Kids’ Bathroom Update by Circo for Target

We’ve lived in our NYC apartment for nearly 10 years, and my kids share a bathroom.  It was renovated by the previous owners and has pretty white and blue tile and a ceiling that’s painted a dark sky blue with clouds. When we moved in, R. was just a year old and I chose this toddler-friendly animal-print bathroom set (shower curtain, bath rug, trash can, towels, etc.) from Kohl’ It worked well for many years as a gender-neutral bathroom for R. and her little brother.


Now that the kids are 8 and 11, though, I realized it was time for a more tween-frinedly update.  I wanted to redecorate with accessories that were still fun and colorful, but not as babyish.  So I was thrilled when I saw the following items at target, and in a one-time impulse buy, re-outfitted the bathroom’s linens and accessories. I bought the Circo Raindrop Shower Curtain in Blue ($19.99), Circo Fish Bath Rug ($19.99), Circo Chevron Hand Towels in True White ($9.99), and some other accessories like toothbrush holder and cup (available in-store only). I love how it turned out!


Plus, in keeping with the semi-nautical theme, I hung up one of S’s kindergarten artworks outside the bathroom door, on a wall that had always been bare.  It’s amazing how a little bit of framed artwork (even by a 5-year-old) can spruce things up.


What do you think of our bathroom’s mini-”redo”?

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New Hostess & Housewarming Gifts at Anthropologie

I stopped into my neighborhood Anthropologie store recently and, and I usually do there, spotted a number of new products that make wonderful hostess/housewarming gifts. Here they are:

Maelle Cake Servers ($10)

Maelle Loaf Pans ($10-$36)

Crystal Ladder Candle Holders ($24-$32)

Russell + Hazel Lucite Collection Stapler ($32)

Gold Iron Utility Scissors ($18)


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Flashback Friday: Too Sweet Plates

This post was published in May 2013, but I have just tracked the plates down at buy them here for about $16.95 per plate.

I spotted these adorable Kids Wooden Plates by Petits et Maman in the latest issue of Stationery Trends. Each plate is handcrafted–choose from elephant, duck, and car. I think they’ve been distributed in the U.S. just recently so they’re a little hard to pin down; but apparently they are carried at the L.A. store La Merch so you could try contacting them. I expect you’ll be seeing them in more stores soon, though.

Photo courtesy of Lily Alt.

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Bargain Alert: Shutterfly 40% off sitewide + free address labels

shutterflyiPhone6Here are two great deals to enjoy at our affiliate Shutterfly:

  • ALL customers receive 40% off their final order at checkout with promo code GOOD4U, today through 9/28 (note: check out the new customizable iPhone 6 cases, along with other photo gifts).
  • ALL customers receive one free set of address labels with promo code LABELIT, on 9/27 and 9/28. Order your free set of 24 customized labels now to get a head start on your holiday card mailings.

And, yes, you can use both codes together!  Visit Shutterfly.

Disclosure: I am a Shutterfly affiliate and this post contains affiliate links.

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Skeleton PJs for Halloween: A Few of Our Favorites

It goes without saying that Halloween is one of our favorite holidays here, because it is also my birthday. For years, I’ve dressed my kids in Halloween PJs, and skeleton prints have been their favorites. Although this year my 11-year-old daughter has decided she is “too old” for skeleton PJs, my 8-year-old son is still raring to go. So I thought it’s a good time to share some of our favorite designs, all available online right now (but, hurry, sizes are selling out fast, especially for bigger kids). If you’re out of luck, try Ebay where I’ve scored skeleton pajamas closer to Halloween, too:

Gymboree’s Skeleton Two-Piece Pajama Set ($21.95, sizes 6-12mos to 3T remaining) in black, also available . Also available in in pink and as an infant one-piece ($21.95): gymboree-skeleton-pjs

Carter’s Girls Skeleton pajamas and Boys’ skeleton Pajamas ($20, sizes 6mos-18mos, also available in larger sizes):

Baby Gap’s Glow in the Dark Skelton Sleep Set in grey ($26.95, sizes 6-12mos to 5T).  Also available 26.95. Also available in black:


Osh Kosh Girls’ Skeleton PJs ($16, sizes 4-10) and Boys’ Skeleton PJs:

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City Maze


Add this one to your short list of easy, affordable birthday gifts for school age kids:  Smart Games City Maze by SmartGames.  Introduced at the 2014 Toy Fair, this game provides single-player entertainment for kids ages 7 and up, in a neatly sized package (great for traveling or other times you need toys-on-the-go).  In this game, you place puzzle pieces on a maze of city streets to create 2 different routes for travelers from start to finish (kids will recognize it as their own puzzle-ized version of GPS).  There’s a booklet included with the various travel challenges.  It’s a clever game, though I’d recommend it more for ages 9 and up (it was kinda tricky for my 8-year-old who is pretty good at puzzles).  Buy it for $14 at

I received a sample product for purposes of this review.  I was not compensated for this post, and all opinions are, as always, entirely my own.


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Flashback Friday: Halloween Shop Report–New York Costumes

Editor’s Note:  This post was first published in October 2011.  New York Costumes is still near Union Square and is open for Halloween business.  Call ahead for store hours. 

A few weekends ago the kids and I got some early Halloween shopping done at New York Costumes, an incredible NYC Halloween mega-store that, shockingly, I had never visited in my 17 years of living here in the Big Apple. This place is amazing, and if you’re a New Yorker still in need of costumes or decorations, it’s worth braving the crowds to come here.

Here is the outside of the store. It’s just south of Union Square at 104 Fourth Avenue:

Inside, you’ll finds thousands of square feet housing everything you need for any Halloween costume or party. There’s the standard fare–infant bunting costumes, superhero costumes, classic witch garb–plus costumes you’ve never even dreamed of, and any and all accessories (we bought R. a blond wig to wear with her Princess Peach costume).

I actually bought my costume here this year. Yep, I was inspired by Pan Am. No, I won’t be showing photos here.

If your Halloween taste runs more scary than sweet (my children have reached the age where they prefer the former–the spookier, the better), this is your store. Even if you don’t buy a thing, it is a feast for the eyes–if your eyes like to see blood, guts, and freaky things, that is:

Creepy cold cuts anyone?

A two-headed baby. I think I saw something like this on the Discovery Channel.

The sign around this guy’s neck says it all.

This dummy had a revolving bloody head that the kids watched rotate about a dozen times.

The kids ate up all the theatrics (here, I believe they were petting fake furry rats):

I have never seen so many skeletons before:

And R. explained the finer points of mask-wearing to her little brother.

The “Clowns” section of the store was one of my favorites. Remember the Bethenny Ever After episode where she and Jason try on clown costumes with gigantic hands and boots? I’m pretty sure that was filmed here.

S. surveyed everything a clown might need, from rubber chickens to “bonkers” (I let him buy one…a major mistake).

Visit New York Costumes at 104 4th Ave @ 11th street in New York City. 

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Zodiac Trinket Trays


I’ve noticed that zodiac-themed personalized gifts are gaining in popularity.  Whether or not the gift recipient really believes in astrology (not that there’s anything wrong with that, ahem), astrological sign gifts are a fun way to give something quasi-personalized (personally, I love Scorpio-themed gifts for myself).  Inkspot Workshop’s new lucite Skinny Clear Trinket Trays sport your sign in gold foil, on top of your birth’s sign unique color stripe.  And, of course, a few words to describe the classic personality traits of that sign (what are yours?)  And the size is perfect to use whether in your home office (for a stash of pencils) or your bedroom (a great catch-all for jewelry).  Keep these in mind for holiday gifts, too!  They cost $40 each at Inkspot Workshop.

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