Tag: parenting

Web coolness: Gifts for activists, outrageous Christmas tree decorations, Cookie Monster covers PPAP and more.

Here are some links we’ve been reading around the web this week. We hope you like them too. (CMP is an fstyle affiliate) The perfect gift for your socially conscious activist friends with a sense of humor: Handmade protesting elf wooden figurines. We’re in love! Been to our 2016 Holiday Gift Guide yet? What are you waiting for! We’ve just added even more discount codes. One of our favorite categories: Empowering gifts for girls who will rule the world one day. The hot tech holiday gift for kids that you’ll want to steal from them. Cool Mom Eats holiday guide...

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Beyond thank you and please: 7 manners all kids should learn for holiday entertaining (and that we’re not all teaching)

Please and thank you — important stuff, right? I’ve always believe that courteous kids grow into nice adults and we all need more nice in the world these day. But that’s not where etiquette begins and ends. So with the holidays here, and lots of entertaining and mingling coming up on our calendars, we’ve started talking in our home about some of the manners that we want our kids to know, so they can be fantastic guests and hosts. I’m sharing them here with the hope that maybe our ideas will help some of you too. Top: Please and Thank You poster at TanyaGDesign on Etsy I know...

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Web coolness: Fall crafts, Thanksgiving survival, must-read book award winners, and a big viral grandma oops.

Here are some things we’ve been reading around the web this week. We hope you like them too.   The turkey countdown has started! Here are 8 fun and easy Thanksgiving crafts for kids beyond tracing a hand to look like a turkey. Get the kids outside with these 6 adorable pinecone crafts, like the DIY ombre pinecones from Whimzeecal shown above. Love! A little help for surviving Thanksgiving for those of you dreading it this year.   Thoughtful list of articles and posts about taking action and taking care of your feelings if you’re struggling post-election. SO many Thanksgiving recipes and...

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10 free educational online resources for curious kids that every parent should know

We love how the Internet can help us when it comes to raising a generation of more curious kids. There are just so many remarkable free educational online tools and resources that help support a child’s natural curiosity, and even help push them a little (or a lot) when it comes to learning about all kinds of subjects and sparking their passion about the world around them. That’s exactly what our newest sponsor, the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (or CTY, as it’s been fondly known for more than 30 years), does for bright kids and their families. And if you don’t know about...

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10 essential kitchen safety rules to set, that keep little cooks safe in the kitchen.

We’re big fans of pulling kids into the kitchen early and often. But that also means setting kitchen safety rules for kids — and for you. Not just because it keeps them safe (though that’s obviously the most important thing), but because it’s the essential foundation of learning vital cooking skills that they can use for a lifetime. And hey, it also lets them help us out around the kitchen too. The way we see it, there’s no reason why kids as young as 5 years old can’t help make their own school lunch or even help cook breakfast on busy weekday mornings....

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Web coolness: A healing Leonard Cohen playlist, the cutest Harry Potter baby, and a fun way to countdown to Gilmore Girls

Here are some links we’ve been reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too You can’t not smile at this Harry Potter baby photo shoot. (via Kayla Layla Photography; also see her work on her Instagram feed!) Random acts of kindness as a Starbucks customer buys coffee for military personnel. A good mantra for today and every day. Thoughts on mending fences effectively after the election. How to talk to kids if they’re feeling scared about world events. Our picks for must-read graphic novels featuring cool, creative, strong heroines. The excellent We Need Diverse Books is hosting a fundraiser and Gayle Forman...

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Onward.

Kristen and I have never run this as a partisan or a political site, but that’s not to say that our values aren’t pretty clearly reflected on these pages. Our long-time readers know we are, and have always been, about inclusivity. Positivity. Diversity. Honoring our differences and seeking out what unites us. Providing support for all kinds of loving families, and seeking out more opportunities for all kinds of kids. None of that changed today. We’re still here. You’re still here, the hundreds of thousands of you who share these ideals. We started this site ten years ago in part to lift up those who need lifting up, whether...

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Web coolness: Halloween help galore, a defense of working moms, and women over 96 making us ugly cry. In a good way.

Here are some links we’ve liked reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too.   IWaited96Years.com: Must-see portraits and stories of women voters, all born before the 19th Amendment passed in 1920. Check out the I Waited 96 Years Facebook page for even more. Sniff. 7 fun election activities and printables that are great for kids. Self-care tips to get you through the election.Help is here! Online trolls lead to the cancellation of one of the few woman-written Marvel comics. (Get it together, Twitter. And Marvel.) The sweetest story about one little girl’s kindness to a stranger. What is sex like after...

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10 things not to say to a working mom | Spawned Episode 57

What we thought was a helpful post about the new uber-for-kids services popping up around the country turned into the Mommy Wars on Facebook. And so, on this week’s episode of Spawned with Kristen and Liz, we discuss the not-so-nice comment in question, along with other things not to say to working moms based on an article Liz wrote for Redbook Magazine a few years ago. Plus, we share our tips for what to say (or do) to help working parents, and of course, our Cool Picks of the Week. Mug above via Avonnie Studio on Etsy You can...

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Safe sleep for babies: 5 reliable sources on SIDS and more, so you can sleep better too.

In honor of SIDS Awareness Month, we’re sharing five of our go-to, reliable resources on safe sleep for babies. After all, sleep is easily the topic that consumes our minds as new parents more than any other — Are they getting enough sleep? Do I really need a schedule? Is my crib okay? Is my mattress okay? Are bumpers actually unsafe? Can they sleep with me? What happens if the baby rolls over onto her stomach?  We get it. It’s stressful! So we really hope these resources help new parents get the info and the reassurances we all need, so we can hopefully rest just...

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Web coolness: The new LEGO superhero girls, a goth Halloween manicure, and the coolest waffles ever

Here are the links we’ve been reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too.   The new LEGO DC superhero girls are here! (But more superheroes of color, please!) In more LEGO news, how much do we love this LEGO inspired bike helmet? Why parents humblebrag about our kids: What’s up with that? A Serial style podcast for middle schoolers. What a smart idea. Laughing at this “honest birth announcement.” This 8-year-old is our kind of girl! How to raise kinder kids, according to science. Great read. The cool dad award of the week definitely goes to this one! Can we...

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Is it ever okay to brag about your kids on social media? Spawned Episode 54

If you’ve spent any time on social media, you’ve probably seen parent humblebrags, you know, like the mom wishing her child would eat junk food because “ugh, kale chips are so expensive!” So on today’s episode of Spawned with Kristen and Liz, we try to figure out why parents humblebrag, and why it bothers us so much. Plus, is it ever okay to brag about your kids on social media, and if so, what’s the right way to do it so you don’t make people nuts. Listen now to our extra lively discussion, along with our cool picks of the week (of...

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7 tips to help kids walk to school safely. Because October 5 shouldn’t be the only Walk to School Day!

Back in my school day, my mom let me walk alone to school, my friends’ homes, and the pizzeria by the time I was 10 years old. (Uphill, both ways, and barefoot, no less.) Fast forward to me as a parent and I admit my own kids — now ages 12 and 9 — have never walked anywhere on their own. One reason is that their school is much too far from home. The other reason is what’s a common cultural fear these days of letting our kids out into the world by themselves. Even though research shows that kids are actually safer today than ever. With the 20th...

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5 fun and easy last-minute birthday party ideas your kids will love. (Not that we think you forgot or anything.)

I’ve never actually forgotten to send the invites out to one of my kids’ birthdays, but I’ve definitely waited until the very last minute to plan their parties. The thing is: if your child’s birthday happens to land during one of the crazy-busy times of the year (ahem, back-to-school) then their big day can sneak up on you. Before you know it, you have a party to plan in less than a week. And it needs to be as awesome as your kid is. Well, I can assure you from experience, you don’t need to transform your home into a magical fairy land or...

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11 times new parents have thought WTF, how is this my life?

Sure, those prenatal classes and baby books may prepare you for labor, breastfeeding (kind of), and baby milestones. But there are so many truly insane moments as a new parent that create a stark difference between your new life (i.e. slave to an infant) and your old one (i.e. slave to the sales days at your favorite store) and we had the best time remembering some of our favorites. This post is graciously brought to you by one of our favorite infant brands, FridaBaby, because they not only have a great sense of humor, but they know a little something about...

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A fun interview with Anne Holton, wife of Tim Kaine, about parenting, politics + funny tweets | Spawned ep 50

This week on Spawned with Kristen + Liz, it’s our golden anniversary, and we’re extraordinarily thrilled to be joined by an incredibly special guest, Anne Holton, wife of  Senator Tim Kaine, the Democratic candidate for Vice President. But wow, Anne is a powerhouse working mom in her own right, having raised three “independent, strong-willed children” (in her words) while working as a legal aid attorney, a Judge in Richmond Juvenile Court, and until very recently, the Virginia Secretary of Education. We honestly didn’t expect to laugh so much, and we think you’ll love Anne like we did, in this incredibly enjoyable, relatable discussion. We talk...

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Web coolness: Amazing lunchbox notes, bad news for middle school parents, the PTA mom story everyone is talking about

Here are some links we’ve liked reading around the web this week. We hope you like them too.   Amazing lunchbox notes from a dad to his daughter. (Hold the parent guilt; Rob Biddulph happens to be a professional illustrator too.) Cool Mom Tech is out with our back to school tech guide, starting with 15 of the best science apps for kids and 12 of the best reading apps for kids. Check out Facebook and Glamour’s 51 million voices campaign, amplifying the voices of voting women 18-45. Just as Liz + Kristen’s kids start middle school… research that middle school is the worst. For parents. If you...

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5 tested tips for handling separation anxiety, from parents who have been there too

I know a little something about dealing with separation anxiety when it comes to young kids and school. Back when my kids were in preschool, this was my routine: drop them off at the classroom, peel around the corner and press my back against the wall, then wait — sometimes two minutes, sometimes ten minutes — until they stopped crying.  Sometimes I cried too. Separation anxiety is exhausting and heartbreaking and, yes, even sometimes a bit frustrating. If you’re in the middle of it right now, know you’re not alone. We’ve been there — some of us still are there — and...

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Web coolness: Lessons from Gene Wilder, a park bench for nursing moms, unicorn rainbow hair + more

Here are some links we’ve been reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too!   Thank you to Laura Begley Bloom of Forbes for this fantastic feature about the start and growth of Cool Mom Picks. We’re honored! So sad to hear about the passing of one of the comedic greats, and love Gretchen Rubin’s lesson in happiness learned from Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner. ( above image via Getty for ABC News) The ultimate Labor Day grilling + recipe roundup. Bye summer! Sniff.  Cannot stop watching this Kenzo perfume video by Spike Jonze. Cannot. Stop. Another must watch: Kristen’s...

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6 driving distractions people without kids will never understand

Whether you’re hitting the road for Labor Day weekend, or you’re back in the saddle as your kids’ own personal Uber driver, we parents know that driving with kids in the car comes with its own special challenges. Let’s just say it can be… tough.* So I had so much fun putting together this video depicting 6 driving distractions that people without kids will never understand on behalf of our sponsor  ZEISS Better Vision. They make the DriveSafe eyeglass lenses that actually help you see more clearly — especially when you’re driving — so you can be sure to focus on all the other distractions. Like those...

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