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Easter Basket Booty Giveaway!

Enter for a chance to win below: 1) Pair of Freshly Picked Moccs - $60 2) An 'Easter Assortment' from Poppy Drops - $40 3) A set of 3 reusable snack bags from spbang - $30

1) Freshly Picked - Susan Petersen started making baby moccasins in 2009 after becoming frustrated by the lack of well-designed baby shoes. Using her second child, Gus, as a mocc-tester, and a bag of scrap leather she picked up at a yard sale, she began experimenting with designs. Working at her kitchen table, on a shoestring budget, Susan persisted through some disastrous attempts until she had created a pair of moccasins that not only looked adorable on Gus’ chubby little feet, but stayed on his feet as well.  Recently featured on Shark Tank!
www.freshly-picked.com

2) Poppy Drops - Shelly Coffman, mama of three, founded Poppy Drops when her young daughter wanted pierced ears.  Not ready for permanent piercing, she sought out alternatives but had trouble finding a safe and practical solution.  Poppy Drops veggie-based temporary tattoo earrings were their first 'kid-focused' product.  Since then they have introduced other great products, like Tattoo Nail Art & Perfume Sticks, designed to let kids have fun without the hassles of "grown-up" things.  All Poppy Drops are made with natural ingredients and are super easy for kids to use!
www.poppydrops.com

3) spbang - spbang reusable snack bags are created by a mom inventor who has a job in the automotive industry.  She was tired of throwing out plastic bags and could never get the reusable fabric snack bags clean.  spbang's unique and environmentally friendly snack bags are crafted with food safe material that contains no lead, no BPA and no phthalates.  Made in the USA, the cool pattern and name plate on the back make kids the envy of their friends and classmates!! The best part is you can toss them in the dishwasher and they actually come clean.  No after smell from yesterday's lunch or washing in the laundry.
www.spbang.com

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{homemade healthy snack bars}

Been toying with the idea of scraping those sugar laden, store-bought granola bars for homemade ones? Us too... but where to begin? Here is a super yummy (and uber healthy) recipe, from Roxanne's Home Baking,  if you're ready to make an attempt. 

They are chock bull of dried fruit, applesauce, chia seeds, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, flaxmeal and unsweetened coconut. Sound healthy... they are! If you make these snap a pic and tag us (insta:@poppydrops, twitter: poppy_drops or fb: poppydrops)... we'd love to see them and hear how they turn out!

Happy baking! xo

image: roxanne's home baking



{a valentine's gift for our little girls}



As a mother living in a time when youth and beauty are placed in such high regard, it can be a bit daunting to try to raise a daughter with a healthy self-image.  I am 5’4” tall (on my tippy toes), certainly not what they are looking for at Vogue.  I have an athletic build and am strong enough to play soccer, tennis, and run an occasional marathon but have, admittedly, looked at myself in the mirror with less than kind eyes, even when my body has served me so well.

As a woman I can rationalize the scrutiny we put on ourselves but, as a mother, I would love nothing more than to find a way to give my daughter a different perspective.  This time of year is so filled with pressure to “change,” not that it is all bad, but what about trying to become the best version of ourselves, instead of “changing” who we are?

Little girls look to their mothers for so many things… they emulate their walk, try to wear their shoes, play with their makeup (often in secret!) and repeat what they say. It starts with us ladies! In order for them to grow up to love their bodies and all their quirks and characteristics, we first have to do it. We need to show them what it means to really take care of ourselves… eat well (and no, that is not lemon juice & cayenne pepper), be active, rest, and laugh, really laugh. Stop being so focused on perfection and instead focus on the beautiful qualities we already possess.  Look in the mirror as if you were looking at your child and see what a mother sees… sparkly eyes, wispy hair, a sweet grouping of freckles… all the little things that make you special, beautiful.

I founded Poppy Drops as a way to hold onto some of the innocence of childhood a bit longer. We are always looking ahead and moving so fast. Today, maybe stop and enjoy the moment, enjoy where you are and savor it… you’ll never be back here again.  Give your daughter a special gift this year. Give her the gift of LOVE!



Xoxo

Shelly


{snow globes}

Like most kids, ours LOVE snow globes. Something about shaking up the jar and watching the snow magically fall down in the little world inside. Getting a special one around the holidays is pretty fun but making one might just be even better. Its super easy and even the littlest ones can participate.

images: hip baby


Here's what you'll need:

Synthetic evergreen tips
Plastic or ceramic figurines
Glass jar
Sandpaper
Clear-drying epoxy
Glitter
Glycerin

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Sand the inside of the lid until the surface is rough. With clear-drying epoxy, stick the figurine(s) to the inside of the lid, and let the epoxy dry.

2. Fill the jar almost to the top with distilled water; add a pinch of glitter and a dash of glycerin (available at drugstores) to keep the glitter from falling too quickly. Don't add too much, or the glitter will stick to the bottom of the jar when it's flipped. 
 
3. Screw on the lid tightly, being careful not to dislodge the figurine. Turn the jar over and back again, and let it snow!

{homemade gift}

What sous-chef doesn't love to cook with a specialty salt? We found this homemade, gourmet salt (or you could substitute sugar) recipe via Sunset Magazine is a great hostess or holiday gift and requires only TWO ingredients, both of which you'll likely have sitting in your kitchen!

Image: Yunhee Kim, Sunset Magazine
Ready to give it a try? Here's the super simple recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup flake salt, such as Maldon, or coarse salt
  • 3 tablespoons citrus zest (any kind)

Preparation

  1. Mix salt and zest in a bowl; work zest into salt with your fingers to release oils and flavor. Spread on a baking tray. Air-dry until dried completely, 8 hours to overnight.
  2. Note: Zest's color will fade over time, but this won't affect taste.
  3. Make ahead: 2 months, kept airtight at room temperature.
  4. Package in a mason jar or other fun glass jar, easily found at your local crafty store, and top with a pretty fabric & ribbon. Viola... a gorgeous, handmade gift!


{rockin' it seattle style}

Seattle residents are known for their carefree, hip style and their knack for all things nature chic! If you live in the Seattle area (or are planning to visit soon), Kid's Club in University Village is overflowing with cool! 

Expecting mom? Parent of a 2 year old? Need that first haircut? Hip clothes for a 10 year old? They've got what you're looking for and have taken the guess work out of kid's gear & gift giving. Head over today and see what you've been missing. 

P.S. ... like all super cool retailers, they've got all the newest styles of Poppy Drops! Run, don't walk, and get yours today!
 
http://www.shopkidsclub.com/index.html


http://www.shopkidsclub.com/index.html






{halloween treats}
Who's not looking for the perfect treat for those Halloween school parties and fun after school snacks? Your kiddos will love these festive eggs, from Tadka Pasta, made to look like mini-pumpkins and they are healthy to boot!

image: tadka pasta

Thai-spiced Deviled Eggs
(Serves 6)
6 Eggs
2 Tablespoons thick coconut milk, cold(not low fat) or mayonnaise
2 Teaspoons Thai Curry paste (we used the Thai Kitchen brand)
1 Teaspoon ketchup
½ Teaspoon paprika plus more to sprinkle
½ Teaspoon spicy mustard
¼ Teaspoon Sriracha or other red chilli sauce
Salt to taste
For the pumpkin look -
  • Paprika
  • 1 Spring/green onion 
Cover the eggs with an inch of cold water and bring to a boil. Boil for a minute, then cover and set aside for 10 minutes. Drain and then fill the pan with cold water. After 5 minutes, peel the eggs. Slice each egg length-wise and gently remove the yolks.

{Kidstuff Gets Creative in Minneapolis}
Super excited to tell you about our retailer of the week Creative Kidstuff in Minnesota! Creative Kidstuff's mission is simple: we help families play. Why? They Know Kids. They Like Kids. And They Know What Kids Like! Their stores are chocked full of great toys, accessories, book, games... you name it! You'll leave happy... guaranteed!

If you live in the Minneapolis area make sure to head over to one of their 6 locations and stock up on Poppy Drops while you're there!! BONUS... Snap a picture of your CKS receipt for Poppy Drops, email it to info@poppydrops.com (along with your address) and we'll send you a FREE EARRING COLLECTION just for supporting your local stores! Doesn't get much better than that!





{Actress Marla Lynne Sokoloff Hearts Poppy Drops}

So excited and honored to have Marla Lynne Sokoloff, actress, digging Poppy Drops! Marla is best known for her roles as Lucy Hatcher on The Practice and Gia Mahan on the ABC sitcom, Full House. She is also mom to 19-month-old daughter, Elliotte, born in February 2012, and is a popular PEOPLE blogger! 

Poppy Drops help to keep the “little” in Marla’s little girl with our temporary tattoo earrings, made from food-grade, vegetable dyes – 100% safe for any age. Our products were developed for sweet little kiddos just like Elliotte and we are over the moon that they LOVE them too!

P.S. LOVING the Poppy inspired Lipstick! Gorgeous!





{the littlest fashionistas}

Dallas is known for its larger than life style & personalities to boot. So why should the littlest fashionistas be left out? If you're looking for high fashion without the crazy price tags, Kid Biz will not disappoint! Founded in Dallas, Texas in 1989 by a former couture buyer for Neiman Marcus, their philosophy is simple – provide the newest and most fun fashions, gifts and accessories with personal service.
images: Kid Biz


{nellie & bean}

Do you live near Verona, NJ? If so, you MUST go check out Nellie & Bean Mercantile! This jem is situated in a darling location and inside is truly a feast for the eyes. You can find everything from great lamps & housewares to unique jewelry and luxurious lotions! You may have so much fun that you don't want to leave... so plan ahead! 


images: nellie & bean



{sweet relish is actually pretty sweet}

We happened upon this great site, Sweet Relish, which seeks out cool and unique brands! You can click the "discover" tab and with every click you'll find something else that you just MUST have. *Warning... this could be dangerous! We're having so much fun with it that we, admittedly, are not getting a whole lot done but our friends and family have lots of cool gifts in store! Here are a few of our favorites!




images: sweet relish



{have a tantrum}

Who doesn't love a store where everyone in the family can happily shop and find something great?! If you're in the Cincinnati area than you MUST go visit Tantrum! This JEM is more than a gift shop, it’s more than a toy store, it’s even more than a place to find fashionable clothing and accessories. It’s all three combined!! ONE STOP shopping for the urban family... sign us up!

images: tantrum


{lunch time adventures}

Ever struggled to get your kiddos interested in lunch? Check out these amazing "scenes" from Handmade Charlotte. Almost too pretty to eat but I bet they'll dig right in... Learn how to make them here!

images: handmade charlotte



{ribbet salon & shop for kids}

We had to stop and tell you about this FAB salon for kids, situated in the heart of Wilmington, NC. Ribbet Salon & Shop for Kids was founded by Delyn Fritz, a health conscious mama, to be a one-stop-shop for a really great kids hair cut and for the all-natural, high quality product Mom's today are seeking.  When it comes to what is used in their salon and what they sell to their valuable customers,  the staff at Ribbet selects only natural products that they have used and found to be of superior quality, without all the needless chemical preservatives or "mystery" ingredients. Plus, the atmosphere is always fun & inviting and kids leave with a really great cut because their entire staff is specially train to style KIDS! 

We are thrilled that they've chosen to carry Poppy Drops! Stop by and check them out today!



{The Bibelot Shops of Minnesota}
Our retail store of the week is The Bibelot Shops in Minnesota! These fabulous stores are full of gifts, clothing, jewelry, paper & home goods with an emphasis on local & eco-friendly products. 

St Anthony Park resident, Roxana Freese first opened the Bibelot Shop on Como Avenue in Saint Paul in 1966. Since then, she has opened Bibelot Shops in three other neighborhoods… Grand Avenue in Saint Paul, and the Linden Hills & Northeast neighborhoods in Minneapolis. 

Head over today and stock up on Poppy Drops and lots of other great finds!!


{back to school}



{a well traveled family}

We love this idea as a way of journaling a family's adventures. Simply frame a map (of the USA, World or country of your liking), sans the glass, and then add pins with labels for each of your trips. The kids will love to read them later and remember all the fun you had on your journeys!

image: design label



{We Heart Bethenny}

Bethenny Frankel, our favorite reality TV star and a Mom to be admired, reached out to us to give a warm thank you for the pierce-free earringsshe received for her daughter, Bryn. Frankel is no stranger to entrepreneurship or stresses of modern moms. Having founded and grown a hugely successful business, it's no wonder she was willing to take the time to reach out to another woman owned company. We are beyond excited and oh, so impressed with this gracious gal! xoxo



{frosty beverage}

If you're gearing up for a weekend on the patio, this frosty beverage might fit the bill. Kiddos are always asking for a "special drink" to match the ones the grown ups are sipping on and this is the perfect solution. Light & refreshing without all the extra sugar and artificial ingredients - plus it looks really pretty. P.S. if you want to make it more "grown-up" you can always add a little extra something, wink wink.

photo by Kelsey Marie Photography


Watermelon Breeze
3 cups cubed chilled watermelon
1 cup coconut water
squeeze of fresh lime
Ice if needed
Sprig of mint
Put all ingredients in blender. Blend until smooth.
Makes two servings.
90 calories per serving.


{lavender blackberry scones}

What Mom wouldn't love a tasty scone during that special brunch or picnic this Sunday? These Lavender Blackberry Scones, from Joy the Baker, fit the bill! 


image credit: Paola Parsons

Lavender Blackberry Scones
makes 10 to 12 scones
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon dried lavender
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup cold buttermilk
1 cup fresh blackberries(you can used thawed and drained berries from the freezer although the scones will have a more purple color)
1 beaten egg and granulated sugar for sprinkling on top before baking
Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, lavender, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Cut in butter (using your fingers or a pastry cutter) until mixture resembles a coarse meal.  Work the butter into the dry ingredients until some of the butter flakes are the size of peas and some are the size of oat flakes.    In another bowl, combine egg and buttermilk and beat lightly with a fork.  Add to flour mixture all at once, stirring enough to make a soft dough.  Fold in the blackberries.
Turn out onto a floured board and knead about 15 times.  Roll or pat out into a 1-inch thickness.  Cut into 2-inch rounds using a round cutter or cut into 2×2-inch squares.  Reshape and roll dough to create more scones with excess scraps.    Place on an ungreased baking sheet.  Brush lightly with beaten egg and sprinkle with granulated sugar.   Bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown on top.  Serve warm.  Scones are best the day they’re made, and though they can be frozen and lightly reheated in the oven if you need a future treat.


{what our mamas wish for...}

We asked our team of Poppy Mamas to tell us what they would love to recieve this Mother's Day... here are a few of their top picks.




{diy milk art}


We came across this fun art project on FlutterFlutter... such a great activity for kids (and grown-ups too)! 

All you need for this project is the following:
1. A plate  2. Milk (2% or higher)  3. Food Coloring  4. Dish Soap (That’s it!!)
1. Fill the plate with a thin layer of milk. Next, put in drops of food coloring.
2. Then, add a few drops of dish soap into the center of the food coloring, sit back, and watch! (I should mention that I tried this first with eco-friendly dish soap and it didn’t really work, so stick to the hard stuff for this!)
KA-POW! The milk fat instantly reacts to the soap, creating art!
Wow, right?! It will spin for quite a while, and if you add more drops of dish soap into the dark areas of food coloring you can keep the action going for quite a while.

If you want to see milk art in action, you can check out this video:

images: FlutterFlutter, video: EvieS


{rainbow cupcakes}

If you have some big birthdays coming up, like we do, than these are sure to peak your interest. What kiddo wouldn't be thrilled to bite into a yummy rainbow cupcake? Super easy, just separate your batter into small bowls, add a couple drops of food coloring to get the colors you want and then layer in the muffin cups. Bake, Frost & Serve. Viola! Get a detailed recipe here.


images: thegirlwhoateeverything.com



{giant egg}

If your kiddos are like ours then they LOVE to color. And... that love multiplies exponentially when they are coloring something BIG! Grab this free printable and they can spend an afternoon coloring this huge, easter egg picture!

image: mrprintables




 

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