Tag: christmas

Adorable personalized wooden ornaments for kids who wants to see their own names on the tree. That’s, all of them.

Every Christmas, one of my kids’ favorite things to do is reminisce about each ornament as we hang it on the tree. Sure, it takes us a long time to get the whole thing decorated, but we love trying to remember the story behind each one, and some of the most special are those personalized ornaments we own, customized with names, dates, or pictures right on them. So when I saw the simple and lovely personalized wooden ornaments (they’re bamboo!) from the family-run Graphic Spaces Wood featured in our gift guide in our list of cool personalized gifts for kids, I knew my family needed one. Or...

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Modern holiday table setting tips: A huge array of ideas to keep it easy, affordable, and fun!

Let me first be totally upfront: The idea of setting a holiday table kind of terrifies me. I am not someone who can just effortlessly whip up an Elsa’s castle centerpiece made of handmade gingerbread, or pick up a calligraphy pen and go to town on place cards. I don’t even own fancy china or “holiday” dinnerware because we tend to have holiday dinners elsewhere. I quietly envy the spectacular holiday table settings and place card ideas on Pinterest, and repin them, but in my head I’m thinking, yeah, right. In other words, I’m not living the glorious home decor blogger dream. I’m...

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Web coolness – The ultimate list of holiday gift ideas, Thanksgiving help, and the toy NOT to get your kids.

Here are our favorite links from around the web this week. We hope you like them too.   Our 2014 holiday gift guide is here filled with more than 200 gift ideas for everyone on your list, plenty of discount codes, and a huge giveaway. We hope it helps! (Find those personalized Christmas plates for kids right here.) The most beautiful Advent calendars to help you start the countdown. Still focused on Thanksgiving? Bookmark these 4 Thanksgiving cooking hotlines that can help. Start loading up the tablet for road trips, starting with this excellent, brand new Toca Boca app. New to the Cool Mom Picks Indie...

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12 of the most spectacular advent calendars to help you count down to Christmas

Before you deck the halls, make sure you have your advent calendar ready so you can count down the days to the night before Christmas. It’s a tradition that my kids enjoy so much,  we have a few set up around the house to remind us how much longer they have to wait for their favorite day to arrive. And whether you are super crafty, want to print a DIY calendar at home, or would rather purchase something you can use year after year, we’ve rounded up a dozen options for you to have ready by the first of December. Prices and...

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10 creative ways to change up your holiday cards this year

We can’t believe it, but it’s time to start thinking about holiday cards–if you haven’t already. (And if you’re already done, we bow down to you.) We have to admit we’re a little excited though. Don’t you love checking your mailbox in December and seeing stacks of cards (i.e. not bills) inside? If you want your holiday cards to stand out from the rest, we’ve put together some creative ideas for you on behalf of our newest sponsor, Pear Tree Greetings. We’re so happy to discover how beautiful and surprising affordable their custom cards are. Check out these ten ideas, and we hope...

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We’ve got your DIY washi tape Christmas crafts covered with, well, A Washi Tape Christmas

I know, Halloween is barely over and here I am talking about Christmas. But before you know it we’ll all be pinning cookie recipes and gift wrap ideas, so we might as well get ahead of the holiday craft game too. Washi tape crafts have been a hot trend for awhile, probably because it’s such a simple, affordable tool for using in modern DIY crafts. A Washi Tape Christmas, a new book by blogger and craft expert Kami Bigler of No Biggie, offers up dozens of washi tape Christmas crafts, decorations, and gifts that are quick but still impressive. In other words, my kind of crafts. While...

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A twist on holiday photo cards that’s shiny and bright (and pretty darn neat)

Holiday photo cards have become such indelible parts of the season, they’re right up there with shiny wrapping paper, gift-giving, Cyber Monday sales, and gingerbread lattes at Starbucks. (Take a seat, PSL™, you’ll have had your time by then). Since some of you are already asking us about cool holiday photo cards–and we bow down to you–the first really newsworthy ones have come across your desks. This year, the talented folks at Artifact Uprising, whose gorgeous photo books our readers have all gone nuts for, have added a cool twist to the usual holiday greeting tradition with a clever new 3-in-1 Photo Card. It’s...

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Shake it up baby.

In my early days of parenting, finding beautiful handmade baby gifts was something you really had to work on. But now, they’re popping up everywhere. And as we try to pare it down to just our favorites we’re happy to discover Cheengoo who just might make the cutest crocheted baby rattles in the world. Besides cute, the handmade rattles are totally eco-friendly, crocheted from 100% pesticide-free bamboo yarn that makes them super-soft, naturally antibacterial and hypoallergenic. That may sound like marketing speak until you think about how much your newborn is going to have these against his sensitive skin–or in that sensitive mouth. (Fact.) Plus they’re made by...

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Merry Christmas, cool moms and dads!

We hope that whatever you end up doing today (and whatever your kids are playing with) that your day is full of joy, love, and, if you’ve been very very good this year, a big fat afternoon nap. Wishing you a very merry Christmas! -Kristen, Liz, and Team Cool Mom...

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Sad Santa, a new Christmas classic that will make you happy

You’d think a book called Sad Santa, complete with a morose bearded guy in red on the cover, would be a real downer at the holidays. But fortunately, illustrator and author Tad Carpenter’s story will put a smile on your face. And–spoiler alert–Old St. Nick will be just fine too. In this wonderfully illustrated picture book, Santa finds himself with a case of the post-holiday blues. The excitement of Christmas is over, and now the kids are busy with all their wonderful toys, leaving Santa with not a lot to look forward to. Those cheery elves do their best...

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Last minute gift ideas: Lots of ideas when you have little or no time to spare

Last minute gift ideas are always the toughest. You have all these last minute people you forgot about (with no offense to them–we get busy!) and suddenly you’re stuck with whatever you can find in the drugstore aisles. Fortunately the drugstore chains have gotten way better with the gift selections if happen to be any left by now. But as an alternative, try any of these gift ideas you can pull together fairly easily. I promise they’re actually quick–no tracking down beeswax to make candles or breaking out a sewing machine. And of course, make sure you wrap it...

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The ultimate guide to the best holiday cocktail recipes and winter drinks. Because you’ll need these long past Christmas.

We’ve covered so many fantastic holiday cocktail recipes over time, we thought we’d put them together in one handy guide to our very favorites. Find links to more than 30 of only the very best recipes, both boozy and non-boozy. And don’t be thinking we won’t be drinking that candy cane martini well into February. What else are leftover peppermint candies good for, anyway?   8 Delicious Holiday Cocktail Recipes to Toast the Holiday Season: From candy cane martinis to the perfect mulled wine. 5 Apple Cider Recipes including variations for mean mocktails, for those abstaining this holiday. Cheers to...

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5 Tech Picks You Won’t Want to Miss

In case you missed them, here are 5 of our favorite holiday posts on Cool Mom Tech from this week. 1. An awesome round-up of easy photo tutorials to help make your holiday photos brighter. 2. 6 of the best ways to send cards online. Yep, there’s still time! 3. The best Santa apps for kids, although shhhh, we like them too. 4. Turn your family into LEGO mini figures. So much fun. (And not at all painful). 5. Want to change up your holiday playlist? Here are some wonderful tunes from some of our favorite kindie rock artists....

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The cutest printable photo props to put the Merry in your Christmas

We love how grownups and kids alike will totally let their silly side show when you leave out some easy-to-DIY printable photo props. We’ve seen this trend at many birthday parties and even outlined how to make your own photo booth for your next shindig. And now we’ve changed up the props for Christmas, with a roundup that we’ve made sure are all printable and either free, or very affordable PDFs for download. Tet ready to smile so wide it hurts when Uncle David or cousin Lucas starts mugging for the camera. Oh Happy Day’s illustrated free holiday printable photo...

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Mitten stockings: creative stocking idea in a pinch

Every so often, we end up with an unexpected visitor on Christmas who would of course need his or her own stocking. Once it was a friend’s child, once it was our dog who we forgot to hang a stocking for–who knew my kids would be so adamant about that one. So I think this mitten stocking idea at Martha Stewart is super clever. No, you don’t have to scramble for knitting supplies right now; even a leftover pair or an inexpensive pair at a local discount store could do the trick, unless you want the mittens themselves to...

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Last minute holiday gifts, ideas and help on Pinterest. We’re here for you you. (Strokes head lovingly.)

Each week we feature our favorite pins on Pinterest, but today we’d be remiss if we didn’t point you towards just a few of our our own Cool Mom Picks Pinterest boards, which we’ve been packing with last minute holiday gifts and ideas for you from fashion to decor to those gifts you realize you need at the 11th hour. Follow us–it’s fun, and we love checking your boards too!   Holiday Fabulosity on Pinterest  (above) – a great big board of everything festive and everything cool (In partnership with Minted through December)   Printables + DIY on Pinterest – So many...

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Wrap it up with the coolest free printable gift tags and gift wrap

Running low on gift tags and holiday wrapping paper right when you really need them? Want to avoid a shopping center parking lot at all costs this close to Christmas? Yeah, us too. No worries:  Download some of these gorgeous printable gift tags or holiday gift wrap designs and print them right from your home printer. We’ve tracked down only the very nicest ones for you–and huge thanks to all the wonderful designers who provide such a kind service to all of us over the holidays.    Hand-illustrated free printpable Christmas labels and tags by Emily McDowell Oversized tags with a...

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Web Coolness: free holiday printables, postpartum selfie madness, and cookies galore.

Must make: Free printable holiday envelopes ready to assemble. Too cute! Must read: The little joys of holidays with the kids. We love this list. Must watch: Adorable video of a little girl signing a holiday concert. Must eat: The perfect winter salad recipe on Food 52 if you’re OD’ing on holiday treats. Today is the last day to nominate your favorite kids and family brands for a Cribsie award. (We’re excited to be among the judges!) We are super impressed with this Winter reindeer craft made from fallen branches or boughs. Grab the drill. A father-daughter photo series to make you count your proverbial...

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18 little holiday joys with your kids–mostly free. As most little joys are.

As much as we love shopping and big surprises and our seasonal visit to the Nutcracker at BAM and shopping some more, I’m well aware that some of the greatest treats of the season are the little things. So I hope you’ll like this list that I put together as a contributor to the Amex Tumblr: 18 Little Holiday Joys with Your Kids. I thought about the small joys that shouldn’t be overlooked in the craziness of the season, like sharing favorite holiday movies together, knowing every lyric to Partridge in a Pear Tree, or watching a child suspend disbelief...

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Printable Nutcracker paper dolls bring the magic to a coffee table near you.

Forget overpriced seating and an emergency potty break right before the Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy. Thanks to these gorgeous printable Nutcracker paper dolls from CMP favorite Sarah Jane, now you can enjoy the magic of one of our favorite holiday traditions any time, any place, and with the most beautiful or ridiculous dances your kids can devise. The Nutcracker Paper Dolls and Puppet Theater includes PDF printables of the stage proscenium and 13 Nutcracker characters. Just print them out on heavy card stock, cut and assemble. Then, crank the Nutcracker soundtrack from Spotify (The San Francisco Ballet Orchestra recording...

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