Ride the Dragon





Any dragon fans out there? My boys (the 2-year-old is pictured above, channeling his true love, Toothless) adore How to Train Your Dragonknown around my house simply as ‘Dragon Trainers’.

The kids were thrilled to watch the new adventures of Hiccup and Toothless in the Netflix original series, Dragons: Race to the Edge. The pair head out beyond Berk in search of other dragons, some of which shoot cannon balls and send shock waves–as dragons go, they’re pretty awesome. Check out all 26 episodes, streaming now. That’s almost 10 hours of peace and quiet for mom, all told. Enjoy. #StreamTeam. #Dragons.


I am moving this week – between packing up house, shuttling the kids, and setting up utilities at the new house – I’m sure it will take me a week or two to get back to posting. I’m also starting a separate home renovation blog that I’ll let you know about soon. Back when the WiFi is up and the clothes are unpacked.


Danger Mouse, the retro, British cartoon spy spoof with tongue-in-cheek humor, is now on Netflix. My siblings and I loved Danger Mouse growing up – it used to air on Nickelodeon back in the day, and my mom taped the episodes. We watched them over and over until we wore out the VHS tape. (You heard me.) So when the classic episodes popped up on Netflix, I was so excited to share them with my sons. (I also needed a break from Octonauts. Sure, they’re cute and teach us about sea creatures, but I can never get that “Creature Report” song out of my head.) My kids, aged 5 and 2, were dubious at first, as they always are when I suggest my flashback entertainment, but I reminded them of my previous successful recommendations of Fantasia, the Care Bears, and Flight of the Navigator and won them over. It took less than one episode before they were quoting Penfold’s signature “Oh, crumbs!” to each other and giggling. They loved it. I mean, come on – bombs, eye patches, British intrigue – what more could you ask for? We’re working our way through the collection, and it’s inspired me to expose them to Sesame Street Classics as well. I get credit for good ideas, get a little flashback fun from my own childhood, and we get family time together. Wins all around. #StreamTeam.



Pinwheel Is On Vacation

See you next week!

Baby Bathing Beauties


I love a good retro bathing suit, even moreso in miniature styles. Your little one can channel Esther Williams in this custom-made suit, available for $49.99 on Etsy.

Rock, Paper, Crayon


Rock crayons are easy to grip for small children and made from Kosher soy wax with natural mineral pigments. Set includes 64 crayons (4 in each color). This is designed for classrooms but is affordable enough for home use. Set is $29.95 at MightyNest.com.

Adorable Rain Ponchos



Check out these super cute rain ponchos for boys and girls, available at local store Peachtree Place (303 Happ Rd., Northfield, 847-441-7585).

I am super excited about this new collection from The Land of Nod, which takes the retro simplicity of the Golden Book classics and channels them into adorable home decor. Here’s a small sampling of the collection.



The Tawny Scrawny Lion bedding collection


The Shy Little Kitten throw pillow


The Saggy Baggy Elephant hooded towel

Families come in all different shapes and sizes, and kids understand that better than anyone. They are growing up in a world where their friends have one parent, or a stay at home dad, or two moms or two dads, or a whole rich melange of step, half or adopted siblings, not to mention all those grandparents, cousins and more. Modern families don’t conform to any one set up.

unnamedTake Grace and Frankie, the new Netflix series starring Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, two veteran actresses having a ball. Their husbands leave them to be with each other, and these women find themselves forming a family together as they face the prospect of embarking unexpectedly on a new chapter of their lives. It’s a ton of fun to watch these two old friends reunited onscreen, with Tomlin channeling a free spirit and Fonda as a more uptight, Martha Stewart-type. Check it out on Netflix, where the full season is streaming now.

Ask your kids what makes their family unique. What is it that they love the best about their nuclear and extended families? Kickstart the conversation with  these suggested titles. #StreamTeam







The Red Balloon Co. (5407 N. Clark St., Chicago, 773-989-8500; 1940 N. Damen Ave., chicago, 773-489-9800; 3651 N. Southport Ave., Chicago, 773-549-9800) has added some new designs to their signature collection of initial T-shirts ($35), available on-line and in-store.



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