We are always thrilled to find new cookbooks that make life easier for parents, especially because meal planning (and cooking and serving and cleaning and cajoling the kids to eat any of it in the first place) can be…well, not our favorite part of the day. But we’re doubly thrilled when that new cookbook is from our very own Cool Mom Eats editor Stacie Billis. Whoo! The smart, encouraging, and beautifully presented Make it Easy: 120 Mix-and-Match Recipes to Cook from Scratch–with Smart Store-Bought Shortcuts When You Need Them is the right cookbook for busy parents at the right time. As in, I...Read More
Around here we have the same problem each year: We start looking for cool Mother’s Day gifts for all of you weeks in advance…and that means, we sometimes forget to get our own gifts taken care of. (Cobblers’ children and all that). Hey, we’re moms. We know how busy things can get, regardless of what you’ve been doing the last few weeks. So we’re here to help! Note: Don’t miss our updated list of fantastic last minute Mother’s Day gifts for 2017! We’ve got plenty of wonderful last-minute Mother’s Day gifts that won’t feel last-minute, whether you’re shopping for a special mom,...Read More
I have a confession: I’m a recovering cereal addict. I could eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner—and have on occasion—and, would eat it at every snack time if I could. As would my kids. In fact, cereal is one my of our secret ingredients when making a few of my favorite go-to homemade snacks for the kids. So easy, since we tend to have some of them around the house anyway. (I mean, have you seen our original homemade baked bereal milk donut video tutorial? Win!) However like so many other parents, I’m not down with a steady diet of foods containing artificial...Read More
It’s just a few days until Passover, and this awesomely clever craft idea offers one fun way to get the kids excited for the holiday. Besides promising them matzoh sandwiches in their lunch for a week. We love this DIY Passover Matzoh House found at Epicurious. An inventive take on the non-denominational and universally beloved gingerbread house, it’s not all that hard to make. And, it’s as Kosher for Passover as you want to be. You pretty much just need five sheets of matzoh (I’d say more because we tend to break ours in the process), peanut butter if that’s cool by your...Read More
Web coolness: Healthier kids’ birthday cakes, babies and hair extensions, and paid family leave at last!
Here are some links we’ve been reading around the web this week. Hope you like them too. Brilliant! Healthier first birthday cake alternatives for little kids that don’t skimp on the fun. Like this Apple Spice Cake with Maple recipe at Simple Bites. The most influential celebrity baby names right now. Did yours make the list? The fun kids’ app that will bring you back to your own childhood. Amazing POV from a mom-to-be on what it looks like to watch your baby being born…via a surrogate. An amazing 9-year-old reporter. (Does she need an internship?) After writing about our mild disappointment with...Read More
With spring break here or coming up for lots of us, and summer vacations around the corner (whoo!), we know so many families will be hitting the skies — some of you for the very first time with kids in tow. So, as a couple of been-there-done-that moms who’ve flown alone with our children since they were babies, we’re often asked by our readers for travel tips for families. Ask and ye shall receive! On this latest episode of Spawned we’re share lots of cool tips, tricks, and our own experiences — the good, the bad, and the sleepless — that will hopefully help you...Read More
If you want to amp up your March Madness schedule this week, or you happen to be combining a watching party with a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, may we suggest some beer cocktails? (No coincidence they’re both the same week, say beer and basketball fans everywhere.) Fortunately, we’ve got a great one to start you off. This Sriracha-Lada beer cocktail recipe from Bon Appetit looks like it will add some proper heat to the night. It’s rather like a Bloody Mary, only replacing the tomato juice and vodka with a Mexican lager. I’m in! If that’s not your speed — or you...Read More
More than 40 cool Star Wars The Force Awakens birthday party ideas: invitations, decor, treats, and activities. Now THAT’S how the force works!
Since the release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, kids all over planet Earth and Jakku are begging for a Star Wars Force Awakens birthday party that incorporates Rey, Finn, BB-8, and yeah, Kylo Ren along with our favorite pals from the original franchise. So, in addition to the 40 awesome Star Wars party ideas we featured last year — which is among our most popular posts with you all, for good reason — we’ve pulled together another 40+ ideas for this next generation of Star Wars fans who can’t even imagine what Star Wars looks like without Rey! Go ahead, mix...Read More
Every year, we so love honoring the birthday of Dr. Seuss and celebrating all the wonderful work he created for generations of children. Of course his many books and their important lessons are the most dear to our hearts, but he’s created so many wonderful characters that have inspired clothing, decor, snack ideas and more over the years, that we thought we’d round up our favorites. Because there’s never a bad day to get little more Seuss into your life. 8 super fun Dr Seuss snack recipes for kids we think you’ll love. (These Seuss fruit tower treats from Superhealthy Kids) Free printable Dr...Read More
I admit I have always coveted a SodaStream ever since I tried an earlier model at my parents’ house. However theirs seemed pretty big to me, and I live in a small apartment, where we’re supposed to subscribe to the rule about not owning single-purpose appliances (bread makers, panini presses) to cut back on clutter. But since becoming addicted to a different company’s fizzy water maker — until it fizzled out and was entirely discontinued — I leapt at the chance to try out the new SodaStream Power. Oh, was it worth the wait. The SodaStream Power is way sleeker than I was expecting, with a slim...Read More
This post has been updated for 2017 Even if the only movies you’ve seen this year are the animated kind (no judgment, parents!), it’s always fun to have an excuse to get together with friends and ogle all the Hollywood glamour over a glass of bubbly. If nothing else, then to see just how Jimmy Kimmel takes on this year’s Academy controversy. We have high expectations. For those of you so out of it you’re like, “the Oscars are coming up?” we’re here to help. The 89th Academy Awards show is airing this Sunday, February 26 and to make watching the Oscars even more fun, we’ve pulled together some...Read More
Need some last-minute help planning a deliciously sweet Valentine’s Day menu? We’ve put together all our favorite easy Valentine’s Day recipes that we’ve been sharing on Cool Mom Picks and Cool Mom Eats — from breakfast to dessert — in one place. This way, you can scan them quickly to save more time for, well, whatever you want. Plus you’ll find some terrific DIY tricks here that turn store-bought treats into something special for the big day. Because, hey, we’re all about easy on Valentine’s Day. And that’s not a double entendre. Okay, it is. Top photos: Heart-Shaped Pretzels by My Name is Snickerdoodle; Valentine’s Day Brownies by Pink...Read More
Last-minute Valentine’s gifts you can still get for your sweetheart: Because we think thoughts count, whenever you come up with them.
So we’ve officially hit last-minute Valentine’s gift territory, which is something I know well. Whether you’ve been busy, stuck for ideas, watching a little too much Netflix, tight on budget, or, like me, spending all your time coming up with Valentine’s gift ideas for readers of your website (ha) we can help! We’ve got lots of last-minute gifts for Valentine’s Day that you can still make, pick up or order in time, plus some drop-dead shipping deadlines from lots of stores who will keep FedEx in business this week. And lucky you: This year, Valentine’s Day falls on a Sunday, which gives you (worst-case...Read More
If you’re looking for Super Bowl recipes for your game day party, from big hearty food to fun appetizers and even cocktails and mocktails should you need a break from beer, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of our favorite past posts, roundups, and recipe discoveries, for a total of more than 200 Super Bowl recipe ideas. Surely there’s one or or two here for you? (top image: Creamy enchilada potato skins| Cool Mom Eats) SUPER BOWL RECIPES: THE ESSENTIAL BASICS (DIY Nacho bar ideas: What’s Gaby Cooking) 7 mouthwatering nachos recipes for game day parties The ultimate potato skin recipe 9...Read More
I love looking for crafty DIY Valentine’s Day gifts that my kids can make, and I hope you like when I look for them for you. Because my criteria, I think, are fairly straightforward, and ones I bet a lot of you can relate to as well: 1) Do I own any of that stuff? 2) If I don’t own any of that stuff can I easily get it? 3) Can my kids actually do most of the work and if not, will I complain about it? 4) Will the end result look anything like the photos? Even a little?...Read More
We had the best time over the past month, partnering with Amazon Free Time to throw a couple of fun press and blogger holiday cocktail parties in Philly and Atlanta. Our aim was to give parents a little more me time (Get it? Free Time for me time?) in a completely adults-only environment. Remember that? Of course the great company and the chance to meet some of our favorite publishers and editors from around the country was the absolute highlight. But we thought we’d share some other fun things we did that could inspire some fun holiday party ideas for your own gatherings this season....Read More
Here are some things we’ve liked reading this week. We hope you will too. Gingerbread Wookiee cookies from Sugared Nerd: A mashup of America’s two biggest December holidays. An awesome infographic guide to Star Wars curses and insult from nerf herder to bantha poodoo. The coolest Star Wars holiday gifts, should anyone you know catch the fever at this late date. Kelly Clarkson wins Christmas cards. DIY Minecraft ornaments – cute! Holiday cookie help: One sugar cookie recipe, 10 variations. (Wookiee gingerbread men excluded.) More cookie help with 5 easy cookie swap recipes. Yum. Tons of fun, free printable gift tags for holiday gifts, including these printable Star...Read More
The Ultimate Star Wars Guide: Dozens of geeky gifts, party ideas, DIY projects, recipes, and random Force-inspired insanity.
Okay, so the world is obsessed with Star Wars right now in light of the premier of The Force Awakens. And hey, we count ourselves among you all. Now we can’t exactly say we’ve covered Star Wars “since before it was cool” because 1.) no such thing and 2.) we were not blogging in 1978. But we have put together an awesome Star Wars guide, filled with so many fun finds from over the years — gifts, guides, party ideas, recipes (Chewbacca donuts!) and just random awesome stuff. It’s so fun seeing them all here in one place. Or, you can always...Read More
After the fun of trick-of-treating and the trading of the candy, we are pretty sure that your kids are still going to have piles of candy leftover that weighs about as much as a toddler. Now is the time to think of a good plan for what to do with all that extra Halloween candy. Oh, sure, the kids can eat some of their hard-earned snacks. But, instead of throwing the rest of it in the trash, we have a bunch of great ideas that will turn that candy into something more than a messy pile of wrappers. Related: 10 delicious recipes that use...Read More
In honor of our 21st episode birthday (because that’s totally a thing, right?), we’re talking about booze! Just wait until you hear what Kristen mixes vodka with. And, let’s just say we get into a little vent session about Pinterest Syndrome. Do you suffer from it? We’re sharing what we love and what makes us downright crazy. You can listen via SoundCloud right now (why wait?), or just subscribe to Spawned on iTunes and listen in the Podcast app that comes totally free with your iOS device. Card via Beckamade Links from SPAWNED Episode 21 – For delicious cocktails, like...Read More