Ask Maxwell: How Can We Make Our Dining Room Feel Like a Family Destination?
With all our meals happening at home, what can we do to make our dining space more inviting? We recently converted a small bedroom to our dining room, we eat all our meals there, with our 10-year-old and 7-year-old, and the space is so drab. With cold weather approaching here in Maine, we’d love for our dining room to feel like more of a destination in our house and not just a pass-through space.
Oct 29, 2020
One Family, 1,000 Toys, Two Bedrooms, and Space to Work & Play
“I love the way I’ve set up the house! I love our living room so much. That’s where we spend most of our time together: It feels super cozy.” Name: Caroline and Jason Rodrigues, owners of @shopmercimilo; their daughter, Milo, 5; and Caroline’s children, Cailin, 14, and Darren, 16, who live there part of the timeLocation: Glendale, CaliforinaImagine if your child had a never-ending stream of toys showing up in your home.
Oct 28, 2020
How to Get Your Kids to Eat Salad (and Love It!)
Salads are a staple of healthy eating. Add in the fact that a good salad requires zero cooking, and I’m won over. But I am a salad-lover who is also a mom of two. And when guests come over, they are often surprised to see me making salad for my kids—and more surprised to see the kids eating it. How do I do it? The answer is actually simple: I make finger salads.
Oct 28, 2020
The One Question I Ask Myself When Decluttering My Kids’ Books
A child’s relationship to books is one of the biggest predictors of their success down the road, and exposure to all types of print has a lot to do with early reading ability. So hang on to your well-worn “Calvin & Hobbes” treasuries, go ahead and subscribe to Highlights, and definitely send a book-loving message by keeping a fairly robust library, if that’s your thing.
Oct 28, 2020
Here’s How to Make a Fun & Festive Halloween Snack Board
Snack boards are my never-fail, super-easy appetizer—and a clever way to serve dinner on busy nights. Take this Halloween snack board, for example: It’s perfect for a party (when we’re not in a pandemic, of course), but doubles as a quick meal before trick-or-treating (again, in non-COVID times) that will delight kids and adults alike.
Oct 28, 2020
3 Fun Fall Projects from Our New Favorite Craft Book
Handmade Charlotte is one of the OG craft blogs. Founder Rachel Faucett started blogging in 2009 when she launched an Etsy shop selling handmade kids clothing. “I wanted to connect with other creatives and showcase thoughtful design for children,” says Rachel. A decade later, the Etsy shop is long gone, but her blog is the destination for kid fun.
Oct 22, 2020
Over-the-Top Halloween Decorations—No Crafting Required
Halloween is Apartment Therapy Tour Editor Adrienne Breaux’s favorite holiday. Our New Orleans-based editor jokes that it’s practically mandatory to decorate for the holiday. In fact, Adrienne put her Halloween decorations up before Labor Day this year (and made a convincing case for why you should put yours up early too). While we missed the boat for the early-bird decor, there are a ton of ideas to steal from Adrienne’s stylish, colorful, and downright joyful home.
Oct 21, 2020
The Time-Saving Reason I Switched to These Smaller $8 Laundry Baskets
I enjoy simplifying and streamlining wherever I can, especially when it comes to routines and tasks at home. Usually this means downsizing supplies and tools and cutting down on decisions when possible. Simplifying almost always means less.But when it came to solving my laundry problem, it turns out that simplifying means having more of something, specifically more laundry baskets. First some background: We’re a family of seven.
Oct 21, 2020
10 Nostalgic Halloween Movies to Stream on Disney+ This Fall
Calling all witches, phantoms, and pumpkin kings and queens: we’re now one month away from Halloween. How we’ll celebrate the spooky season this year will look much different due to COVID-19 quarantine, but that doesn’t mean All Hallow’s Eve is canceled. One cozy and safe activity to partake in? Strolling down memory lane with Disney+’s roster of nostalgic Halloween movies.
Oct 21, 2020
How Parents Are Making Halloween Special in a Strange Year
My mom was always the mom who made the most out of a tough situation: She did a lot with a little. My sisters and I were the kids who looked forward to Halloween but couldn’t afford new costumes. So for four consecutive years, I wore the same white dress, which my mother kept reinventing as a new costume. I was an angel, Cleopatra, a ghost, and a bride (a very ’90s thing to do). We were the family who drove out to the more affluent neighborhoods to trick-or-treat.
Oct 21, 2020
How to Make a Halloween Candy Chute for Trick-or-Treaters
Earlier this summer when it became clear that Halloween would look a lot different this year, crafty parents began to brainstorm a way to save the annual trick-or-treat tradition—and the socially-distant candy chute was born. We first spotted the idea through YouTubers Jaimie and Jay of The Wicked Makers, but quickly the concept exploded with dozens of DIY ideas across the country (Google “candy chute” and you will be amazed at the creativity).
Oct 21, 2020
This Family Created a Candy Slide for a Safe, Socially Distanced Halloween
Halloween celebrations will look different this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, with parties being replaced in favor of spooky movie marathons at home. One family came up with a super creative way to safely dole out candy to trick-or-treaters: a DIY candy slide that allows them to pass treats through without hand-to-hand contact, sharing how others can make one, too, with a little handiwork and a lot of creativity.
Oct 21, 2020
The Top 10 Halloween Treats of All Time (and How to Make Them — The Easy Way!)
Even though it looks very different this year, Halloween is here — and secretly, I think it’s the most amazing time for food-lovers and their kids. Why? You get to play with your food! Our collective digital feeds are filled at present with cute spider sandwiches and bat-wing cookies, but this is not a modern phenomenon. For nearly a century, there has been pressure on parents to rise to the occasion of Halloween.
Oct 16, 2020
17 Toys that Occupy Kids the Longest, According to Their Parents
From the "ring of neglect" to the brainy workbook Chrissy Teigen loves.
Oct 15, 2020
This IKEA Chair Has Become My School-at-Home Savior
One night while visiting my parents a few years back, my dad hauled an old chair up from the basement for my son. This was a chair I’d sat in for hundreds of family meals as a child; it had then made its way through some younger cousins and gotten a custom paint job along the way. Not a high chair and not a full-sized chair, this was a seat designed specifically for a little kid. My son loved it.
Oct 12, 2020
You’ll Never Believe This Bohemian Loft Was Once a Garage
Most parents would balk at the prospect of moving into a former garage with their child, but designer Cherub Stewart of Florida Water Interiors, saw the potential in a lofty converted garage in the Newark, New Jersey area. With her background in interior design, Cherub could look past the concrete interior and parking lot outside to see the space’s good bones.
Oct 12, 2020
I Tried the Viral Pumpkin-Carving Hack That’s All Over Facebook
Last year, our pumpkins had been sitting on the front porch, unadorned, for weeks. My 6-year-old had been pestering me every day to carve hers into a cat and I had been avoiding it — mostly because I didn’t want to deal with sticking my arm into sticky, slimy pumpkin guts to make way for carving. Then I saw a pumpkin cleaning hack on a Facebook video that inspired me to put it to the test and finally carve pumpkins with my kids. The results were surprisingly delightful.
Oct 12, 2020
12 Fast & Easy Dinner Ideas for Hungry Toddlers & Tired Parents
At 5, my youngest has officially left the toddler years, but the struggles of feeding a toddler are not too far away from my memory. Toddlers bounce from happy and inquisitive to tired and cranky easily without the capacity to tell us that they are hungry and headed for a meltdown. All of this is to say that after a day, or a week, or even hours of extraordinary emotional highs and lows and generally wrestling a wild, stubborn 2-year-old, you are tired. And you all still need to eat.
Oct 12, 2020
These Snickerdoodles Are the Best Cookie to Make with Your Kids This Fall
I’ll be honest with you: Classic snickerdoodles are one of my least favorite cookies. I love their crunchy cinnamon-sugar coating, but I’ve always wanted something more—something to really kick them up a notch. So in an attempt to reimagine the snickerdoodle into a cookie I would actually get excited about, I added an additional layer of flavor to the mix, completely transforming them into a brand-new treat that’s bold, delicious, and unexpected. My secret ingredient?
Oct 12, 2020
One-Pot Meatballs & Pasta Os
As far as guilty pleasures go, a love of SpaghettiOs is pretty tame. Cranking open a can may have been acceptable for me as a 7-year-old back in 1989, but it’s time to admit that what I really love are the soft O-shaped noodles swimming in a sweet tomato sauce. With this wholesome take on a childhood favorite, I know I won’t be reaching for the can opener anytime soon. My traditional spaghetti dinner takes two pots, one pan, and an embarrassing number of bowls and utensils.
Oct 12, 2020
The Easiest Pigs in a Blanket
Do you remember the absolute joy you’d feel when your mom would pop open a can of biscuit dough and a package of bite-sized sausages — meaning pigs and a blanket were on the horizon? Our version embraces that exuberance, but we’re upgrading the whole thing. Thanks to our smart technique, you don’t have to individually wrap 50 tiny sausages to create the perfect bite of flaky, buttery pastry and smoky sausage (but more on that later).
Oct 12, 2020
Baklava Breakfast Parfaits
Hello, and welcome to the first recipe in my new column, But First, Breakfast! I’ve been thinking about the idea for this series for a long time, probably ever since I started touring to promote my breakfast cookbook, Whole Grain Mornings, and readers told me how much they longed for really simple weekday breakfast ideas. This series is about real-world, make-ahead breakfasts that you can actually fit into your busy, everyday life.
Oct 12, 2020
How To Make Chicken Lettuce Wraps
For all the times I have ordered chicken lettuce wraps at Chinese restaurants like P.F. Chang’s, inhaled entire “appetizers” by myself, and sighed with happiness while licking sticky sauce from my fingers, it never once occurred to me to try making this dish at home. Partly, lettuce wraps have always felt like an indulgence that needed restriction to restaurant visits only.
Oct 12, 2020
Chickpea Nuggets
Getting kids to try new foods is simply an exercise in marketing. Case in point: When I made falafel for dinner one night, I called them chickpea nuggets instead of falafel and my children gobbled them right up. They asked for chickpea nuggets again and it got my mind churning with an idea for an actual chickpea nugget recipe — one with all the flavors and textures of chicken nuggets, but baked and egg-free.
Oct 12, 2020
Red Lentil Sweet Potato Soup
Packed with vitamin-rich sweet potatoes, this simple soup is a quick family meal that ensures a dose of veggies even in a relatively small portion. The natural creaminess from the potatoes provides a pleasing texture for kids and is delicious topped with everything from crumbled bacon to a dash of hot sauce for parents. The red lentils are more subtle in flavor than their brown and green counterparts, and they cook about three times as fast, so they’re ideal for weeknights.
Oct 12, 2020
How To Make the Best Macaroni and Cheese on the Stove
This is the macaroni and cheese recipe I grew up on — creamy sauce, chewy pasta, and plenty of cheese. It always felt like a special treat to us kids, although I suspect my mother liked it more because it was an easy stovetop dish that requires just five ingredients and almost no thought to pull together at the end of a long day. Whatever the reason, whatever the occasion, a bowl of this mac and cheese will always spell comfort.
Oct 12, 2020
3-Cheese Frittata Cups
Hectic mornings are standard in my house. With barely enough time to gather an armload of books, bags, and lunches before racing out the door, breakfast is often a grab-and-go affair. Instead of scrambling cheesy eggs as the school bus pulls up, I quickly warm my make-ahead cheesy frittata cups. A trio of cheeses — ricotta, Parmesan, and Fontina — season the eggs and add creamy richness.
Oct 12, 2020
10-Minute Black Bean Tacos
When you come home extra late after a crazy day at the office, it may seem like your only options for dinner are takeout, those questionable leftovers in the fridge, or scrambled eggs and toast. You’re starving and cranky and you need dinner fast, after all. Luckily there’s a fourth option: these 10-minute tacos. Yes, making tacos in 10 minutes is absolutely possible.
Oct 12, 2020
Zucchini Pesto Pizza Rolls
Five simple ingredients tag team on a dinner that everyone at the table will love — including mom and dad, given all of the veggies tucked inside!
Oct 12, 2020
Avocado Toast Two Ways, for Mama & Baby
Oh, avocado toast — the perfect shortcut meal for any time of day. And one of my absolute favorite ways to serve up a meal that works for the entire family, even the wee ones. Avocado toast is the perfect example, too, of the type of food I am sharing this week for DIY Mama; simple, adaptable meals that with a few adjustments are equally delicious and nutritious for mama and toddler.
Oct 12, 2020
Make-Ahead Smoothie Packs: Super Greens Smoothie
Because you know, drinking your greens always feels good.
Oct 12, 2020
The Single Best Thing 10 Families Did for Their Homes This Year
From simple solutions like a new outdoor umbrella to sky-high additions, like a parkour gym in the garage, ten families share how they have changed and improved their homes to adapt to the weird times we're living in.
Oct 7, 2020
Edible Play Dough Is a Solid Hour of Fun
Got marshmallows?
Oct 7, 2020
Our Top 12 Kid-Friendly Grocery Finds for Fall 2020
Every one of these is kid-approved.
Oct 7, 2020
There's a Surprising Decision in this Madewell Designer's Home
Joyce Lee's apartment is filled with stylish, family-friendly ideas, including her secret to a tidy living room.
Oct 7, 2020
10 Easy Lunches that are Better Than Sandwiches
Whether your kids are at school or at home these brilliant lunchbox ideas will shake up your stuck-between-bread routine.
Oct 7, 2020