The house is decorated, there’s candy in the pantry for trick-or-treaters, and your children’s Halloween costumes have been planned for a month. Think you’re set for October 31? Well, have you considered what your kids will use for Halloween treat bags? Plastic pumpkin-shaped pumpkins and spare pillowcases from the linen closet are fine, but if you’re putting in all that effort to make creative costumes for your kids, I think it’s kind of nice to make their bags just as special. Also, good way keep the kids busy when the pre-Halloween excitement hits a fevered pitch. I’m not suggesting you splurge on some designer...Read More
7 impressive make-ahead Easter brunch recipes. As in, more time to sneak handfuls of the kids’ jellybeans.
I love hosting holiday brunches for family and friends, but cooking holiday brunches is not so high on my list. I’d much rather ease into my day sipping a latte or, now that it’s spring, one of these amazing iced coffee drinks, than slave over a stove first thing in the morning. So I’ve put together 7 really wonderful make-ahead Easter brunch recipes that make it possible to serve an impressive breakfast spread and get out of PJ’s before the first guest arrives. Hey, there’s a first for everything. Related: 6 fab Easter brunch recipes that you can prep in 30 minutes...Read More
7 easy school lunch ideas for St. Patrick’s Day from rainbow fruit to leprechaun sandwiches. (Contains no actual leprechauns.)
St. Patrick’s Day falls on a weekday this year which means it’s time to get festive with your kid’s bento box. (How’s that for a super specific column for you? St. Patrick’s Day Bento Lunches.) Don’t worry: You don’t need a PhD in crafts—or even the luck of the Irish—to take on these school lunch ideas for St. Patrick’s Day. Each is simple to make, even after a couple of pints of Guinness. Kidding. Kind of. Related: 5 copycat Shamrock Shake recipes. You can even pack them in a Thermos. Don’t fret if you don’t have a set of...Read More
For a little Chinese New Year celebration this evening, I’ll be tracking down some delicious take-out dumplings at my local Chinese food joint (in lieu of my Chinese mom’s amazing cooking, sniffle), and printing out a few copies of this free Year of the Goat printable coloring page that I know my kids will love. What a cool, modern design to bring the Chinese Zodiac to life–which trust me, is pretty hard to find, if you’ve ever searched for free Chinese New Year printables. All you need is your printer, some crayons, and you’ve got a fun, simple way to share a cultural experience with your kids....Read More
Need some last minute Christmas help? We are here for you, friends! 16 last minute ideas for Christmas gifts you can still get 40 creative stocking stuffer ideas, beyond bubbles The best gift card apps to make last-minute gifts easier 6 fun Santa apps for kids to help prove he’s real 7 of the best apps and websites for sending last-minute holiday ecards Handmade craft gift ideas that kids can make themselves Tons of gorgeous free printable gift tags and gift wrap 14 creative gift wrap ideas Easy holiday table setting ideas for a dinner with kids How to take better...Read More
We are the first to admit that we get so caught up in getting gifts for others (and recommending them for you all!) that sometimes, we forget to devote the time to our own memory-making keepsake gifts. One great idea that Kristen puts to use every year: once the holiday craziness has died down, she hits the photo book sites (some of which offer great post-Christmas discounts) and makes an end-of-year family photo book. That way she can actually include all of those special Christmas morning and New Year’s Eve photos which never make it into holiday photo book gifts....Read More
Breaking news: We’ve got two days until Christmas. And I’m guessing I’m not the only one who hasn’t finished holiday shopping yet. Deep breath. Don’t panic. And don’t break your budget on $39 overnight shipping just because you get desperate. Instead, snag one of these easy, last-minute Christmas gift ideas, which can all be pulled together quickly. There’s something here for every price range too. And, just like that, your holidays are saved. The great thing about last-minute gifts is that they can inspire you to think outside the box and shop for things you may not normally think of, which can end up making...Read More
If you’re like me, you have yet to take all those parcels and toys out of their hiding places and start hunching over the gift wrap and ribbon to get them all gift-ready. One of my plans is to make use of some of the truly gorgeous printable gift tags that our intrepid writers scope out for you each year. And then at the last minute, I found one last source for free printable holiday gift tags: The Zutano Blog. Like so many parents, for years we’ve loved Zutano baby clothes in part for their fun original prints. So how perfect that their...Read More
Santa may have a team of elves working for him (not to mention a name-taking Mrs. who pretty much keeps the whole show together), but the rest of us are running on fumes by Christmas Eve, and with little back up to boot. Still, cookies must be made. Because once every gift is finally in order, right before the lights go out, Santa (ahem) needs a snack. Any one of these 5 easy Christmas cookie recipes can be made without stress at the very last minute for a perfect treat for Santa. Gingerbread Cookies I was not born with the cookie...Read More
I’ve woken up a few times over the last couple weeks to the sound of ornaments falling from my tree and crashing to the floor. Not good. I’ve got a few gaps in my tree now, but with just a couple days until school is out and the kids are home, I don’t have time to make a run to the store for more ornaments. Our editor Liz forwarded me these cool printable Christmas ornaments from Smallful the other day, and now I don’t need to go anywhere. I love tradition and vintage and classic at Christmas, but these fresh, modern designs...Read More
Here are some of the things we’ve loved reading around the web this week, with special emphasis on last-minute holiday help, and humor to get you through the week. Enjoy! The final days to enter our seriously amazing 2014 Holiday Gift Guide giveaway and our equally awesome Holiday Tech Gift Guide giveaway featuring a new iPad Air 2. Someone has to win–how about you? 15 seriously hilarious Christmas cards Christmas song playlist compiled by top parent bloggers. (Also, their least favorites. Sorry, Dominic the Donkey) 11 creative gift wrap ideas including these adorable parcels “from the North Pole.” Ideas for gift...Read More
Knowing how to make mulled wine is at the top of my holiday season skills list, along with pie making, gift wrapping, and secret keeping. (I score 2 out of 4. Can you guess my failures?!) Mulled wine is one of my favorite winter drinks. Like a warm version of sangria, it is packed with citrus and boosted with holiday spices. Make a big batch of this mulled wine recipe and keep it warm all day to keep the wine-drinkers in your family happy. To make this mulled wine, you’ll need: 4 750ml bottles of red wine (see...Read More
Posted by Cool Mom Staff | Dec 19, 2014 |
Obsessed with Pinterest as we are? Follow us for great ideas like these from our site and beyond. 1. One of the easiest, most adorable DIY Christmas gifts from kids. 2. Nice ideas for gift-wrapping a bottle of wine. 3. If you’re heading out of town, you might need this cool gadget for travelers. 4. Great last minute gift idea for guys. 5. Perfect New Year’s Eve jewelry....Read More
When the holidays–and the cold weather–hit, it’s the time I make sure our games are in good shape. As in, half the cards from UNO aren’t missing and there is actually Monopoly money in the Monopoly game. As opposed to the play kitchen. (I know you feel me, mamas.) With more than a few kids and relatives visiting over the holidays, here are a few new family games made by smaller companies we’ve added to our repertoire this year. Plus, this is a great time to stock up, with all the last minute shopping deals, whether or not they make it in...Read More
Every year, I love finding funny holiday cards available online, so many from cool small designers and shops that don’t have shareholders on their boards who look at the holiday card messages and say Are you kidding? We can’t sell that into Walgreen’s! Here are some of the best funny Christmas cards we found this year. No fruitcake jokes, “your gift is this card” jokes, no Christmas ball jokes. You know what we mean. If you have the kinds of friends and family on your list who can take a Christmas card joke, then you may have the best gift of...Read More
Chocolate candy is a must over the holidays. Festive sweets make a special treat to have around the house, serve as part of a holiday dessert spread, or give as a gift. Store bought is great—we love supporting local chocolate shops—but it can get expensive, and who needs that when homemade takes 5 minutes to prep? These 7 delectable holiday chocolate bark recipes are a cinch to make, totally affordable, and look absolutely gorgeous. Now if only gift wrapping were this easy. If you’ve never made bark before, you’re in for a treat. This basic chocolate bark recipe from Martha...Read More
Holiday entertaining doesn’t have to be a blockbuster affair. In fact, some of the best holiday gatherings are small, impromptu get togethers and relaxed gatherings with easy cocktail party foods, festive snacks and, of course, seasonal drinks. During the holidays especially, I stock my pantry with these snack foods so that I can invite people over whenever the whim strikes. With these goodies on hand, I know my guests will be well fed—without any hard work. Lesley Stowe Crisps Crackers are a must at any gathering, and I’m not talking about everyday butter crackers. Don’t get me wrong, those...Read More
If you would love to decorate cookies with the kids but have a to-do list as long as mine, my new favorite, and delicious, shortcut to easy Christmas cookies may work for you. It’s those amazing, pure butter shortbread cookies from Walkers, the Scottish company that you can find all over the place. Unlike some other store-bought cookies, Walkers’ aren’t made with a bunch of preservatives or ingredients like hydrogenated-or-high-fructose anything. If you’ve never looked at the label, there are only four ingredients: wheat flour, butter, sugar, and salt. Just like I’d make, if I didn’t have that pesky to-do list. So for easy cookie decorating, I...Read More
If all your kids want for Christmas is more LEGO pieces to add to their never big enough collection, they’ll be thrilled to discover that you can even cover the Christmas tree with those beloved bricks in the form of LEGO ornaments. Here are three great shops to start to help them on their quest for LEGO domination of the world! Or okay, maybe just Christmas tree domination. If your LEGO fanatics like the building part of LEGO most of all, they’ll be thrilled to receive one of LEGO building master Chris McVeigh’s LEGO ornament kits. I absolutely love the modern designs and cool...Read More
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