There is never a bad time to throw a pirate themed party and look for cool pirate party ideas. Of course there’s always Halloween — and then today’s Talk Like a Pirate Day. (One of our favorites!) But it’s a cool birthday party theme all on its own, and it doesn’t even have to be all Pirates of the Carribbean themed either. So thanks to printable decor and activities, crafty DIY shortcuts, movies on demand, and clever but easy cupcake decorating ideas, it’s possible to pull together a cool pirate themed party (or pARRRty) for your kids and all their best mateys in just...Read More
Even though Finding Dory has only been out for a few weeks, she already has a ton of fans who are likely going to want her be the star of their birthday party (well, after the birthday child of course). So we’ve gone fishing for some of our favorite Finding Dory-inspired birthday party ideas from invitations, decor, food, and party favors. And we’ve even put them all in this one spot so you won’t forget anything, unlike you-know-who. Related: 10 cool summer party ideas for kids, and lots of inspiration to help you pull them off (Top image: The...Read More
More than 40 cool Star Wars The Force Awakens birthday party ideas: invitations, decor, treats, and activities. Now THAT’S how the force works!
Since the release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, kids all over planet Earth and Jakku are begging for a Star Wars Force Awakens birthday party that incorporates Rey, Finn, BB-8, and yeah, Kylo Ren along with our favorite pals from the original franchise. So, in addition to the 40 awesome Star Wars party ideas we featured last year — which is among our most popular posts with you all, for good reason — we’ve pulled together another 40+ ideas for this next generation of Star Wars fans who can’t even imagine what Star Wars looks like without Rey! Go ahead, mix...Read More
With so many iconic Easter candies to buy, Easter brunch recipe to make, and fancy Easter cakes to bake, it’s easy to forget how simple it can be to make DIY Easter treats. So I’ve put together a few that I love. These special sweets are such a nice way to add a homemade touch to your holiday without taking up a whole lot of your time. This way, there’s more time for egg hunting, Easter brunching, or just hanging out with the kids instead. Related: DIY Easter Cake Pops almost too cute to eat. Almost. Jordan almonds are a staple filler in my Easter baskets....Read More
I will not get into the ingredient list on Lucky Charms cereal because, well. Yeah. But, hey, no judgments. I’m not one of those no-sugar-ever-moms. And once in a while, for a special occasion like, say, St. Patrick’s Day, I can totally see how putting those little colorful rainbow marshmallows to use in creative Lucky Charms dessert recipes is indeed, magically delicious for all involved. I will be totally honest, I spent a lot of time looking around and beyond the fun Lucky Charms treats we found a few years ago, most Lucky Charms desserts I found look kind of gross to...Read More
NYC local cupcake shop Baked By Melissa has had us wrapped around their finger since they rolled into town with their delicious bite-sized cupcakes and clever ideas–remember the cupcake gumball machine and the Betsy Johnson cupcake? We even have their insanely good cookie dough cupcakes in our 2014 holiday gift guide, as an awesome BFF gift. Their latest creation is just as innovative as all of those: the Baked By Melissa online cupcake creator, ready for wannabe dessert artists to flex their design skill. You can choose from 16 flavors and turn a blank digital canvas into your own virtual artwork made up of anywhere from 100 to...Read More
We’ve seen rainbow themed parties for kids before, but if you have an art and color-loving child, a rainbow art party can be a really fun and original theme for the birthday boy or girl. While there are plenty of ideas out there that involve seven-layer rainbow birthday cakes that may or may not come out like the photos on Pinterest, I wanted to track down stuff that makes it easier for parents. So here, find plenty of easy rainbow party invitations, decorations, recipes, activities, and party favors — and no, you won’t need a pot of gold to afford them all. [top image: one charming...Read More
If your kids are anything like mine—or every other kid I know—they are way into Frozen. Still. Until they let it go (cheap shot?), I say we embrace it. For me, this means whipping up Frozen-inspired recipes that are perfect for a movie-viewing party, a Frozen themed birthday, or a surprise movie night dessert. Because if you’re going to watch it for the 67th time–this week–here might as well be something delicious in it for you all. The entire snow theme is a great help as far as Frozen movie party recipe ideas, and I love the tasteful Vanilla Snowflake Cupcakes...Read More
Most cakes for Easter are elaborately decorated beyond the point that I’m interested in or, um, able to take on. Tired of gawking at fabulous no-can-do cakes (you know what I’m talking about), I decided to find six easy but cool cakes for Easter with recipes that anyone can make. Even me and I’m no uber-bakerBonus: While these cakes make great Easter desserts, most are just plain pretty for any occasion, like a spring party or a fabulous baby shower. You’re probably thinking that there’s no way you can make a cake as pretty as the Pastel Swirl Cake (above) on...Read More
I’m not one for fruity candy, so “taste the rainbow” never sounded like such a good thing to me. But now, as the mom of a preschooler and a school-aged kid, I have a new appreciation for the appeal of all those rainbow recipes and rainbow-colored snacks we see all over Pinterest. My kids love multicolored treats any day of the year, but I’m especially eager to try these gorgeous rainbow recipes on St. Patrick’s Day as an alternative to everything green. The rainbow cake has gotten all of the internet glory, but if you ask me, these Rainbow...Read More
Web Coolness: Amazing Valentine’s treats, a commercial to make you cry, and big news for the Downton Abbey obsessed
It’s Friday! That means it’s time for us to share some of our favorite links from around the web with you. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do. Love these adorable and easy arrow cupcake toppers for Valentine’s Day. Nice touch. [h/t Handmade Charlotte] From our editor Kristen: The one thing you’re doing wrong that’s making you feel like a failure. Must-read. From our editor Liz: An encouraging look at the future of fatherhood. Check out the Home Hour podcast, this week featuring not one but two of our very favorite parent bloggers. Tearing up at this Argentinian Coke...Read More
With a heightened awareness of kids’ increasing sensitivity to artificial food colors, more parents are turning to natural alternatives for those Valentine’s cupcakes and bake sale treats. And no, that doesn’t mean you have to puree and strain down your own beets either. A while back, we discovered the wonderful natural food colors, sprinkles and other decoratifs from India Tree, and wow, how they’ve grown since then. They even have a nice recipe section right on their own site, with proportions especially measured for their own products. Check out their creamed frosting recipe right in time for pink Valentine’s...Read More
I miss many things about working in New York, but today I have a totally unexpected and thoroughly awesome reason to miss my old office. Or one in Seattle and San Francisco too. Because today it would have been filled with kittens and cupcakes. Private driver service Uber has teamed up with meme site Cheezburger today on National Cat Day to deliver kittens and cupcakes in New York, San Francisco, and Seattle. $20 will get you fifteen minutes of kitten snuggles, plus cupcakes from Ace of Cakes, yum. Local shelters will provide the kittens (to borrow), and Uber will...Read More
Last week we talked apple treats, and this week it’s pumpkin time. You’re picking pumpkins this year, right? If only from the grocery store? Now all you have to do is seed, peel, and cube your pumpkin. Then roast and puree the pumpkin flesh and we’re almost ready to start. You have homemade pie crust ready, right? Heh. You were getting worried there, admit it. We’d never put you through all that. These six pumpkin-inspired sweets do not call for hours in the kitchen. In fact, they don’t even require a recipe. Hold on to your gourds, cool moms: you...Read More
The ever-growing lead time on holiday marketing can be overwhelming. I’m really not ready to think about Hanukkah or Christmas. But Halloween? That’s a different story. Especially Halloween party snacks. Bring it on! We’ve already had a Halloween party (no joke) and I’m happy to report back with six simple, festive snacks that will get you excited to dress up and party down. These snacks are easy to make whether you’re hosting a big gathering or just a few friends. Yup, there’s no way I’m going to give you an excuse to let the Halloween season pass without a...Read More
It’s still a little toasty outside for me to consider baking, but I’m busy lining up recipes for when the temperature takes a dive. And because I usually bake more than my family can eat, I’m also collecting creative ideas for sharing my wares with friends and neighbors. One of the top finds on my list: The printable retro oven cupcake boxes from Claudine Hellmuth’s Etsy shop. Just download the PDF files, gather the materials on her list, print and assemble. Plus, there’s a link to a super detailed how-to video. You can even omit the cupcake tray and...Read More
If Sharknado registered on your personal pop culture radar, you know that everyone is talking about Shark Week, which started as a Discovery Channel programming block, and has now turned into an actual…Thing. Don’t be surprised if your kids start wanting all things shark after this week. Or hey, if they’re too young (or you are!) to watch, then just settle for one of these fun shark picks. –Liz Custom kids’ shark tee, made to order from this awesome Etsy seller. Too cute. I mean…scary. (above, $23, Oh Bananas) Handmade shark pencil case: one of our favorites that...Read More
I’ve been carrying a deep dark secret since childhood (and yes, Cool Moms, I’m revealing myself here and now): this organic mama has a weakness for sugary cereals. I cannot be left alone with a box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch, I’m the one person on the planet who actually likes Fruity Pebbles, and Lucky Charms make me weak in the knees. As you can imagine, I rarely touch the stuff anymore, but you know what they say about moderation, right? Everything has a time and place, and I say that St. Patrick’s Day qualifies as both to justify...Read More
Red may be the official hue of Valentine’s Day, but you don’t have to give red roses or wear a splash of red to get in the official Valentine’s Day spirit. You can also whip up something red. Red velvet, to be exact. Using a simple red velvet batter makes anything from pancakes to brownies festive. These five red-colored, cocoa-flavored sweets are proof. They’re also super easy to make and cupid approved. The color of love never looked–or tasted–so good. Be still my heart: Red Velvet Milkshakes! (above) These babies are so potent that Courtney at Pizzazzerie, the mad genius behind this...Read More
Next in our series of Valentine’s gift ideas, ideas for gifts you can make yourself. It’s brought to you by the US Postal Service’s new limited-edition Sealed With Love Stamp–because what’s Valentine’s Day without Valentine’s cards in the mail? And isn’t the stamp just gorgeous? (We want it on all our letters, not just Valentine’s cards!) Whether you’re super crafty, a maestro with the convection oven, or just handy with construction paper and the kids’ leftover glue sticks, here’s a great array of 17 DIY Valentines Day gift ideas you can make yourself–with varying degrees of help. clockwise from top Cupid’s Arrow Cupcakes,...Read More
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