kids-section

Category : Tweens & Teens

The New Year is just around the corner and whether you and your children stay up until the stroke of midnight to ring in the new year or you celebrate at the stroke of noon instead, here is a roundup of the best crafts to celebrate bringing in 2013 with your children.

countdown bags

I love these Countdown Bags from The Idea Room. No New Year’s Eve would be complete without fun ways to count down the hours until the stroke of midnight (or noon).A bag filled with a fun activity or idea to open every hour, sounds like a blast to me and I bet the kids would love activities like “dance in the kitchen” or “make cookies”!

 

Blessings Jar

Blessings Jar from I Can Teach My Child is wonderfully sweet and thoughtful. I absolutely adore the thought of my children gathering what they are thankful and blessed for all throughout the year, then on New Years Eve sitting as a family and “counting our blessings” together.

 

balloon countdown

The Balloon Pop Countdown from Real Life, Real Estate, Real Dana is something I am positive my kids would go crazy for. You can fill the Balloon’s with notes containing fun activities like “have a confetti party” and “jump on your moms bed”.

first night hats

 

First Night Hats from Spoonful While you’re waiting for the New Year, you can help your kids make these adorable and festive. Let your children’s imagination run wild as they create and decorate their own special hats to wear!

 

confetti box

 

Once the magic hour sets, it’s time to celebrate! These Matchbox Confetti Boxes from Homework Today’s Assignment: Be Inspired may be messy but will certainly bring loads of treasured memories for your children. You can make a bunch to throw at the stroke of midnight or you can do one each hour as a countdown; the amount of confetti mess is up to you!

 

noisemakers

 

Noisy NoiseMakers from Alphamom are the perfect way to ring in the New Year. Made of empty raisin boxes, your kids will have a blast making them!

I’m looking forward to the New Year and whatever 2013 holds. Happy New Year Savvy Sassy Moms!

NewYearsCollageFINAL

 

 

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Have you heard of Origami Owl Custom Jewelry? Well in the past month I have heard them mentioned almost everywhere – from Facebook to chat-boards, at preschool pick-up and email invites to shows!  As someone who loves beautiful things and is in direct sales – well I had to find out all about Origami Owl!

I love their tagline “You tell your stories with words…we tell our stories with jewelry.” And can you believe that it all started with a teenager and a dream…..

Origami Owl’s story starts with a teenager and a dream. Our company was founded by 14 year-old Isabella in the fall of 2010. Fueled by a goal to raise enough money to buy a car for her 16th birthday, she started the business with $350 worth of babysitting money and a matched contribution from her parents. She sold her unique line of personalized jewelry at home parties and events and quickly realized that this brand has an energy all its own. People absolutely love creating and wearing personalized jewelry that has meaning and is special to them.

Origami Owl’s signature jewelry collections are now available online and through trained Independent Designers, who sell the amazing products exclusively at home parties and events-just as Isabella did from the very beginning!

Origami Owl’s trademarked product is the Living Locket™  which is custom designed by you with charms that tell the story of your life and represent the things you love. You have fun picking out your own custom charms, lockets, and chains to create you own unique piece of jewelry.


What a perfect gift for a daughter, a mother, a sister or a dear friend. I am considering having my daughters each create a Living Locket™ for themselves for their next birthday.

Personally, I love their Soho Collection! Seriously amazing chains that you can add any and many dangles to for a completely custom and unique look! I could sit and create looks all day!

However, if you really want to capture someone’s heart and give a gift that is so unique, special and heart-touching, well then you must check out Origami Owl’s Wish Lockets. Each locket comes with a custom piece of paper neatly folded inside to write your hopes and dreams and wear close to your heart. I love this beautiful thought.

If you are looking for a truly unique and heartfelt gift I highly recommend checking out Origami Owl. Everything is truly a treasure that one will keep forever.

You can check-out all of their collections on the Origami Owl website and you can also easily find them on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.

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Bullying is a topic that I think about often because my “little” little guy gets picked on a little bit
more than the average toddler. I not sure if it’s his size, demeanor or something in the universe, but it happens more often than not.  I feel conflicted about this topic for two reasons:

1) It breaks a momma’s heart to watch other kids strong arm toys from him, bop him on the head, push him out of the way and so on

2) On the other hand, this is a part of life and sooner or later my little guy is going to have to become emotionally tougher to survive as an adult

The question that I am stuck with is…how much is too much? I have some friends kids in elementary school that beg not to go to school the next day or the rest of the week because kids in their class are picking on them. Do you forcefully encourage them to forge through the bullies and become emotionally tougher or is this an emotional breaking point? How do you know? 

While I think about this side of bullying, I saw first hand at the park the other day the “other” side of bullying. The kid, we will call him “X” for reference, was a rather strong and taller 8 year old that came over to the sandbox to play with my little guy and 2 of his buddies who ranged in age of 2 to 6 years old. He started by grabbing the shovel out of my little guy’s hand, then took a toy car from another kid without asking and then began making a racetrack in the sand for the car. My 2 year old thought he would join in on the fun and went to help dig with X. Well, X was not looking for an assistant and went nose to nose with my little guy and telling him to go away and that he couldn’t play with him and that he was ruining everything. So what did I do? I pulled my little one away and then without thinking started telling X that this was not a nice way to play, sharing was a must and that we do not talk to people in this way and took the shovel and car away from him. I looked around and X’s parents were no where in sight. This situation happened several more times. After moving my two year old away each time, X situated himself back to my little one. As any 2 year old would, my little one tried to play with him again and then X would get back in his face. At some point my husband stepped in and told X that this was no way to play or make friends. After removing our little one for the last time, X sat there, turned bright red and started shaking and saying he is ruining my castle over and over again. As we all packed up our sand toys, my heart began to ache.

We always think about those that are bullied/picked on…but what about the kids that we never taught how to play with others, how to communicate or socialize in a positive manner. I felt terrible, X was desperately seeking interaction yet clearly wanted to dominate every situation while craving a friend to play with. Any parent could see that this child was in emotional distress; however, it is mine and my husband’s sole responsibility to take care of our child’s emotional well-being first. I have to remember that it is X’s parents responsibility to teach him how to interact with other children, how to share, how to keep his hands to himself. These are not innate qualities, they must be taught by an adult so that a child can be set up for success in life. I know this, but my heart still aches for this 8 year old kid…

Mommas weigh in…How do you deal with bullying? Parents of bullies? Overall thoughts?

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This will be my first year doing the big back-to-school shop, so I may be a little TOO excited about it, but being the newbie that I am, I wanted to search out some of the most awesome school supplies for my little girl. One thing that has been one of my priorities is that the supplies were as eco-friendly and toxin-free as possible. I’ve always been wary of plastic, especially plastic containers made for holding food, so finding a plastic-free lunch box was number one on my list, but also finding products that can be re-used or have been recycled were a priority. Each year schools go through insane amounts of paper, and I wanted to be conscious of that and try and help out in any little way I could. I know I’m not the only mom out there who has the same concerns that I do, so I wanted to share my top eco-friendly school supply finds for all of you eco-minded mamas out there!

eco-friendly school gear and supplies

 

Recycled Crayons- $15.00 Etsy

For the first few years of school, crayons are normally at the top of the supply list. While you can’t beat Crayola’s prices, I like to know that I’m doing my part by purchasing recycled crayons that are also created with non-toxic pigments or ingredients. These crayons from Etsy store hooty and lou would be the perfect addition to your eco-friendly supply list. If you do a search around their store they offer a huge variety of recycled crayons in all different shapes and colours so you can choose which set best suits your child!

eco-friendly school gear and suppliesRecycled Pencils – $7.89 Office Depot

Once your children start getting older and writing becomes a bigger part of their school curriculum, pencils are a school supply staple. Considering how many pencils your kids will go through during the school year, a great way to reduce waste is to look for recycled pencils. The Earth Write pencils from Papermate that are pictured above contain 100% recycled content made from reclaimed wood. A great step in the right direction toward more eco-friendly supplies!

eco-friendly school gear and supplies

Reusable sandwich/snack bags – Deluxe set – $38.00 graze organic

When thinking of what I wanted to send my daughter’s snacks to school in, I immediately knew I didn’t want to use plastic baggies. Not only is it creating a lot more waste, it’s a waste of money! Instead of buying endless boxes of plastic baggies to put your child’s sandwiches, snacks, etc. in, take a look at these cool reusable bags from graze organic. Not only are you saving the earth one reusable bag at a time, you are also avoiding plastic linings and dangerous inks. graze organic’s bags are made from 100% organic cotton, made from water-based inks and made in the USA. The company also sells reusable napkins and lunch totes, so you can also forgo the paper napkins and brown paper bag!

eco-friendly school gear and supplies

Stainless Steel lunch kit - $34.95 – $74.95 – Planetbox

The choosing of one’s lunch box or lunch kit is a big decision. I remember taking my decision of either a Little Mermaid or Barbie lunch box quite seriously. Now that I have a child of my own, I still take the decision seriously, but for much different reasons than when I was 6! I get iffy about plastic, so I like to steer clear of that if I can. Glass is just not an option for a child to take to school, but stainless steel is perfect! I love these Planetbox lunch boxes because of their durability and that they are plastic-free. Your child can also customize them by choosing from a ton of really cool magnets to put on the outside of the box so they have a lunch kit that’s all their own.

eco-friendly school gear and supplies

Recycled Notebooks- 5 subject notebook- $8.99 Grassroots

Recycled notebooks are not ugly anymore! I found a cool bunch of recycled notebooks from grassroots that any kid would love to have in their backpack. The notebook choices range from one subject to five subject notebooks, plus they have sketchbooks, workbooks and agendas available too. Considering that paper is something your older children are going to go through a lot of, a recycled notebook could be a great way to keep on track with your eco-friendly supplies.

What are some of your essential eco-friendly back-to-school supplies?

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DREAMPOP Twitter Party
Thursday August 23rd
5pm PST / 8pm EST

Hashtag: #DREAMPOP

Hosted by:  @MomTrends, @SavvySassyMoms, @jcpenney
Special Guest:  @Cynthia_Rowley

As two fashionable Moms, fall is always our favorite part of the year and for two main reasons.  School is back in session and all the exciting fall fashion is hitting the runway!  So we are thrilled to be partnering with jcpenney and Cynthia Rowley to celebrate the launch of her new tween collection DREAMPOP!

It’s a tween girls dream come true as designer Cynthia Rowley unveils her most fun collection ever.

The DREAMPOP collection is affordable and is meant to mix and match always incorporating the core basics of jeans, t-shirts, and iconic fashion pieces.  These colorful and expressive separates are based on her upcoming book series, with an inspiring message for girls:  dream big!

Join us for a night of Fun, Friendship and Fashion!

DREAMPOP is exclusively available in jcp stores nationwide!

Prizing
4 $25 Gift Cards
$100 Gift Card

RULES
Must RSVP to WIN prizing
Must use #DREAMPOP in your tweet to win
Must be a US Resident and 18-years old to win
Full Rules can be found here
Winners will sent a direct message after the party to coordinate prizing
Winner must respond within 24 hours

RSVP with your Twitter Handle

Example:
Link Title: @savvysassymoms
Email: [email protected]
URL: http://twitter.com/savvysassymoms

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My oldest daughter has now reached the age that she doesn’t love the cute little sundresses, ruffles and bows of summer. Instead I find her wanting to dress in simple denim shorts, tank tops and flip flops.

We no longer visit the typical kids shops and instead we find ourselves looking at the bling of Justice and sometimes the teen styles of Abercrombie & Fitch.

Sometimes I feel like I’m totally not ready for this but realize there is no stopping growing-up and instead I’ve started embracing her new shopping style and actually enjoy finding clothes that aren’t babyish at all, yet super fun and age appropriate.

Here are some outfits that my tween gives two huge thumbs up to:

Love this peasant dress and short boot outfit from Zara. Very current and very ‘Taylor Swift’ if you will. A more grown-up style without being too grown-up.

I’ll be the first to admit that I am not a huge fan of the ‘bling’ – but my tween LOVES it, and then I just have to remember my Valley Girl phase of the early 80′s and keep my opinions to myself.   When she put this outfit on from Justice though I had to admit that she looked pretty cute and ready for Summer. In fact I even wrote a post about letting a little Justice into our lives.

Abercrombie Kids is still a bit old for my daughter but I do love their basic tees, tanks and skinny jeans and capris for some cute and casual Summer looks.   The quality is also very good.

Nordstrom usually hits a pretty big home-run for us in the ‘shopping for tween’ department. We can find anything from total casual wear to swimsuits and also a dress for a special occasion.  We love this dress from Roxy with the coordinated accessories.

..and this Nordstrom’s  shorts set from Splendid is also a huge hit.

 

Where do you shop for your tween?

 

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If you haven’t discovered Totsy yet, please let us introduce you to one of our favorite deal sites. It’s perfect for savvy moms looking for great deals on products for their kids at an affordable price – often greater than 50% off of retail!

Add in the fact that they also offer deals on clothing, shoes and accessories for mom as well as items for the home and you have a one-stop shop that allows you to scour the proverbial sale shelves without leaving the comfort of home. Who wants to tempt fate with toddlers in tow when you can peruse deals during nap time? Not me!

The only downside? If you wait too long to click “purchase” you may miss out. Those deals can sell out fast and they change out just as fast, so check back often.

Our favorites at Totsy this week (that had yet to sell out before this posting) include:

Infant shoes at a fraction of their normal cost…

fun fedoras for your fashion forward older children,

Swimsuits just in time for beach weather,

And a little something that might fit the bill for date night.

 

What’s’ even more exciting is they’re expanding on their deals even more. Today’s deal is starting off with a Totsy Travel sale! Think you can’t make that summer vacation happen? Maybe this will make it feasible! Totsy will be running deals on Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Sante Fe, New Mexico which both sound like a dream.

Additional upcoming sales that we can’t wait to check out in the next 24-48 hours include:

  • Raquel K Couture Handbags
  • Barbecue Time  - all things Barbecue to get you ready for the summer BBQ season!
  • Hello Kitty Flip-flops & swim wear
  • Secretly Spoiled super chic fashions for your daughters
  • Gund huggable characters to include Sesame Street friends, undersea characters, and hugger bears
  • Imagine Toys – construction sets and dress up toys
Have you discovered Totsy? 

 

 

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post but all savvy thoughts and sassy opinions are my own.  We share this savvy shopping website with you because it’s a fashionable, fun and saves Moms money!  

 

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Shopping for birthdays – whether it’s your own kids or someone else’s can be tough, so here at Savvy Sassy Moms we’ve gathered for you a list of the hottest birthday gifts for kids for all ages! For younger kids we have water fun, musical toys and play tents. Older kids will enjoy remote controlled helicopters, video recorded race cars, story cubes and Monster High dolls.

With this list you can rest assured: no one will be saying “I’m bored, Mommy!” as these toys are guaranteed to keep your kids busy for a while.

                                          LEGO Friends Olivia’s Tree House $33

We love that they are making LEGO sets that are girl centric. Sit down with your little lady on a rainy day and put together the LEGO Friends Olivia’s Tree House.

                                          Step 2 Big Splash Water Park $43.49

Hot and muggy outside? Splash tables are the perfect way to cool off a bit. It’s perfect for toddlers and preschoolers who love to splash and watch the cause and effect process of water going down the water slide that’s provided on the Step 2 Splash Water Park. Your toddler will squeal in delight as they watch the swimmer flip on a diving board or the water wheel spin. It’s endless fun on a summer day.

 

                                 Syma S107/S107G Helicopter $20.47

If you have an older boy who has a mechanical eye and loves to see how things work, then this helicopter is just the ticket. It allows the pilot to control flight for up to 8-12 minutes at a time for tons of simulated flying fun.

Disney Princess Super Play House Tent with Lights $61.59

Have a little princess in the house who loves to dress up? Add this playhouse in to the mix and she’ll feel like the princess in her own castle she’s been pretending to be.

                                  Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes $8.09

We all need some go-to items that we can take with us when we’re on the go and this Baby Einstein Take-Along Tunes toy is just the thing to pack in the bag for a trip to the park for a picnic or a stroll on a trail when you need baby to be entertained while you get some time out and about.

  Rory’s Story Cubes $6.99

If you have a creative story teller in the house, these cubes are perfect. Roll the dice and use them to create the story. The variations are endless and it promotes creative thinking within the minds of everyone involved.

Ty Beanie Baby Max and Ruby Set $15.99

These plush toys are perfect for the Max and Ruby fan in the house. Snuggling and imaginative play are good to go when you gift these to your little fan of these lovable characters.

                     Hot Wheels Video Racer Micro Camera Car $31.22

If your child ever wondered what it was like to be the race car driver, this video racer will allow them to take the seat. They can race their car around the house, hook it up to the computer and instantly see what their “driver” saw. It will open their eyes to a whole new perspective. The memory records up to 12 minutes of racing time  which if fantastic!

Melissa & Doug Brianna 12″ Doll $14.49

Gift this doll to your toddler who is starting to learn about baby love and care. Use it to teach those important skills like body part identification – eyes, ears, nose and mouth. Have them feed baby and brush baby’s hair – all essential, toddler skills. Every toddler needs their first baby doll and the Melissa & Dough Brianna Doll is a lovely one to pick up for just that purpose!

                   Monster High Toralei Stripe Doll with Pet Sweet Fang$25.95

Monster High is all the rage for your older girls who are fans of the cartoon. She’s posable and comes with her sidekick, sweetfang.

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So you need to find something appropriate for your tween to wear this holiday season?  Not so easy is it?  Most things are either too babyish, beyond ugly or totally inappropriate for a young lady.  But, you need to find something that won’t make them say “Mom I am NOT wearing that!”   Your best bet is gonna be black with some sparkle and sequins!  It will be sophisticated yet modern and still playful.  Sears has some great pieces for a Mom on a budget and a little fashionista on her hands.  These items are all for size 7 – 16 and are sure to impress the girl who is too cool for school!


Buy them now while they are all on SALE!

Sleeveless Sequin Dress $39.50 , Cap sleeved Tiered Dress $27.00, Red Wool Peacoat $29.99, Girls layered Ruffle Top  $17.00,   2-piece shrug and scooter set $19.99, Bongo striped hoodie $17.00, Red sweater dress belted $10.00, Short Sleeve Knit Tunic $13.60, Josie sparkle flats $9.99, Sequin Shrug $12.99, Girls Black soutache skirt  $18.00

Disclosure:  This post is in conjunction with my partnership with Sears this Holiday Season.  All my choices and fashionable picks are my very own.

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I remember growing up and my parents just telling me to be home by dinner time, or when the street lights came on!  Can you imagine doing that today?  Wow, have things changed, because I’m not that old people!   Today it is an entirely different world and while we can use technology to keep our kids safe we also need to be aware of some of the dangers out their in cyber-space. With all of the social networking sites and ways for kids to connect it has become a huge parenting topic as we worry about how much time is spent online and with who.

Safely Social Monitor is a brand new FREE service from Location Labs just one part of a suite of services called”Familyware, which also includes Safely Locate and Safely Drive. It is defined as “software services that increase awareness, improving parents’ ability to communicate with and guide loved ones through each stage of their growth.

Safely Social Monitor is a service that lets you connect with your child’s facebook page and get updated on their activity.  It lets you know who they are interacting with, provides a simple report of their activity and alerts you if there is innappropriate behavior or language.

Safely Drive this technology is pretty darn impressive!  It senses when their phone is in motion and locks it.  The phone will also send out an auto-reply to any incoming calls or text messages letting the person know that they are too busy driving to pick up! (brilliant)

Safely Locate Yup, you can connect your phone with theirs and locate their real location in real time.  So no more saying your at Michelle’s house when she’s really at Brian’s house.  (sorry kids) Safely Locate will also send you alerts when your child got home safely or arrived at school.

Be sure to check out Safely Spotlight which will be a free digital parenting guide with tips and advice for parents navigating their way through parenting today.  This resource will be regularly published and made available on the Safely Facebook page.

Safely Social Monitor is FREE people – sign up today!

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