TOTEMS stackable blocks make mix-and-match fun for all ages

by 03/06/15   filed under: art, eco play, eco toddler, green design, kid friendly, kids entertainment

totems, green design, kids entertainment, kid friendly blocks

Artist and industrial designer Dino Sanchez’s work features clean lines, minimalist style, and a zen vibe. He brings this same sensibility to his first kid-friendly product, TOTEMS, a set of blocks which he promises were designed for all ages. The set comes with four handmade blocks, each featuring a different “face,” crafted from solid oak and walnut with non-toxic finishes in Massachusetts. Arranging these blocks into a totem pole makes for a cool, mix-and-match stacking experiment, but we also like the idea of combining them with other block sets to create robots and a variety of fanciful creatures.

+ TOTEMS stackable blocks $60.00

 

Captivating children's book "Curious Critters Marine" showcases stunning photography and fascinating facts about ocean dwellers

by 03/06/15   filed under: books, education, kid friendly, kids entertainment

curious critters, books, animal books, education

David FitzSimmons is a photographer, writer, and professor, and his Curious Critters books combine his expertise in all these areas to make for a stunning, award-winning, and kid-friendly learning experience. With a fitting release date on Earth Day, FitzSimmons’ third volume of Curious Critters focuses on marine animals and includes the giant octopus, the calico crab, the loggerhead sea turtle, and the hooded nudibranch (we had to look that one up for ourselves).

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Study finds link between Autism Spectrum Disorder and BPA

by 03/05/15   filed under: health & body, kids health, news, parenting

BPA, autism, kids health, health & body

BPA is under constant scrutiny for its role in numerous health issues. It is best known for being an endocrine disruptor, and the FDA recommends that children under age three and pregnant women should attempt to minimize their exposure to the chemical. A new study, the first of its kind to use human subjects, examines the link between BPA and autism. The recently published Bisphenol A Exposure in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders examined 52 children without autism and 46 children with autism to assess their levels of BPA, which is commonly found in the lining of canned food as well as a variety of other sources including cash register receipts. Using a urine analysis, the researchers found that the children with autism did not metabolize the BPA normally, resulting in more BPA remaining unbound in the body. While the small study did not look at BPA as an actual cause of autism, the link between the two will now likely be examined in a much closer light.

For more information on the effects of BPA on health, read our previous reports on BPA.

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Lead image © Evlakhov Valeriy via Shutterstock

 

HOW TO: Make hearty, savory vegan Irish stew

by 03/05/15   filed under: cooking, food, green holiday ideas for kids, health & body, healthy recipe, how-to, recipe, vegan cooking, vegetarian

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'Under the Dome': A mother's documentary about China's deadly air quality is taking the world by storm

by 03/05/15   filed under: education, news, parenting, toxins

education, movies, environmental movies, news, parenting, China, pollution, Under the Dome

Becoming a parent can be one of the most powerful catalysts for being an environmental activist. After all, this new life certainly inspires most of us to want a better, safer world for our children. Journalist Chai Jing had been interested in the environment in her country of China for over a decade, reporting on the smog, haze, and pollution that has become part and parcel of Chinese life as the country industrializes. The birth of her daughter, however, was a game-changer and a huge inspiration for her new documentary “Under the Dome.” Jing’s daughter was born with a tumor and almost immediately underwent successful surgery to remove it. But even as her young daughter grew, Jing became increasingly concerned with the air quality (or lack thereof) in many parts of China, especially for children. The haze and smog are often so heavy that many children have never seen the stars or clouds. Parents often have to keep their children indoors for more than half of the days of the year, since the other days are deemed “too smoggy” to go and play outside. Jing likens the situation to living in a prison.

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7 green St. Patrick's Day crafts for kids

by 03/04/15   filed under: art, craft, diy kids crafts, eco decor, green family, green holiday ideas for kids, green kids, kid friendly

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These unique, everlasting daffodils are made from recycled plastic bottles!

by 03/04/15   filed under: art, green design

eco art, upcycling, Mother's Day, Mother's Day flowers

Check out these gorgeous daffodils, the perfect symbol of spring and an ideal way to celebrate Mom on Mother’s Day (March 15th in the UK and May 10th in the U.S.). Now take a closer look: these lifelike beauties are actually upcycled from plastic bottles! British eco-artist and designer Sarah Turner hand cuts, sandblasts and dyes each petal, then melts the petals to create a realistic and natural shape to the flower. You can purchase one orange-yellow daffodil or really make Mom’s day with a bouquet of six flowers in a combination of the three possible color combos (yellow, orange, and white). Turner has also designed the perfect way to display the daffodils by sandblasting old glass soda bottles, giving them an elegant frosted look. These unforgettable flowers will last a lifetime, and £1 from each daffodil sale is donated to Marie Cure Cares, an organization providing help to terminally ill patients in the UK. Daffodils cost £8 for one and £40 for six.

+ Upcycled plastic bottle daffodils

 

8 year-old girl forms friendship with crows, and they bestow gifts upon her

by 03/04/15   filed under: kid friendly, news

gabi mann, animal human bond, kid friendly, news, green kids

Some people think crows are a bad omen, associating the dark birds with their long-held reputation of thievery. But an 8 year-old girl in Seattle has been cultivating a relationship with local crows for years, and she has some unconventionally delightful goods to show for it. Gabi Mann has been feeding crows in her neighborhood bits of food since she was four, and as her feedings became more regular, an interesting exchange began to take place. In return for their daily “meal” and water, the crows began sporadically gifting Gabi with bits and baubles. See Gabi’s collection of treasures bestowed by the birds after the jump.

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10 surprising everyday uses for apple cider vinegar

10 surprising everyday uses for apple cider vinegar

TweetEmail Image via Shutterstock 1. All-purpose cleaner Apple cider vinegar can be used as a simple cleaning product as well, either diluted with water or at full-blast with a…

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HOW TO: Make mini vegan leprechaun cakes for St. Patrick's Day

HOW TO: Make mini vegan leprechaun cakes for St. Patrick's Day

1. Gather the ingredients. Both recipes slightly adapted from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. For the cake: 1 cup non-dairy milk 1 tsp apple cider vinegar 1 1/4 cups all-purpose…

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Kimberton Waldorf School to offer forest, field and farm kindergarten program

Kimberton Waldorf School to offer forest, field and farm kindergarten program

Kimberton Waldorf School—the second oldest Waldorf School in North America—is to offer a Forest, Field and Farm Kindergarten program for the academic year 2015/16. The Kimberton,…

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HOW TO: Make spicy Earl Grey chai tea as an uplifting alternative to coffee

HOW TO: Make spicy Earl Grey chai tea as an uplifting alternative to coffee

1. Gather the ingredients 2 ¼ cups of filtered water 1 whole star anise 1 stick of cinnamon 4 cardamom pods 4 bags of Earl Grey tea (or ¼ cup of loose tea) 2 cups of almond…

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Parents get tattoos that match their daughter's birthmark to make her feel like she belongs

Parents get tattoos that match their daughter's birthmark to make her feel like she belongs

TweetEmail British parents Adam and Tanya Phillips have made a life-long commitment to making their daughter feel like she belongs, by getting matching tattoos that replicate…

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"3 Pregnant Dads" wear 33 lb pregnancy suits to see how it feels to be an expecting mother

"3 Pregnant Dads" wear 33 lb pregnancy suits to see how it feels to be an expecting mother

TweetEmail The “3 Pregnant Dads” are nearly halfway through their “ninth month” of gestation. Naturally, everyone wants to know what put this crazy idea in their heads…

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Newly discovered Dr. Seuss book will hit shelves in July!

Newly discovered Dr. Seuss book will hit shelves in July!

The title of his new book may be What Pet Should I Get?, but fans of Dr. Seuss will know exactly what book to get this July. This never-before-published book was only recently…

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HOW TO: Upcycle a dinosaur toy into a succulent planter

HOW TO: Upcycle a dinosaur toy into a succulent planter

Step 1: Gather the Supplies medium to large sized plastic dinosaurs leftover spray paint craft knife organic potting soil organic succulent plants Step 2: Get Cutting Using the…

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Bring on the toasty drinks! 10 best BPA-free reusable bottles for hot beverages

Bring on the toasty drinks! 10 best BPA-free reusable bottles for hot beverages

Klean Kanteen Vacuum Insulated Bottle & Mug Klean Kanteen’s vacuum insulated bottle and mug is one of your best bets if you’re looking for bottles that work for the…

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Study finds that hand-washing dishes could result in children developing fewer allergies

Study finds that hand-washing dishes could result in children developing fewer allergies

A new study has found that washing your dishes the old-fashioned way — by hand — could decrease the likelihood of children developing allergies. A team of Swedish…

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