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Author Archives: Tori

Director of Content and Community at The Grommet

  • Weekly Grommet Wrap Up

    With the week's end comes our new feature- the Weekly Grommet Wrap Up. Whether you missed a day or two or just want a recap, we have got you covered.  Here are all five of this week's Grommets in one spot:


    Kovenex Fire, Fire Safety Blanket, fire blanket, fire blankets, fire retardant blanket, fire proof blanket, fire blanket use, fire resistant blanketsDouble-Duty Dog Collar. After years of prototyping and many miles of running, Brian and Paula debuted the Release N Run collar. It’s made with Spectra, a lightweight fiber that’s 15 times stronger than steel. Inside there’s a retracting mechanism that was originally designed for scuba gear (so you know it can handle a swim in salt water) and for securing military weapons (so you know it’s reliable). (Starting at $32.95) Buy a Release N Run Leash here.

    Jack up your Toolbox. It’s time to give the back of your hammer a rest. There’s a better way to extract old nails and brads — and it doesn’t involve pulling, twisting, groaning and pleading for a nail to come out smoothly, without damaging your woodwork. This would make a perfect Father's Day gift for that handy dad you know. ($24.95) Buy the Nail Jack here.

    Travel Wine Carrier

    Have Wine, Will Travel. This clever gadget inflates to create a protective cushion around a bottle of wine (olive oil and other similarly sized bottles fit, too). It’s ideal for travelers of all kinds — bikers, backpackers, sailors, kayakers and anyone else who wants to protect a glass bottle and its contents. No more worrying over that unprotected wine bottle in your luggage. (Starting at $19.95) Buy the Wine Hug here.

    Wrap Yourself in Boho Style. This leather wrap bracelet from iheartjenna is one of those discoveries that causes instant obsession. It has everything going for it – lots of layers, natural materials, and a cool, bohemian vibe that’s perfect for Summer. It's so comfortable, you won't even want to take it off. (Starting at $55.00) Buy iheartjenna's Bohemian Wrap Bracelets here.


    Step up, to Summer. TenMarks helps student refresh what they know and learn what they don't. Practice math one topic at a time with hints to guide and video instruction to help teach. Personalized programs tailored to your child's ability and grade level. Keep them busy this Summer and ahead of their class. ($39.00) Buy TenMarks Summer Session here.

  • Conference calls, crackling and confusion

    Daily Grommet headquarters may be located in Lexington, MA but every day I join the team remotely all the way from sunny California. Chances are, if you chat with us on Twitter or are a part of our Facebook community- we’ve already met. But if not, Hi! I’m Tori—and it’s a pleasure to meet you.

    Every week the brains here at Daily Grommet gather for a team meeting. Most gather in the office, while a few of us call in remotely from across the country. During one of my first meetings (remember I am conferenced in) I could barely make out anything they were saying. As business talks went on as usual I felt a slight panic forming. Was it my cordless phone connection? What was this crackling sound? Afraid to interrupt the call, I strained to listen in catching probably every third word that was being said. I thought that my cordless phone was either not catching the connection properly or maybe I had just done something wrong. So instead of interrupting -- “ummmm….excuse me, I think my connection is bad,” I just chose to silently suffer through the call.

    Then I get an email from Katherine, another remote Grommet team member, asking “Was your line crackling, or was it just me?” Okay, so I wasn’t the only one. Confident that it wasn’t operator error after all, we asked headquarters about the bad connection. They replied (with a little chuckle),  “OH the crackling? Sorry, we were testing (gourmet) Grommets. We must have been munching near the speaker phone.”

    Alas- lesson learned, the discovery team does in fact take their Grommet testing very seriously—even during meetings.

  • Green Tweets: Eco friendly tips from our 'green' pals

    The ability to connect and share with  others on Twitter is something I really treasure. Recently I have made connections with wonderful “green” folks while tweeting. I am always impressed by their resources, tips, and motivation which (in its own way) is fueling the green movement and bringing eco-consciousness topics to the forefront.  I wanted to find a way to honor these “green tweep” and so I asked them to share a short tip (longer than 140 characters but brief just the same) with us here on the Grommet blog. So, without further ado; here are some of my favorite green tweople and their tips for living a greener life:

    @GreenParentsNet:  It's important to "Go Green" with the products you use on your skin, because your skin absorbs anything and everything it comes in contact with!  Take a look at the ingredients in your shampoo, soap, lotions, deodorant, perfumes, nail polish, etc.  Chances are if you can't pronounce (or wouldn't eat!) the ingredient, you shouldn't touch or use it, either, because it will enter into your bloodstream - via your skin! -Mary Beth Rebedeau Green Parents Network - Where green families meet!

    @EcoChic: I'd have to say that my best tip is to be a more conscious consumer. Buy long term use products (local if possible) that are made of earth friendly materials and packaged mindfully. -Jen Khatchatrian EcoChicagoStyle.com

    @EthicalStyle:  Don't blindly follow trends, even if they're being marketed as 'green.' You'll produce less waste if you know your style and wear what you like, rather than buying into trends that haven't truly stolen your heart. As with consumer conscience, personal style has to be individually tailored. -M.J. Prest EthicalStyle.com

    @MomGoesGreen: Going green is simply about taking a moment to step back and rethink your actions in your everyday life.  Remember the three r's: reuse, reduce, and recycle.  If you can implement those r's into your life by consuming less, purchasing wisely and making better choices, you have taken a huge step toward being green. -Doreen Kukral  momgoesgreen.com

    @Makower: Make sure you bring your environmental ethic and habits to work each day. The waste and emissions you create at home pales in comparison to what you probably do at work. There is nearly unlimited potential to improve that -- and to make your job, and your company, better in the process. -Joel Makower founder of GreenBiz.com and author, "Strategies for the Green Economy."

    @CelebrateGreen: Reducing is the best way consumers can help save the Earth (and money too). Buy less--especially food (Americans toss anywhere from 15-20% of what we buy) and don't let leftovers turn to sludge. Use, share or compost what you can't eat. -Lynn & Corey at Celebrate Green CelebrateGreen.net

    @GreenMyParents: Think the price of gas is hard to swallow? Try bottled water! Bottled water can be over $6 a gallon – twice the price gas.  People say you should drink 8 glasses each day.  If you drink bottled water, you could be throwing away $1000 a year. Help your parents kick their habit: invest in a filter and portable canteens. -Josh Stempel greenmyparents.com

    @EcoDiva: Get Back To Basics: Plenty of sleep, plenty of clean water and define simple luxuries for yourself. If you invest in a new item, don't go for quick fads; choose items that will last through seasonal trends. Follow your inner EcoDiva versus magazine trends. -Elena Lipson theEcoDiva.com

    Thanks to these green tweets for sharing your tips with us. We know there are many more green folks out there spreading the word on Twitter. If you have something to add, feel free to leave your earth-friendly tip in the comment section below. Also, be sure to leave your twitter handle too so we can follow you!

  • A Recipe for an Impressive Company

    Our friend Julia Elmer has once again introduced to us to a truly impressive company- Dancing Deer. Starting from humble beginnings, this bakery has grown to become a national brand with well deserved recognition.

    Dancing Deer Baking Company blends traditional artisan baking with innovative flavor combinations. The Company's all-natural and Kosher cookies and brownies are baked with the highest quality ingredients, and are known for their scrumptious and delectable taste. We love that whenever possible, Dancing Deer makes green choices in its packaging, production and facilities, and consistently demonstrates its commitment to social, environmental and community causes.

    This Boston based start up touts their success to luck, dedication, hard work and a commitment to having fun. Having won several awards (including the title of “Best cake in America”), Dancing Deer is successful in many ways including in their philanthropic efforts. With such success,  the company grew and a move became eminent. CEO, Trish Carter surprised many people when she relocated head quarters to Roxbury, an inner city area of Boston. Karter saw this move as an opportunity to positively impact a neighborhood that otherwise didn’t have much going for it. It wasn’t long after that that Karter and Dancing Deer had founded the Sweet Home Project.

    In an effort to help families move permanently out of poverty, the Sweet Home Project was established by the Dancing Deer team and for many, is a beacon of hope in Boston. Here's how it works... You purchase "Sweet Home" cake & cookie gifts and Dancing Deer donates 35% of the retail price to scholarship programs through One Family Inc to help homeless and at risk mothers further their education.

    Karter describes her mission with Dancing Deer,

    “My business career has always been driven by a need to do more than peddle one more case of something strictly for commercial gain. I was raised in a tradition of philanthropy and social activism and it stuck. There is so much more to do, and our efforts have yielded only very modest results. But I am proud of our good works at Dancing Deer. Whether it’s the Sweet Home Project or helping an individual walk in to Dancing Deer with no skills, and walk out the door with a career, we’re helping people who need it.”

    We love that Karter and the entire Dancing Deer Company dedicate so much to helping their community. We think Karter and the entire Dancing Deer team have one winning recipe for a very impressive company.

  • Gardening... a community of growth (we hope!)

    With Spring's arrival, many of us here at Daily Grommet have an itch to get in the garden. Whether you're a novice gardener or a seasoned pro, it seems gardening is always a learning process. Jen Wallace, founder of www.IndieFixx.com, knows this all too well. She shares some of her experiences with us and offers a way to make gardening a bit more enjoyable.

    by Jen Wallace

    So, I'm a pretty new gardener ... last year was my first year at it, and one thing I've learned is that gardening in a vacuum is not a good idea. You need to connect with other gardeners. Both for the information, but also to share your accomplishments and your defeats. There's nothing better than sharing your garden's growth with others; and conversely, only another gardener knows the heartache of losing all one's tomato plants (something that happened to a lot of us last summer).

    To that end, I share a lot of my gardening experiences on my blog Indie Fixx and I've also started a Gardening Flickr Group as a way for all of us gardeners to connect and share images of our hard work. So, whether you have a large backyard plot, just have a few herbs in pots, plant vegetables or just flowers, come share with us

    Here are a few recent highlights from the group. 

    Thanks for sharing your gardening  journey with us, Jen, and for helping to build a community around a shared loved for gardening. I was so pleased to learn about Jen's flickr gardening group that I joined too! Like Jen, I'm a new gardener, so I'm thankful to have found a community  to learn and share with.

  • Relax! Here's one week of pampering that won't break the bank.

    I keep busy on Twitter all day long -- and the one best parts about what I do is that I never know who I'm going to "meet". Luckily for me, I recently struck up a relationship with Michelle Joni Lapidos, the social media director of Spa Week. Her energetic and cool personality really stood out, and when I heard about what Spa Week was all about, I knew it was worth sharing with all of you.

    Spa Week takes place April 12-18th. Here's the concept: indulge yourself with a week of decadent, relaxing, rejuvenating, restoring, hydrating, slimming, soothing, calming, caressing, enlightening, brightening, whitening and beautifying spa treatments for just $50/service. There are participating spas all over the country, so you can book a mini-escape and enjoy a bit of pampering while not breaking the bank.  Cool, right?

    Here's Michelle to tell you more about it:

    If you're ready for a little pampering, head on over to  Spaweek.com (http://spaweek.com). It's as simple as clicking on your region, browsing the treatments, and booking yourself the week of wellness you deserve.

  • A blogger's passion for fashion, one day at a time.

    Seems like a lifetime ago that the Daily Grommet team hosted a "b-lunch" for local bloggers, including Christine Koh of BostonMamas and mom and daughter team, Sharon and Jane McClelland from Mom Generations. Fast forward a year later and I had the pleasure to connect with the other member of Mom Generations trio, fashion blogger, Audrey McClelland. Turns out, she's using video to tell stories, just like us. Every day of the year (yes, that's 365 days) Audrey gives women all around the world fashion savvy advice. After chatting with Audrey, I'm convinced that she not only knows her stuff, but that she loves sharing her fashion stories just as much has we love sharing our Grommet stories with you.

    Audrey, your story reflects that of so many women who choose to leave the corporate world behind in order settle down and raise a family. You worked at Donna Karan International in New York City for six years before returning to your roots in Rhode Island. Can you describe that transition? Was it easy to leave the fashion world behind?

    It was easy in the sense that I truly wanted to be home with my sons, but it was tough in the sense that I loved and craved the fashion industry. I knew once I left Donna Karan that I absolutely wanted to keep working someway/somehow...and  I also knew fashion needed to be involved with what I was doing; I loved it too much to leave it behind.  So I feel I really have found the "perfect world" for myself through my fashion blog.

    I started this blog for moms because I wanted to share (in the best way I could) easy, doable and practical fashion advice.  Because, at the end of the day, even though it's just clothing and beauty products - they have the potential to make us feel more beautiful and more confident... and that's an incredible thing!

    Lately we've seen and heard you at fabulous events from the Red Carpet at the People’s Choice Awards to the Mercedes Benz Fashion Show, has one event or experience stood out the most to you?

    The People's Choice!  It really stood out because I got to meet and listen and learn from Tim Gunn.  He knows so much about style and shape and fit... he's truly an expert.  I was soaking up everything he was saying because he made it sound so easy and doable.  That's what I love about him, so it was a real treat to be able to sit on the panel with him and talk celebrity fashion.

    In your own words, your job is "Finding trends that anyone can wear (especially moms)! ‘Cuz let’s face it – not all fashion trends are created equal." What do you predict that the next hot trends for moms and busy women will be this year?

    I'm thinking we're going to see clothing that's a lot more "doable."  Last season we saw a ton of mini-skirts and huge shoulder pads and jumpsuits.  Most moms don't wear those types of clothing.  I love that the upcoming trends are more focused towards classic sophistication.  Cable knits, dark colors, chunky scarves, pleated skirts, and chunky over-sized sweater cardigans.  It's easy fashion... it's not something you have to think about, and I love that about it.

    Now as a mom of 4 boys, do you find it a struggle to keep fashion a part of your daily routine? Do you have any suggestions for those women out there who feel they are just too busy to be fashion savvy?

    I try to keep myself looking good, because then I feel good. If you're too busy to be fashion savvy - really find items that are easy and can work for you instantly.  A little black dress, black tops, a great pair of jeans, a comfortable pair of boots, a sweater wrap, etc.  You don't have to spend a lot of money or have a love of fashion to look good and feel good.

    I loved chatting with Audrey! She's full of practical fashion advice (and as a busy working mom, I definitely appreciate that!), and even shared a couple fashion faux pas (think chipped nail polish at a big fashion show!). If you haven't already, tune in and watch Audrey as she vlogs another 365 days of fashion advice. We'll all be watching!

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