Manuela Ottondo Wulff is Argentinian currently living in Madrid. And Manuela is a very tallented graphic designer and creator. Mow is her project inspired by dreams, imagination and games. That’s how her “objects with movement” were born.
Mowobjetos has animals, each animal has a name, a personality and a story:
And the perpetual calendar, which I personally adore and have, is so much fun for kids!
All of it completely handmade, images printed and assembled on cardboard and can be moved as many times as you want. These kinds of things really catch my eye because they are definitely made with love. Congratulations to Manuela for her work with Mowobjetos!.
Growing up with a German mother, celebrating advent was a big deal and magical to us children. In our family I have so much fun putting together and collecting gifts for the advent calendar. Henrik is now at such a wonderful age and gets really excited to open each advent. This year I found some great paper advent bags at Ikea and couldn’t pass them up. I like to keep things simple and I just tied twine to the staircase. I then attached the bags to the twine with wooden close pins going up the stairs.
I rotate the gifts so that my two children get something every other day. I usually give them small little gifts that range from $1-$4. I also like to pick gifts that they can get a lot of play out of. Because I have a 22-month-old that is into everything I only put one advent gift in at a time the night before.
I am wholeheartedly addicted to Pinterest! And it turns out… it’s not only a place to find a million cool products you wish you had (damn that Pinterest!) but I’ve also found loads of great craft projects I’m hoping to try with the kids. Like these little walnut mice. How cute! Originally blogged by the lilla a design blog (which has loads of cute craft ideas), I stumbled upon her images on Pinterest and decided to give it a go with my kids. The only trick, we found, was cracking open the walnuts without breaking the shells. But we managed to keep a few shells in tact and made some charming little mice. Find the full tutorial and materials list here.
Can you believe it’s December already?! Wow! It crept up quickly this year, didn’t it?!
This year will be the first year we stay in London for Christmas… which means we get to properly decorate the house and make it nice and cosy and christmasy (!!!). We’re all very excited about it and have already hung our stockings, set out the decorations, and of course, hung the Advent Calendar (which starts today!). And… I’m listening to Christmas music as I type! Oooh Happy December!
Have you caught the ‘holiday bug’ yet? Do you do an Advent Calendar? Any other little traditions you do around this time of year? I would love to know!
Gosh, time flies! Can you believe we have been blogging for exactly four years this week?! It’s a funny thing because in some ways it’s hard to believe four years have passed so quickly… but then on the other hand it’s almost impossible to think about life pre-Babyccino Kids (at least for us)!
To celebrate our fourth birthday, we’re devoting this week to all things party-related. We’ll also each look back on the past year and reveal our five favourite posts. But before we begin to bring you new ideas, here are some of our favourite party-related posts we’ve featured here before:
- A cute and easy Japanese-themed birthday party Esther threw for her daughter
- Delicious, chocolatey cake toppers available in NYC
- Cute party invites by Rifle Paper Company
- A balloon-themed birthday party — easy, festive and fun!
- Never forget another birthday with this handy Date Reminder Calendar
- Water-resistant garlands for every celebration (don’t let rain ruin your party decorations!)
- Mo’s brilliant Cops ‘n Robbers party with easy-to-copy ideas
- DIY goody bags made from the pages of old magazines
- The most adorable and reusable candle holders!
- Make your own Crocodile Clothespins and use them in many ways (i.e. on top of goody bags!)
- The perfect carrot cake recipe (for every sort of party)
- Esther’s DIY stick horses for her daughter’s ‘pony party’
I’m a big fan of the whimsical prints and calendars from The Wild Unknown — I have this calendar hanging in my office and it’s one of my favourite things in my house! So of course I was so excited to receive an email from them announcing their latest project: a series of art prints for children… and a children’s ABC book! I love the touch of watercolour to the ABCD print and the fact that a butterfly lands on B and a mouse creeps across M, etc. So sweet. And from the sneak peeks of the book, it looks to be just as beautiful. It’s available to pre-order now.
My sister gave me this calendar from The Wild Unknown for Christmas this year and I am IN LOVE with it. I love the hand watercoloured feathers (twelve of them for twelve months) and the fact that all the months are on one big page so there’s no flipping pages to look forward or back. I think I will keep it forever… despite the fact that it only ‘works’ for this year.
PS — I just checked and there are only ten of these limited edition calendars left. So hurry and snap them up!
I’m usually so good at remembering birthdays and other important dates, but lately I’ve been slipping! (Does ‘baby brain’ ever go away? I hope so!) Anyway, I just bought myself this Date Reminder Calendar by French artist, Flora Douville, and I’m really hoping it will help. Isn’t it beautiful?
I’m going to hang this in my office right above my desk so there’s no way to forget. And maybe it will even keep me organized and encourage me to send birthday cards BEFORE the birthday!
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• Colourful raincoats for grey weather from Toby Tiger
Smallable recently asked us to choose a selection of our favourite products for the Christmas season… and it was nearly impossible to narrow down a list as everything on that site is beautiful! But, we managed to choose some favourites, and, as always, they made it look so beautiful! Click here to see what we chose…
PS – Smallable is featuring an online advent calendar and every day leading up to Christmas they are offering discounts and free goodies. Just click on the day to see what’s on offer. (How cute is that advent calendar?!)
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• A tray for the Stokke highchair
I’m sorry the picture isn’t great… but this is such a quick, simple and (I think) effective idea that I had to tell you about it.
Advent for us starts officially this Sunday, but of course the first doors on the advent calendars will be opened on the 1st. To jazz up our hallway I made this simple Advent paper-bag bunting. And it was so easy you could even make this with the kids.
- Some plain white paper bags (mine were bought in Germany but these look similar) folded over at the top and punched with a normal hole-punch.
- Each one stamped with the numbers 1 – 24.
- Then some christmas string threaded through the top.
Mine are currently just decoration but I think I will fill them with a few treats so the kids can open them up as the days tick by.
Every year I wait until it’s too late to buy a new calendar — and by the time I think to do it (usually January 1st when it becomes a must!), it seems my favourite ones are all sold out. So… this year I am somehow VERY on top of it because I am the proud owner of the 2011 Letterpress Calendar from Ink+Wit. I love that you can hang up the individual calendar pages, maybe even frame them when the month has passed. And don’t you just love that fox? He’s also featured on the lovely Foxy Friends linen tea towel as well!
I saw this Maileg Advent Calendar in Elias & Grace the other day and I just couldn’t resist. It’s so cute! I love that each day has a little pocket for a tiny treat to go inside. And I also love the idea of using the same advent calendar year after year — it will become one of those things the kids will remember forever. Maileg also makes the most beautiful Christmas decorations — their ornaments are my favourite!
p.s. I’m also planning on doing Mo’s Christmas Book Advent Calendar idea as well! Bring on the holidays!
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• Free Download from Homemade Happiness — for all of you!
• Ver de Terre outdoor wear
It was tough, as always, to choose just five. But here is my selection of favourite posts from the past year…
1.)Esther’s DIY Stick Horses (pictured above) — because that is the coolest birthday idea ever… and she made those only one week after having her third baby!
2.) Emilie’s Kids Clothes in France Don’t Have to Break the Bank — because I love that you can buy cute clothes at the grocery store in France.
3.) Mo’s Christmas book Advent Calendar — I am soooo going to copy her idea for this Christmas season (and I always love Mo’s book recommendations!).
4.) Esther’s DIY Colourful Lanterns — because we made those lanterns and I love them; they’re still sitting on my dining table and we light them on ’special occasions’.
5.) Dina’s Listen to Them and They Just Might Listen to You — because my husband and I both read that book and it completely changed the way we want to parent our children (‘want’ is the key word — I don’t always have enough patience!).
For my son’s first Christmas his Aunt (in Berlin) bought him a beautiful kinderzimmer (Kid’s Room) calendar, illustrated by Wolf Erlbruch — the gentleman who illustrated The Story of the Little Mole Who Knew it Was None of His Business (which if you don’t know you should probably stop reading and take yourself to the nearest book-retailer or library to find a copy).
I secretly hoped this would become the annual present from his aunt, but as it wasn’t last year, I have decided to take matters into my own hands and buy him the 2010 calendar this year. It seems they only do it in German — but even if Deutsch is not one of your household languages the illustrations compensate by far.
The topic for 2010 is ‘big and small’ and the illustrations are divine — my favourites are the sausage dog and the fish, and the moose and the owl in the tree (how great is a world where a moose and an owl sit chatting in a tree!). I also love that this calendar comes in A2 size — so it really makes a statement on the wall.
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• Rietveld crate chair
I love Christmas! But my problem is I start getting that Bing Crosby feeling around mid-October and it is no good for my kids’ excitement levels. So, as of last year, there is now a self-imposed rule: no Christmassiness (that includes Gingerbread Lattes, Mince Pies and said Bing) until 1st December. Well Bah Humbug!
As with most rules I have been finding ways to get around it, and one way is with this Advent Calendar I have been preparing (since about mid-June) for my children.
As I was clearing out their bookshelves to make room for a particularly large Amazon delivery I decided to put the Christmas themed books away until December — we had 8, so that made some space. It occurred to me that it would be a nice idea to have a Christmas story every night of Advent… and so the Christmas Story Book Calendar was born. Of course my husband thinks I am madly excessive buying a further 16 Christmas books over the last months but this is a calendar that will come out year after year. (more…)
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• A Beautiful Baby Book
I have given into the hype and acquired an iPhone and am loving it. It holds all my addresses, calendars and emails. I feel like I am the most organised person alive (which I am not: Courtney and Esther are).
I have only recently discovered another huge advantage of my new favourite gadget: it is a great thing to distract my 3-year-old! I was stuck on a train the other day with a very grumpy toddler, and I suddenly remembered a little download one of our readers wrote to us about. I downloaded it and suddenly — heavenly silence for a good little while. (A good little while in this situation constituted of feeding the toddler’s little sister her full lunch uninterrupted…).
The Wheels on the Bus iPhone game was developed by some mom’s who realised how much little kids like to play with their parents’ iPhones. They decided to make something educational and fun for them. The game can be played in different languages and there are lots of little things that can be moved around on the screen, keeping little minds busy. The other great thing is that this toy is impossible to forget, as it is right there, on your mobile!
I read about this very special advent calendar on this blog I have been following daily for over two years. Jen is a mother of 4 (a set of triplets plus 1) and she very often amazes me with her enthusiasm, attention and creativity. She has a collection of 24 children books with Christmas related stories and at the beginning of December she wraps them all up and places them in a basket. Every night (until Christmas) one of the children picks a book and she reads it to them before bed. Once the holiday season is over the books are stored away, so that the following year they will be very new and special once again. It’s of course an ongoing project as children will “outgrow” some of the stories, so she plans to substitute one or more of the books from the collection every year.
I find this idea so sweet and special. It’s too late to replicate one in my family this year… but I’ll start buying some more Christmas books now (possibly in the Holiday section of our Bookshop)!
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• A destination very far away
I have spent a year looking for the perfect birthday calendar (herewith an excuse for all those forgotten birthdays, dear friends)! And I think it is safe to say that I have finally found one: the Gregory Calendar from Dadadum. So cute! (And such a great Christmas present, don’t you think?)
It’s nice and big, totally original and comes with a white woody to write all the year’s events down and do the creative bit.
I just finished drawing the reindeer for December, and it looks so cool! It totally deserves a prime spot in my house, if I can say so myself.
And then I’ll let my children draw all the other animals — I promise…
P.S. I got this calendar from the super-stylish shop Little Catwalk!
ONE YEAR AGO WE WROTE ABOUT:• Best of both worlds
I am not trying to complain… I am really happy that my husband is involved with our kids and that they have a great relationship, but sometimes I wish they thought I was as much fun as he was!
Why are Dads always the fun ones while Moms are the fun police? Is it because women are actually innately more organised and naturally get burdened with the task of being the disciplinarian?
I have to say that most of the time my head is so full with trying to plan what kind of dinner to cook or remembering to organise a playdate with my new friend’s little girl etc. that it does not come to my mind to stick a newspaper on my head and pretend to be a giant duck. I actually think that even if I was not acting as my 2-year-old’s PA, making sure that her social calendar rivaled Paris Hilton’s, it would still not occur to me to stick a paper on my head and pretend to be a feathered beast!
I also do not have the patience to sit on the floor and draw for hours on end; I can do about 10 mins and then my mind wonders off and I start thinking of the wash I need to hang up, how I’ve been planning to hang up some new paintings, and how my desk really needs a tidy up. I also get this urge to quickly, just quickly, check my email and see what is going on in the world outside our 4 walls. (more…)
The 13th flower show of the Orticultural Association of Lombardy “Orticola” took place last weekend in Milan in the nice surroundings of Giardini Pubblici. It was obviously nice to look at all the flowers, plants and garden furniture on show, but what I thought was surprising was the effort made to make children feel welcomed! For the three days of the show, children (who enter free until they are 12) could attend all sorts of labs, where activities were designed to put them in touch with nature… and I believe city kids need all the contact they can get. (more…)