Esther in Amsterdam

HOUSEKEEPING, ORGANIZATION AND TIPS
Stuffel -- a clever storage solution for all those little Lego pieces.
Do you have a Lego obsessed child? And do you struggle to find a good storage solution for all those nasty little pieces? I have tried all sorts of baskets and boxes before. I have even tried boxes with different inserts so Lego could be organised according to shape and colour. But in the end, the one Lego ...
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TOYS & GAMES
The sweetest little felt Flower Fairies
Here in Amsterdam, we have a little shop I love. It is called De Zaailing, and it sells all sorts of beautiful and natural toys, clothes, crafting materials and books. On the counter, they keep a wicker basket full of the most beautiful little felt fairies -- perfect little presents for birthdays, or just because. My ...
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COLOURING AND ACTIVITY BOOKS
'Me' by Wee Gallery
Ava was recently given 'Me' by Wee Society, and it's such a lovely activity book -- perfect for her age now that she just started to read and write this school year. The book is actually a fill-in journal, with super cool kid-friendly illustrations. It challenges the child who is the owner of the book to ...
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CHRISTMAS RECIPES
Some yummy seasonal cookies
We love baking during the Christmas season and these two cookie recipes we make every year. Speculaas (just like pepernoten) are very specific to December as we relate them to Sinterklaas, but where pepernoten really only hit the scene when the Saint is in town, we like to enjoy speculaas the rest of the year as ...
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PICTURE BOOKS
Illuminature, a magical discovery of some of the world's most diverse habitats
We are big fans of the British publisher Wide Eyed Editions. Their books are always so educative and informative, tapping into children's (and adults'!) natural curiosity for the world around them. They are also known for working with some of the worlds most talented illustrators, making their books not only a feast for the brain, but also ...
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KIDS
The best basics! From Mabo Clothier
This is the time of year when I'm on the hunt for great pyjamas, cosy lounge wear, good layering pieces, warm underwear... We spend more time inside, so we want to be comfortable, and when we are outside in the cold, we want to be warm! The cute collection of mabo basics ticks all of the ...
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MAMA
Personalised jewellery from Merci Maman. The perfect present!
Did you write your letter to Santa yet? It's not too late to tell him about the gorgeous personalised jewellery from Merci Maman! ; ) Merci Maman is the brainchild of French mama Béatrice, who started engraving jewellery from her kitchen table in London, and now leads a team of twenty together with her husband ...
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CHRISTMAS CRAFTS
Easy December craft: 3D paper snowflakes
I took the children to school yesterday and noticed that Pim's classroom was so beautifully decorated with the prettiest paper snowflakes hanging from the ceiling. All white and delicate -- it looked so lovely and festive! I asked him to show us how they had made them later at home, which he did. It is super ...
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CRAFTS AND DIY
A DIY wooden warrior friend from Conscious Craft
Over the summer my children received this cool wooden ninja construction kit, available from one of my favourite toys & crafts shops, Conscious Craft. It was a curious little package -- a box full of wooden construction pieces, steel bolts, and allen keys. Thankfully a clear instruction leaflet was included, or otherwise we would have been lost. Because DIY kits ...
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FOOD
Yummy tea for the entire family
It's getting darker, wetter and chillier here in Amsterdam. Time to spend more time inside with cosy candles and big pots of tea on the table! Our children love tea as well, so I'm always on the look-out for tanine-free concoctions that we all love. The vanilla-rooibos tea from Løv has been very popular in our ...
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TOYS & GAMES
Pretty building blocks from Hape Toys
Building blocks are perhaps the most basic and classic toy existing. It's also the one toy I feel every child should own -- a couple of blocks not only makes a great tower, but it also makes structures, houses and fences for all sorts of pretend play. US based toy company Hape recently came out with a set of ...
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EDUCATION
A pretty times table poster by Lollipop Design
How are your kids' multiplication skills? We recently sat down with the pretty multiplication poster by Lollipop -- a design based upon the 'wheel' method of learning tables, which makes it easier for children to understand and memorise the times tables. (You might remember Courtney's post from last year, where she spoke about homeschooling and introduced the multiplication flowers.) With the ...
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TOYS & GAMES
Sweet stocking fillers (and the cutest clothes and toys!) from Lublue
It's the time of year to think about stocking stuffers! Even though we don't traditionally hang stockings in the Netherlands, I have happily adopted the custom after living in the US and the UK. I remember sitting at our table in London and sewing our stockings from fabric remnant I had cheaply gotten at the John Lewis curtain department ...
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KIDS ROOMS
Whimsical felted fairies from Dorimu
Živa and Saša from Dorimu are a sweet couple from Austria who together create the most whimsical little works of art -- tiny (tiny!) little needle-felted fairies. Made from wire, thread and wool and with details made of pearls, the little fairies are so stunningly beautiful. They sit on little pieces of driftwood, and have a clever ...
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KIDS
A Christmas Box of YAY! from ShortStitch
We have written about the great convenience of the ShortStich private shopping service before. The idea is that you fill out the (very straightforward) questionnaire to indicate what sort of occasion or activity your child needs clothes for (for example school, sports, or party), and a personal stylist will put together a box of clothes, taking into account ...
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CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS
Our activity advent calendar -- redesigned and ready to print!
Two years ago I started our first activity advent calendar and it has quickly become a firm family tradition. The children are so excited each morning of advent -- taking turns to open an envelope and discovering what special thing we'll be doing that day. This year, I wanted to make a bit more of ...
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CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS
KalenderHaus, a beautiful advent activity by Clever Gretel
We just enjoyed a lovely long weekend, in which we didn't do much more than cozying up inside our house in our pyjamas. The children played together endlessly -- they built huts, set up a shop, made a city on our living room floor using masking tape, set up their Playmobil horse farm, crafted mini ...
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TOYS & GAMES
Niddle Noddle at the London ShopUp (and some favourite gifts)
One of the things I really enjoy at our ShopUp events, next to the obviously GREAT shopping, is the community behind it. In London, our 4th (!!) ShopUp is coming up on the 4th and the 5th of December (so mark your agendas if you haven't done so already!) and I can't wait to hang out ...
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TRAVEL
A family trip to Marrakesh and the Atlas mountains
I can't believe it is over a year ago that we made a trip to beautiful Morocco. And for that entire year I've been meaning to write about it! But finally, here is recap of our week there. A week that left us deeply in love with Morocco! We arrived in Marrakesh midday on a Sunday, just ...
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HEALTH & CARE
When you have a premature baby...
This is a guest post by my friend Silke. She had two premature sons:  Max, born at 25 weeks and Felix, born at 28 weeks. She recently has put much effort into the launch of the Hearts Milk Bank, a not-for-profit social enterprise, which will soon operate in Greater London to fill the current shortages ...
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HOME AND DÉCOR
Lollipop year planners
I was in my friend Julie's lovely apartment the other day and as always I couldn't stop gazing at all the pretty things around me. She's just so creative and has such great style, it's apparent in every little corner of her house! One thing that struck me and which I thought was SO clever, ...
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AUTUMN CRAFTS
The seasonal table
In most nursery and early-years classrooms in the Netherlands you will find a corner set up to celebrate the seasons. In autumn it will be decorated with leaves, nuts and mushrooms, and children are welcome to play with it and decorate it with things they have found in nature. Also I grew up with the concept of 'the seasonal ...
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TOYS & GAMES
Cute Cubelings Pet Blocks from Brimful
It was Casper's birthday a few weeks ago, and sweet Annie from Brimful gave him the cutest present: these darling Pet Blocks by Cubelings, that are both building blocks and cute play characters. Casper is totally into blocks these days -- he loves stacking them and building all sorts of structures and houses, and then he ...
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KIDS
The sweetest fall/winter outfits from Waddler
Last week during the autumn break we visited the beautiful region of Puglia in Italy, located all the way south in the heel of the boot. For a few days we were staying in one of the characteristic local houses called 'trulli' -- very typical of the region and so, so pretty! One morning, Casper and Ava ...
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Yay! @theshopup will be back in LA on April 23rd and 24th and registration for shops is now open! Follow the link in profile for more information ️
13 hours ago
On the blog today, Courtney shares beautiful photos of the picnic she had with her daughters and @yoli_and_otis a couple of weeks ago - you'll even find Ivy's fruit tart recipe as an extra treat! (photos from @madeline.johnson)
21 hours ago
This great backpack from @goodordering_mini is perfect for kids! Fill all the pockets with their treasures or take it to school - it can also be attached to scooter handles! And check out our latest Top Ten to discover the other 9 cool, fun or cute blue items. Link in profile
1 day ago
Emilie talks about speech therapy today on the blog, and the fact that it is very common for kids to have such sessions in France (for free!). So we're wondering: as a parent, when do you think we should intervene with therapies and other kinds of educational support? How does it work in your country? We'd love to hear your thoughts!Follow the link in profile to read the blog post.
1 day ago
This ruffled collar shirt is just too cute! There is such a great selection of classic, timeless pieces at @annaandlouis #babyccinoboutiques #newshop
2 days ago
Do you know Sophy Henn (@sophyhenn), the author of this sweet picture book we love, 'Where Bear'? Today on the blog she's telling @vanessagerbrandy about her favourite children’s books and her selection is wonderful! Link in profile! #babyccinoreads
2 days ago
Check out this interview on @virtuosoltd where Courtney answered some questions about her favourite destinations from her family gap year around the world! www.blog.virtuoso.com
3 days ago
We're talking about rear-facing car seats and car safety for kids on the blog today - and we would love to hear your thoughts about this matter too. Link in profile ( @besafeinternational)
3 days ago
Ok, it's January, the days are short and it's cold outside - but this is our version of Blue Monday! A cute selection of blue items to cheer up your whole week. Tap for details and follow the link in profile for more info about this Top Ten #bluemonday #babyccinotopten #blue
4 days ago
This one is for you, mums-to-be! @storq is offering a 15% discount store-wide for Babyccino readers with the code 'motherlove' (valid for 3 days from today). Courtney has been living in this comfortable black dress recently, perfect for all the bumps!
4 days ago