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Angella

Author Archives: Angella

Angella is a mom of three, a chartered accountant (she's Canadian, eh?), and she posts prolifically to her site Dutch Blitz. She's busy, yes, but wouldn't have it any other way.

  • Let's Panic About Babies!

    I've been reading both Fussy and Finslippy ever since I started blogging six years ago, and I've even had the pleasure of meeting the writers behind those two blogs. Eden Kennedy and Alice Bradley are smart, funny women who (among other projects) created a humorous website called Let's Panic! The popularity of that website let to a book being written: Let's Panic About Babies! Eden and Alice sent me a copy of the book to review when it first came out and I can honestly tell you that I have never laughed so much when reading a book. I asked the ladies if I could interview them for the Daily Grommet, and they obliged.

    1. I would hope that the entire Internet would know who Fussy and Finslippy are, but in case our readers have not heard of you, could you give us an introduction?

    Alice: I write Finslippy, which is a blog with a made-up name. I've been writing that for over seven years. In addition to the blog, I've been known to write for magazines. In my free time, I hang out with my son Henry and husband Scott, and try to put funny hats on my dog Charlie. I have not succeeded, not even once.

    Eden: Well, I've been blogging at Fussy since 2001. It hasn't won any awards but it sure has been there a long time. I once put a diaper on my dog and took a photo of it. She looks very angry in the photo.

    2. You (Eden)(Fussy) and Alice (Finslippy) created the Let's Panic! website a couple of years ago. How did it come about?

    Eden: Alice had an idea for a book that would be a parody of dog-training manuals and I said, Hold up! What if we do one about BABIES?

    Alice: Eden and I had been working with this idea of writing a fake parenting book for a while, and then we decided to turn it into a website. The book deal arrived shortly thereafter. I'm making it sound so easy and simple, but in fact the process that brought us here took years and probably also years off our lives. Then there was this troll who lives under a bridge, and all I'm going to say about that is, promises were made. It's not going to end well for me.

    Eden: It never does with trolls.

    3. Do you find writing the Let's Panic posts difficult, or is it an easy task because having babies is not as serious as certain message boards would have you believe?

    Alice: Oh, it's surprisingly easy. There's so much to make fun of, when it comes to all the parenting literature there is out there.

    Eden: All you have to do is be MORE serious than the message boards and it crosses over into parody.

    4. Where do the post ideas come from? Past history? Reader submissions? Encountering THE CRAZY on the Internet?

    Alice: There's no shortage of sources. The Internet's been known to do some fear-mongering, so that's simple to poke fun at. And of course there are all the books. The media at large, really. There's an entire industry built around the need everyone seems to have to tell you what you're doing wrong. It's not hard to find things to satirize.

    Eden: A lot of our ideas come out of personal experience, then we just extend a specific event until it becomes good and absurd. Sometimes it's not even that much of a stretch. I guess that's a nice way of saying yes, The Crazy is inspiring on a lot of levels. If it weren't I'd have to kill myself because OH MY GOD SOME PEOPLE OUT THERE ARE ANGRY ABOUT DISPOSABLE DIAPERS.

    5. There is a Let's Panic book!  How did it come to be?

    Eden: We are fortunate that lets-panic.com got some positive attention, which led us to being noticed by some big-shot New York editors. They paid us some money and made a book for us. It's all about making us happy.

    Alice: As I mentioned, the book idea came before the website. We had always intended on turning this into a book, and we were lucky enough to get that opportunity. Somehow Eden stole my share of the advance. We'll clear it up one of these days, if I manage to find her. She's surprisingly hard to pin down!

    Eden: I have a vast array of aliases.

    6. Give our readers a quote from your book that best tells them why they would be remiss in not ordering Let's Panic.

    Alice: Just ONE quote? This is difficult. Very well, then. Here's some warning signs to look out for when it comes to choosing a pediatrician:

    - Eats a club sandwich while examining your child
    -Diploma is written in crayon
    -Can't pronounce "stethoscope"
    -Says he needs to see and/or feel your breasts "to make sure they're working good," even if you're bottle-feeding
    -Picks up Baby by the foot
    -Shrieks at sight of umbilical cord stump
    -Play area of waiting room is a driving range

    Eden: Hey, I chose a quote from that same section! TWINS! Note: my quote comes just before the one Alice chose, which may confuse some readers.

    "Most pediatricians fall into one of two categories: the attachment-parenting advocate, and the attachment-loathing automaton. Whichever one you choose depends on how much you love your baby. Not that we’re judging."

    Thanks so much, ladies! Here's to continued (success, and) humor in all of our lives.

  • How to organize your home | Tips from the Organization Junkie

    Organization tips with OrgJunkie

    If you have ever felt overwhelmed by clutter and chaos or simply wanted to learn how to organize your home, this post is for you. Laura is a blogger and author who chronicles the life of an organizing junkie and attempts to get others “hooked” along with her. She has graciously stopped by our blog today for a little Q&A with us.

    1. Your blog (orgjunkie.com) is quite popular and seems to be the go-to place for organization tips. How did you get started with blogging and did you ever anticipate that you would have such a
    large readership?

    I started my blog 5 years ago now, when my youngest was just six months old, for something to do and to connect with other moms. At the time I had no idea what a hot topic organizing was, I just knew how much I loved doing it and wanted to share that passion with others. My friends all thought my habit was a little strange so it was nice to find people out there that appreciated this love of mine and that I could help in some small way. I anticipated going back to work outside the home when my baby turned one but blogging turned out to be such a blessing in more ways than one when it became a part time job for me. This allowed me to stay home with my son, something I didn’t have the opportunity to do with my oldest two children. My blog has continued to grow over the years and I’m just so grateful for that. It’s really taken me by surprise to be honest.

    2. Have you always been an "organizing junkie"?

    Oh gosh no, just ask my mom! I was a very messy teenager. At the time it didn’t bother me though so it never occurred to me that there could be another way. It wasn’t until I lived in a 900 square foot rancher (no basement) with a husband, two kids and a dog that stuff really began to drive
    me nuts. Stuff without “homes” turn into piles and piles turn into cluttered messes. I remember having to get very creative with space in that home. The day that I turned a coat closet into an office was a turning point for me. It was my a-ha moment when I realized that even though this wasn’t conventional it worked for me and that’s what mattered most. It wasn’t someone else’s idea of what an organized home should look like, it was how it worked for my family that counted. To see so much fit into such a tiny space was so rewarding and dare I say fun! It became quite the addiction for me, hence the name of my blog, I’m an Organizing Junkie.

    How to organize your home | Clutter Rehab3. You've recently wrote a book (congrats!) -- I remember reading a post where you said that writing a book wasn't something you had ever planned. How did your book deal come about?

    No writing a book was never something I dreamed of doing. In fact I still have trouble calling myself an author! My publisher found me through my blog and contacted me to find out if I’d be interested. I turned him down. Yes I really did. My husband had just lost his job and was relocating to another province for work leaving me at home to hold down the fort with the kids until school finished for the year. I knew my hands would be full. However my publisher persisted and proposed instead a simple easy to read organizing tip book rather than a full on wordy book. I liked the sound of that as it’s something I knew I would read myself and so I agreed.

    4. How did you find the book writing process? Easy, hard, fun? Or a combination of a bunch of different feelings?

    To be honest it was a lot harder than I had anticipated. Writing doesn’t come easy for me and it would literally take me hours to write one tip. There were days I wanted to just give up. I hung in there though, with the support of many people, and completed it right on my deadline. I’m very proud of that and I think it was a wonderful lesson for my kids to see. Pushing through our fears and what’s comfortable is possible with some perseverance, determination, deadlines and prayer.

    5. Do you have any advice or encouragement for people who claim that being organized just isn't in their blood?

    Well I don’t really buy into the theory that it isn’t in our blood as I don’t think I have any special organizing gene or anything. Yes I have a passion for it that other’s may not but anyone can do it. They just have to learn the skills needed to do it and that’s what I teach in my book. The two key elements to organizing any space are knowing the process to follow and the ability to make decisions. This last one I think is where people get stuck most often but with practice it does get much easier.

    6. Do you have a simple tip that you'd like to share with our readers?

    Start small. It’s as simple as that. Feeling overwhelmed with all that needs to be done can be debilitating and lead to procrastination. Break your tasks down into bite size manageable steps. For instance, don’t keep reminding yourself that you need to organize your office. Instead make a list
    of all the things that need to be done inside your office in order to reach your goal of an organized space. One drawer, closet, file and/or pile at a time.

    7. What's next for you and orgjunkie.com?

    This year I’ve introduced a new challenge on my blog that will help readers with their own organizational journeys over the course of the entire year. It’s called 52 Weeks of Organizing and it is designed to have you accomplish
    one small organizing task per week. Bite size portions, one week at a time. However, from the feedback I’m already getting, what seems to be happening is that once people get started (and let’s face it that can be the hardest part sometimes) and experience that sense of order and calm that
    comes with an organized space, they want to keep going and end up doing more! My goal is to get everyone “hooked” on organizing right along with me!

    Laura, thank you for chatting with us about your new book: Clutter Rehab: 101 Tips and Tricks to Become an Organization Junkie and Love It!      and for giving us a bit of a behind-the-scenes look at your blog.

    Thanks so much for having me here today!

    Laura is a wife and mother to three great kids, lives in Alberta, Canada and is an addict of all things organizing, especially containers. She is addicted to the “high” that comes with living a life of order and simplicity and is always looking for her next "fix". You can find her blogging regularly and sharing her passion over at I'm an Organizing Junkie, and her organizing book, Clutter Rehab: 101 Organizing Tips & Tricks to Become an Organization Junkie and Love It!

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap-Up

    This week we have two unique products for when you are on-the-go and three must-haves when you are at home. So whether you are indoors, or out, you can get your Grommet on!

     BPA Free Water Bottle

    A Better Bottle. ALEX lives up to its extraordinary moniker ("Always Live EXtraordinarily"). The body is built from 50% recycled stainless steel, and the carrying strap is made from recycled plastic water bottles. The middle joint makes it easy to clean (by hand or in the dishwasher) and simple to reconfigure. ALEX comes in two different sizes, and if you join half of the 32-ounce bottle with half of the 20-ounce bottle, you can expand your sizing options. (Starting at $25.95) Buy ALEX safe and easy to clean stainless steel water bottles here.

     Orange Bitters

    From Elixir to Mixer. Jovial King, a practiced herbalist, has achieved just the right balance of old and new in her refined bitters. Through her venture, called Urban Moonshine, Jovial harnesses the power of local plants to create intense flavoring agents by steeping herbs, roots, leaves, berries and fruits in alcohol. You can choose her Original blend, Citrus flavor or Maple bitters. We’re also featuring Urban Moonshine tonics, which are medicinal bitters such as Immune Zoom for fighting the common cold. These organic bitters and herbal tonics are packaged in glass apothecary bottles that perfectly capture the classic-yet-exotic spirit of Jovial’s creations. (Starting at $15.95) Buy Urban Moonshine's herbal bitters and tonics here.

    Right Angle Electrical Plug

    Hug-A-Plug It’s hard to believe no one thought of this until now: an adapter that changes the orientation of an electrical outlet, so power cords run parallel to the wall instead of sticking straight out. This way you need less clearance behind furniture and appliances. Plus, this right angle electrical plug safer alternative to bent plugs and crimped cords that get jammed into tight spaces. (Starting at $19.95) Buy the Hug a Plug right angle electrical plug here.

     Shoulder  SlingKangaTek Slim Shoulder Sling Creators Martha McDaniel and Greg Menzel designed this slim shoulder sling with four zippered pockets for organizing and securing your valuables. Made from water-resistant neoprene, it has space for your wallet, cell phone, MP3 player, camera, keys and whatever else you like to have handy. It doesn’t get in the way of your activities, so whether you’re skateboarding, walking a dog, or navigating on crutches, you can keep your valuables secure and accessible. (Starting at $39.95) Buy the Kanga Tek shoulder slim pack here.

    Indieflix Film Festival In A Box. We think Film Festival in a Box is a fun, easy way for movie lovers to screen independent films and spark lively, thoughtful discussions and a great excuse to invite friends over, pop some popcorn and play the role of movie critic (for a fun gift idea, you could pair Film Festival in a Box with this really clever popcorn popper). (Starting at $14.95) Buy the Indieflix film festival in a box game here.

  • Do Fun Stuff

    Angella Dykstra

    I first "met" Ryan after BlogHer 2009. I saw hundreds of hits to my personal blog from a blog called Pacing The Panic Room and clicked over to see who was sending so much traffic my way. He had taken a photo of me laughing with my hand by my face and, well, click on over if you want to see why it was so funny. We became Twitter/blog friends and I admire his photography and writing immensely. I finally met him at this year's BlogHer in New York and he's just as engaging in person as he is online. When I heard about this album that he had put together to raise funds for SMS (Smith-Magenis Syndrome) I wanted to highlight it here on the Daily Grommet blog. We're not the only ones to back the cause - both Dooce and The Pioneer Woman have done their part (as have others) to send traffic love his way and keep the album at the top of the charts. Let's learn more about Ryan and his cause.

    1.Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself? Who you are, what you do, how you got to be so Internet famous? (*I* know it's because you're a brilliant photographer and ridiculously awesome, but maybe link to some of your fun stuff and that sweet series of Cole when she was pregnant. Or maybe it's for a whole 'nother reason altogether?)

    Internet famous? When did that happen? I thought you had to have like over a million views on “you tube” and have someone “auto tune” you to be considered internet famous. I’m just a jerk with a blog. I started Pacing the Panic Room when I got married and quit bar tending, and put my night life behind me. I wanted a way to make all my friends feel okay about married life, so they would want to quit partying every night of the week, get married, and have babies...That way we could all still hangout together. Pacing the Panic Room truly began as a way to let my friends know what I was doing, and how I was feeling about it, as I was one of the first to break away from that pack of Peter Pans. I was so excited and terrified to be starting this new life, and I had made a choice early on that I wouldn’t let being a husband and a new father mean that I had to lose my identity, and the big one for me, not letting go of my dreams. So the blog has been the building of my family, not just the wife and kids story, but both Cole and I were just starting our careers when the blog started. So there has been a strong emphasis on my photo jobs. As it turns out, it hasn’t been my professional work that gets much attention, rather the personal at home projects I do. Mainly the maternity series I did documenting Cole’s pregnancy. I can’t believe the reaction to it http://pacingthepanicroom.blogspot.com/search/label/the%20belly%20pictures%20series

    2. Your son has been diagnosed with SMS (Smith-Magenis Syndrome). Can you tell us what that is, and what that means for him and for your family in the long run?

    The Littlest Buddy is my step-son and when I first met him he was this adorable, silent, little 3 yr old boy. He was so tiny for his age. He is six now and still only weighs 30lbs. The only words he could actually say were “apple” and “mama.” Cole had him in all kinds of therapy: speech, occupational therapy, and physical therapy. She had no diagnosis for him (despite years of trying), and had been down so many paths of various Doctors scratching their heads baffled. Then, it was March of '09, and Cole was 23 weeks pregnant with Tessa (our baby girl) when she got the call that LB had a genetic disorder called Smith Magenis Syndrome. The developmental pediatrician called her and told her at her job. Who does that? This Doctor muttered some clinical cold definition that she was reading out of a book, and said she was not familiar with SMS, and that Cole should just call a geneticist to schedule an appointment to find out more. The only geneticist we could get an appointment with didn’t have any openings for months. So, we had to turn to the internet to find out what this all meant for us, and for LB. It was a shock, don’t get me wrong, not because of the list of symptoms and characteristics, but it was truly the first time that the reality set in that this wasn’t something that LB was going to eventually grow out of. Nothing else really changed at all. He was already in all kinds of therapy, and we had been working hard on all of his delays-- only now, we knew this was going to be a life long challenge for all of us. So what became our priority was to separate the boy from the symptoms, to be sure that we knew who LB truly was inside of all of these delays and characteristics and profiles being dumped on us. The benefit of having the diagnosis is that we can fine tune his therapy, and we found a small community of parents and researchers at a site called PRISMS that we could gain insight and perspective from and learn about Smith Magenis.

    3. You rallied people together to make an album to raise funds for SMS. I love this idea. Who is involved in the project and who has helped to promote the cause?

    A web storm :) I had heard someone say this once. “Web Storm.” I can’t remember where, but I loved the idea of getting SO many people to simultaneously make enough noise about something, that it would thunder across the web. I knew that trying to get a bunch of people to care about a rare genetic disorder wasn’t going to go far, so the first thing I had to do was make something to attach to this cause to champion. The kids album “Do Fun Stuff” was born. It made sense to make a kids record since I had so many parents reading my blog. I had worked in the music industry for awhile in one of my past lives, and I was still buddies with some great bands. So I begged them to please make me songs that were easy on the parents, but that kids would respond to. I had to make something parents would want. So I came up with the idea to make “A kids record for parents.” I knew that if I could just get people excited about this music, they would take a second to see what it was attached to, in this case SMS. Everyone’s always like: “What’s that?!” and as soon as that happens, the info is right there. So in the end a bunch of people got educated about SMS, and at the same time I made it really easy for them to help, they just had to buy this album of really great tunes, and all the proceeds went to a fellowship to create more research with PRISMS. (Parents & Researchers Interested in Smith Magenis Syndrome)

    So many people have helped out with this album - the list of people to thank is enormous and overwhelming. When I first made the plea on my blog to pretty please help out, I ended up with about 300 emails of people who signed up to post about the album on the release date. By the time the album actually was finished being made and launched, I had collected about 100 more emails. So on August 30th we all posted about the album on the same day, at the same time, and with the same message, and we linked to the album to buy. In just a few hours, so many people had tweeted the #dofunstuff hashtag, and posted the album widget that I had made, that the album debuted at #1 on iTunes in the Childrens Music charts. It was incredible. Such a huge accomplishment and I was so proud of everyone that got involved. I mean a bunch of personal bloggers totally crushed big music labels, we beat everything from Disney, to KidZ Bop, to Yo Gabba Gabba. Since then we have dropped and fluctuated in the charts from day to day, and I have been extremely fortunate after the initial big buzz had died to get some HUGE boosts from: Dooce, Pioneer Woman, Ohdeedoh, Cup of Joe, Design Mom, Mama Pop, the list goes on. It seems like every time the album starts to drop in the charts someone will come along and put some light on the album and shoot it back to the top. I mean to have help like this after Cole and I spent the first months of the diagnosis feeling helpless is really beautiful. I really haven’t been able to wrap my head around the response. It was so important to Cole and I to physically do something to help. We wanted to create a chance for more research to be possible. The more case studies there are the more info is available, and so the goal has been to raise enough the first year that a new case study is done.

    We decided early on that this would be a yearly project for us. Do Fun Stuff vol. 2 is already being worked on.

    4. We're excited to share your story with our readers and help spread the word about SMS. Is there an official website where people can go to to learn more information?

    Check out our Monster widget: http://www.dofunstuff.net there is good basic info when you click the tab “our cause” and within this space there are links to take you to PRISMS where you can really learn a bunch more about SMS and the charity.

    5. Last (and most definitely not least), where can people buy the album to help support PRISMS with SMS and research?

    The album is available on iTunes and if you click on the monster widget on the iTunes link, you are juts a click away from purchasing the album. There is also a donate button at the bottom of the monster widget if you would like to make a bigger donation than just an album purchase, feel free to unburden yourself from all that heavy money in your pockets. 100% of the proceeds go to this charity, none of the musicians, or artists, or graphic designers, or any of the people that helped “Do Fun Stuff” come to life are making money on this. They have all donated their time and talent and made a really superb album for you.

    When we made this widget, we wanted it to have everything you needed in one little adorable micro site. I hope it came in handy for this post :) He even has a little share button for any of you who would totally love to post this monster on your blog. I know what you’re thinking... You’re thinking: “that’s a great idea Ryan.” So please go and share that widget. Get yourself “Do Fun Stuff” and then, stop by my blog and tell me about your post here: http://pacingthepanicroom.blogspot.com/2010/09/love-letters-from-us.html

  • Do Witches Make Fishes?

     

    Angella Dykstra

    Angella Dykstra

    I have a pretty varied group of Internet friends, all of whom are interesting and dynamic and unique. Jason Mayo is one of them. He's got a great wit, a great perspective on women (he has a house full of them) and a big heart. It's that heart that led him to write a book for which all proceeds go to charity. I sent Jason a Q&A about his book, "Do Witches Make Fishes?"

    Do Witches Make Fishes1. Tell our readers a little bit about yourself. Who are you and why exactly are you on the Internet? (I jest. Who isn't on the Internet, other than my Grandma?) Where can our readers find you if they want to get to know you better?

    Well, my name is Jason and I'm gonna be 40 years old in a couple of months. This means that I'm too young to retire and too old for chicks to think I'm hot anymore. I'm losing the hair on my head but it's growing back on my ears, my back and the top of my shoulders. Luckily I have a wife that still thinks I'm handsome and two daughters that are too young to know any better. I also write a Dad blog called Out-Numbered where I make some pretty bad decisions a couple of times a week and my first children's book just came out about a month ago. I need a nap.

    2. So. You wrote a book called. "Do Witches Make Fishes?" What is the book about?

    Well, the book is about a young boy who favors candy over his Mom's healthy but really weird looking dishes. Eventually he's faced with an ultimatum from his Mother and he has to make a choice. What ensues is a series of extraordinary and fantastical events. I used to love Dr. Seuss as a kid but I'm also a huge horror buff, so it was only natural for me to try and introduce a little bit of the two into the story. I think the combination makes it pretty unique. It's like a cross between Dr. Seuss and Clive Barker. Aside from being fun to read and filled with tons of cool illustrations, it has a really important message for kids about making healthy choices and listening to your parents. That was something I really wanted to work into the story because I haven't seen that many good new children's books dealing with eating healthy and it's a real problem with kids in our country today.

    3. How was the process of creating the book? Was it as hard as we've heard, or what is easier than expected?

    I'm the kind of person that likes to have things done perfect and fast. Not one or the other. So it was a really difficult exercise in patience for me. In all honesty, the first draft of the story took me about 2 or 3 hours to write and then it took about 8 months to finish fine tuning the story and perfecting the drawings with my illustrator. I really enjoyed that collaboration. It was amazing for me to see my story come to life through the eyes of another human being. I'm just happy he didn't kill me for annoying him with my changes day in and day out. There was a lot of back and forth on multiple levels. My editor was really helpful with the story arc as well as, phrasing and what not but I think some of the most valuable feedback, came from the multitude of teachers, school administrators and parents alike that took the time to read and comment on the book. I didn't think it was going to be that arduous a process but then again, I'm usually wrong about most things.

    4. Now that you're on the other side and on the published side of things, is it what you envisioned it to be?

    The truth is, I never envisioned anything. I never even envisioned writing a blog, let alone have people that read it. I'm just really happy that I actually followed through with it because it feels good to have accomplished something. I think my wife and kids are proud of me and that's pretty much more than I could ever wish for. I think the biggest thing for me is that I don't allow myself to feel a ton of pressure. I'm not doing this to make a living. I'm lucky enough to have a full time gig that allows me to do this sort of stuff in my spare time. It's a labor of love really.

    5. Rumor has it that the book's proceeds go to charity. OK, fine. It's not a rumor - it's the truth. SO COOL. Which charity gets to benefit from all of your hard work?

    Yes, you are correct. All of the profits from the book (my royalties) go to a terrific charity called the Garden of Dreams foundation. The charity works closely with all areas of Madison Square Garden, including the New York Knicks, Rangers, Liberty, MSG Media, MSG Entertainment and Fuse to make dreams come true for kids in crisis. About a year ago, my best friend found out he had cancer and one of our sports heroes, Adam Graves of the New York Rangers, did a pretty amazing thing for us. I wrote a blog about it called, "Hockey Heals". That experience opened my eyes to a whole new world of thinking. It really was a spiritual experience that changed my life and I made a decision to make giving back a priority in my life. I originally wrote the book for my oldest daughter and her 2nd grade class but I thought it would be a cool way to raise money for The Garden Of Dreams if I could get a bunch of people to buy it. So far it's working and I'm grateful for all of the support and love I've found along the way. I'm pretty psyched because I've started to do readings at schools, libraries and local community fairs etc. I'll also be working with the Garden of Dreams and doing events, hospital readings and other great stuff to help put smiles on kids faces. I just hope the kids don't think the book sucks.

    You can find all of the info about the book, the charity, my inspiration and where to buy it at: http://www.dowitchesmakefishes.com

    Thanks so much, Jason. We're happy to be able to feature this book (and the Garden of Dreams foundation) here at  Daily Grommet. I'm sure our community members would love to buy a book that is not only a fun read for kids, but gives back to those in need.

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap Up

    Angella Dykstra

    The Grommets this week are perfect for the fall weather: pashminas, knit hats, induction burners and more!

    Naturally Knotty, Bamboo Cashmere Pashmina Shawl, Eco Cashmere, Bamboo Cashmere, Pashmina Shawl, Pashmina Wrap, Bamboo Scarf, Bamboo Wrap, Bamboo Shawl

    Naturally Knotty It's hard to beat the versatility of a pashmina when it comes to mixing up or topping off your outfit, but quality and pricing vary widely. In an ideal world, your perfect wrap would be beautiful, affordable, soft, durable and, of course, eco-conscious. Sound like an impossible list? Not for Naturally Knotty. (Starting at $29.95) Buy Naturally Knotty pashminas here.

    Pistil Fashionable Fall Caps for Women and Men, Womens Cap, Wool Cap, Winter Wool Cap, Brimmed Hats, Billed Cap, Men Cap

    Pistil Knit Accessories Pistil is known for hats that are soft and stylish, functional and original. Far from itchy knits, they frame your face, shed the elements and keep you feeling warm and looking great. They’re a perfect fit for everyday life, when you’re running errands, on a hike or heading out for a date. Like your favorite jeans… for your head.(Starting at $20) Buy your Pistil Knit Accessories here.

    TRU Portable Induction Cooktop Burner, Induction Cooktop, Induction Cooker, Portable Induction Cooktop, Induction Burner, Magnetic Induction Cooktop, Portable Induction Burner,

    Tru Eco Induction Burner How would you like a kitchen helper that’s fast, powerful and economical? Why not invite the Tru Eco induction cooker right in. This compact cooktop from Select Brands works by inducing, or transferring, heat through magnetic fields (you'll need an induction-compatible metal pan or pot to sustain the magnetic field). It can go from 125 degrees to 425 degrees in an instant, and it cools down just as quickly. Plus it’s incredibly energy-efficient compared to traditional gas burners and electric ranges, which can experience heat energy loss approaching 50%. This little powerhouse packs a serious punch. (Starting at $79.95) TRU Eco Portable Induction Burner here.

    Laser Pegs Sets | Lighted Building Toys, Laser Pegs, Lighted Construction Set, Building Set, Construction Set, Toy Construction Set, Kids Construction Set, Toy Building Set, Building Blocks, Building Toys, Building Sets

    Laser Pegs Sets Laser Pegs is the world's first lighted construction set, and the building pieces light up and flash when you connect them. You can build toy models -- with fun names like Wicked King Cobra, Robo Mutt and Baja Jumper -- or create your own free-form designs. The multicolored lights add a new dimension to your bug-eyed monsters, and your four-wheeled vehicles will glow like supernatural transporters. (Starting at $39.95) Buy your Lego Pegs set here.

    Sporting Sail, Body Sail, Wearable SailSporting-Sails Sporting-Sails are a descendant of Ski-Klippers wearable sails, which were originally invented in the 1970s by avid skier H.W. Smith Jr. The sails wrapped around a skier’s wrists and ankles, allowing the skier to harness the wind while carving down mountains, creating enhanced control, stability and a little freestyle elegance. ( $79.00) Buy Sporting Sails Body Sails here.

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap-Up

    Angella Dykstra

    This week's Grommets are innovative, creative and whimsical. From lightweight luggage to artistic night lights to animated hoodies, we've got some goodies up our sleeve (ha!) this week.

    Hideo Wakamatsu, Lightweight Carry On Luggage, Wheeled Carry On Luggage, Rolling Carry On Luggage, Best Carry On Bag, Travel Messenger Bag

    Hideo Design A great bag can mean the difference between a relaxing trip and one spent dragging a too-heavy suitcase, painfully navigating the narrow aisle of an airplane, and straining to lift your suitcase into the overhead compartment. If you’re ready to ditch your rigid, heavy suitcase for  sleek, lightweight carry on luggage, we’ve found the perfect upgrade. (Starting at $79) Buy Hideo Design luggage here.

    Nelley Kelley, Unique Night Lights, Decorative Night Lights, Owl Night Light, Glass Night Lights, Angel Night Light, Sunflower Night Light, Bunny Night Light

    Nelley Kelley Night Lights Artist Ellen McHale has elevated the lowly night light to pure art form with her handcrafted glass tile fixtures. Her Nelley Kelley unique night lights are great for the bathroom, bedroom, living room, hallway – anywhere you need a little extra light. But you won’t want to put them away once the sun comes up. They’re works of art, meant to be treasured all day, not just at night.($45) Buy your Nelley Kelley Night Lights here.

    Mouth Man, Animated Shark Shirt by Ross Valory, Shark Shirt, Shark T Shirt, Mouth Man Shirts, Journey Shirt, Ross Valory

    Mouth Man - Animated Hoodies Here’s a Grommet you can really sink your teeth into. Mouth Man hoodies reveal animal faces when kids (and grownups) strike just the right pose. The knw skeleton design is perfect for a pre-Halloween costume!  (Starting at $24.95) Buy Mouth Man animated hoodies here.

     

     

     

    Rebound Driveway Marker, Reflective Driveway Marker for Snowplows, reflective marker, pavement marker, snow plow marker,

    Rebound Driveway Marker The inventor of the Rebound marker is Arra David (on the left with CEO Mike Collins), a mechanical engineer who designs high-end gift products for a living. Arra was inspired by the poles that line a slalom ski run, and he used that inspiration to solve two problems with traditional driveway markers: They’re hard to install on frozen ground and they break all the time. Arra’s driveway markers keep snowplows and wayward drivers on the straight and narrow — and they’ll last a lot longer than one season.(Starting at $24.95) Buy the Rebound driveway markers here.

    Flying Wish Remember wishing on a star? Julia Lambie has created a unique way to make a special wish – and it doesn’t require a clear night sky. Her Flying Wish Paper lets you celebrate every wish with fun, whimsy and a little bit of firepower. These wishing kits are truly magical. (Starting at $8.95-$14.95) Buy Flying Wish here.

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap Up

    If you have missed a Grommet this week, be sure to check out this post. We have gathered all five Grommets in one spot for you, enjoy!

    Bialetti, Espresso Maker, Bialetti Saute Pan, Bialetti Espresso Maker, Bialetti Stovetop Espresso Maker

    Bialetti The best part of waking up? Java, just the way you like it. Maybe eggs, too. We’ve got the gear to take your morning ritual to delicious new heights. It’s from Bialetti, an Italian company made famous when founder Alfonso Bialetti invented the iconic Moka Express coffee maker in 1933. It’s the original (and often imitated) stovetop espresso maker, and it’s a staple in kitchens around the world. On a burner beside Bialetti’s stovetop espresso makers, we’ve made room for the company’s eco-friendly sauté pan. The 10.25” Aeternum nano-ceramic sauté pan has a safe and natural nonstick coating that resists stains and scratches. It has all the convenience of traditional nonstick pans without the harsh synthetic coatings. (Starting at $29.95) Buy Espresso Maker or Bialetti Saute Pan here.

    Hem Gems, Shorten Jeans with a Temporary Hem, How to Hem Jeans, How to Shorten Jeans, How to Hem Jeans with Original Hem, Temporary Hem

    Hem GemsLove your favorite pair of jeans but not how the hems drag across the floor when you wear flats? Two friends devised a clever solution that’s as stylish as it is practical. Called Hem Gems, the invention lets you shorten your jeans instantly and temporarily for those times when you want to wear flats.($19.99) Buy your Hem Gems here.

    PHandcrafted Pewter Items, Handcrafted Pewter Ware, Pewter Measuring Cups, Pewter Gifts,

    Crosby & Taylor We’re featuring a number of our favorite Crosby & Taylor’s pieces: an intricately detailed bird rack for key holding, a coffee scoop with a refined geometric pattern and it’s own hook, and amazing Celtic-inspired measuring spoons and cups (you’ll treasure these for generations). There’s also a Santa key, which is a heartwarming way to reassure kids that Santa will have no trouble visiting, even if there’s no chimney. (Starting at $23) Buy Crosby & Taylor handcrafted pewter ware here.

     

    Turducken, Turkey, Duck and Chicken Roll, Turducken, Buy Turducken, Turducken Order, Turducken Review, Turducken Roll, Cajun Turducken, Best Turducken

    Turkey + Duck + Chicken = "Turducken" Let your taste buds fly south this winter for a poultry feast of epic proportions. Yes, it’s a turducken. Concocted in Cajun country, a turducken is a turkey stuffed with a duck that’s stuffed with a chicken. There are no bones except for the wings and drumsticks — it’s all meat, layered with either a Cajun sausage stuffing or cornbread stuffing. (Starting at $57.95) Buy Cajun Stuff's Turducken here.

     

    Perplxus - 3D Ball Maze Game Perplexus is unlike anything we’ve ever seen before – and it may just be the most fun you can have without batteries. It’s a marble maze that works in 3D, on every plane, all twisted up inside a ball. Imagine one of those tilting labyrinth marble mazes contorted in on itself, reimagined in color and somehow married with both a playground and a fun house.($19.95) Buy the Perplexus 3D ball maze game here.

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap-Up

    Another week of excellent Grommets. Dig in and enjoy!

    Polarity, Interchangeable Magnetic Locket Necklace, Lockets, Round Locket, Unique Locket, Round Silver Locket, Interchangeable Locket

    Polarity It’s easy to get stuck on Cat Ivins’ locket necklaces – and not just because they’re magnetic. They’re handcrafted from recycled steel auto parts and personalized with quirky graphics created by Cat and other indie artist collaborators. The look is clean and simple, with an easy industrial vibe. ($20.00)

    Buy Polarity interchangeable magnetic lockets here.

    Gluggle Jug, Fish Shaped Gurgling Jug, Cod Jug, Gluggle Jug, Gurgling Water Jug,  Fish Shaped Jug

    A Jug That Glugs The Gluggle Jug is a fish-shaped water jug that gurgles delightfully when it pours, making it both fun and functional. It’s a great conversation piece with a rich history. Gluggle jugs were first produced in the late 1800s in Staffordshire, England, and the merry glugging sound has made these a favorite among collectors for more than 100 years.($35.00) Buy your Gluggle Jug here.

    Ila Security Personal Alarms, Personal Alarm, Personal Alarms, Personal Security Alarm, Personal Safety Alarm, Portable Alarm, Personal Alarm System, Personal Attack Alarm, Personal Emergency Alarm, Personal Panic Alarm, Personal Protection Alarm, Keychain Personal Alarm, Personal Body Alarm

    ila Security It’s not uncommon to feel vulnerable when you’re walking alone at night, heading for your car in a parking garage, or traveling in an unfamiliar city. Today’s Grommet can’t promise invincibility, but it can provide another line of defense if you feel threatened. We’re featuring three personal alarms from ila Security that are designed to shock and disorient potential attackers and draw attention to dangerous situations. (Starting at $14.99) Buy ila Security personal alarms here.

    Young Punks, Hip Children's Tees, Hip Baby One-PiecesYoung Punks You won’t find baby blues or cotton-candy pinks among Phil Rowntree’s creations. His palette starts and ends with basic black. Add a dash of wit, and there you have it: kids’ tees with a refreshingly irreverent style.($22) Buy Young Punk's hip children's tees and baby one-piece bodysuits here.

    Jon Wye, Graphically Cool Belts, Cool Belts, Unique Belts, Cool Mens Belts, Print Belt, Graphic Belt

    John Wye Belts A Jon Wye belt does more than just hold up your pants. Each one tells a story. Jon's designs are laid out horizontally, and the graphics are transferred onto the belts in a process that's similar to how a tattoo artist might tattoo skin. It took him four years to perfect this secret technique, which ensures the designs won't wear off. ($65) Buy Jon Wye graphically cool belts here.

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap-Up

    Another week of excellent Grommets. Dig in and enjoy!

    Lotuspad Yoga Mat, Eco Friendly Non-Slip Yoga Mat, Thick Yoga Mat, Best Yoga Mat, Yoga Mat Reviews, Eco Friendly Yoga Mat, Yoga Mat Strap, Extra Long Yoga Mat, Skidless Yoga Mat

    LotusPad Nothing ruins a Zen moment like a slippery yoga mat. With Lotuspad, you can hold your pose on a non-slip mat that’s extra thick, extra long and eco-friendly too. If you’re looking for cushioned comfort and a better grip, Lotuspad does it with style. Bonus, it's an Eco friendly Yoga Mat. (Starting at $42.00)

    Buy the Lotus Mat eco friendly skidless yoga mat here.

    Arghand, Soap Pebbles, Lotions and Creams, Soap Pebbles, Hydrating Body Lotion, Antioxidant Face Cream,  Anisette Lip Balm

    Arghand Cooperative Arghand was started by Sarah, a former National Public Radio reporter, in 2005. Its signature soap pebbles are crafted using age-old techniques. Each one takes six weeks to make. The result is a dense and long-lasting soap that resembles a beautiful stone polished by river water.($38.00) Buy Arghand Cooperative soap pebbles, lotions and creams here.

    Toffee Talk, Gourmet Toffee Candies, Toffee, Almond Toffee, Gourmet Toffee, Pecan Toffee, Toffee Candies, Buy Toffee, Walnut Toffee, Pean

    Toffee Talk Catherine calls her toffee “pieces of conversation” because you cannot eat one without comment. We can attest to that at Daily Grommet, where we devoured Catherine’s artisanal toffee treats and then couldn’t stop talking about how delicious they were. From San Francisco to our East Coast offices and everywhere in between, we think Catherine’s toffee is about to make a big splash in candyland. Psst…the gossip on the street is all about Toffee Talk…pass it on.($30) Buy Toffee Talk gourmet toffee candies here.

     

     

    Sodastream, Soda and Seltzer Maker | Carbonation Machine, Soda Club, Make Soda, Making Carbonated Water, Carbonator, Sparkling Water Maker, Sodastream, Carbonated Water Maker, Carbonation Machine, Fizzy Water, Seltzer MakerSodaStream SodaStream is sleek and affordable. With a touch of a button you can turn flat water effervescent. Add any of the company’s flavored syrups (regular and diet) and you’ve got homemade soda or seltzer water at a fraction of the cost of store brands (and without high fructose corn syrup). Our bundle includes the Jet soda maker; a refillable CO2 carbonator canister; flavor packs; and two BPA-free carbonating bottles, so there are no bottles or cans to recycle.($99.95) Buy Sodastream soda and seltzer maker here.

     

    evanhealy

    evanhealy. The skin is the body’s largest organ, and most of us spend the better part of our lifetime either ignoring it or “caring” for it in ways that inhibit its own natural ability to mend and repair itself. Evan Healy takes a different approach. As a trained aesthetician, Evan believes in the skin’s ability to achieve optimal balance with just a minimum of help. All the products in her evanhealy line are made from organic, plant-based ingredients, and there are no perfumes added.(Starting at $29.95) Buy evanhealy skin care products here.

     

     

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