Tag: gifts for teens + tweens

6 essential sleepaway camp packing tips to keep you organized and sane (if not a little sad)

If your kid is going to sleepaway camp this summer — especially if it’s for the first time — your family is probably dealing with a lot of organizational kerfuffles right about now. Not the least of which is packing. Even though your camp will send its own checklist of “what to bring” and “what not to,” you’re still going to have plenty of questions. So we rounded up some sleepaway camp packing tips to help make it all much easier. That way, there’s less time to worry, and more time for what really matters: Lots of pre-camp hugs....

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So smart! A new board game subscription box to keep family game night fresh.

My kids’ playroom has a bookshelf with piles of board games taller than me. So yeah, you could say we’re fairly avid tabletop gamers at our house. But, even so, we’re still always on the lookout for fun new games. If they’re really affordable, even better. So you can imagine how happy I was to hear that Hasbro just announced their first-ever board game subscription box service. Subscribe, and every three months you get a crate with three new board games right to your door. Choose from either a family game option and an adults-only option for $50 a...

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The Rebel Girls are back, and they’re more badass and inspiring than ever.

It’s hard to overstate how excited I was about the first volume of Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls. A whole book full of the biographies of stereotype-busting sheroes? Illustrated with gorgeous portraits from female artists around the world? Heck yeah, I was sold! And this beautiful book far exceeded my already sky-high expectations and became a permanent fixture on my coffee table. So obviously I’m now bouncing up and down for the second volume, which by the way, includes Beyoncé. Okay, now I’m really freaking out. Related: Launch Ladies: The new children’s book all about the trailblazing women of space...

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The Wonder Woman bracelet we all need right now

With all of us completely obsessed with Wonder Woman these days — and can you blame us? — I am so glad that our brand partnership director Lisa spotted this awesome Wonder Woman bracelet by Alex and Ani. Because it may have just risen to the top of my birthday wish list. The price is pretty sweet — under $50. And while you can buy them in either a gold or silver finish, c’mon. Is there really any choice besides gold? Perfect for your favorite super mom, super grad, or newly minted Wonder Woman fangirl. Related: Cool Wonder Woman gifts...

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Cool Wonder Woman gifts that boys and men will love too.

Wonder Woman — let alone an exclusive all-female screening of the Patty Jenkins-directed Wonder Woman movie — does not frighten the boys and men in my life, and for that I am grateful. I mean, what kid wouldn’t want to look up to a badass superhero who’s a natural born athlete, fighter, and can bench press 15,000 pounds? And that was before she earned the bracelets. Not to mention that iconic magic lasso which so many of us coveted as kids. Related: 13 amazing superhero gifts for girls who can (and will) do anything So while we’ve featured tons of cool Wonder...

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The cast of Hamilton gets bigger and cuddlier

Of our entire 2016 holiday gift guide, by far one of the most popular gift ideas were the genius handmade Hamilton dolls by Christina of Etsy’s Bobeena Shop. What can we say, you all have good taste in artists — and game-changing Broadway musicals. Now she’s out with a few brand new characters to help round out the most adorable founding fathers (and mothers) around: John Laurens and Hercules Mulligan. Add them to favorites like the Schuyler sisters and Alexander Hamilton himself and you’ll have the most enviable pop culture doll collection on the planet right now. Related: The best Hamilton party theme ideas: Decor, invitations, treats, and...

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6 fun, creative ways to give your graduate a cash gift and make it special

Now that we’re in the thick of graduation season, it’s time to give our high school and college grads plenty of well-earned congratulations. That’s why we sought out the most fun and creative ways to give cash gifts to grads. Because, reality check: We’ve learned through trial and error that the most appreciated gift for this age group is definitely cash. Hey, no shame in that. It really is the perfect gift to help a recent grad get started in their new lives. For us, though, it feels a little impersonal to hand over an envelope stuffed with bills. So we’re here to help make that gift of graduation cash...

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10 inspirational art prints for grads that will encourage them to work hard, be kind, and follow their dreams.

I’m a real sucker for a feel good, motivational quote, so I love the idea of giving an inspirational art print as a gift to a recent grad. They can hang it on a wall or prop it up on a desk, and it’ll be a daily reminder to go out there and go get ’em! These 10 inspirational art prints for grads are the ones I feel will most encourage hard work, kindness, and a belief in themselves to follow their dreams. Cue the Pomp and Circumstance… At top: Work Hard and be Nice to People Print by Stars and Type...

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One Star Wars gift we want the whole world to buy. May the Fourth be with you!

We are clearly not unbiased when it comes to everything Star Wars, but when there’s a totally perfect Star Wars gift to celebrate May the Fourth and it happens to support one of our own team, we’re all over it. And you should be too. Can’t wait for The Last Jedi? You’re in luck!   Uh. So I’ve been keeping secrets from you… #Phasma A post shared by Delilah S. Dawson (@delilahsdawson) on Apr 14, 2017 at 2:39pm PDT Our own longtime contributor Delilah S. Dawson, also a popular author, girl power graphic novelist, hilarious Instagrammer and bona fide Star Wars junkie is...

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7 of the coolest, most covetable fidget spinners. Because OMG, kids are obsessed.

Cool fidget spinners and fidget cubes are absolutely taking over the world these days. In fact we’ve compared notes here on team Cool Mom Picks and yep, kids across the country are collectively losing their ever-loving minds over these fidget spinners. Stores are sold out and kids are spinning obsessively. All. day. long. For some kids who have trouble staying still or need to redirect all that physical energy to help them stay focused, the original KCHKUI fidget cubes can be truly fantastic. A few of the moms here have seen some great results with our own kids, and some of...

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Where’d you get those bracelets?! Well, I’ll tell ya….

I’ve had a thing for layering multiple bracelets for a while now, which has slowly replaced my former compulsion to wear massive cocktail rings all the time. I will say it’s a little easier to put on gloves in cold weather, ha. If you’ve been stuck in a jewelry rut, it’s such an easy, fun way to jazz up even jeans and a t-shirt or make a stuffy black dress a little more contemporary. When I’m running out the door, I just grab four or five bracelets, like the ones here and suddenly I feel “dressed.”   Since people are always asking...

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The Wipebook dry erase notebook: One random office supply gift your kids will absolutely love.

My kids are obsessed with their dry erase boards (it’s the little things, you know?). In fact, my daughter has figured out she can use the dry erase markers on her glossy coloring book covers and wipe those down too. Now, they’re playing games like teacher and student whenever they can, with their markers and books in hand. So when I spotted the reusable Wipebook dry erase notebook over at The Grommet, I instantly knew this would be a huge hit with my kids. Related: The coolest birthday gifts for 7 year olds This notebook has 20 reusable pages that can be written and drawn...

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A magazine for tween girls, by tween girls, about tween girls. Finally!

OMG! We found a magazine for tween girls so cool that the only thing my 10-year-old daughter could find to complain about was that some of the fonts were hard to read. High praise indeed, if you’re familiar with hormonal, too-cool-for-school preteen ways. Seriously, though. If you’ve got a tween girl, you’ve got to check out Bright Lite magazine. Related: 9 great TV shows for tweens that you might not have considered Bright Lite, which is run by two moms, is a magazine for tween girls written by tween girls, and curated by an editorial board of — you guessed...

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We can’t wait to read our way through this 100 essential novels scratch-off poster from Pop Chart Lab.

Looking for a good book to read this winter? This classic novels scratch-off poster chart at Pop Chart Lab has your next 100 book recommendations for you, with the most satisfying check-off list ever. This framed art poster has 100 classic novels — books like Pride and Prejudice, Fahrenheit 451, Gone with the Wind, and Animal Farm — with covers partially covered in scratch-off gold. As you make your way through the list, you scratch off each one to reveal the whole cover. Feeling satisfyingly smug yet? Related: 7 books to help you feel fabulous right now (because shame is so 2016) Now, this is Pop Chart...

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6 wonderful children’s books about African-American pioneers your children may not know — yet

It’s safe to say that during Black History Month in particular, our children are learning all about our nation’s great civil rights leaders, like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks and Frederick Douglass. But, if you’ve seen (or, heck, even heard about) the film Hidden Figures, it’s been an awakening for a lot of parents and educators that there are so many more African-American pioneers who deserve the spotlight too. Even my mother-in-law, an 83-year-old Black woman, had never heard of Katherine Goble Johnson, Mary Jackson, or Dorothy Vaughan — the brilliant women who were instrumental in helping launch the first U.S. astronaut into orbit. Thankfully, that’s...

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2 fantastic tees we’d wear even if they didn’t support the ACLU. But they do.

Our friend Christine Koh, she of the wonderful gold personalized unicorn tee (featured as one of our favorite cool birthday gifts for tweens and tweens) is at it again. Her shop, which features beautifully designed advocacy tees each supporting an excellent cause, now has two new designs with 20% of the proceeds going to one of our favorite orgs, the ACLU Nationwide. Check out the shop for the fierce Rise Up tee and the gold stamped Equality tee, both of which I love so much…well, considering the cause, the designs themselves, and the opportunity to support an indie maker mom with my purchase,...

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Protect yourself from the elements with this rad Star Wars lightsaber umbrella.

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...

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The best lists of the best children’s books of 2016, all in one place

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...

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18 best children’s books of 2016 | Editors’ Best of 2016

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...

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