From the category archives:


In praise of the bathroom stool: one small step for toddler-kind

January 17, 2014

We’ve had a stool in front of each of our bathroom sinks for so long that I can hardly remember life without them. I’m constantly sliding them out of my way with my foot, have banged my toes on them more than once, and am counting down the days until my younger child is old […]

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Never give your toddler food coloring

December 3, 2013

I’ve been sitting on this “toddler friendly” art print project for YEARS because I wanted to test it before giving it my stamp of approval. Instead — holy cats, people! — I learned the hard way: NEVER GIVE A TODDLER FOOD COLORING. Let me back up a bit. The following activity was suggested to me […]

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Activity #120: Try Potching

November 27, 2013

My stepmom (aka Grandma Leslie) introduced Julian to the kitchen counter at her house, way before it would have occurred to me. Bring a stool to your empty kitchen sink and let your toddler climb up. Fill the sink with warm soapy water, plastic cups, utensils, etc. Let your toddler pretend to make something or […]

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Build your toddler a play kitchen for less than $50

November 21, 2013

Wanna just buy one outright? I don’t blame you, I got tired just writing about all these awesome projects. Two super cute (gender-neutral) play kitchens on amazon are Melissa & Doug’s corner kitchen (more compact) and Kid Craft red retro (more deluxe). I also encourage you to be on the hunt in your local Craig’s […]

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Create the best chocolate-free advent calendar

November 19, 2013

My friend, the very creative Wendy Copley, created a clever advent calendar for her children that has two big benefits over all other holiday countdown traditions: It focuses on experiences over stuff. She can change it according to her mood and available time. Allow me to explain. She purchased a wooden advent calendar kinda like […]

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Activity #275: Put the child in a container

October 29, 2013

This suggestion came from my friend Sunny on a rainy day. “You put a boy in a small bucket and see how long it takes for him to get himself out,” she explained. “In this case, he wanted to stay in there.” In fact, he has a history of squeezing his way into several other […]

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Introducing cool rookie mom, Hintmama

October 25, 2013

We are happy to introduce you to Jenny, AKA Hintmama. She’s a San Francisco rookie mom to young toddler, Hannah. As of the time of this interview, Hannah was 13 months old. Before entering the corporate world two years ago, she wrote about consumer finance for The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. […]

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My toddler is a sponge that I’m trying to fill up (+ keep clean)

October 22, 2013

This post is sponsored by Too Small To Fail. As I was dropping my little guy, now two, off at preschool this morning, I realized that I’m gonna have to start censoring the morning talk radio. Bummer. Whenever I have the big kids in the car, I channel surf to music-only stations switching it back […]

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Create an easy ball pit at home

October 22, 2013

Turn your pack n play into a ball pit for a toddler that still needs occasional containment but also wants entertainment. (Mama’s gotta carry in the groceries without a little person running into the street, right?!)   Kalena tells us how she did it for curious toddler, Nolan: Remove any mobile and bassinet from your […]

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What does your toddler LOVE to play with?

September 26, 2013

Does your small person have any hobbies? I want to know. When parenting my first son, I thought all little boys were interested in trains (like really really obsessively so and they’d happily leave any playground to drive past one). Then his interests broadened to include diggers, all construction vehicles and LEGO. But not really […]

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Activity #173: Chase the garbage truck

September 18, 2013

My friend Mike used to take his toddler Miles out for Garbage Truck Friday each week without fail. They did it for years. Their routine included picking up muffins from the local bakery and following the garbage truck all over Oakland for an hour or so. It was something that they both looked forward to. […]

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World travel is better with a toddler

September 10, 2013

Our friends, Karen and Ross, just returned from an amazing European escape with their toddler son, Laz. Skeptical that a trip with a rowdy one-year old could be relaxing, I asked her to share their story with us. I hope you like it as much as I do. Almost a year ago, I wrote a […]

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