured last fall. We gushed over how cute the line is, and even more impressive, their amazing mission to feed hungry kids with ten meals donated to major hunger-fighting charities with the purchase of every doll. And, wow, did our readers ever respond: This remarkable company has already donated over 200,000 meals to kids in need in just over half a year. Now, Cuddle and Kind’s Little Collection — a new line of the same sweet dolls, but mini versions of their originals — is matching the mission. For every Cuddle and Kind doll purchased, whether it’s their original 20″ or their new 13″ doll,...

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Kidbox: It’s like Stitch Fix, for kids.

Last fall, two of our editors tried Stitch Fix and gave their totally honest reviews about their experience (one liked it, one didn’t). This month a new twist on the popular shopping service trend launched, but this time it’s for kids. Intrigued? Yes. Sold? Well, maybe. There were some obvious pros (hello, massive time saver for busy parents!) but also some cons (which I’ll get to in a minute). I tried out Kidbox to see how it worked for a mom on a budget and an 8-year-old girl with, let’s just say, strong opinions about her clothes. Here’s what I found out.   Similar to...

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The absolutely remarkable things you don’t know about St. Jude’s hospital, but should.

You’re probably familiar with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital — you’ve seen the ads with the adorably sweet, brave children, featuring Marlo Thomas, daughter of actor and St. Jude’s founder Danny Thomas. You may have caught some of our suggestions to support them with a benevolent gift in our various gift guides. You might even know their reputation as the world’s leading cancer research hospital for kids. This hospital alone has helped raise cancer survival rates from 20% to 80%, and leukemia survival rates from 4% to 94% since they opened in 1962. Basically if, heaven forbid, your kid gets sick, St. Jude is the place...

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12 wonderfully empowering Mother’s Day gifts for progressive moms

I happen to have a mother who’d be more happy with a political biography or a “smash the patriarchy” print for Mother’s Day, than a salt scrub. (Not that she’d turn down a nice salt scrub.) It got me thinking, that I’m sure she’s not alone! So for those of you looking for a cool Mother’s Day gift that’s a little more empowering, a little more forward-thinking, a little more radical than most traditional options, here are a few gifts for progressive moms that I’m totally loving. Just be sure to check ship dates if you’re trying to get them...

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Mother’s Day flowers that come in a vase that’s even more special

We love Mother’s Day gifts that give back and so I was happy to learn about ProFlowers’s collaboration with All Across Africa, an organization that handcrafts the most beautiful woven vases and baskets in crisp, colorful patterns. Every one is locally sourced and handmade in East Africa, where weaving is providing sustainable employment and income to the women artisans. It’s the perfect way to add a little extra joy to a Mother’s Day bouquet, especially knowing she’ll have something special long after the flowers are gone. Related: Presenting our 2016 Mother’s Day Gift Guide! What I love even more is that for every two baskets that are sold,...

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Gorgeous accessories to help moms in need, thanks to Jessica Seinfeld’s Good+ Foundation.

We’ve been fans of Jessica Seinfeld’s charity Baby Buggy for a long while now. For the past 15 years, they’ve provided more than 20 million essential children’s supplies to low-income families in NYC and LA, and our own editor Liz is among their “Friends” board of advisors. Now, they’ve rebranded as the the Good+ Foundation to be able to help even more families, with a broader mission. For one of their first initiatives, right in time for Mother’s Day, they’ve teamed up with HSN to launch a line of fashionable items that may be perfect for a mom in your life. Or hey, maybe even...

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Put a poem in your pocket: A fun way to celebrate National Poetry Month

By this point in the school year, my kids know not to expect the sorts of lunchbox love notes they got from me daily in September. But there are a few days on the calendar that inspire me to scribble something special to surprise them: Valentine’s Day (of course), St. Patrick’s Day (a must in our Irish-American household), and Poem in Your Pocket Day. Poem in Your Pocket Day (today!) is my favorite part of National Poetry Month each April. The idea is that everyone should carry a poem in their pocket to read in quiet moments or share with friends. Because, who...

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Give an orphan the gift of a birthday, through the charity With My Own Two Hands

We’re entering birthday party season in my house, and as my kids’ party requests are growing more and more over-the-top (rein it in, kiddos), I’m feeling emotional about an amazing charity we discovered just this week, which provides birthday gifts for orphans who otherwise wouldn’t get the opportunity to celebrate their big day. Such a brilliant idea; we’re really excited to get behind it! With My Own Two Hands is a small non-profit founded by yoga instructor Lindsey Pluimer. They are doing some very cool work in Africa — from teaching yoga to kids as a way to heal to giving girls an education. But...

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Happy birthday Jane Goodall! 5 fun, easy ways to introduce her to your kids

Is there one kid in the world who isn’t fascinated by animals? (Answer: no.) So today, Jane Goodall’s birthday, is a perfect opportunity to cozy around your tablet or computer together and dig into her life just a bit. Especially if you think her legacy is limited to her work with Chimpanzees. Here are five places to start.   1.  Read a quick bio of her on the wonderful The Reconstructionists site, an homage to amazing women through history. Their Jane Goodall page includes a fantastic illustration and Goodall quote from Lisa Congdon, that would happen to make a nifty screensaver for...

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One good thing you can do in one minute today to change the world.

If you’ve been reading Cool Mom Picks for a while now, you know we’re strong advocates of increasing opportunity for women and girls across the globe in all kinds of ways. Sometimes it’s promoting businesses that support women in need, like FashionABLE, Raven & Lily, or To the Market. Sometimes it’s sharing organizations like Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls or simply seeking out smart toys for girls that defy the pink aisle and open up opportunities. And sometimes it’s finding ways to collectively raise our voices constructively to make substantial change in the world. In honor of today’s International Women’s Day, we ask you to spend one minute and click over...

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How beautiful swaddle blankets are helping babies in need of more than just sleep

What’s even better than snuggling your baby in the soft, stylish swaddle blankets we love from Buttermilk Babies? Knowing that your purchase is going to help low-income kids get the things they need to feel well-cared for. That makes me feel all the warm fuzzies inside, too. To celebrate their one-year anniversary, Buttermilk Babies will donate 50% of the proceeds from every single sale to Baby2Baby, a terrific LA-based organization that distributes new and gently used items to underprivileged kids.  But this campaign is only through February 29, so hurry! The hard part will be picking the item you love best. Buttermilk...

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Rockin’ Baby goes from slings to a cool kids’ line that gives back in a big way

Our editor Liz, who once touted herself as “sling-incompetent,” fell in love with Rockin’ Baby slings years ago both for their style and their charitable do-gooding that supports mothers in need. I count myself among their fans too. So we both couldn’t be any more excited about their new baby and kids clothing collection. Related: Gender neutral clothes for cool kids that leave the stereotypes behind. Their super cute clothes will outfit kids newborn to age 10, and plenty of it is on sale right now. Up to 40% off in fact. The prices are fantastic, and yet every single item is still made beautifully right...

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Because Of Them, We Can: Where kids honor our Black History heroes, charmingly

To be honest, Black History Month is year round for me. As a black woman, especially one living in the U.S., I’m reminded of and inspired by the endless contributions of black people to the collective betterment of this nation on a daily basis. And now, as a mother raising a brown boy here, I’m even more grateful for Black History Month to help me educate my son about the expansive history of African Americans. One remarkable non-profit campaign that I’ve leaned on to introduce him to new, significant heroes is Because Of Them, We Can. What started as a visual project...

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Small Apparel: Cool little tees that give back in a big way

Supporting amazing artists and designers we find at cool, yet undiscovered indie shops we find is so important to us — in fact, it’s why Kristen and Liz started Cool Mom Picks in the first place. So when we find a shop like Small Apparel, we can’t wait to share them with you all. This tiny, family-run business currently makes very cool tees and onesies for kids with positive, inspiring designs and messages. However, their profit margins are super slim. So going forward, if their Kickstarter campaign is successful, their goal is to start donating 25% of all their sales to support kid-related non-profits related to the designs, without raising...

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Web Coolness: Star Wars in schools, smart ways to be more playful, and the most amazing new car seat.

Here are the links we’ve liked reading around the web this week. We hope you like them too.   Love these sweet Star Wars’ illustrations by James Hance in the style of classic children’s book illustrations. (via Bored Panda) How teachers can bring Star Wars into the classroom with these great lesson plan ideas that cover everything from Shakespeare to economics. We had our own theory on the Spawned Podcast last week about “Where is Rey?”  Sadly, our theory was confirmed nearly verbatim by a toy manufacturer who confessed as to why there are so few Rey toys on shelves. Just wow. A great resolution: 52 ways...

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Web coolness: Outrageous gingerbread houses, movies no parents have seen, and the year in review according to children.

Here are some of the links we’ve liked reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too.   Fantastic TV and movie inspired gingerbread houses including this amazing Game of Thrones gingerbread house. Mmm…Westeros. Possibly the most insane gingerbread house of them all — because it’s life size! Creative eggnog drink recipes. Yes, please. Cute Hanukkah craft to get you through the final nights. Awesome emoji gifts! Bad dad jokes for the holidays. Ha. 17 cool tech gifts under $25 Speaking of which, have you entered to win a free iPad Air + designer case from the Cool Mom Tech holiday gift guide? It’s...

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Unnecessary gun violence: Don’t lose hope. Here’s how.

Kristen and I each went to bed distraught last night, and woke up no less unsettled after yesterday’s news about two mass shootings in San Bernardino and Savannah —  the 354th and 355th in the US in 2015 alone. We alternate between outrage and grief, wondering just kind of world we are raising our children in right now. Especially when 10,000 US children a year are injured or killed as a result of guns. As far as we’re concerned, even one is one too many. While this is not a site where we tend to discuss politics, we have never shied away from sharing the causes and...

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