Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and Spider-Man are the stuff of legend. So are moms. Their crime-fighting, peace-keeping, home-cooking, power-jobbing, do-gooding ways deserve a little recognition (for at least one whole designated day a year).
Cosmotot is here to save the day with a streamlined list of pretties and practicals ranging from cheap to steep and campy to fancy that will go great with those hand-drawn kiddie-made cards mom loves.
Once that baby is out and about, firsts start coming faster than contractions that have just barely become a drug-hazed memory. Instead of leaving baby's big moments subject to mommy brain, record them in grand style with the help of Mother Stork's Baby Book from Berwyn-based Kistner Supply. Proven to be the ultimate in luxury keepsake baby books (warning: pricey), this oversized 1904-esque bundle brings together the best in classic design and traditional craftsmanship (think archival quality, custom-made paper, gold foil stamping and linen cloth accoutrements). A black gel pen and photo corners are included. Recessionistas can go for limited supply, final sale "imperfect" books that have miniscule imperfections like a wrinkled page or subtly dented cover, but a greatly reduced price tag. Either way, it's a total keeper, kind of like a a husband with hardbound covers.
As any mom whose unsuspecting fingers, knuckles or nipples have found their way into a tiny mouth packed with budding chompers will tell you, teething bites. Smart Mom Jewelry lessens the burn that sore baby gums feel - while giving mom's hands and boobs a break - with an innovative line of pretty yet practical Teething Bling made from food-safe, non-toxic, latex- and phthalate-free, federally-approved silicone that's made to look like real gemstones (think coral, lapis, malachite, gold, jade and more). Made from the same material as other high-quality teething toys and soothers, Teething Bling pendants and matching bangle bracelets are safe for babies to tug, handle and chew to their gummy content.
Babies often like new foods about as much as they like gas. Try enjoying the solid food experience instead of being overwhelmed by it with Baby's First Foods journal from Glow Baby. Created by a veteran mom, it's designed to give newbies a cute, organized, spiral-bound place to track new eats, reactions, allergies, food intolerances, and even favorite recipes that can be easily transported to grandma's house or the doctor's office.
Globetrotting moms who spend more time grounded than touristing will dig Loloko. The little California-based online shop specializes in funky Japanese imports that feature everything from stamps shaped like mushrooms (with "bonjour" on the bottom) to egg memo stands to kitschy ring holders.
Coffee lovers who savor flavors the way a wine lover studies pairings will go gaga for Keurig's Special Edition Brewing System. The mid-luxury home brewing system offers a blend of styling and convenient features (think chrome accents, a blue backlit LCD display and three brew size options) that make it feel luxe. More than 200 varities of K-Cups in flavors from all over the world perk up one perfect, you'll-think-you-hired-a-barista cup of coffee, tea or cocoa when you're ready to enjoy it. Read my full review here.
Show the chief haul monitor love with Hedvig Bourbon's Lucas Diaper Bag & Stroller Tote. Designed by a savvy Norweigan mom for fellow fashion-minded moms (and dads) on the move, the bag has a clever hook-and-closure leather stroller-to-shoulder strap that is all about family-friendly function. Each bag is handmade in New York with several pockets keep mom organized - a large magnetic closure pocket on the outside is sized for a changing pad (bonus: it's included), two pockets on the front allow for quick access to pacifiers, chew toys or lovies; and four inner pockets make sure bottles, diapers, wipes, keys and cell phones stay put in one place. Enjoy 20% off with happystrolling at checkout.
Band-Aids might be like balm for kids, but tired moms need something more along the lines of an Ace bandage with a cocktail and side of Swedish massage. Chic Blvd has the next best thing with the luxurious, extra fluffy Frankie & Johnny spa wrap. Embellished with everything from indulgent sweets to a hearty farmer's breakfast to Lucy-esque 50's fashionistas, the wraps are made from the most ultra plush fabric around. Each is roomy, too, with a convenient Velcro closure and elasticized back for the ultimate in coverage and comfort.
Spending an uniterrupted day at the spa is high up on every mom's list, but for recessionistas looking to get replenished, renewed and refreshed on a budget, the Red Carpet Recovery Kit from organic lotion- and potion-touting company, Woodsprite Soap is a wise investment. Filled with amenity sizes of best-selling Dead Sea Mud Organic Spa Soap, Seaweed Organic Spa Soap, Grapefruit-Mint Sea Salt Glow, Vanilla Creme Organic Sugar Polish, a 16-hour Clarity Aromatherapy Soy Votive, Muscle Mender Massage Balm, Overnight Sensation Organic Shea Foot Butter, Feel Better Spa Salts, Cool Your Heels Soothing Spa Foot Soak and more, Woodsprite Soap is dedicated to crafting and selling 100% natural, world class organic bath and body products of uncompromised quality.
As moms, we hear all kinds of back talk and general sass from our deceivingly sweet-cheeked children. Keep your sanity while enjoying what you wish you could say with hilariously inappropriate, yet oh-so true sentiments from MA! Motherhood With Attitude? Created by fast-talking mamas, Janalee Chmel and Tiffany Hauber, MA! offers like-minded maternal types a series of stationery, including witty magnets, snarky greeting cards and notepads featuring nitty gritty, no holds barred photos from nitty gritty, no holds barred moms, all with real words of wisdom printed on each one. A portion of all paper goods profits go to A Mother's Wings, a non-profit organization for women facing postpartum depression.
Maria Pilar Clark is a mom times two and Windy City-based writer.
See more of Pilar's stories here.