Never Fear, Zutano's Here! (Part 1 of 3)

I have always considered myself a unique individual. I wear what I want and I march to my own drummer. I want the same for my children. That's what really caught my eye when I first came across Zutano brand children's clothes. This brand is UNIQUE in every way. I'm not surprised that it was started by an artist couple. The clothes are durable, super colorful, and, best of all, comfortable! Zutano also supports tons of different programs to provide our young ones with a great world to grow up in.

What kid would not want to run around all day in these cute duds? Here are Hailey and Noel in their super cool Zutano tops:

Stay tuned to check out what Hailey and Noel are wearing next week in our Zutano review series!

CONTEST: He Loves Me, He Loves-Me-Knots

Here is Hailey, wearing her new "LadyBug Love" bow from the all-about-girls boutique, "Love-Me-Knots" Melissa and Dawn of Love-Me-Knots have quite a selection of adorable hair bows for your stylish little princesses.

I don't know about you but when I found out I was having a girl, bows and dresses and shoes just flashed through my mind. Love-Me-Knots is right up my alley! I'm anxiously awaiting Hailey's hair to get a little thicker and grow a little longer. She will most likely be wearing bows every day of the week!

Melissa, creator of Love-Me-Knots, graciously took some time out to answer a few of our questions about her business.

Mums: What prompted you to start this kind of specialty business and how long have you been in business?

Melissa: The true beginning of the idea of the business started when my daughter, Katie Greer, was a toddler. She was constantly losing all of her hairbows on the playground, shopping malls and just everywhere! So I began designing and making my own and along the way I started adding my own little embellishments and creative touches with unique specialty ribbons and hand-painted single letter monograms. I had people constantly stopping us to ask about her bows and finally I started selling several lines in the local children's boutique. "Love-Me-Knots" was born in the fall of 2003 officially.

Melissa & Dawn

Mums: Who are the masterminds behind "Love-Me-Knots"?

Melissa: I began the "Love-Me-Knots" business selling to individuals and in local children's boutiques. I traveled to each store personally creating bows to match the clothing styles and colors within each individual store. While I enjoy the creative task of designing for each person or store, with the birth of my son this past year, I knew my traveling would be limited. So Dawn was added as my partner to help me go where I could never go -- worldwide right in my own studio! Through the design of this beautiful website, Dawn has brought "Love-Me-Knots" to a new level of success and opportunity.

Mums: What makes you continue doing what you do?

Melissa: As I mentioned, "Love-Me-Knots" was, in its earliest beginnings, created to meet my own sweet little girl's needs. But it certainly perpetuates because of the unending creative outlet it provides and the joy I have in designing and making just that /perfect/ piece that makes a little girl know she's beautiful inside and out!

Love-Me-Knots is based in Georgia and their line has been showcased in six exclusive children’s boutiques and gift stores in the metro Atlanta area. They have expanded by offering their lovely line of hair bows online, so all of us can indulge!

Check out Love-Me-Knots online store and blog.


We have two sets of five Love-Me-Knots bows to give away! That's right, we are looking for TWO winners. So if there is a lovely little flower in your life, you'll definitely want to enter this contest.

Here are the "rules". We actually don't have any rules, except for you to sign the Mr. Linky below and leave us a comment! Oh, maybe one "small" rule...please spread the wUrd! We'd like to get as many entrants as possible.

Two names will be drawn next Wednesday, June 6th. Please include your blog site in Mr. Linky below as a means of contacting the winner and if you don't have a blog, you can still enter, just be sure to leave us a comment with your email address. If we don't have your contact info, we won't be able to include you in the contest because we won't know how to get in touch with you. Let the contest begin!

Bitty Braille!

Such a different and cool idea! Bitty Braille is the brainchild of Julie Dutt, a quite prolific crafter, teacher, and indie- goods-seeking-and-selling-mom!  These 100% cotton shirts and onesies are decked out with a crystal or stud braille design, and its meaning.  Julie donates a portion of every sale to the American Foundation for the Blind. 

These are just so cute, aren't they?  I bet they're also an interesting conversation starter at the playground...
Go and support Bitty Braille and be sure to check out the other independent retailers listed on her website! 

All Systems Go, Retro!

One of the best toys we ever got Noel is the Radio Flyer Retro Rocket. As you know by now, we love retro, so as soon as we saw this at Costco during the Christmas season last year, we knew it was THE toy for our kid.
He LOVES the rocket. In particular, the three buttons that say various things like "Asteroids ahead!" and "All clear! We're looking good!". It also vibrates and the tail lights up!

Can you believe I got this gem for $20?? I just did a web search, and of course, I can't find one now for cheaper than $40. Amazon is trying to tell me that the list price for the retro is $70! What?!? My advice? Wait and see if Costco carries this again at Christmas, or go to Target and see if they have it in their clearance items (they did not long ago).

Tote Bags and Bows and Watches, Oh My!

Hello? Excuse me? Why haven't I heard about Karen's Creations until now? Holy ridiculously adorable tote bags, batman! My friend, Kerry, recently referred me to Karen's Creations online boutique. Very similar to the style of 1154 Lill in Chicago but amazingly more affordable and just as cute, if not cuter than the DIY bags you can create at Lill. I need one of these bags for every day of the week!

Here are a few of my favorites:

click to enlarge

Also, these watches are SO COOL! You can pick out which band you would like on your watch. You can view a few of the different color schemes here:

You get SIX different bands with your watch and it is also ridiculously affordable.

Karen took some time out to answer some of our questions about her wonderful little boutique:

Mums: When and why did you start this business?

K: I started my business in the spring of 2003 and officially opened my website in February 2004. I originally started making hair bows for my daughter – korkers to be exact. I thought they were so fun and unique, and nobody around here sold them. Around that time the diaper/tote bag craze hit, and I couldn’t resist! I’ve been sewing since I was 9 years old so I knew it was something I would enjoy doing.

I’m a CPA by trade and had a “real” job when I first started my business. For years I had searched for a way to be able to work from home so that I could spend more time with my children. Thanks to the fantastic support of my customers I was able to quit that job in January 2004 and devote myself to my business. I’m having a blast doing what I love to do and hope to keep adding new items to offer to my customers.

Mums: Where are you located?

K: Baton Rouge, LA

Mums: Can consumers purchase your products in a physical boutique or online only?

K: My products are available online through my website and in carefully selected boutiques (both physical and online) around the US.

Head over to Karen's Creations and look at all the fun mommy stuff now!

I Want to Ride My Bicycle, I Want to Ride My Bike

I just came from a playgroup at a park where a friend of mine has something called a "WeeRide Kangaroo Child Carrier" on her bike. It's a bike seat for a child that goes IN FRONT OF YOU instead of behind. She told me her toddler LOVES to go for rides and shouts "weeeeeee"! Hence the name, WeeRide, I guess. Anyway, this seat is totally cool, so I had to post about it. You can find it at, Target, Ebay

The Kangaroo retails for around $80.00 but I've seen it as low as $30.00 on Ebay. If you search around, you'll probably get lucky and find it pretty cheap. Kent is the manufacturer of these fine seats and they also sell other kid's accessories, as well. Click the Kent link and watch a video of the Weeride Carrier. You'd also want to pick up a helmet that fits your child's head, for sure. They have a helmet that fits kids ages 2-4 yrs. Let's go ride our bicycles!

Ida J Designs!

Whenever I've walked into a public restroom and see the Koala changing tables, I am always grossed out.  Sorry, but there is no way those things are sanitary!  That's why the Tush Cush from ida j designs is so great.  No more bottoms on the gross table when you have a need to use it!

My Tush Cush has saved us from the bare Koala table tons of times!  Isn't it pretty? 
ida j designs also offers a blanket called the "Tag Along" and burp cloths, all in similar fabric.   Soon they'll have organic cotton onesies available too!  For the parents, if you're looking for a laptop bag that isn't lame, well, ida has the bag for you!  These bags are custom made just for your computer, and they're so cool! 

A featured vendor at Seattle's Urban Craft Uprising, Michelle and Jill started ida j designs in 2004.  They work out of their Seattle homes creating unique and creative items for you and your tot!  You can purchase ida products directly from Michelle and Jill through the website, or contact any of their local vendors in the Seattle area.

Rock Baby To Sleep

Both Laura and I are music lovers and we're always looking for music that appeals to us that our toddlers would also like. I was telling Laura just recently that I wanted to make a lullaby mix for Hailey using songs from bands that I really like. She then told me about the Rockabye Baby! Lullaby Renditions albums. She owns the Rockabye Baby! Lullaby Renditions of the Beach Boys and I instantly added some of the songs from that album to my lullaby mix. I then discovered there are quite a few lullaby renditions albums out there such as, The Cure, Coldplay, The Ramones and Green Day to name just a few. Baby Rock Records uses instruments such as the glockenspiel, vibraphone, mellotron, harp and bells to lull your baby into a peaceful sleep. They claim these recordings are "cherub rock for a new generation". I, for one, like the sound of that (no pun intended).

Here are a few songs to whet your appetite. Check out the Baby Rock Records website to purchase any or all of the Rockabye Baby! Lullaby albums.

(Click the little blue play button to hear each MP3)

mp3: Just Like Heaven - The Cure

mp3: No Surprises - Radiohead

mp3: In My Room - The Beach Boys

Who's Sassy? We are!

I'm currently raising my toddler part tomboy, part princess. I think the reason for this is because I grew up as a tomboy and didn't start dressing like a "girly-girl" until I was in my early 20s. Only then did I realize how FABULOUS dressing up was. I want my little girl to experience both sides, getting dirty and looking gorgeous.

I don't know about you but I get pretty picky when it comes to a party dress.

When there are holidays and weddings coming up, I tend to stress. I want to find the most unique and stylish dress for my little one. That's where SassE comes into play. A mama-owned business in the Chicagoland area. How much more perfect could that be?

The SassE line has been featured in Brides Magazine and Child magazine among others. Suzanne, the creator of SassE has been staying quite busy with designing First Communion dresses and now with the wedding season upon us, she's working overtime. Read more about Suzanne here.

SassE original fashions can be found at the following children's and infant boutique in Chicago:

Bonny & Diane
350 N. Orleans St.
Ste 677
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 329-0667

or by contacting Suzanne at: HERE

Threadless Rules School!

Threadless is an online t-shirt store where amateurs and professionals design their t-shirts and then submit them to Threadless (which is run by skinnyCorp in Chicago). The t-shirt designs are then voted on by the public and if chosen, a small batch of shirts are printed and the designer wins a cash prize.

We were totally thrilled when we found out that Threadless started a Kids section.

When you go to the Threadless Kids website and browse through the kid's shirts, you will see the title of each shirt and the designers name. Since the shirts are only made in small quantities, you can be sure that your child has a one of a kind piece of clothing. You can click HERE to learn about some of the designers. You can also view their size chart to make sure you're getting the correct size for your kid.
It's best to check their site often, as new designs are always being submitted. The coolest thing about the site is that you can vote on the different designs and click a box telling Threadless to let you know if the design you voted on wins, so you can buy the t-shirt when it comes out. They even have "Free Gear" contests where all you have to do is enter your email address and when the contest ends, they choose the winner randomly.

I just added their site to my Google Reader so I can keep up with all things Threadless on a daily basis! You can too by clicking HERE.

It's good to be King and Queen Baby, right?

Snobby Babies gives your baby the latest in tiny couture, from chic fabric slip covers for your Baby Bjorn/Snuggli to designer inspired bibs and clothing.

I just received a groovy Snobby bib, burp cloth, and travel wipe holder gift set in one of my favorite patterns: DOTS! I really love the fabric that they offer on all their bib sets. Now for the burp cloth and wipe holder, both of which I immediately put in my diaper bag (the burp cloth will work great for emergencies or big messes at restaurants). Take a look! Awesome, no?

(click photo to enlarge)

I know! He looks completely ADORABLE. Isn't it cute? I think chenille is one of the greatest fabrics EVER for babies and kids, so I was dually impressed that the bib and burp cloth are lined with it. I'll definitely be ordering these sets for baby showers! Snobby Babies has tons of other great gift sets to fit any budget.

And now for the girliest of girl items...the Fairytale Princess Tutu Set! You should have heard the ear piercing squeal that I let out when I received the tutu set. Took me less than three seconds to slap that baby upon my little princess. She, too, looks quite adorable I must say. =)

(click photo to enlarge)

This is one of the prettiest tutus that I have seen around. The little flower on the front is just darling and makes it very unique. Its elastic band makes it a "grow-with-me" piece and that gets top ratings in our household. offers many more stylish items (hats, shoes, diaper bags to name a few). Get on over there and make sure your little one is dressed to impress!

~Laura & Amy~

Just Some Cool Baby Stuff

If you're looking for something that everyone else has, then Baby Dagny is not for you. HOWEVER, if you're looking for some cool baby stuff that everyone else will WANT, then stop by Baby Dagny dot com! They offer some of the most adorable designer outfits around. Not to mention all of the cute little accessories, such as the plush pacifiers that were included in the Oscar gift bags for the celebrities. I don't know about your babies but the only pacifier mine would take was the green plastic one from the hospital. That's exactly what is attached to these snuggly little animals. We're talking PERFECT shower gift here ladies and gents. They come beautifully packaged for you and are sure to be a hit. All the other babies will have pacifier envy!

Baby Dagny was founded by Andrea McGinty, who is the proud mama to baby Dagny herself.
The boutique specializes in carrying items from small mom and pop shops around the world. Andrea is doing these shops a great service by providing one place for all of us to find them. Baby Dagny products are especially made for newborns and babies up to 24 months.

Know someone who's expecting? Here are Baby Dagny's Top 5 Shower Gifts:

1. Purple Frog Pacifier Set
2. Timboo Bamboo Towels, Washcloths and Robes
3. Brights & Stripes Blankets and Sleepers
4. Beauty & the Bib Strawberry Bib - on clearance!
5. Doomoo Seat

Some other things I'd like to tell you about, they offer gift certificates, a gift registry (which, if you fill one out and tell 10 friends, they will give you a free gift. They also have a PHOTO CONTEST running, so get over there and submit your cutie's photo for a chance to win a $20 gift certificate! Winners are drawn on a weekly basis.

...and if all of that isn't enough, you've GOT to check out all of their clearance items. There are some great buys and I'll be heading back to their site after this post is up to do some clearance shopping of my own! They're offering an ADDITIONAL 20% off all clearance items this week only (to May 14th at midnight)

Boon, Take Two!

Amy already had a training potty, so she sent me this! It matches our frog, so now if we just paint the rest of our bathroom avacado, we're set! We're very far from potty training right now, but this also serves as a step stool for the little guy. Although he's still a little short, we're using it for him to stand at the sink and wash his hands after dinner.

What I like about this, for potty training purposes, is that it has a compartment for training supplies-including a toilet paper holder, and another compartment for books, or whatever you'd like to put in it! Being the parent of a boy, I also like the orange deflector.

This is a super cool potty-I can't wait to get started using it!!! The two Boon products I have are both excellent.


I am sold:
Bootyland offers shirts like this cool as heck Bowie print, organic and hemp clothing, interesting wooden toys, and lots of other neat things geared toward hip kids and alternative parents!  Located in Seattle, they carry a lot of locally crafted goods as well!

I'm off to buy Noel this Bowie shirt!!!

Happy Tushies

We're a cloth diapering family. Cloth diapering is great, and not difficult like people might lead you to believe. These are no longer your mother's diapers...there's a whole new world of diapers and products. Unfortunately, the lady that made our diapers is out of business (turn around time was horrendous, but the diapers rock), but, that doesn't mean you can't find ones just as great as mine...a fellow blogger, Drea, just started using some cloth diapers, so go check her out for advice!

I did get this great bag though to house dirty diapers back when we took the plunge into the cloth diapering universe:

It's called the Wonderbag! and you can find it, and lots of other cool, environmentally friendly products at Happy Tushies! Hope, the guru behind Happy Tushies, has 8 pages of custom fabrics to choose from...and they are all so cool (the ones I lined are just the woven fabric options...there's flannel and "dogs" too)! The Wonderbag! not only looks swell, but it keeps the house smelling fresh and NOT like dirty diapers. It also looks like she's improved this bag since I bought mine and made it completely WICKLESS! I want one!

Hope also offers a line of cloth diapers called Mums (!) Bums, which I haven't tried, but they sure look cute! As you can see, they aren't cheap, but in my mind, an initial investment of $200-$250 for cloth diapers vs. thousands in the overall cost of disposables + cutting all the trash and landfill space, is so worth it to me. Not to mention, disposables are SO BORING compared to the fun, colorful cloth diapers and accessories that are out there! A big "Hurrah!" for Happy Tushies!

Stamped and Stitched!

When Noel was born, I was given a swaddling blanket from Stamped and Stitched. The friend who gave it to me was also the wise Sensei that turned me on to swaddling in the first place. Well, honestly, we didn't use this blanket for much swaddling because of the Miracle Blanket.

That is until now! This blanket has now become Noel's "woobie". He loves it, and prefers it to every other blanket. When he goes to bed, he automatically grabs this blanket and snuggles it with a big smile on his face. I hope and pray that it never gets lost.

I don't have one of these...but I love it anyway!

This is the coolest idea...they'll custom make you a paint can deocrated any which way, for anyone (adults included!). You have the option to fill it yourself, or give them ideas and a budget for what you'd like inside the can and they'll do it for you. Isn't that rad?

The sisters that run Stamped and Stitched hand make all their items, and the list of custom products is growing! They've got great stuff for baby showers, kids birthdays, and they also handcraft fab cards. Go visit them today!

It's Organic, Baby

Nowadays, it seems like everything is organic. From fruit to veggies to...CLOTHES. That's right. Happy Green Bee offers lots of stripey, organic cotton, gender-free clothing and accessories for our next generation of planet-saving children.

The very impressive, Roxanne Quimby started up HappyGreenBee. Here is what she has to say about her environmentally friendly company:

"We created Happy Green Bee so that a child can be a child, first and foremost."
"By using organic cotton, a comfortable and practical fabric, and simple bee-striped patterns, children feel as comfortable as they look while their parents take a small step in making a big difference in the environment their children will live in."

These bold colors are sure to make any little one feel happy and playful. Happy Green Bee offers an array of different color combinations to choose from. Don't forget to check out their adorable sock hats and berets, too! On top of it all, they also offer FREE shipping. If you're around the Chicago area, here are just a few fine boutiques that you can find Happy Green Bee duds:
City Mouse, Shorty's Children's Boutique (site down until 5/7/07), Wild Child.
If you're in or around Texas, you can find a selection of duds here:
Wildflower, Baby Bea,
They also have numerous other boutiques scattered about the U.S. Check out their website for more information!