When both of my big kids became older siblings for the first time, they wanted to take over most of my mothering duties for me. Feeding the baby, changing diapers, and of course, babywearing. I eventually passed an unused baby sling down to my daughter, and she carried her dolls around the house — and to the grocery, the café, church, Target — with pride, just like I carried her baby brother. While we’ve seen baby doll carriers for kids on Etsy for a while now, we love that our favorite companies are making carriers for kids that match the ones we’re...Read More
We could all use a little nudge to get moving some mornings, especially after a horrible night sleep with a teething infant or a sick child. And what’s way more helpful than a friend chanting “it takes a village,” or your partner reminding you “it’s just a phase,” are these get-up-and-go coffee mugs we found on Etsy. With these motivational mugs, you can get the affirmation you need that everything is going to be all right — and, really, it will be all right — and go seize the day, even on just 2 hours of sleep. (Coffee helps too.) Related: 9 beautifully...Read More
I think any parent would be so happy to be gifted a portrait of their child for Mother’s Day. Not the old-fashioned, over-posed kind of photo but something unique, handmade, custom-created. I so admire indie artists who create images of families that still clearly, and without a doubt, look like them and I was so excited to find Patricia Lima at Purple Paper People on Etsy. I have been wanting a portrait of my youngest, and her custom cut-paper portraits are so full of personality and whimsy, she’s the perfect artist to capture his fun-loving spirit. With Mother’s Day coming up, this is the gift I really want. Not that...Read More
Despite living in the land of spring seersucker and smocking — also known as The South — my boys aren’t exactly preppy. And getting them to wear a bow tie on Easter seemed like an impossibility, until I found RougeBox. This little gem of an Etsy shop has amazing pop culture bow ties my boys and I can’t help but love. Owner Joanne Kim creates these handmade ties in Los Angeles, and that big-city cool comes through in every piece. Whether your boy is more a fan of Thor, Star Wars, Wimpy Kid, or Dr. Seuss, I can’t imagine you won’t find one...Read More
Ready for Easter? We weren’t either until we started searching the web for ideas, and got excited when we found so many totally adorable bunny gifts for Easter out there! And there’s no chocolate, Peeps, or jelly beans in this bunch — not that there’s anything wrong with those. We just thought it would be fun to find some cool, non-candy gifts for Easter baskets, for babies all the way up to our not-too-old-for-Easter-gift tweens and teens. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Shaped like those iconic Peeps candies we can’t stop eating despite ourselves, these Easter bunny crayons from Custom Crayons by...Read More
With today being Pi Day, I cannot advocate for scribbling the first 10 or so digits of Pi on one’s sneaker soles before a test in math class. (Not that I’d ever know of such things.) But I can certainly go for the transparency of the awesome set of Pi pencils found at the Columbus based Wacodis Etsy shop. I love the pretty pastels juxtaposed with the exquisite nerdery of 3.141592653589793238462… and so on. Nice bonus that they’re USA-made. Today, March 14, is of course a perfect day to order them. Mmm….Pi. Find the of Pi pencils and other fun geeky pencil designs online at...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
This time of year I start to get a little stuck. The excitement of Valentine’s Day is gone, light is still limited, the weather is frigid. It’s like I just want to imagine myself someplace — anyplace — else. So I started browsing Etsy for globes and found some outrageously wonderful options from California artist Wendy Gold that at least get my mind traveling, if not my body. The custom globes at her shop ImagineNations Vintage Globe Art are more than just an artist with a nice hand taking a Sharpie to a scavenged globe; this is true art with the prices to...Read More
While I’m not big on fake flowers (sorry fake flower fans!) I am big on real flowers, especially when they’re used in a way as gorgeous as the modern, made-to-order resin floral jewelry spotted at Modern Flower Child on Etsy. Each piece from this Oregon artist is entirely one-of-a-kind, as Sarah incorporates real flowers, grasses, and bits of foliage into resin to beautiful effect. It’s funny but from that description alone, I wouldn’t think I would like them. Then I take a look at the result and actually I think they’re quite stunning. That birch bark bangle is just awesome. Or if you’re crushing...Read More
Whether you’re a fan of Valentine’s Day or not, what can we say — we’ll always take the chance to put a little more love out there. Or you know, just to get a Huey Lewis earworm in our readers heads for the rest of the day. Whether you’re celebrating with the kids, your beloved, or a big box of chocolates and a date with Netflix, we wish you all the the love in the world today. Happy Valentine’s Day! xo Kristen + Liz and team Cool Mom Picks Power of Love crossstitch: Not So Modern...Read More
Today starts the Lunar New Year, and lots of little Year of the Monkey babies are soon to be born. If not already. I’ve always loved Tree by Kerri Lee‘s beautiful wooden birth year blocks, which a make sweet gift for a special little someone. Handcrafted by artist Kerri Lee and featured in her sister’s Etsy shop, you can order these in three colors, all of which feature characteristics of a Year of the Monkey baby. I think they make such lovely, affordable keepsakes, whether the lucky recipient is super into the Chinese zodiac, or just appreciates the thoughtfulness of a...Read More
We always have the best time looking for cool Valentine’s Day gift ideas for our kids, whether they’re toddlers, tweens or teens. Hey, it’s not like they’re expecting spendy chocolate truffles or diamond jewelry! Of course not every family exchanges Valentine’s gifts — and we still think cards are always terrific — but for those who do, we love all of these cool Valentine’s gifts for kids. Think of them as sweet ways for kids to give a little love to a sibling or best friend, or for parents or grandparents to shower a child with love, with something besides those chalky...Read More
Each year I have the best time scouring the web for the funniest Valentine’s Cards. I was just never a fan of those long, poetic prefab cards written in wedding script. I guess if I have something sentimental to say I’ll say it myself. As for my cards? Give me the funny, please. So whether you like the self-deprecating Valentine’s Cards that make fun of your standing Friday night date with Netflix, or the slightly racy cards that imply…well, that there might be a little more to your evening than passing out at 8:45 surrounded by a box of half-eaten truffles...Read More
We’ve had conversations around here from time to time about musical artists, and the few of them who are able endure over time, even managing to evolve and experiment and remain relevant for four or more decades. David Bowie is easily on that list for us and we were all pretty devastated to learn of his passing today at just 69. David Bowie heroes greeting card by Etsy’s Lost Plots Shop. I know that some think it’s strange to cry for “a celebrity” you never personally knew; but that’s the genius of real artists. They have an amazing way of burrowing their way into your soul,...Read More
19 cool Rey Star Wars toys and gifts: She might not be in Monopoly, but she sure is here. | Spawned episode 28
We’ve been super frustrated with the lack of Star Wars toys for kids featuring Rey. Not just because she’s a woman, and all of our kids — male and female — love her, but uh…she’s the hero. How the heck do you make a Star Wars Monopoly set or a Star Wars 6-piece Action Figure set “with all your favorite characters” but not the main character of the entire movie? above LEGO Force Awakens Rey and BB-8 art photograph | Holtzman Customs Even JJ Abrams doesn’t get it. We discussed the issue on this week’s Spawned Show: Where is Rey? — especially Mike...Read More
It’s not like I was thinking of you when I laughed my head off at this I survived another meeting that could have been an email coffee mug. I mean, even if we do conduct business together, and we do have conference calls that seem to go on for hours, and we have sat through briefings that take longer to discuss than the brief took to write in the first place…no, I actually enjoy those things. And those calls where you wait for 14 different people even though a dozen of them never even say a word? Those are my very favorite. Of course I’m talking about other meetings with someone...Read More
The weather outside may finally have us shaking in our boots, but I’m feeling kind of warm inside just looking at the cutest handmade winter fleece hats for babies and toddlers from Mrs PTB on Etsy. They’ll almost make you want to leave the warmth of your house just to hear the ooohs and ahhhs of the passersby when they see your child all bundled up. Made of soft fleece by Philadelphia crafter Angelique Buckley, there’s nothing scratchy to bother sensitive kids who normally rip a hat off in five seconds flat. And the under-the-chin snap closure–which can be replaced by velcro on request–helps...Read More
Total Star Wars score! I just discovered these awesome printable Star Wars Force Awakens coloring pages from Etsy’s DJ Penscript and I know my kids will be clamoring to get their markers on them, stat. This is no rudimentary clip art; New Mexico illustrator Devyn Brewer has created some darn cool illustrations that incorporates zentangle patterns into coloring pages that I can imagine a few adults will be downloading too. You’ll find Rey on her Speeder (whoo!) plus BB-8 and R2D2, the iconic Millennium Falcon, and everyone’s favorite Dark Lord. There’s an x-wing fighter too, but it doesn’t offer nearly as much coloring potential...Read More
It’s amazing how many printable 2016 calendars there are online now — although admittedly they’re not all style. Now that I’ve finally investing in some good thick paper and become like a printable maniac, I spent a ton of time looking for the printable calendars that I would be happy to have on any of my own walls — clean, modern, pretty. Some are free, some cost a few dollars (but support small indie designers), some actually have space for scheduling, while some are just a date-at-a-glance style that’s perfect over a desk or on a refrigerator door. Hope you...Read More
As we parents start counting down the days to the December break, some of us are also realizing that whoa! It’s time to figure out teacher gifts, stat. I still really love our post about the best teacher gift ideas according to actual teachers and if you haven’t checked it out, you really should. There was definitely some debate on Facebook about the results (some of you feel really passionate about cash gifts!) but whatever you give, the message that came through loud and clear to me from all the educators we spoke with, is that it really, truly is the thought that counts. So...Read More
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