Curbly Gift Guide: The Best Toys for Creative Thinking

by Mod Home Ec Teacher

If you're serious about raising creative, imaginative, problem solving kids, you need to focus on toys that are open ended and not prescribed by a toy developer. Thoughtful consideration about the quality of play can result in toys that provide the delicious opportunity for kids to use their own noggin' to develop stories, build structures, paint pictures, role play and problem solve. Toys that spoon feed a set start-to-finish experience rob kids of the chance to discover some very interesting side roads that can provide lessons and knowledge no one else could manufacture for them. Let's see here...

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How-To: Make Borax Crystal Snowflake Ornaments

by Capree K

created at: 12/09/2010

Bust out your lab coat and goggles, because we're about to get down with some science.  Making your own borax crystal ornaments is not only super cool, it's a fun project to do with kids (and keep the education going during that extra long holiday break)!  

First, I have to thank my friend Megan for sharing this with me.  She knows I'm a kid at heart and, well, easily amused.  If you're the same way, or actually have kids...

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Curbly Gift Guide: The Ultimate Stocking Stuffer Round-Up

by Alicia Lacy

Curbly's Stocking Stuffers Gift Guide
If Christmas gifts consisted only of stockings and the goodies therein, I'd be one very happy gal. While I absolutely adore the tradition of gift-giving, I find gathering the little things most exciting.

Below is my list of favorite "stocking stuffer" gifts (and yes, Julie Andrews' "My Favorite Things" ran through my head as I put it together). For a gift to make it on this list, it had to be wonderful, and it had to cost under $20.

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Modern Doll Houses

by Alicia Lacy

created at: 11/21/2010

Recently, I stumbled upon these amazing doll houses (read: works of art) by Brinca Dada. Not only would I love to have one of them for our daughter Ayla, but I'd love to live inside one of them. They are simple and stunning. 

The company's philosophy is that "toys should be beautiful and fun." They believe they should be athestically pleasing to parents and inviting to children. They pride themselves on skipping the flash and noise, in...

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How To Build a Backyard Tree House

by Mod Home Ec Teacher

created at: 04/07/2010

Photos: Popluar Mechanics

We've all seen photos of amazing tree house architecture, but nothing compares to this dad's tender narrative of building his kids' their own backyard tree fort. The next best thing to letting his kids build it themselves is reading about his recollection of the construction of his own childhood perch with his neighborhood friends, an all but extinct experience these days. His story, intertwined with a descriptive How To, evoked sweet memories of my own childhood summers filled with treacherous climbs up to our homemade shack and our summer long attempts to make it cozier by adding carpet, floor tiles, and eventually shingles.

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Mr. Mod's Souped Up Bunny Cake

by Mod Home Ec Teacher

created at: 03/26/2010

Foodie Fridays have made me feel all Home Ecky. However, it's Mr. Mod who's the baker around here. In response to my nagging, he agreed to supervise my attempt at baking by lending me the secret to his souped up German Chocolate Cake recipe. We started with a boxed German Chocolate cake and then turned it all creamy rich and dark chocolate-y. As if that's not enough, we've turbo-texturized the canned coconut pecan icing too.

The bow tie and other details are done with a simple butter cream icing tinted with food coloring. I was shooting for lavender, but we ended up with a preppy looking bunny.

Ready? Here we go...

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Design with Kids in Mind

by DIY Maven

Is kid stuff taking over your place? Do you feel as if you're living in the middle of a Toys R' Us? Does it look as if your decorator is a seven foot tall yellow bird? If you answered 'yes' to any of these questions, you might want to check out these very inspiring interiors from Design is Mine. They're proof that you CAN keep your stylish sensibilities while living the kid-centric life.

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Recycled Juice Pouch Lunch Bag.

by Chris Gardner

Like or not, it's the end of August, and with the season comes all sorts of options for  DIY Back-To-School fantasticness.

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This Recycled Juice Pouch Lunch Bag is a great project to do with back-to-schoolers, or just as a good luck present. It can teach them about recycling and reuse, provide a great introduction to sewing, and provides for a pop art lunch toter that beats the pants off of wasteful brown paper sacks.

Materials

1. 14 juice pouches...

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Mid-Century Modern Classics...For Tots.

by Chris Gardner

Knoll Furnishings, the manufacturers of classic pieces by Eero Saarinen, Harry Bertoia, Alexander Girard, Maya Lin, and  Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (nearly all the MCM heavyweights besides the Eameses and George Nelson), is getting smaller.

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"Created for the ones we love, knoll kids™ is a collection of spirited, modern furniture scaled for a younger generation. Each piece reflects our belief in the utility of modern design and commitment to...

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