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Archive for the ‘Shopping’ Category

 

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Photo courtesy Island Treasure Toys (Bath)

 

The Cute Potato kids are growing up fast, and with each passing year, MP finds it more challenging to find a toy or game they’ll use again and again. For ideas, MP enlisted the help of toy expert Anita Demetropoulos, the owner of Island Treasure Toys. Her toy store, which began as a home business in 2001, has expanded to three locations over the years. Anita’s warm and welcoming shops in Yarmouth, Freeport, and Bath are favorites among parents for quality toys and games. With nearly 16 years of experience, Anita has valuable advice to offer when it comes to gift-giving.

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MP has a philosophy about house cleaning —it’s best in small spurts and even better when the products she’s using are environmentally-friendly and smell good. Enter our newest blog sponsor, Good Natured Brand, a home and body care company that began with Maine-based mother of three, Kate Perrin. MP first discovered Kate’s products in 2013 when she came across them at a local farmers’ market. Three years later, with the marketing help of business partner Lisa Hansen, Good Natured Brand is growing by leaps and bounds. You can find their products at Whole Foods, Amazon.com, Hannafords, Ace Hardware, True Value and several Maine-based natural foods stores.

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Co-founder Kate Perrin at home with her daughter.

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How is it that Sunday Mother’s Day already? If you’re anything like MP, you’re shopping for a thoughtful gift just a few days before. Here are a few local favorites:

Signature Westport Leather Clutch

This clutch has a few good things going for it. First, MP loves this bag for its simple, classic style. The interior is deep, making it easy to store your wallet, makeup and a few additional essentials inside. And the best part? There’s a handy, zipper storage compartment on the outside of the bag for your cell phone. 

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Our family is expecting a baby nephew (and cousin) any day now, so you can imagine our delight when we discovered Baby Crates from CrateFull of Maine – a new gift business started by Chris Avantaggio, Nathan O’Leary and John Turner. The three entrepreneurs, who run their own successful companies, namely LiveME, Mainely SEO and Traps Eyewear, began selling gift boxes filled with a variety of Maine made items in December 2015. This year, they’re offering themed crates full of good things including Maine made sweets and handcrafted baby goods.

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Image courtesy Tyler Vunk Photography

Welcome our newest sponsor, Gabrielle (Gab) Melchionda of Mad Gab’s natural and organic bodycare, to the blog! In the early nineties, Gab started making lip balm in her mother’s kitchen just for fun. Family and friends encouraged her to sell her homemade balms at farmers’ markets and local stores, and in a few short years, her company received national attention. QVC featured her lip balms on television, and magazines including Vogue and Working Mother highlighted Gab and her sought-after products.

Flash forward 25 years and Mad Gab’s is looking to make headlines again. They’ve recently launched an exciting new line of products called MG, geared towards young women. The company is also a finalist on Greenlight Mainea local TV show that features up-and-coming Maine businesses.

MP sat down with Gab to discuss the challenges of running a successful business, balancing work and motherhood, and what she’s dreaming up next.

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Winter is finally here and for our family, the drastic change in temperature demands we pay better attention to our skin. Wind, cold and bright sun can be especially hard on sensitive skin like ours. CP#1 is prone to chapped lips, and MP, who runs outside throughout the winter months, has rough hands and feet. And whether we are cross country skiing or sledding, all of us need to protect our lips and faces from the elements.

For MP, the challenge has always been finding a bodycare line that appeals to the whole family. Enter Mad Gab’s — a Westbrook-based company that specializes in lip and body balms made with a balanced combination of natural and organic ingredients. Their line also includes convenient, SPF 30 Sun Sticks for sun protection on the go.

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A cool, camo design makes this a popular choice for kids.

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Holy cow. This is a busy time of year! MP is trying her best to slow down and enjoy the season, but it’s easy to get swept up in the holiday hubbub. There’s our daily routine to maintain coupled with holiday parties, cards to order, trees to light, cookies to make and gifts to buy — all good things for certain, but it can be hard for a parent to keep up!

Thankfully, we live in a state where there are so many beautifully made gifts available to us, it’s easy to check a few items off the holiday to-do list. And it feels good to support our local makers!

For the littles (0-5):

Two Chickadees Design: Handmade Soft Sole Baby Booties

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Lilleputt Studio Brown Sheep Baby Blanket

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