My kids love checking in with the news to see if Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow every year on Groundhog Day (SPOILER ALERT: there will be six more weeks of winter this year), and so the new book A Greyhound, a Groundhog by Emily Jenkins and illustrated by Chris Appelhans is one we just had to check out. It’s fun for Groundhog Day, but any other day of the year too, because even though it features a groundhog, it’s most definitely not about Groundhog Day. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: The best lists of the best children’s books of 2016, all in...Read More
Tag: gifts for kids
It’s February, which means a lot of us are spreading a little extra love in the family with Valentine’s Day gifts for kids. We’ve tracked down some favorites that are sweet — but also candy-free. So in this year’s Valentine’s Day Gift Guide, we’re serving up 19 of coolest Valentine’s gifts for kids of all ages, and we hope there’s something here just right for your littlest sweetheart. Be prepared to accept lots of hugs and kisses in return — even from your tweens. Well, maybe. Related: Don’t forget about your partner — 16 creative, inexpensive Valentine’s Day gifts for him CMP is an...Read More
9 lovely children’s books about the immigrant experience to help encourage more kindness and empathy.
I’m a child of an immigrant. And so I jumped at the chance to put together a list of some of my favorite children’s books about the immigrant experience. I know first-hand just how difficult it is for someone to get to America for a better life and work toward citizenship, let alone having to leave their homeland, family members, and the only life they’ve known behind, sometimes forever. With immigration a big topic in our country right now, our children are hearing about these issues too. They have so many questions, whether they’re watching the news with you, discussing it in...Read More
As a mom-to-be, I’ve been looking for some inspirational prints for boys that I can hang on the nursery walls. After all, I’ve already started my campaign to create a compassionate son, starting with the essential feminist onesie, which was the first item I added to my baby registry. So as I look for artwork, I’ve been thinking beyond the typical superheroes, rockets, and robots (all of which I love!) that you tend to see “for boys” and seeing out inspirational prints for boys that will be a reminder to my whole family to work hard to raise a son who is smart, caring, and respectful. So...Read More
Members of the Rebel Alliance, big and small, rejoice! We’ve found the perfect weapon to protect you from the damp forests of Endor, the withering sun of Tatooine, or, you know, some light drizzle on your commute to school. We are so excited about these Star Wars lightsaber umbrellas — an essential accessory, if you ask me, for any Star Wars fanatic needing some rad rebel gear to hold them over until The Last Jedi opens nationwide (just 324 more days, yay!). Related: 5 of the hottest Star Wars toys your kids totally want. Trust us. You’ll look like a real...Read More
A brilliant new maker box that combines digital and real-world play for kids. And wow, the possibilities.
To my nieces, screen time is like water. Without it, I think they’d go all limp and cockeyed. So I love discovering apps for them that encourage both tech literacy and imaginative play. The two come together together beautifully thanks to the brand new Get Qurious Maker Box, which we think parents will be really happy to discover. Related: The coolest birthday gifts for 4 year olds | The Ultimate Birthday Gift Guide You may have heard about its super successful Kickstarter campaign last year, and now that the box is finally out, I think that Get Qurious is going to be a fantastic gift...Read More
This past holiday season, my 9-year-old asked for a boy doll. “But not a boy baby doll,” she said, “because they’re exactly the same as the girl baby dolls when you take the clothes off. They are just girl dolls! Only in blue clothes! Though sometimes they don’t have eyelashes. And anyway, I have so many girl dolls and it’s just not fair that there aren’t boys too.” Can you tell she’s my kid? We did find a rag-style boy doll for her who she absolutely adores; but I admit I wish we had found The Doll Kind a month ago,...Read More
5 wildly cool STEM bath toys to inspire future scientists. (Even if they can’t spell scientist yet.)
If your kids are getting older and casting off rubber duckies for something a bit more stimulating when it comes to bath toys, we’ve tracked down some very cool science-based bath toys with an educational spin that might do the trick. Even though little plastic cups keep kids entertained (and certainly have educational value all on its own), these 5 fun STEM bath toys go a little further to teach the youngest kids fundamentals of water science while cutting no corners on fun or imagination. Consider giving one to your budding hydro-engineer or future architect, or wrapping it up as a smart, educational toy for your...Read More
If you’re a parent of a new baby, you’ll soon find that many experienced moms and grandmothers on the street will stop and tell you: You have to put a hat on your baby during cold winter weather! Some will even suggest you dress your babies this way in spring and fall, and on cooler summer nights too. And this season, I am loving the animal-themed winter hats for babies that’ll make them look stylish and keep them warm all winter. Or, anytime, really. From unicorns horns to long bunny ears, here are some adorable animal winter hats for babies you won’t want to...Read More
We’ve been longtime fans of Nutcase bike helmets, since they offer some of the cutest designs and trustworthy safety features for our kids. So I’m very excited about the brand new launch of their newest designs for their Little Nutty line. My favorite? The Tin Robot design (shown above), which reminds me of the friendly droids from Star Wars. But I also like the Bluebirds & Bees, which encircles your child’s head in a wreath of flowers, birds, and adorableness. Oh, and the Ahoy! helmet with a pirate map on one side? Sold. Related: Turn signal gloves, inflatable helmets, and other cool bike...Read More
When you’ve been the littlest in your family your whole entire life, but things are about to get real because a new sibling comes along, you need the book Little Big Girl by Claire Keane. This sweet story about a little girl growing up and getting bigger and bigger (sniff) has captured the imagination and attention of my three kids, as they’re planning to welcome a new little sister very soon. If you’re looking for a sweet gift to help your child transition to having a new younger sibling, this is it. Related: The ultimate new-baby sibling gift In Little Big Girl, Matisse (the real name of author Claire...Read More
Once again, we’re happy to have compiled the best lists of all the best children’s books of the year, curated by the top publishers, reviewers, organizations, and bloggers we respect. And boy, was it a fantastic year for children’s literature and storybooks. You’ll surely find lots of great new discoveries from the New York Times to the American Library Association, from NPR to well-curated blogs like Brainpickings and Brightly and…well, us! So start with our own list of the best children’s books of 2016, then check out some other perspectives. We bet a few of your kids’ favorites will be on here, and you’ll surely find some new ones you’ll be excited to add to...Read More
As the year comes to a close, we’re looking back at our picks for the best children’s books of 2016 — according to our editors, writers, and of course our children! What a perfect way to kick off our Editors Picks of the Year. As our readers know, we all adore books here at Cool Mom Picks and we’ve collectively read hundreds of great kids’ books this year, from the sweetest board books for babies, to excellent picture books for early readers, to compelling graphic novels — and it’s not an easy job to whittle it down to just a few favorites. Ultimately, we go with the books...Read More
The ultimate list of awesome last-minute holiday gift ideas. We’ve got you covered, procrastinators!
Every year, I convince myself that this is the year I won’t be scrambling to find great last-minute holiday gifts; that this is the year I “shop all year” for great stuff for my friends and family and stash it away. But..nope. How is it Christmas week already? Oof. Fret not, fellow procrastinators! You don’t necessarily have to shell out for express-expedited-Santa’s-reindeer-special-overnight-shipping. I mean you can, but instead we’ve got some brilliant last-minute holiday gift ideas and tips so you can get those presents under the tree or by the menorah in record time. (And don’t forget, lucky Hanukkah revelers, if you’re...Read More
With the perfectly timed December launch of Rogue One, of course Star Wars toys for kids are all the rage. Again. If you’re looking for an awesome gift for your little padawan — even if he or she isn’t quite so little — here are 5 of the hottest Star Wars toys right now that we wouldn’t mind getting in our own Tauntaun fur-lined stockings. But hurry, with all the urgency of a quadjumper pilot using hyperspeed! Because if you order all these Star Wars toys now, you can still get them in time for Christmas or Hanukkah delivery — most with...Read More
These memories brought to you on behalf of JCPenney We spend so much time around here thinking about the best gifts to give to those we love, that sometimes we forget about ourselves and our own gifts! (Is that a mom thing?) So we asked a few of our writers and editors to spend a little time thinking about the most memorable holiday gifts they’ve received over the years, those gifts big and small that brought them joy, and to share them here. Oof, what memories. From Allison’s unexpected surprise from Santa, to Jane’s beginning of a Christmas tradition, to Kristen’s gift that meant so much...Read More
Research shows that the happiest families are those who spend their money on experiences instead of on things. I totally get it. Looking back at my childhood, I can remember only a handful of toys my parents gave me over the years — a Strawberry Shortcake lip gloss, still being a favorite. But every out-of-the-ordinary trip we took together is etched in my memory, whether it was a week at the beach or a night out to see the circus. So, this year, consider investing in an experience gift for your kids in addition to the books and toys they’ll be getting...Read More
For the little girls in my life, ages 6–9 has been a craftaholic phase. One that’s moving away from cardboard and pipe cleaners and more toward DIY craft kits for kids that result in beautiful finished products they can keep themselves or give to others — like to their favorite aunt on Christmas (hint). And since crafting can be a fun bonding time for us, I’ve been looking for artsy DIY kits for kids that don’t require too much painstaking detail work and that are totally self-contained, so we can eliminate any frenzied last-minute trips to the art supply store. Three cheers...Read More
17 of the best subscription gifts for kids: From babies to teens, we’ve found something for everyone.
It feels like the holidays are going to be here in a minute, and I’m not ready! If you’re like me and are still scrambling for a few great gifts that will make your kids think you’re pretty awesome, then you might want to look into one of the cool subscription gifts for kids we’ve been scouting out. Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen so many companies with such good ideas for subscription boxes that range from developmental toys for babies to science kits for our bigger kids. And we know from experience that our kids are thrilled to receive actual, real packages...Read More
I admit I am very skeptical of subscription boxes of clothing like Stitchfix (we published a terrific, brutally honest she said/she said post on it that’s worth a read) since I have very particular tastes and I tend to know what shapes I can wear and what I can’t. So, no surprise, my kids also have very particular tastes and I have had yet to try one of the new trends in boxes of clothing for kids — until Rockets of Awesome, which was founded by former Cricket’s Circle CEO and mom, Rachel Blumenthal. Mamas? I am a total convert. They sent me a credit...Read More