Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Owned and Adored: An Ode to Ikea

KALAS Bowls - These affordable bowls are a favorite in our house. Not only are they a steal at 6 for $1.99, but they are fun, colorful and durable. Perfect for the littles. We also use the coordinating cups, plates and flatware. I love that they are microwave and dishwasher safe.

VITSIG Hats -  I love these hats!  They are great for the dress up bin and encouraging imaginative play. The kiddos have a blast running around with their "magic" hats.

PIFFAG Shoes -  Much like the VITSIG hats, these shoes have occupied the kiddos for hours in fantasy play.

MULA Stacking Rings - The babes love the bright and colorful MULA stacking rings. These wooden rings are useful in teaching size, color, counting and to encourage the development of fine motor skills. We have a well loved set that has lasted through two kiddos and will soon be used by a third.

HOPPLEK Rug - This rug is the newest addition to the kiddos' play area, but we are already head over heels in love. This playful rug does double duty by providing numbered circles to count, colors to identify and teaching measurements with the rulers on the side.  Totes adorbs!


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Small Style: Fair Isle Boy

Although I'm much more of a beach bunny than a ski bunny, I have a fondness for winter clothes.  Warm and snugly fabrics, layers, boots and gloves... I love it all!  This blue fair isle print sweater from The Gap is the start to a perfect winter look. Layer a puffy vest on top for extra warmth. Skinny jeans and rad hi top sneakers are perfect bottom additions to this outfit.  Add in a pair of bad ass skull and crossbone gloves and your little dude is winter ready.

Shopping List
Fair Isle Sweater (Blue Streak)
Genuine Kids Puffer Vest
OshKosh B'Gosh Skinny Jeans
Hi Top Sneakers
Cherokee Boys Gloves


Saturday, November 16, 2013

Small Style: Picture Perfect

With the holiday season in full spring, there's no time like the present to start planning holiday party outfits for the littles. The girl kiddo was picture ready for Santa in this outfit that got her lots of love while walking the mall. Every little lady needs a little black dress and this lace frock is the one is as sweet as can be. I love that the hot pink bow adds a bit of sassiness to the dress.  This is a great alternative to the standard red holiday number.  Layer a super soft faux fur vest on top and slip on a pair of classic Mary Janes and you've got a picture perfect look!

Shopping List
Genuine Kids Lace Dress (Ebony)
Smocked Faux Fur Vest (Cream)
Cherokee Dee Patent Mary Jane Dress Shoes (Black)
Dainty Hair Bow Set (Black)


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Book Review: Wilma Jean the Worry Machine

Childhood anxiety has steadily been on the rise for the past several decades. Increased pressures in school, family stress, environmental dangers, and social expectations are just some of the contributors to the worries of children. Often times parents are confused as worries manifest from seemingly the smallest of circumstances. The common root of many anxieties are a lack of control and security. Although some children grow out of this "fear phase," children who experience a significant degree of distress or interference in daily activities due to worries are at risk for continued anxiety in adolescence and adulthood, as well as the development of depression or other mental health disorders.

Wilma Jean the Worry Machine is a helpful resource for parents of anxious children. This book features a worrisome little girl named Wilma Jean whose life is experiencing interference due to her worries.  The book normalizes the experiences of childhood anxiety while guiding both parents and children on the development of coping skills. Near the end of the book, parents have an opportunity to engage their children in a discussion activity as well as create a coping plan to address common fears and worries. Parents will appreciate the inclusion of a specific intervention to utilize at home with an anxious child. The text is a bit lengthy for younger children, but the concepts are applicable to a variety of age groups. The humorous pictures aid in keeping kids engaged in the story while illustrating the experience of anxiety and offering a different perception of the worry. Also worth checking out is a companion idea and activity book.

By: Julia Cook
Illustrated By: Anita Dufalla


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Duck, Duck, Goose: Collingswood, NJ

This cute little shop in downtown Collingswood is a treat for parents and kiddos. The shop has a nice collection of eco-friendly playthings from globally recognized top brands as well as several unique, handmade items from local artisans. The shop may be small in size, but the selection leaves nothing to be desired. It's the perfect spot to hit up if you are looking for a special gift for your favorite munchkin.

Duck, Duck, Goose is more than just a store.  There's also a lovely little play room for little ones to roam. The events calendar has lots to offer including pop-up shops, music classes, mama workshops, art classes and more.

The atmosphere of the shop is what you would expect - nurturing and inspiring.



Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Owned and Adored: These Are A Few of Our Favorite (Baby) Things...

The babe is only a few days past a month old, but we've already developed a healthy collection of "favorites."  Here are some at the top of our list.

HoMedics Sound Spa On-The-Go - Affectionately known as the "baby crack machine," the full sized HoMedics Sound Spa has been a lifesaver since my first born almost 6 years ago. The soothing sounds instantly lull cranky babies to sleep and is essentially the only way I got my babes to stop crying on some days.  Finally an on-the-go version has been unleashed just in time for baby number 3.  It's been awesome to have this miracle machine in a travel sized version. Hook it on to the car seat and baby is in bliss and mama can accomplish trips in peace.

Velour White Rabbit - The babe already loves this super soft and snugly white rabbit.  It must come along with us whenever we leave the house.

Blankets and Beyond Swaddle Bag - This ultra plush swaddle bag has won over both me and the babe. So soft! I'd like one in mama size please!

Villa and Londyn Blanket- Our Villan and Londyn Baby Blanket keeps the babe as snug as a bug in the rug when we're out in the crisp, cool weather. This adorable stroller blanket is easily one of our faves.

JJ Cole Caprice Diaper Bag - I tolerated, but never loved, any of my diaper bags from kiddo 1 and 2. Third time must be a charm because I am enamored with my JJ Cole Caprice bag. It's reasonably priced, stylish and just the right size. The bag is roomy enough to fit all of my (and the babe's!) essentials, without being overly bulky. The bag has several outside pockets as well as inside compartments.  Bonus points for the inclusion of a shoulder strap AND a stroller strap.


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Holidaze: Hansel and Gretel

In continuing on with the costume's of Halloween's past, the kiddos were Hansel and Gretel in 2012.  I put a lot of time and effort into these costumes and am a little bummed that I didn't get any great pictures out of the ordeal. I sure did try, and the kids sure did run away from me anytime the camera was aimed in their direction. I couldn't even sneak a shot!  Those little boogers were on to me!

The costumes mostly consisted of scouring the vintage section of Etsy for the perfect pieces. The only thing I had to actually make was boy kiddo's hat. Construction of the hat was simple, I used the all-mighty google.com for directions ("how to make an edelweiss hat"). I believe the directions I found might have been for a paper hat, but I simply used felt in place of paper and stuck a craft feather in his cap and called it maca... sorry, got of track there for a second.

Boy kiddo's outfit consisted of a gold vest found on Etsy, a plain white shirt I found at Walmart, brown cords from H&M and fur lined boots I scored at Target.  Hansel complete!

Gretel was similarly achieved by finding a German dress on Etsy. I was amazed to find a dress that worked so well and so badly wish the girl would have cooperated for a picture to show how perfect it was.  Search for "girl's German dress" or "girl's Oktoberfest dress" and if you are lucky, you'll find a nice selection.  I picked up a scalloped edged white shirt from Target, sweater tights from H&M and pulled black Mary Jane's from girl kiddo's closet. Perfection!  Of course, I couldn't forget the bread basket!  Luckily I had a perfect basket on hand, grabbed a red kitchen towel and viola, costume complete!