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
Tag: gifts for kids
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
This is a sponsored message from Candlewick Press Award-winning children’s book author and illustrator Oliver Jeffers and fine artist Sam Winston have teamed up to create a gorgeous children’s book that’s a tribute to the power of a great story — and just in time for holiday gifting. The 2016 New York Times #1 bestseller, A Child of Books, is an imaginative adventure through the world of storytelling. The two young main characters discover the magic found in books, as they explore forests of fairy tales, sneak past monsters in haunted castles, and climb mountains of make-believe — all presented to the reader with a genius visual...Read More
Web Coolness: Princess Leia gingerbread, the Hamilton Rudolph mashup, gift ideas for the hardest people on your list and more
Here are some things we’ve been reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too! Princess Leia Gingerbread Cookies! Total win from the always brilliant Just Jenn (and one of our favorite geeky Twitter follows) for the Star Wars blog. Gifts that give back: The HSTRY Black Santa Ugly Christmas Sweater designed by Nas is donating proceeds to prison reform. (And it’s definitely cooler than the Royal Family’s Christmas sweaters. Eek!) Be sure to check out the brand new 2016 Cool Mom Tech holiday gift guide, and a chance to win your own iPad Air! Terrific ideas for 15 cool...Read More
With Marvel and DC pretty much taking over entertainment for the past decade or so, plenty of kids are clamoring for superhero action figures for the holidays. But what I think is even cooler than Chris Evans in miniature (not that I’d complain if I had the full-size version, ahem) is a new company that lets you customize your own superhero action figure, right down to the sex, skin tone, name, and superpowers. Started by a husband-wife team, Hero Me Lab is a small company I discovered when they reached out to send me an action figure to check out and…wow. Color me super impressed. (Get...Read More
We’ve recently become Cheryl’s Cookies converts around here, after having received a generous gift basket delivery of their buttercream cookies. (Now that’s a friend.) And now…they’re our newest sponsor! Which makes us very happy. If, very hungry, because we’ve spent an inordinate number of hours browsing their site this past week. It’s amazing how many incredible, affordable treats they offer that make thoughtful and convenient holiday gifts. (ZOMG, cookie cards!) From their famous buttercream frosted cookies in the cutest shapes and designs, to make-your-own kits for kids, holiday tins and giant towers…well, just saying, be careful browsing on an empty stomach....Read More
It’s no secret that parents love finding tech gifts for kids that we can justify as being both fun and educational, but the true test isn’t whether we think they’re cool — but rather, whether our own kids play with them. Over and over again. That’s why we we’re so thrilled to have partnered with our newest sponsor Bitsbox. (And you dedicated Spawned podcast listeners already know just how thrilled!) This clever subscription box gift masterfully and clearly teaches kids how to code their own apps that actually work on smartphones and tablets. Like my 9-year-old son’s Burping Obama app. (Not coming to an app store near you,...Read More
While I think using an heirloom Hanukkah menorah that has been passed down from previous generations is a lovely idea, it’s also nice to have a menorah just for kids, to help get them as excited about lighting the candles as they are about eight days of gifts. And there are so many fabulous, kid-friendly menorahs out there this year, we could barely narrow it down. From cute menorahs for younger kids, to edgier options that will appeal to tweens and teens, take a look at these 12 cool options that Liz and I found, and see if one makes it...Read More
If you’re looking for some of the best Black Friday shopping deals and discounts around the web, we’ve rounded them up for you right here, along with the best Black Friday tech deals over on Cool Mom Tech. We’ll continue to update the post with sales all day (and weekend) long, so be sure to check back. And you definitely want to follow us on Twitter where we’ll be sharing great ones as they come up. We’re happy to support a lot of these businesses, indie makers, and brands, which can always use a boost this time of year. So, happy shopping —...Read More
These 6 new books for kids about the arts are sure to inspire young painters, musicians, and writers.
I’ve noticed a trend lately among the hundreds of children’s books I receive for review: stellar new books for kids about the arts. We tend to promote a lot of STEM toys, books, and opportunities for kids because we’re passionate about science and technology and the digital world our kids will live and work in. But we still love to find great books for kids about the arts that can inspire young painters, musicians, and writers too. These 6 books for kids about the arts will encourage your littlest ones to try their hand at creativity, or they can be used to supplement your elementary-age children’s...Read More
Adorable knit bunny, deer and unicorn winter hats for babies from Oeuf NYC. Because, of course you need this.
When you find a gift as adorable as these handknit animal hoodies and winter hats for babies from Oeuf (pronounced uh-f, it’s French for “egg”), I think it’s completely appropriate to ditch any baby gift registry suggestions and go rogue instead. I mean, what friend could blame you for skipping the bottle cleaner when these are an option? These knit hats and hoodies are hilariously charming and sweet, with a whimsical sense of modern style to them. Seriously, buy the unicorn hat instead of the diaper pail liners. You won’t regret it. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: The Baby Registry Essentials...Read More
My kids hate to see me cry, but there have been times when I’m following the Syrian refugee crisis that I can’t help it. They’ve caught me looking at the haunting photo of Omran Daqneesh in the ambulance, seeing the tragic body of 3-year-old Alan Kurdi on a Turkish beach, and watching desperate mothers and fathers trying to get their families to safety while “reporters” trip them as they run from armed guards. But, you know, I think it’s a good thing that they see me cry at images like this. As strongly as I feel about it, I’ve still struggled to explain the Syrian...Read More
Move over family movie night — we found 4 fun art activity books the whole family can enjoy together.
In an effort to reduce screentime at home, especially with Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks around the bend, I’ve been stocking up on some arts and crafts-type activity books for kids. Instead of everyone sitting on the couch, looking at their own devices, now we sit around the kitchen table and work on these projects together. And yes, of course, it’s blissfully peaceful and it happens every single night. Heh. In reality, though, sometimes I just pass an art activity book over to my kid to keep them busy while I’m working on something else. There’s no craft supply shopping or Pinterest-searching required;...Read More
My daughter isn’t what you’d typically call a “girly girl.” Her favorite clothes are athletic wear and she can hold her own (and then some) with the neighborhood boys in a game of flag football. But she still loves to dress up and has a collection of dolls that has taken over her room. She may not wear sparkles and bows, but she’s still a girl in every sense of the word. So I was really excited to find out about the Girly Girl Doll Company, which is redefining what it means to be “girly” in the best possible sense....Read More
In a world where a quick Google search can answer even the toughest question in just seconds, we love the delicious act of waiting for a surprise in the mail. But while most subscription boxes give you a pretty good idea of what to expect (makeup and books, hooray!), we found one very unique subscription box for kids ages 9 to 14 that remains just as magical and enigmatic as the Loch Ness Monster, right up until they open the box. Thanks to the geniuses at Wonder and Company, every few months, your child will receive a Kids’ Mystery Box delivered right to...Read More
Cool custom temporary tattoos from Love and Lion that we want for our special events. (Or, heck, just any event.)
We’ve seen plenty of tutorials from crafty bloggers on how to DIY temporary tattoos, but they’ve never turned out quite right. I recently discovered the insanely creative indie temporary tattoo company Love & Lion out of my hometown Nashville (whoo, Nashville!), and now I’m hooked. In addition to the readymade tattoos they sell, they create stylish and witty custom temporary tattoos — so much fun for friend’s bachelorette party, announcing your pregnancy, celebrating your third 39th birthday, or just that moms’ night out that you so desperately need. They even have temporary tattoos for kids, like Big Bro or Sis and custom pirate tattoos (naturally). Related: We...Read More
This is a sponsored message from Brightly Gifts Whether you’re shopping for a special gift for your own child, grandchild, niece, nephew or best friend’s cool kid, books are at the top of so many wish lists. Which is why you’ll want to check out Brightly Gifts, a brand new shop filled with thoughtfully curated, high quality gift boxes of books to suit babies and early readers. Special offer for Cool Mom Picks readers: Save 20% off your order + get free ground shipping at Brightly Gifts with code CMPGIFTS2016. From the creators of Brightly, a popular site trusted by thousands...Read More