Things We Love – Cool New Gadgets for Cooking with (and for) Kids

We’ve recently come across some fun and inexpensive gadgets that you and your kids can use in the kitchen.

Our favorite new cooking tools for moms and kids:

Tovolo 2-pc. Petite Pie Mold Set, Star and Heart
Tovolo 2-pc. Petite Pie Mold Set, Star and Heart
Price: $12.99
Nothing says love like pie. Tovolo’s Petite Pie Mold is the secret to creating perfect portable pies. With your choice of sweet or savory fillings, these individual pies are ideal for easy entertaining and taking pies on the go. Set Includes: Star Petite Pie Mold Heart Petite Pie Mold Features: Use the mold to cut and shape the dough. Place crust in mold and fill as desired. Use lid to seal and crimp the crust. Perfect container to take pies on-the-go!
From Cooking.com. (Get the latest Cooking.com coupons.)

Tovolo Set of 3 Farm Animals Ice Cream Sandwich Makers
Tovolo Set of 3 Farm Animals Ice Cream Sandwich Makers
Price: $12.95
Hard pressed to perfect your ice cream treats? These Ice Cream Sandwich Molds can help. Designed as the easiest and most fun-to-use molds on the market, just three steps take you to ice cream sandwich bliss:
1. Bake a full sheet of cookies (recipes included)
2. Cut the cookies with the design of your choice
3. Press the ice cream between the cookies…and enjoy!
Features: Bright colors make a fun kitchen addition Designs are pressed right into the cookie
Completely dishwasher safe for easy clean-up.
From Cooking.com. (Get the latest Cooking.com coupons.)

Tovolo 3-c. Pancake Pen
Tovolo 3-c. Pancake Pen
Price: $9.95
Spell “YUM” with your next batch of Sunday morning pancakes. Draw hearts, letters and numbers – to your heart’s (or stomach’s) content!
Features: Silicone nozzle is heat resistant to 600°F/315°C
Comfortable Grip suits kids and kids at heart
Quick-clean, removable top and bottom caps
Measurements and clear-view sides make batter-making a breeze
Easy-hold contoured design.
From Cooking.com. (Get the latest Cooking.com coupons.)

Norpro Ice Cream Sandwich Maker
Norpro Ice Cream Sandwich Maker
Price: $9.99
Create the old fashion ice cream sandwiches you loved as a child. Built in sandwich cutter to effortlessly create a perfect sandwich. Recipe and instructions included.
From Buy.com (Get the latest Buy.com coupons)

Ice Pop Mold - Set of 6
Ice Pop Mold – Set of 6
Price: $12.0
Sailboats! Rockets! Robots! Break from the mold with these playful pops, made for entertaining with sweet imagination. Mix, match and build to your taste for a friendly fleet of frozen flavors sure to delight old and young popsicle enthusiasts alike. A versatile set of six plastic molds creates endless pop-sibilities with fruit, yogurt, ice cream, and more, while a unique snap system minimizes freezer space and unsheaths pops one-at-a-time. What could be sweeter? Sailboat, rocket and robot sets sold individually as a set of 6. Sailboat holds 2.8 fl oz. Robot holds 2.7 oz. Rocket holds 2 oz.  From Uncommon Goods

Mini Ice Cream Sandwich Press
Mini Ice Cream Sandwich Press
Price: $15.0
Create professional-looking, mini ice cream sandwiches lickety-split! Simply stamp the press into a cookie, scoop in some ice cream, stamp another cookie layer and then swirl the handle to pop your perfect treat out of the mold. Comes in a set of three shapes: heart, circle and star. Made in China. From Uncommon Goods.

Tovolo 3-c. Cupcake Pen
Tovolo 3-c. Cupcake Pen
Price: $9.95
Make a perfect-looking – not a mess – with our no-mistake cupcake pen. The easy-grip contoured pen efficiently fills muffin pans and cupcake liners. No more drips and slips. Features: With the pen’s measurements and clear-view sides, batter-making is a breeze Silicone nozzle is heat-resistant to 600°F/315°C Removable top and bottom caps ensure effortless cleaning Extra-wide nozzle evenly distributes even the thickest batter Dishwasher-safe. From Cooking.com (Get the latest Cooking.com coupons.)

Free Recipes Booklet: 20 Easy, Affordable Chicken Dinners

All You Magazine, along with its sister publications, MyRecipes.com, Cooking Light, Real Simple and Southern Living, is making available a free recipes booklet featuring 20 easy and affordable chicken dinners.

Download yours here (It’s a PDF): Free MyRecipes Booklet: 20 Chicken Dinners

Things We Love – Blue Orange Games

The folks at Blue Orange games recently sent us Spot It! and it has quickly become a family favorite. It’s simple, portable, quick, and fun.

We also love the game Gobblet, which we just realized is also a Blue Orange game, so we decided to spotlight a few games from this company – known for its parent accolades and environmentally friendly policies (they plant two trees for every one tree used in the creation of their games.)

Check out the selections below for gift giving and/or your own family game night:
(Each of these games is available on the BlueOrangeGames.com site and AreYouGame.com)

Spot ItT
Spot It
In Spot It!, there is always one, and only one, matching symbol between any two cards in this game. Spot it and you win! There are only eight symbols on each card, but two matching symbols may be different sizes. This challenge increases as new cards are quickly revealed in this fast-paced game. Spot it! contains four fast, challenging mini-party games in which all players play simultaneously. The Tower, The Well, The Hot Potato and The Poisoned Gift can be played in any order or you can just play your favorites. The bottom line is, have fun!

Designed for all ages and packaged in a travel-size tin, Spot it! has colorful, appealing symbols on high-quality, glossy card stock. With fast action and endless fun, this unique card game is sure to be a splash at your next party and to become a family favorite.

Skills Developed: Spot it! develops visual perception and matching skills. It supports quick mental processing and sharpens cognitive skills in a fun atmosphere. The symbols are universal and easy to remember but the variety of imagery will challenge any eye.

For 2 – 8 players, ages 6 and up. Contents Include: 55 cards and rules.
Award(s): ASTRA Best Toy For Kids, Dr. Toy 10 Best Games, TD Monthly Top Seller 2010, NAPPA Gold, Oppenheim Gold and Learning Express Top 12 Toys of Christmas.

 

Zimbbos Game
Zimbbos Game
Price: $23.99
Use your creativity and Sense of Balance to Build the Most Elephantastic Pyramid! The elephants are ready to impress with this brand new game of balance. Taking turns, roll the die to find out how many elephants you have to add to the pyramid. The player who puts the last elephant on the pyramid wins the game. A classic stacking game where kids can develop their spacial relationships and test motor skills. Elephants have never been so friendly or fun. Ages 3 and up, 1 to 4 players.

Gobblet Game
Gobblet Game
Gobblet is a four-in-a-row, tic-tac-toe game where you can move pieces around the board to increase your chances of winning – or losing. Simply move your piece to a vacant spot, or gobble up an opponent’s smaller piece to gain the advantage. Pay close attention to the board – by moving a piece, you may uncover a previously gobbled up token that will have your opponent declaring victory!

Includes wooden game board and storage area, 24 wooden Gobblets, and instructions. For 2 players.

Winner of the following awards: 2002 Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, 2002 Parents’ Choice Silver Honor Award Winner, San Francisco Chronicle’s Best New Game – 4 Stars, Dr. Toy’s Best Vacation Product and 10 Best Games, and NAPPA Children’s Resources Gold Award. Voted one of the Best Educational Toys of the Year on MSNBC’s Today Show.

Deluxe Bendomino
Deluxe Bendomino
Dominoes with a twist! Bendominoes play just like regular dominoes, but their innovative curved design gives you much more control over the game. Full of challenges, Bendomino offers passionate games in which strategy, luck and good times are always combined. A great game for all generations, its one twist of strategy, and two twists of fun!
This Deluxe edition includes two-tone classic bendomino tiles stored in a beautiful wooden bookshelf box.
Includes 28 Bendominoes.
For Ages 5 & Up. For 2 to 4 players.

Fundomino
Fundomino
Fundomino combines the best fun of dominoes and adds some wild Action!  Match the color of each tile and anticipate which direction the Action Tiles will take. DRAW Action (The Plus symbol): The next player draws a tile before playing. PLAY AGAIN (The Arrow symbol): Play again. WILD Action (The Star symbol): Can match or be matched with any color. Who will get to have another turn, draw extra tiles, reverse the order or gain extra points? Fundomino is the best domino party game to gather family and friends together for hours of fun!
Includes 32 Fundominoes, 4 pawns, scoring track and illustrated rules.
For 2 to 4 Players. Ages 6 & Up.

PigzUp!
PigzUp!
PigzUp! is the hilarious stacking game! How quick and precise are your fingers? Find out as you build piggy piles in this lively stacking game. As soon as any two cards match, both players with matching cards race to stack up the requested number of piggies with the right color on top. Stay on your hooves! There is more than one silly way to stack up your piggies. Be the first player to get rid of all your cards to win the game!
For 3 – 6 players, ages 4 and up.
Play Time: 15 minutes
Contents Include: 8 wooden pigs, 60 piggy cards, 1 die and instructions.

Double Shutter
Double Shutter
Double Shutter is an enticing and irresistible game that combines tactical choices, luck and fun for the whole family. Roll two dice, add the dots and find the best combination of numbers to shut two rows of nine tiles. Don’t touch a tile on the second row unless you have already shut the tile in front of it. Very few can shut all the tiles and close the super box, but even fewer can stop playing this addicting game! Remember to always play in moderation! Comes with one double shutter box with two rows of 9 tiles and two dice. For 1 to 6 Players. Ages 6 & Up.

Yamslam
Yamslam
Let the five dice roll you to a win with Yamslam! Calculated chances and strategic choices will place the odds in your favor. After each roll, choose the dice that will get you the best combination. Each combination is worth a different point value and has only 4 chips, so get the best ones before they run out. Race your friends to the special bonuses and keep the suspense rolling until the end with Yamslam. Self contained, and made from recyclable tin, Yamslam is travel-friendly and highly durable for years of fun. With its attractive design, bright colors and brilliant play appeal, Yamslam is sure to become the family favorite! Players develop basic arithmetic and higher level math skills relating to probabilities and odds. Strategy skills are required not only to achieve specific combinations, but also to gain bonuses before your opponents. For 1 – 4 players, ages 8 and up. Play time: 10 – 20 minutes Contents: 1 dice tray, 5 dice, 28 chips and illustrated rules.

Sketch It!
Sketch It!
Are you an artist, or just really good at deciphering pictures? If so, Sketch it is just the game for you. Start with a paper and pencil. Draw a card. Each card lists 6 words and the roll of the die determines which item to draw. Now, Sketch it! All players sketch their word simultaneously. The one to finish drawing first gets to grab the token with the most points-but only earns points if another player, chosen randomly, can figure out what the heck it is! Pictures are swapped around. If you can name the picture correctly, you get the number of points indicated by the artist’s token. If you can’t, you and the artist are out of luck. If you have the most points after 10 rounds, you win! Either you’re the best artist, the best critic, or both-or maybe you’re just the luckiest. No matter how it ends, players will sketch, laugh, and try to outsmart each other to the nub! Sketch it appeals to the artist in all of us. It develops creativity, supports quick thinking, and strengthens the ability to read visual cues. It also works on fine motor skills and teaches players to trust their own visual perception.

Dragon Face
Dragon Face
Price: $29.98
Dragon face is perfect for the chess and checker enthusiast, and ideal for those with a penchant for fantasy and strategy games. Set several hundred years in the future, the world is divided into 2 spheres, each vying to conquer the other by making them do an about-face. Each side has an Emperor, 6 Ambassadors, and 7 Governors. Each piece can move in different ways. You capture an opponent’s piece by jumping over it. That piece then flips over and becomes one of your own. The end goal is to capture the emperor by locking it in. Each dual-colored piece is engraved with beautiful red designs. The simplicity and elegance of the cotton mat enhance the quality and color of the pieces. The matt rolls up for easy storage and the pieces fit snugly in a nice cotton pouch. When you want a compelling strategy game to challenge the imagination, Dragon Face is it! Dragon Face is a great way to develop critical thinking skills and concentration. It promotes mathematical reasoning while developing risk-taking and problem solving skills. It reinforces the power of evaluation and discipline.

Trigger
Trigger
Do you have the fastest and the most accurate hand? In Trigger, you answer True or False to various statements, using your right hand for True and your left hand for False. Some statements just need quick observation: At least two players are wearing shoes with no laces. Some require more thought. If I am your mother’s brother, then I am your aunt. Others appear obvious: A volleyball is oval. But in the rush to answer first, you might choose the wrong answer or use the wrong hand. Once all the hands are in a toasty little stack, it is time to get to the bottom of things! You collect a card if you are the first to answer correctly, and lose a card if you the first to answer incorrectly. With diverse and humorous statements in a fast pace atmosphere, the game is always mind boggling and full of surprises. Trigger will humble and challenge everyone from elementary students to PhDs’, and produce peals of laughter and hours of excitement. Trigger works on reflexes, observational skills and hand-brain coordination. It also supports cognitive skills in a fun environment that will promote social interactions.

Disclosure: The Spot It! game was sent to me free of charge for review. The opinions here are my own.

Recipe – Tropical Thai-Style Fruit Pudding

so-easy-baby-food

This recipe for Tropical Thai-Style Fruit Pudding from Freshbaby‘s Cheryl Tallman is sure to be a hit with your little ones.

Ingredients:
1 mango
2 bananas
½ cup coconut milk
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. lime juice

Directions:
Peel, core and chop mango into chunks. Peel and slice banana into chunks. Over medium heat, pour coconut milk into a medium-sized saucepan. With a wooden spoon, stir in brown sugar and lime juice. Add mango and banana. Cook for 3 minutes. Pour the mixture into a blender and puree to a smooth texture. Pour the fruit pudding into ice molds or baby food trays (such as Cheryl’s So Easy Baby Food Trays), cover and freeze until ready to use.

Serving:
Defrosted pudding cubes taste great alone, but try these options for variety:

* Add fruit pudding to oatmeal for a great tasting start to the day.
* Add a few cubes of fruit pudding to pancake batter to make Thai-inspired pancakes
* Add mashed brown rice to create a fruity rice pudding
* Toss 2-3 frozen cubes, 2 ice cubes and splash of fruit juice or milk in a blender for a frothy fruit smoothie

See Cheryl’s Family Thai Dinner Recipes and Ideas.

About the Author: Cheryl Tallman is the co-founder of Fresh Baby, creators of the award-winning So Easy Baby Food Kit, and author of the So Easy Baby Food Basics: Homemade Baby Food in Less Than 30 Minutes Per Week and So Easy Toddler Food: Survival Tips and Simple Recipes for the Toddler Years. Visit Cheryl online at www.FreshBaby.com to learn about her latest creation, the Kid’s Portion Plate.

Learn more about Cheryl’s work:

So Easy Baby Food Kit: Make It Natural, Make It Fresh.
So Easy Baby Food Kit: Make It Natural, Make It Fresh.
Price: $23.85
An award-winning, all-inclusive solution for making baby food in less than 30 minutes per week. The month-by-month Cookbooks uses fresh ingredients with no additives. Kit includes a cookbook, freezer trays, how-to video, and nutrition card, and pays for itself in just three weeks compared to jarred baby food.

So Easy Baby Food Basics: Homemade Baby Food in Less Than 30 Minutes Per Week
So Easy Baby Food Basics: Homemade Baby Food in Less Than 30 Minutes Per Week
Price: $8.95
Baby Food Cookbook including recipes and instruction for making stage 1, 2, and 3 baby foods. This book also includes the basics of introducing solid foods and developing healthy eating habits. Available in English and Spanish.

So Easy Toddler Food: Survival Tips & Simple Receipes for the Toddler Years
So Easy Toddler Food: Survival Tips & Simple Receipes for the Toddler Years
Price: $8.95
When it comes to eating, toddlers can be tough to please. So Easy Toddler Food is the perfect resource for parents looking for survival tips and 35 simple recipes that will win over even the pickiest toddler. Available in English and Spanish.

Things We Love – Yoga Chic Sandals from Ahnu

We love these summery sandals from Ahnu for active lifestyles. Each of the shoes below is part of the Yoga Chic Collection at Ahnu.com.

Among our favorites:

Karma
Karma
I just bought these. Couldn’t help myself. The women’s Ahnu Karma shoe is a super unique looking shoe, drawing from a classic ballet style. An enclosed toe and heel are connected only by the sole and two criss-cross straps on the instep. This incredibly open design allows for maximum flexibility and allows intense ventilation of the foot.
Genuine leather uppers
Rubber outsole
Elastic in ankle collar opening
Criss-cross straps across instep to help cradle foot but allow movement
Swirl stitching accent on toe
AHNU-2287 PLUM.
Available at The Walking Company and Endless Shoes (Get Endless Coupons and Special Offers here.)



Zen
Zen
Price: $79.95
See the incredible melding of a casual shoe and a sandal in the women’s Ahnu Zen slip-on. The Zen features a seriously unique upper, combining thong-style straps with a round, closed toe, accented with cutouts and contrast stitching. The interior is lined with super-soft textile, and the contoured footbed cradles feet for control and comfort. The outsole is made of durable rubber to help increase flexibility and traction.
Full grain leather uppers with cutout panels and closed toe
Contrast stitched details and cutouts on toe
Textile-lined interior for softness and comfort
Contoured footbed
Rubber outsole for increased traction and stability.
Available at The Walking Company and Ahnu.com

 

Gracie
Gracie
Price: $99.95
Classic, Mary Jane style is lived up a bit in the women’s Ahnu Gracie casual shoe. The Gracie features unique, contrast stitching and cutout uppers for a detour from the ordinary. The asymmetrical Mary Jane-style strap adds to the uniqueness, and is also adjustable with a hook-and-loop closure. The interior is lined with soft textile material, made to comfort and ease your tired feet, and the contoured footbed provides stability and support like no other. Lastly, the outsole is finished off with durable rubber so you can get as much traction as you need on almost any walking surface!
Soft, full grain leather uppers
Mary Jane-style instep strap, adjustable with hook-and-loop closure
Padded collar
Textile-lined interior
Contoured footbed
Rubber outsole DS-AF2291CBST
Available at The Walking Company and Ahnu.com

View the entire Yoga Chic Collection at Ahnu.com.