We think of our tots as little cherubs, so what better to dress them in than Barefoot Dreams’ cloud-like CozyChic knit. The specially designed fabric was made to keep your baby’s skin baby soft and is used to make everything from stuffed animals to ponchos to towels. When it comes to little girls (and frankly, a surprising number of grown women), you can’t go wrong with Hello Kitty. The famous cat adorns an adorable toddler hoodie ($74) that will quickly become her favorite. For the boys there’s the Little Royals infant hoodie ($62). Crowns just aren’t comfortable – have your little prince show off his stately status in this regal blue softie (available in pink for princesses, natch). While you’re at it, get them the matching receiving blanket ($59), too. It’s nice and big – perfect for wrapping them up snug as bugs! Available on Barefoot Dreams.
Your little girls are angels no matter what they’re wearing, but being able to dress them in these enchanting Tutu du Monde pieces is the icing on the cake of parenting. My tots just had their first ballet recital last week, and I could not have been prouder. While a little disorganized, they were full of the grace and confidence that only comes when you don’t care whose watching. Seeing them prance around onstage was one of the best moments of my life, so maybe these precious tutus and caplets are my attempt to relive the recital. Can you blame me?? Available on ShopBelle.
Rosebud Caplet ($108): With the rows of sequins, this rose petal-colored caplet is just the girly style tots love to don. While the look is dramatic, it’s surprisingly wearable over regular dresses.
Centre Stage Onesie ($168): Your little star in a star onesie – could it be more perfect? Made from silk and tulle, this is exactly what every young ballerina dreams of dancing in.
Sugar Plum Fairy Tutu ($164): The best part of being a tot is that you can wear tutus whenever you want (as Björk famously showed us, adults cannot get away with this indulgence – that might’ve also had to do with the giant swan attached to her dress, but the point stands).
Curtain Call Caplet ($108): For the price, though, a caplet would serve her better. They’ll fit her longer and are just as decadent.
BabbaCo creator Jessica Kim knows that we’re always trying to come up with new, more creative ways of entertaining our tots, so she developed the BabbaBox. This set of fun activities for ages 3-7 is mailed to your home each month (May’s theme is “Deep Sea”) and includes everything from arts and crafts to games to books to science kits. One of the best things about this is that everything you need is in the box, saving parents the time of planning out playtime and running around town trying to find all of the required materials. There are different types of subscriptions – the digital ($6.99/month), regular ($15.99/month), and premium ($29.99). I recommend the regular – it comes with four fun activities, and if your tots finish all of those, they can find more to do online with the included digital membership. Learn more on BabbaCo.com.
While some board games are only amusing to tots (I’m looking at you, Candyland), the LEGO Creationary game actually is fun for the whole family. It’s basically Pictionary with Legos, which is great because some concepts can be hard for kids to depict in drawings. Not everyone is an artist, but everyone knows how to use Legos. You roll a die to find out which category (vehicles, buildings, nature, or things) you’ll be building from. There are three levels of difficulty, so don’t worry about tots (or you!) having a tough time. LEGO just recommends that players be seven-years old and up. Since the game is designed for three to eight players, it’s great to have around when you have a bunch of tots over for playtime. The guessing game aspect will keep all of them constantly entertained, and the building allows each one of them a moment to shine. Turns go surprisingly quickly because there aren’t many Legos. Your imagination is really put to the test when you’re limited to so few pieces. It’s interesting to see all of the things your kids come up with! On Amazon for $26.99.
Little girls love playing dress up – to the point where they refuse to ever change out of their princess gowns, even for that fancy dinner you’ve scheduled with your parents. We accept this because we have to, but I’ve found a way to make everyone happy. These adorably ruffled dresses are fun enough for playtime without looking in the least bit costumey. Flowery ruffles decorate the hem of the long dress, which could easily pass for a ball gown or magical fairy outfit when paired with a tiara and sparkling scepter. Plus your tots will love the feel of the comfy jersey knit compared to the usual scratchy polyester costumes! Available on Chasing Fireflies in pink, ivory, and lavender for $88 each.
All moms deserve a break but even if you take the tots out of the house, she will not be able to relax with so many loose ends laying around to distract her with. If you really want to please her and get her something that will make a real difference, get her a hotel room nearby, that way she can feel settled knowing she can be home within minutes. Having absolute peace and quiet is just what the mind and soul needs. She can curl up with a book and actually read more than 2 sentences at a time without interruption. Or even better, if the hotel has a spa, book her a service so she can fully indulge. And when happy hour hits, have girlfriends join her for cocktails by the pool followed by a dinner filled with adult conversation. No talk of diaper accidents.
For me, I escape to the Terranea Resort, just minutes from my house. And look at the view! There is an entire spa retreat with its own gym and pool right at the ocean’s edge. Kids not allowed! This is where I’m spending Mother’s Day weekend. I will roll out of bed Sunday morning and have a lavish brunch with my family and go right back to a nap. If you think my husband planned this out, not a chance. The best gift are those you give yourself. As they say, if you want it done right, you have to do it yourself. So go ahead, book yourself a room if you have to. Leave the guilt at home.