Category : Kids

The Children's Place

The moment you walk in the door at The Children’s Place, you’ll realize that spring is here and it’s super stylish this year. Known for their bright, bold colors for kids’ clothes and styles that are fashionable, but also functional, The Children’s Place continues to hit the mark with their Spring 2014 collections.

The Children's Place

Spring is here at The Children’s Place

One of our favorite things about shopping at The Children’s Place is that no matter what you’re shopping for, you’ll find it there. They are pros at mixing kid classics, including spring staples such as shorts and graphic tees, with fun new prints and color combos that make you and your kids feel like you’re adding something special to their wardrobe.

Pictured above:
Dot Skimmer Shorts, $14
Baby Boy Shorts, $10 and up
Rompers for Girls, $16 and up

Our picks for boys

The Children's Place

There were so many eye-catching options in the boys’ section at The Children’s Place and since my son Everett was right in between sizes for the Baby Boy and the Boy sections, we got to pull our favorites from both sides! He was enamored with all of the graphic tees and I loved them because they felt nice and thick, as many graphic tees for boys don’t. Both of these pairs of shorts, in these colors, are in his regular outfit rotation — they’re soft and easy to get on and off.

Skull Graphic Tee, $11
Striped Matchback Shorts, $13
Pull-On Cargo Shorts, $13

Our picks for girls

The Children's Place


My girls, Janie and Meg, spent a long time browsing through all of the options at The Children’s Place and they tried on something from nearly every rack and table. But, it was true love with both of these dresses. Meg picked the dress on the left, which I love because it has an extra ruffle layer on the bust, for a bit more coverage than the average spaghetti-strap dress. Janie adored the hi-low dress on the right. This hemline is awesome for girls who often get tripped up on their maxi dresses!

Striped Maxi Dress, $25
Striped Hi-Low Dress, $17

Have you shopped the spring collection at The Children’s Place?

A gift card was provided by The Children’s Place to shop their Spring 2014 collection. All opinions are my own.

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Thinking about throwing a circus-themed party for your big top loving tot? Check out these applause-worthy treats that will leave your crowd wanting more.

Walking the tight rope

This easy DIY cake topper is perfect for any circus themed party — whether it’s for kids or adults. Let the colors pop against the backdrop of vanilla bean frosting. It’s all in the details with this one. Yum!
Photo courtesy of


Clown cupcakes

Gummy worm smiles, fruit cereal hair and licorice eyes. You can’t get any more sweet (or cute) than that. These clown cupcakes are the perfect treat for any circus-loving kid.
Photo courtesy of

Circus peanuts

Peanuts! Get your peanuts here! With all the food allergies out there, it’s probably best to stay away from actual peanuts, so these candy substitutes are just the right choice.
Photo courtesy of

Dumb bell pops

Chocolate-dipped marshmallows and candy straws make up these strongman dumbbells. Use piped frosting to mark each one with its weight.
Photo courtesy of

Personalized animal crackers

Animal crackers. These perfectly portable packs of cookies are too cute not to include in a circus-themed spread. What could make them better? Personalizing them with the name of the birthday boy or girl.
Photo courtesy of

Colorful cotton candy

What circus would be complete without cotton candy? Cute striped boxes are filled with colorful spun sugar. Finish each one off with an “admit one” ticket for the full affect.
Photo courtesy of

Pretty pachyderms

The big top wouldn’t be the same without elephants. Bring these majestic animals — only smaller — to life at your party. Chocolate molds, melting chocolate and lollipop sticks are all you need.
Photo courtesy of Rosebud Chocolates on

Polka dot cookies

While we’re on the elephant tip, let’s get a little crazy with the polka dot kind. These bite-sized cookies are so pretty, they serve as great decorations as well.
Photo courtesy of  Sugar Me Desserterie on

Moms, what treats would you serve up at a circus party?
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circus room
Design a circus room for growing kids

As your little one transitions from your carefully-designed nursery to a big-kid room, you might find yourself at a loss for design themes. Young kids often ask for character-driven decor, but there are other options available. Circus-inspired decor is colorful, whimsical and incorporates animals — a perennial kids’ favorite. Create a circus room for your little monkey, and let them have fun sleeping — and playing — under the big top.

circus room

Circus wall art

Art prints are one of the simplest things to change about a room, even without changing the paint color. Let your little boy know you think he’s the strongest guy you know with the Vintage Strong Man Circus Print (Rosenberry Rooms, $59). If he’s more of an animal lover, let him imagine himself in the Junior Lion Tamer Circus Print (Etsy, $18). For a little added whimsy, Big Top Circus Peel and Stick Appliqués can be repositioned at any time, so kids can move them around during playtime (Rosenberry Rooms, $16).

circus room
Every circus needs special lighting

Lamps and overhead lights can really pull together a themed room, and a circus room certainly deserves fun lights! The Cotton Candy Circus Alphabet Lamp is a sweet addition to any dresser (Rosenberry Rooms, $138). For a more dramatic detail, consider the Circus Time Wide Chrome Ceiling Light (Lamps Plus, $200).

circus room
A fun seating option

As children get a little older, having their own little seating areas can help encourage quiet time. Just because preschool and early elementary-aged kids are starting to drop their naps doesn’t mean they don’t need down time during their busy days. The Circus Nod Chair is cozy, comfortable and has a pocket on the back that’s perfect for favorite books (Land of Nod, $129.)

circus room
Build a cozy corner

Every circus room needs its own big top, and the Red and White Circus Tent is perfect (Etsy, $164). The hoop tent can be used indoors or outdoors, making it a versatile piece that can be used for room decor or larger parties. If your circus star is a die-hard fan of pink, you might want the Haba Room Tent (Amazon, $250).

Have fun with the circus theme

A circus room is a fun way to transition between a nursery and a tween room, so let your kids have some input and remember how fun and whimsical the circus can be. Any of these pieces can be used alone or in a crazy, colorful collection of circus fun, and your growing child will love having a new space of his own.

How much input do your kids have in their room decor?
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girls telling secrets

Dear Sassy,

My 9-year-old daughter has been having some trouble with her friends at school. The girls have gotten into this thing where they tell secrets and whisper in front of each other and exclude other girls from the circle. My daughter has been on the giving and receiving end of this and it hurts her feelings. I’m not sure what to tell her and it’s breaking my heart.

Dear Secret Keeper’s Mother,

You’re a woman, you know how this goes down. No matter how old you get, this kind of rude behavior still happens. I was at a dinner party just a few months ago, where 10 ladies were gathered around a table enjoying the evening. But two of them whispered into each other’s ears and giggled several times throughout the night. Call me paranoid, but I wondered what the heck they were whispering about. Was it me? Did I forget deodorant that day? Was there broccoli stuck in my teeth?

The difference between me and your daughter is that I know a true friend would come out and say “Hey Sassy, you’ve got broccoli stuck in your teeth.” She wouldn’t whisper into another woman’s ear and then laugh about it. I can blow off those secretive women as people I don’t want to hang out with again, or if they are good friends behaving badly, I have no problem calling them out on it. (In this case, I chose the former. My real friends don’t act like that.)

But that wisdom has been hard-won over decades (at least two) of social conflict trial and error. And that, my friend, is what you have to step back and allow your daughter to experience.

You cannot fix this for her.

Believe me, I’d be the first in line if it was okay to march down to the school to give those kids a piece of my mind for treating my kid badly. One of the hardest things about parenthood is letting your kids go through pain, and with the advent of snotty little girls’ social circles around your daughter’s age, you’re dealing with a most exquisite and tricky form of it. There’s not much you can do about it besides modeling the behavior you want to see in her, and reinforcing your love.

Without lecturing, here are some key topics you can work into your conversations when she comes home from school or social activities, sad because the other girls are keeping secrets from her, or feeling superior because she’s made it to the inner circle:

-Empathy. When she sees her friends being mean or hurtful to another child, how does it make her feel? What would she want someone to do if she was the one being picked on or whispered about? Remember, it’s not appropriate to counsel her to bitchslap the bully, but you can encourage her to take a stand.

-Standing up for herself. Instead of having your daughter report the incidents to you so you can get to the bottom of the story – “And then what happened? And who did what?” – remind her that the only person she is in charge of is herself. If a friend hurts her feelings, it’s up to her to say “It hurts my feelings when you whisper in front of me.” That can be hard, especially for a girl who feels shy, but your job, Mom, is to at least inform your daughter of the most important tool she has: her voice.

-Respect for others. She doesn’t have to be friends with everyone, but she should at least be respectful. Having been on both ends of hurtful behavior, she now knows what it’s like to be the excluded kid. You can make your own observations about what you see go down with the girls, like “That girl looked sad when nobody was playing with her,” versus telling your daughter how to behave, to stimulate conversations about treating others nicely.

-Choosing friends wisely. Alas, while parents have influence over a child’s friends, we cannot force them to pick the ones we like. You can, however, point out that “mean girl” behavior is not the kind of thing a real friend would do. Encourage your daughter to hang out with the kids whose treatment and activities seem to make her happy and less involved in drama. And then stand back and let her make her own choices.

I know that advice seems so vague that now you want to bitchslap me, but you’ve got to face it here, lady. This is a personality-forming issue and a teaching moment. (Aren’t those the worst?) It’s not something that can be fixed with a secret-dissolving spell. As exhausting as it is to model positive, character-building behavior for your daughter, this is what you signed up for. She will get through this snotty-girl storm, and the best you can do is be the steady one she can hold onto while it’s happening.

Submit your question for Ask Sassy here! (Or just email me, darling. We can keep it between us. [email protected]) You can also follow me on Twitter or like my Facebook page, where I share pro tips on life every week.

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Circus birthday party

Hosting an adorable circus-themed first birthday party for your child is a definite way to ensure that fun will be had by all! For us moms (and dads!) hosting birthday parties and choosing the right theme can be stressful, but a circus-inspired party can be so simple to pull off. From carnival treats and snacks to colourful banners and cupcake wrappers, I’ve found the perfect items for your little one’s first birthday bash.

I’m always a fan of easy-to-throw-together parties. Anything that’s easy on the parents and exciting for the kids gets a big giant A in my book. Putting together a circus-themed party with the sweet-as-candy supplies I’ve featured will be not only easy but will be guaranteed fun for your little one and his/her friends. What child doesn’t love fun, vibrant decorations and delicious food?

The invites

Circus-themed invitations

I love all of these fun invitations. They are bright and unique, as well as gender-neutral, which is a plus.

1. Blaze birthday party invitations 2. Ticket invitation 3. Vintage circus invitation 4. Circus birthday invitation

The decor

Circus party decor


All you need for foolproof big-top decor is vibrant colours, great printables and some other odds and ends that can create that carnival feel. Try serving drinks in old glass milk bottles, and drape festive banners around the party space to add circus appeal to every corner of the room!

1. Circus high chair decorations  2. Picture props 3. Carnival birthday party 4. Cupcake wrappers 5. Polka dot balloons 6. Circus decoration ideas

The menu

Circus party food ideas


The food for your party should be simple and fun for the little ones. Believe it or not this can be done! Ice the cake in whimsical colours. Lollipops and popcorn are easy no-brainers, and using old apothecary jars filled with candy and treats are easy ways to add to the effect.

1. Circus-themed party food 2. Retro popcorn boxes 3. Snacks and treats 4. Circus treats and decor 5. Popcorn-shaped marshmallows

What do you think of the circus theme for a first birthday party? How would you incorporate the circus into your little one’s big day?



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If you’re on the hunt for a perfectly sweet and lovely gift for an upcoming baby girl, look no further than the source for all that is unique and awesome, Etsy. Here, I’ve rounded up seven of my favorite baby shower gifts for girls found on Etsy.
little pearl boutique


The Little Pearl Boutique — for glamorous and feminine baby headbands that any expecting mom is sure to go wild over, check out this darling Etsy shop. From vintage-inspired headbands like this one, to a simple but sweet daisy version, this store has got your little one’s head covered.

little post bebe shoes

Little Posh Bebe — Aren’t these the most adorable pair of baby shoes ever? Little Posh Bebe sells handmade soft-soled baby and toddler shoes in addition to various hair accessories. My daughter has a pair and we always get compliments when she wears them. And we all know no baby shower is complete without teeny tiny baby shoes for everyone to ooh and ahh over.

etsy shop collage

The Snug Bug Shop — Okay, check out that ingenious and gorgeous bib above and tell me you don’t want it? The dress-up bib/burp cloth are just some of the stylish items offered by this shop that also features swaddles, chic baby blankets and changing mats in some of the cutest prints. Because even changing diapers can be stylish if you’re a savvy sassy mom!

king soleil

King Soleil — Trust me, all moms love to receive personalized baby gifts, and there is nothing lovelier than this custom-made embroidered nursery art. Not only will this gift be displayed for years to come on Baby Girl’s wall, but it also screams heirloom. I mean, seriously, could there be anything sweeter?!


Red Attic — This Etsy shop can custom make a doll for you to match certain characteristics of your choosing, and fabrics for the outfit. Trust me, this is guaranteed to be one toy that will never get donated. The one pictured above was actually custom-made for one Jessica Simpson.

happy bowtiqueHappy BOWtique – Baby girl rompers made of lace? Oh my. These would be perfect for a newborn or baby photo shoot in the future or just for an everyday case of Dress the Baby.

yarningYarningMade — A perfect gift for the pregnant mom that already has everything, this hand-knit baby blanket is both modern and vintage at the same time and is non-baby enough to be proudly displayed for years to come.

What is your favorite Etsy shop for baby items?
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Bagels, eggs, champagne, bacon. We’ve all seen these staples at Easter morning brunch. But where’s the punch? Where’s the fun? These recipes are sure to amp up appetites and kick Easter brunch up a notch — from fun to fantastic.

Banana Almond Croissant Bread Pudding

I love all these words. Love them. How could you go wrong? The only way it could be better, maybe, is with chocolate. But why mess with perfection. This recipe is easy to follow, but it will look like you spent hours in the kitchen.

Photo courtesy of

Updated Eggs in a Basket

Eggs in a hole are so old school, but this recipe takes them to a new place. Whether you wrap your eggs in philo dough or in a popover, these savory treats will go fast.

Photo courtesy of


It’s the Bees Knees

Tired of mimosas? Looking for something a little…stronger? Yep, us too. This cocktail is full of springtime flavor with fresh juices, honey and gold rum. Who’s ready for another round?

Photo and recipe courtesy of
Bunny Bottom Pancakes Recipe

And Something for the Kids

These bunny bottom pancakes will make kids squeal with delight. The added dollop of whipped cream and fresh berries may have them asking for seconds.

Photo courtesy of


French Toast Shots

French toast can be messy, especially when you are serving things up family style. These cute French toast sticks are nestled in their own shot glass of syrup. They’re dunkable and totally delicious.

Photo courtesy of


Bacon Pancakes

Everything is better with bacon. That includes these pancakes. You can make these ahead of schedule and warm in the oven right before serving time. Once you have one, you’ll want another so make plenty.

Photo courtesy of


Moms, what are you serving for Sunday brunch?
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Easter table
Spread out to the kids’ table

Large holiday gatherings often mean creative seating options — like kids’ tables. Just because you don’t want your smallest guests eating from your special occasion china doesn’t mean they can’t have a fancy table, too. Designing a fun Easter table for kids will let them know how special you think they are.

Elements of an Easter table

Table elements can be as simple or elaborate as you’d like, but a few pieces really work together for a cohesive look.

  • A centerpiece
  • Place cards
  • Festive plates
  • Napkins
  • A little treat
Easter table
Start with a centerpiece

A centerpiece helps ground the table. Once you choose your Easter centerpiece, you can find other pieces that complement it. The Easter Peeps Centerpiece is an adorable choice for a kids’ table (Taste of Home). The rest of the elements on the table can draw from either the colors in the centerpiece — pinks and yellows in this case — or the design elements of the Peep bunnies.

Easter table

Use place cards to stop arguments

Kids’ feelings can be easily hurt by a favorite cousin choosing a seat across the table. Place cards are an easy way to focus attention on their personal seat and not on who is sitting next to them. The Easter Egg Place Card Holder set is a simple and colorful way to incorporate the egg design from the centerpiece (Etsy, Table and Wreath Lady, $6 for 4).

Easter table

Find festive plates

Stores are filled with adorable Easter-themed paper plates, but if you host holidays frequently, melamine is another option. Plastic plates mean you don’t need to worry about china breaking at the hands of your littlest guests, but you can use the plates year after year. Touchstone has adorable Pastel Melamine Plates with a sweet ruffled edge that mimics the look of traditional picnic plates in the durability of melamine (Touchstone, $29 for 4). The polka-dots are a fun touch, and the colors make them appropriate for a wide variety of occasions.

Easter table

Don’t scrimp on napkins

When it comes to kids and napkins, it’s always useful to have extra on hand. From spilled drinks to smeared butter, all sorts of messes happen at the kids’ table. Buy more paper napkins than you expect to need — you can use them for the next month if you don’t need them all. The Easter Egg Buffet Napkins boast beautifully decorated eggs in coordinating colors (Pier One, $6).

Easter table

Add a little treat

Holiday menus always include something sweet, and the kids’ table shouldn’t be exempt from a bit of sugary sweetness. If you worry the kids will fill up on candy or cookies before eating their meals, keep the treats out of sight in the kitchen until they’ve eaten a sufficient amount of real food. When they’re ready for treats, try the Scalloped Bucket Treat Containers (Pottery Barn Kids, $17 for 4). If their Easter baskets were already filled with candy, try personalized Easter Egg Sugar Cookies instead (Etsy, Lovin Oven Cookies, $38 for 12).

For more adorable Easter ideas, follow Easter.Chicks.Bunnies from Savvy Sassy Moms on Pinterest.
Does your family do a kids’ table at holidays?
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baby boy spring fashion

Our top picks for baby boy spring fashion

It’s springtime, meaning time to revamp our closets! This includes our children’s closets, of course. I just love a new season and a whole new excuse to find cute clothes to match the changing weather! I’m expecting a spring baby, and thus thought it would be fun to put together some cute items for baby boy spring fashion! Gotta make sure he’s looking cute as a button.

1. Zara bunny tee
2. H&M sun hat
3. Gap yellow hoodie
4. Pediped Naples shoes
5. Zara striped trousers
6. H&M bib overalls
7. Gap striped shorts
8. Minnetonka fringe booties
9. Hello Apparel anchor onesie
10. Thief and Bandit leggings
11. Gap checkered one piece

Stripes and nautical-inspired clothing is always in for spring

For spring, I always gravitate toward stripes for my own style, and it’s no different for my little one’s wardrobe. Babies in stripes are just about the cutest thing ever, and I plan on decking my own baby boy in them when he makes his grand arrival! The nautical look is always popular in the spring, as the weather is getting just right for boating outings and soaking up some sun. This anchor onesie paired with some boat shoes is the perfect nod to the nautical look.

Channel the Easter bunny with pastel colors

Another hot trend for spring each year is pastels. For boys, it’s easy to lean toward baby blues the most, but I think it’s fun to sprinkle in some pastel greens and yellows as well, for variety. Since Easter is just around the corner, how cute is this sweet little bunny tee? Paired with some striped pants and maybe a bow tie, and he’ll be all ready for the spring holiday!

Don’t forget the accessories

A hat is always a good idea for an accessory to keep the sun out of baby’s eyes, and some cute little shoes or sandals are just perfect, depending on the weather. To keep baby’s feet a bit warmer on the cooler spring days, grab a pair of moccasins and he’ll be styling!

What’s your favorite spring fashion look for baby boys?
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circus books

Why kids love circus books

Colorful costumes, performing animals and sugary cotton candy combine for fun circus stories. Kids will love reading about the circus with these recommended children’s books. Whether your little ones will be listening to you tell the stories or are reading on their own, these circus books will make them smile.

Circus books for little kids

With his penchant for crazy creatures and colorful illustrations, many Dr. Seuss books feel as though they’re wandering through a circus. In If I Ran the Circus, Morris McGurk dreams of what things would be like in the circus of his imagination (Amazon, $12). The dare-devil Sneelock is only one of the fun characters little ones will love about this rhyming classic.

circus books

When the animals are out sick, everyone’s favorite, red and white stockinged pig, needs to step into the ring. In Olivia Saves the Circus by Ian Falconer, Olivia juggles, flies through the air and tames lions when she’s the only performer available under the big top (Amazon, $15). In this Olivia book, the colors are subdued but the story encourages dreams to soar higher than the trapeze.

circus books

The Secret Circus by Johanna Wright is the perfect book for sleepy, bedtime reading (Amazon, $14). A Paris circus will astound readers, but only the smallest visitors know how to navigate the way to find this special place. Children are fascinated by small, hidden worlds, and the 1920s-style mice are precious guides in their hot-air balloon floating over Parisian streets.

circus books

Circus books for independent readers

Newbery Medalist Kate diCamillo weaves magic and hope together in The Magician’s Elephant (Amazon, $14). An orphan asks a fortuneteller for answers about whether his sister is alive and begins a journey inexplicably tied to an elephant (mistakenly) conjured from the sky. Independent readers will enjoy the imaginative, twisting tale told in The Magician’s Elephant. DiCamillo’s dreamy prose coupled with the beautiful illustrations by Yoko Tanaka make it a book that will captivate younger children when it’s read aloud.

circus books

Kids ask tough questions, and books can offer parents a springboard for hard conversations. In Saving Lilly by Pat Kehret, Erin Wrenn and her friend David take an ethical stand against the Glitter Tent Circus. Their teacher takes issue with their opposition to a class field trip, but Erin soon learns she might have a bigger battle to fight. She’s ready to learn if a class of sixth-grade students can help save a circus elephant from being sold to a hunting park.

circus booksKids aren’t the only ones who love the circus — check out our circus-inspired book club picks!
Do you have a favorite kids’ book about the circus?


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