Inside ToteSavvy

Change Kit + Mini = The Perfect Pair

Inside ToteSavvy

Change Kit + Mini = The Perfect Pair

by Lauren Kutting on Aug 24, 2020
With the launch of our new Change Kit, we're eager to show you just how versatile and helpful it can be. It's lightweight and compact, making it easy to stash inside your favorite tote, wear as a crossbody bag, or both!  If you plan to pack it in your tote to use solely as a changing kit, we suggest pairing with ToteSavvy Mini for the ultimate diaper bag combo. Continue reading to discover how we use the MZ Wallace Metro tote (medium size) to create a lightweight, sleek, and functional diaper bag.  Both ToteSavvy Mini and the Change Kit are compact organizers that work well on their own, but depending on your needs, work even better together. When paired together, you gain more space in your tote in addition to a hands-free option for diaper changes.  How to Pack Your Organizer and Change Kit Start by packing the Change Kit with all of your diaper change essentials. Diapers (3-4) Wet wipes Diaper cream Changing mat (included with Change Kit) Your Change Kit will serve as your hands-free way to change a diaper when out and about with baby. Wear the kit crossbody so both hands are free to hold your little one close and safely change their diaper. Never worry about placing your bag on the floor of a public restroom or at the end of the changing table only to be kicked off by strong little legs. The cherry on top is quick access to wet wipes without taking them out of your kit.    Once your Change Kit is packed, move on to ToteSavvy Mini. This is where you'll want to pack the rest of your mom and baby essentials. We like to pack: Bottle and formula (if using) Bibs or burp cloth Pacifier Outfit change Toy or teether Hand cream Aquafor Lip balm Nose Frida (the best nasal aspirator) ToteSavvy Mini will stay inside your bag, organizing every other essential for baby. When it's time for a diaper change simply grab the Change Kit and head off without disturbing everything else inside your bag.  ToteSavvy Mini and the Change Kit work flawlessly together to give you the ultimate diaper bag. Easily swap bags or keep them inside your go-to tote to confidently take on your day with your sweet little one.       
Inside Our New Change Kit

Inside ToteSavvy

Inside Our New Change Kit

by Kara Neff on Aug 17, 2020
See what’s always in our ToteSavvy Change Kit for every stage and age.  We didn’t just make a changing kit to make your time on-the-go doable, we made a changing kit to make every step of the way effortless. Packing efficiently is the best way to start any adventure off on the right foot. It’s a way of managing expectations, of ensuring preparedness, and about creating a framework around your agenda. Because when you’re well-prepared, you’re less inclined to sweat the small stuff--even the unexpected, including everything from spit-up to spilt milk. So no matter your family’s age range, we’ve got you covered. See all the ways we pack our changing kit for newborns, infants, and toddlers too.  NEWBORNS + INFANTS This stage is when having the essentials close at all times is paramount. And to have the parenting system down, you’ll want to pack properly. That means keeping about 2-3 diapers packed snuggly inside the kit, alongside wet wipes, the diaper cream of your choice, plus a small rolled onesie or a few pacifiers. Stash your Change Kit inside any bag to use as a full service changing kit (featuring easy access to diapering essentials while wearing it crossbody), or wear on its own as the most compact and minimalist diaper bag you've ever used.      TODDLERS + SCHOOL AGE KIDS By the time you reach the toddler stage with your child, you’ve pretty much got a handle on things. And though your Change Kit packing rituals won’t change that much, you still want to be mindful of the must-haves. To that end, we like to pack our kits up with the toddler necessities, like one Pull-Up, wet wipes (think disinfectant or antimicrobial hand wipes), snack bars, and any small, easy-to-grab toys that you can toss their way in the blink of an eye.  Once the essentials are taken care of, there's still some room for your keys, wallet, and cell phone. We recommend removing the changing mat and using the outer pocket as a quick spot to stash your phone.  The beauty of the ToteSavvy Change Kit is that it’s an easy, compact solution for holding everything you need, when you need it, wherever you are. And we love it even more because it grows with your family.   
Introducing the ToteSavvy Change Kit

Inside ToteSavvy

Introducing the ToteSavvy Change Kit

by Lauren Kutting on Aug 11, 2020
  As a parent, you're constantly juggling more than you can carry (literally and figuratively). Having your hands free to carry your baby, chase your toddler, or hold them with one hand while you quickly change a diaper with the other, is all too familiar.  We're passionate about making parents' lives easier, and of course, more organized. For this reason, we created the ToteSavvy Change Kit. It's part changing kit and part crossbody bag––a hybrid design helping you keep your hands free so you can easily access a diaper, a wet wipe, or anything else you need at that moment.     
The Craziest Place You've Ever Changed a Diaper

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The Craziest Place You've Ever Changed a Diaper

by Kara Neff on Aug 09, 2020
To usher in the release of our new launch, we asked the moms in our life about the most unconventional places they’ve ever changed a diaper. As a parent, there’s nothing that pushes us to our limits quite like the unexpected bathroom break our diaper-clad baby always seems to drop on us at the most inopportune time. (They know, right? Like, they must know...) An ill-timed poo can really stop us in our tracks, especially if we have no well-equipped area to change a messy nappy. Luckily, as moms, we have fast become accustomed to thinking on our feet. And things are about to get a whole lot easier for you with our latest launch; it’s so good, you’ll actually be excited to change a diaper. In the meantime, let’s all take a moment of silence to remember the most absurd and literally off-the-wall places these moms have ever changed a diaper. Like we said, pure insanity…    “On a deep freezer in the kitchen of a restaurant!” --Lisa K., @addictedtohairlockport    “When my son was four months old I had to change him on the bathroom floor of a very busy McDonalds during a Chicago Cubs baseball game.” --Tiffanie S., @energeewhizz    “The craziest place was in a cab!! Visiting my family back in Argentina, in Buenos Aires, big city, and [moving] around either in public transportation or cabs, so we had a long drive to the place we were going and well... duty calls! Poor cab driver.” --Flor, @kabana_community     “On a 6" deep windowsill, above/behind a toilet, in a restaurant. Poor kid. [AND], on a dining table at a brewery (so grossed out now in retrospect that I did this... but I was a new parent and totally brain dead at the time... and they didn't have a bathroom I could do it in, and I saw others doing it too sooooooo.)” --Kelsey S., @ShopMiliMili    “On the ground in front of a church in Lake Como.” --Michelle Piccolo, @feedingourtoddlers    “My hubby and I have done several hiking trips with our daughter so two crazy spots come to mind because we always hike far enough that a diaper change was necessary: 1.) Outside the Lake Agnes Teahouse (which takes 2 hours to hike to) in Banff National Park in Canada, and  2.) At the Kallur lighthouse on the island of Kalsoy in the Faroe Islands.” --Hannah J., @habejo    “Seat of an airplane.” --Petria B., @petriaboutin     “The craziest place I've changed a diaper (so many!). My favorite is on a bar in Lloret de Mar, a coastal town near Barcelona. We took a trip there when our first baby was 4 months and I was on maternity leave. We frequently found ourselves in fairly inconvenient places for diaper changes. One night we were having dinner with friends at their favorite local spot and found out mid-meal there was no room or changing table in the restroom. We asked the restaurant if we could clear off the bar counter and they were more than happy to accommodate!  That memory will go down as one of the funniest.” --Severina O., @gabriisle    “On the side of the road, on a backstreet, in the middle of nowhere Staten Island. It. Was. Weird. AND it was a blowout.” ---Charlotte B.K., @charlotteblakekaplan    “In the bathroom on the train from Rye, NY to Manhattan.  No changing tables, so [I] had to do it standing up.  Best part? I didn't realize until after the [poopy] diaper change that they don't have trash cans on the train and I didn't have a plastic bag. #success” --Jessica G., @taavi_village    “Well I have definitely changed diapers in many great locations but the best has to be in the middle of gay pride parade I was walking home from yoga and Laszlo had an up the back poop and I had to change him on a park bench while a dance party was in full action.” --Tara C., @thismamasoul     
Discover Which ToteSavvy Works Best For You (And Your Lifestyle)

Inside ToteSavvy

Discover Which ToteSavvy Works Best For You (And Your Lifestyle)

by Kara Neff on Aug 04, 2020
Remember those quizzes we used to take in old-school, authentic, glossy paper magazines that would tell us what kind of guy we were meant to be with, or what kind of career woman we would be? This post is a little bit like that--without the cheesy questions.  We all have a type--a mode of cooking, a ritual for bathing, a driving style. But what kind of mom are we? Each of us gravitates towards a certain type of style of parenting. In a way, it’s an extension of our past life, and the way we bring our interests that preceded having children into motherhood. And the best way to accommodate our lifestyle lies in finding the perfect bag--and bag organizer--that keeps it all together. Find your perfect fit for your lifestyle with the bags and organizers that seamlessly align with your parenting style. Full breakdown below!    photo credit @thatgirlgick Designer handbags are an investment, and one you likely don't want to shelve just because you're a mom. Your beautiful bag also deserves to be beautifully organized.  Pair ToteSavvy Deluxe or Original with the luxury handbag or your choosing. A few favorites include Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Dior.  (Designer tip: not only are they the perfect fit, they keep your bag lining looking untouched and totally pristine.)     photo credit: @jeneaeng From the beach to the park, and everywhere in between, we have the active mom covered. Adventure bags require max organization for the nuts, snack bars, and water bottles that need quick and easy grabbing. Fun fact: our mini organizer fits seamlessly into smaller bags and backpacks, too.  Pair a sporty backpack with ToteSavvy Mini. We love the Dagne Dover Dakota Backpack in size small or medium.      City dwelling requires major inventiveness and creativity when it comes to motherhood. Life is not just almost always on-the-go, it's almost always exclusively on foot. This lifestyle demands a special type of organization, and the ability to grab whatever you need in a New York minute. Our Original Organizer fits perfectly into an oversized tote so that whether over your shoulder or riding in your stroller, you can really grab-and-go.  Pair ToteSavvy Original with the MZ Wallace Metro Deluxe large tote. It's the perfect lightweight on-the-go bag for city dwellers.     The working mom needs a bag that does double-duty--something that works overtime to accommodate office life and mom life in equal balance. And though the juggle is real, the things in your bag don't need to be up in the air. Keep your life in perfect working order with the Deluxe Organizer, our interpretation of max organization that gives structure to even the craziest of days.  Pair ToteSavvy Deluxe with a sleek and stylish boss bag like the Rebecca Minkoff ‘Megan’ tote.       
What's in My Bag: Jenin Paradise

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What's in My Bag: Jenin Paradise

by ToteSavvy Team on Jul 21, 2020
Chicago-based mama, Jenin Paradise @mrsjeninparadise wasn't interested in going back to bulky diaper bags for baby number two. She opted to use her existing totes combined with a ToteSavvy insert to create the perfect baby bag.  Becoming a mom of two this past spring, 4 years later, I kind of had to get back into the rhythm of what it was going to be like to have a baby around again. We were definitely out of the diaper bag stage and I almost dreaded the thought of having to lug around a giant bag full of stuff. Because who wouldn’t when you have had the luxury of being able to use your handbags again?! I knew using a diaper bag was going be part of the gig and ToteSavvy has made that process pretty much seamless. I love that I can create my very own diaper bag by simply using one of my favorite tote bags that I love. The organization system makes life A LOT easier, allowing additional space for not only my personal things but also anything we might need for our four year old and extra sanitizing items we might need when we travel out of the house to keep us all safe + healthy! BABY Diapers   Wipes Aquaphor Bottle Hand Sanitizer / Disinfectant Wipes (we all use these and I also bring along a mini travel Lysol) Milk Snob Cover  Swaddle Soft Toy Pacifier Bib  Burp Cloth Extra Outfit / Sun Hat  FOUR YEAR OLD Water Bottle Snacks Face Mask Extra Clothes  FOR ME: Medela Pump + equipment (yes it fits, woo hoo!) Chapstick Keys Wallet  Sunglasses  Sunscreen (for all of us) Face Mask Even with all of these things, I still have plenty of room. So, on days we plan to go to my families pool — I will throw in swimsuits + swim diapers for the kiddos and my swimsuit / cover up. 
#BossMom Spotlight: Eli Yonas, founder of Toki Mats

Inside ToteSavvy

#BossMom Spotlight: Eli Yonas, founder of Toki Mats

by ToteSavvy Team on Jun 30, 2020
Eli Yonas came up with the idea for her much-loved Toki Mats while on maternity leave with her second baby. Now as a mom of (almost) three, she manages her family, a full-time career in tech and her own business. We caught up with Eli to learn more about Toki Mats and gain some insights into how she does it all.  First, tell us a bit about how the business got started.  I came up with the idea on maternity leave with my daughter in the summer of 2016, and spent my leave doing all the research, product testing, and business foundation. After returning back to my day job, I slowly continued to work on Toki during nights and weekends. We finally launched our site on Small Business Saturday in November 2017 Do you ever think about focusing on Toki full-time? In addition to Toki, I currently work full-time in Partnerships at Facebook. I'm actually planning on using this upcoming maternity leave to launch our newest collection! While sometimes I wish I could work on Toki full time, I'm grateful for a job I like that allows me to invest back into the company to grow it and reach more families. It's also a great exercise in focusing on what will really make a difference with our product and customers since my time is so limited. Toki Mat designs always stand out! Do you design the patterns? Where do you find inspiration? Thank you! For all our patterns since we launched, I source the designs from fabric makers across the U.S. I go to fabric shows (usually with a baby in tow!) and have partnerships with fabric factories nationwide. It's fun to "shop" for fabric designs to use, and I always make sure to pick a diverse selection that will still be appealing for the modern and style-focused mom. For our newest collection (14 designs launching in July!), I am doing something completely new! I collaborated with artists and graphic designers to make exclusive Toki prints. I'm SO excited about them! Each artist's collection is true to their style and talent, while remaining on-brand for Toki to provide modern and beautiful play mat designs. Thee new collection has been nearly a year in the making, and we are so close to launching! We love that the company uses all non-toxic materials in making the mats. How important is sustainability to your overall mission? Super, super important. I spent the first year just doing research on sustainable materials and practices. Ultimately, I ended up using materials that have never been used in the play mat space, but are taking off in the adult mattress industry. From a values perspective, if I was going to be adding a new product to people's homes, it couldn't be anything less than 100% non-toxic and safe. We know first-hard how difficult it is to juggle running a business and family life. Can you share your tips for how to best manage it all? First, admitting that I don't do it perfectly. It would just be impossible. Second, is recognizing that that's OK. Lowering my expectations of myself in all areas (work, family, etc) allows me to be more forgiving when things aren't perfect (and they never are!). My motto has been to just take it one step forward every day, big or small, and that's what's gotten Toki to the place it is now. On any given day, what do you pack in your ToteSavvy? Now that I'm expecting baby #3 (right around the corner!) I'm so happy to have a ToteSavvy already packed in my hospital bag to be fully prepared. I have diapers and wipes of course, pacifiers (multiple to make sure the babe takes one!), my nursing must-haves especially for the newborn phase, a change of clothes (or two) for those inevitable blowouts, my baby wrap that I can't live without, and a swaddle. that gets thrown in my purse where I have my own essentials, and I'm all set!
Your Packing List for Safe Outings

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Your Packing List for Safe Outings

by Lauren Kutting on Jun 22, 2020
Venturing out of the house these days is no easy task. Quick trips requiring just your wallet, phone, and keys are practically non-existent. As we learn how to safely be in public, especially when bringing children along, there are a few must-have items to ensure you won't be putting yourself at risk.  Now, more than ever, it's important to have a well-stocked bag––filled with the essentials you know you'll need (even for a quick trip outside). ToteSavvy comes in handy keeping your essentials organized and in place so you don't have to fumble through your bag looking for the hand sanitizer.  WHAT TO PACK FOR SAFE OUTINGS Cloth masks - for yourself and your children (assuming they're of age to wear a mask) Hand sanitizer - a new must for leaving the house. Don't forget!  Water bottles - bringing water with you will eliminate the need to buy a bottle of water or find a drinking fountain (which most likely has shut off for safety anyway) Snacks - another good thing to have on-hand to avoid going into a store if you don't need to Wet wipes - always handy, even though they don't disinfect. You could easily swap these for Clorox wipes for surfaces, too! Sunscreen - for those  just in case moments when you get caught in the sun. Lip balm - a must for anyone who hates the feeling of dry lips! Our "safe outing" packing list can be adapted based on your needs and the ages of your kids (if you have them). If you have an infant, add in diapers, a bottle, teethers, and any other item you find essential. If you're packing for just yourself, consider downsizing to ToteSavvy Mini if you feel you don't need so much room.    ToteSavvy is extra helpful in that each item has its own pocket. You can designate a pocket for your clean cloth masks and another for your used masks. After removing your masks to wash, simply wipe the pocket with a disinfectant wipe to ensure it's clean and ready for next time.  Looking for a bag to fit ToteSavvy? Take a look through our handbag recommendations perfect for our inserts.       
Tips to Getting Your Nursery Ready

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Tips to Getting Your Nursery Ready

by ToteSavvy Team on Jun 15, 2020
Getting your nursery set-up just right can be exciting, yet also overwhelming. We turned to organizational expert, Lisa Jacobs from Imagine it Done for her tips on setting up your space for your newest arrival just right! Whether you are a first-time parent or expecting another, getting ready for the baby's arrival will be a life-changing, exciting experience. With so many changes to internalize over the 9+ months of pregnancy, the tasks for preparation can be as daunting as it is thrilling. Aside from the health and wellness factors, there are logistic decisions to consider in creating the nursery; the layout, decor, and of course the essential tools. Selecting from the latest and greatest products to make this chapter in your life thrilling and peaceful can be potentially overwhelming.   We typically see that soon-to-be parents are quick to buy clothing and decorative accessories before they consider the space, the furniture, and essentials for the nursery. Here at Imagine it Done, we urge you to carefully review the layout of the room for the placement of the crib, changing table, glider, side table, lighting, shelves, and of course the closet or armoire. Once the space is ready you will be calmer and at peace as you prepare for your little one’s arrival. You will take comfort in knowing that you and your baby will have a functional, playful, and safe nursery.   At Imagine It Done, our clients rely on us to guide them through this thrilling chapter, from conception to delivery. We provide essential information including a detailed list of organizational tips, products, and a large dose of comfort. I am a mom of 3 children. I too understand the fears, joys, and rewards experienced, especially during the first few years of the baby's life. In fact, I am, 34 years later happily involved in their grown-up lives.  It is so important to never forget how quickly time passes. In making their first home safe, functional, and peaceful these rules of order will undoubtedly impact them for a lifetime. An organized space is an organized mind is an organized life! Here are some tried and true Imagine It Done tips and tricks for getting the nursery ready: Choose a crib that will grow with the baby and can be lowered as the baby gets more mobile.  Blackout shades are a must to ensure the baby's room is dark for daytime naps. If installed shades are too much of an investment, temporary blackout shades will do the trick.  Invest in a changing table that serves as a dresser as well. Make space on the tabletop next to the cushion for go-to baby changing supplies. Be smart in setting up the baby’s closet to maximize space for a growing child. Invest in Elfa system shelving and baskets. This is the perfect, cost-effective solution to maximize vertical space and accommodate all clothing plus the supplies. Always leave room among the sections of the closet for future clothes as the baby continues to grow! Invest in Baby hangers. This will streamline the overall look of the closet and maximize hanging space. Choose a hypoallergenic rug. This provides the perfect surface where the baby can crawl and play. Add floating shelves for books and photos instead of a bulky bookshelf. Choose a rocker/ glider that coordinates with your decor and make sure it is the proper size for the room. How to properly set up the changing table: Top Drawer: diapers, wipes, and extra essential supplies (creams, thermometer, nail clipper, brush, medicines, etc).  Middle Drawer: rolled casual/everyday baby clothes (onesies, PJs), bibs & burping cloths.  Bottom Drawer: folded linens, swaddles & blankets.  Keep diaper pails and hamper on the side of the changing table to easily discard diapers and clothing without leaving the baby's side. For more tips and tricks to organizing your space, be sure to check out Imagine it Done online and instagram!
What's in my Bag - Charmaine Dulak

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What's in my Bag - Charmaine Dulak

by ToteSavvy Team on Jun 01, 2020
Fashion has always been important to Charmaine Dulak (@charmainedulak), which is why when she became a mom, keeping her personal style was a non-negotiable. Find out what this mama of one keeps in her bag on any given day.  Motherhood has really taught me a lot, especially to always be prepared. My diaper bag is super important to me and it's always jam packed with all the goods we could possibly need. Even if we're just out for a shopping trip, I tend to pack as though we could get stranded somewhere for a day or two. (That's normal right? No? Just me? haha okay.) To help organize my bag, I use the Totesavvy organizer. I've been using Totesavvy for two years now and no regrets here! I absolutely love how everything has its own place. It makes things easy to find, I mean who wants to be digging in their bag when in a rush, right? Also, I love the fact that I can easily switch my bags with Totesavvy. Simply slip the organizer out and put in a different bag, and boom, you have a new diaper bag! What's in my diaper bag? - Diapers + Wipes - Emergency Kit - Boogie Wipes - WetOnes - Tissue - Extra Outfit - Wet bag - Sippy cup with water - Juice box + Granola bar - Reusable silicone straw - Cetaphil lotion - Hello Bello Hand sanitizer - Baby Aquaphor - Babyganics sunscreen - Wallet + Keys + Hairtie See how satisfying that looks? So organized and the blush color totally matches the interior of my bag. Totesavvy organizers are available in a variety of beautiful colors and sizes so you can easily match it with your bags. Also comes with a changing pad that's slim (doesn't take up much room at all in your bag) and is super easy to clean! Featured is my Louis Vuitton Neverfull MM with the Totesavvy organizer in the original size. I highly recommend this organizer to anybody. Remember, mom, but make it fashion.
Female-Run Businesses to Support During Qurantine and After

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Female-Run Businesses to Support During Qurantine and After

by Kara Neff on May 11, 2020
In a weird turn of events, the more time we have at home, the less time we feel like we actually have. There’s something tricky about managing the balance of working from home, and it’s more precarious than a high-wire act. It’s perilous, yes, but it’s completely, wholly mentally taxing, too. All day our minds and bodies are working overtime to accommodate our never-ending to-do lists, now longer than ever before. And at nights, rarely sleeping well, we’re consumed with the weight of the world--also in a way like never before.  Quarantine has felt like a bit of time warp. Inside all day, we have so much to do, but nowhere to go. The effect is a bit unsettling, but it also has us searching for things to do. Because as much work as we have to do right now--not to mention parenting, teaching, cooking, and the list, as we know, goes on--we’re eager for distractions, and seeking any remnant of our past life to fill the day. If we’re learning anything through this new process, it’s that there’s truly no time like the present--no time like now to find a new hobby, to try something you’ve always wanted to, or to tackle that project that’s been nagging at you for years. And with that, we’re so excited to present to you a healthy list of female-led companies making our quarantine experience a little more bearable. You’re going to want to keep reading…  FEEL THE FLOW with a FENG SHUI CONSULTATION  There’s nothing quite like being in your home 24/7 to make you realize there’s a lot you want to do to your home--like make it flow, comfortably. A Feng Shui from The Sanus Home expert can give you hand.  FEEL STRONG with PERSONAL TRAINING SESSIONS We all miss going to the gym, but luckily we can still get personal. Training sessions, that is, via video, thanks to the sweetly militant trainer we all need in our lives right now: Sara Titone, owner and founder of SET Movement. FEEL MOTIVATED with WORKING MOMS COACHING AND SUPPORT Have we ever been more reflective on our life and our needs than now? Probably not. Rachel B Garrett Coaching harnesses our greatest goals and desires and helps make them real, tangible things, so that we can come out on the other side in the form of our brightest, strongest selves.  FEEL COORDINATED with VIRTUAL ERGONOMICS AND WELLNESS The way you sit while working greatly impacts your efficiency levels and general productivity, not to mention your overall comfort, and subsequently, your mood. Everything’s connected, so make sure your furniture is top-notch--Marka Health is here to help with that.  FEEL SWEET with COOKIE DECORATING KITS - kids Sweetology is typically our go-to source for birthday parties, classes, and events. And now more than ever, their at-home delivery of DIY-decorating kits has proven the perfect stay-at-home activity for the whole family.  FEEL PRETTY with VIRTUAL MAKEUP CONSULTATIONS  Connecting over video, Amanda Thesen Beauty allows you to take self-care while at home to another level. Enjoy 50-minute consultation about whatever you need most: makeup must-haves, skincare questions, how to use your products, and more.  FEEL SEEN with PREGNANCY AND POSTPARTUM SUPPORT  Being pregnant or a new mom can feel entirely overwhelming right now for any number of reasons. But with the support of Poppy Seed Health--the app giving you digital access to nurses and doulas for 24/7 guidance and care--means you’ll never feel in the dark, even when you’re stuck in your house.  FEEL REJUVENATED with NEW RITUALS  Kat Schneider built Ritual on the foundation of health--something that begins and ends with ingredients you can trust. And given the current climate, there’s no time like the present to re-examine your daily rituals, and dial in on what you need most.  FEEL LIKE FAMILY with SNUGGLE ESSENTIALS  Primary is the coveted line of kids’ essentials that makes every day--even days in quarantine--a little bit easier. Founders Christina Carbonell and Galyn Bernard get major bonus points for the enviable comfort factor each of their pieces maintains, an attribute that’s perfect for movie night (which, currently, is every night).  FEEL COZY with a BEDDING UPDATE  No matter what quarantine looks like for you, there’s something about knowing our beds have reached max comfort levels that brings us a new level of contentment with our space. Enter Parachute Home, the brainchild of Ariel Kaye, and never look back.  FEEL REVITALIZED with REFINED ROUTINES  Our daily routines may have been upended, but that doesn’t mean our skincare routines need to follow suit. Maelove is the science-backed skincare you’ve been waiting for, and the perfect complement to days and nights spent indoors. In theory, more time at home means more time for self-care… right?  FEEL HOMEY with SWEET SCENTS Abigail Cook Stone: Otherland Abigail Cook Stone introduced Otherland, the toxin-free candle collections, in 2017. From the start, Otherland was our go-to for gifting--the perfect birthday, engagement, host, and housewarming gift. Today, it’s the thing that’s keeping our house feeling like a home, and smelling sweeter than ever.  FEEL BEAUTIFUL with MEANINGFUL SPARKLES  If we’ve learned anything during our time spent at home, it’s that family is everything. Plus, there’s definitely something to be said about feeling pretty, even in your favorite sweat set. Maya Brenner’s meaningful collection of personalized jewelry helps us see the light--in more ways than one. And, customized necklaces, earrings, and more means we can really show the ones we love how much we care--now, and after quarantine too.  FEEL RELAXED with CREATURE COMFORTS We know and love Jenni Kayne for her streamlined aesthetic that knows a thing or two about essential comfort. Be it home or apparel, her collections always embrace the philosophy that we feel our best when we’re our most comfortable. So it’s no wonder that now, more than ever, we’re shopping her incredible line of must-haves.
How to Host a Virtual Baby Shower

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How to Host a Virtual Baby Shower

by Lauren Kutting on May 04, 2020
When I offered to throw my sister-in-law a baby shower for her sweet baby girl I had no idea we’d be swapping our girls luncheon for a virtual gathering. While I watched my typical party-throwing playbook fly out the window, my biggest concern was how I would make the event feel special without the flowers, fun banners and themed cupcakes. More importantly, how was I going to recreate the energy that comes with women coming together, physically, to celebrate the mom-to-be? Through a little research and the help of some fantastic Etsy shops, I was able to pull together a thoughtful shower to celebrate both mom and baby. I’m excited to share my tips for pulling off a virtual shower that doesn’t disappoint.   Pick an online hosting platform like Zoom, Google Hangouts, or Skype.  I chose Zoom out of comfort and ease. These days, through business calls and homeschooling, most people have used the platform and are familiar with how it works. Plan the flow of the shower You’ll want to give guests something to do throughout the shower like playing games, chatting with mom-to-be, or watching her open gifts. I chose to play two guessing games (The Price is Right and Guess How Many) along with Bingo as our mom-to-be opened her gifts. We also scheduled time for open conversation at the beginning and end of the shower. I highly recommend having a few talking points ready in case there’s an awkward silence. Choose your activities/games and prizes I chose three games to play and purchased templates from Etsy so the games looked cohesive with the theme of the shower. When you’re unable to decorate with balloons, flowers, and more, you can still add little details that help it feel like a special event. More on that later!  You can either email everyone their game cards or print and mail them to each guest. Depending on the level of safety you’re optimizing for you may want to email the cards and have everyone print their own.  For prizes, I chose digital gift cards from giftcards.com that I easily emailed to the winners after the shower.  Create a custom background (if using Zoom) The lack of an actual venue makes an event less appealing than most so to create a little fun you can create a custom background and send it to everyone to use during the shower. Etsy again is a great place to find backgrounds or have one custom made for you. Because of quarantine, this is now a thing.  Send invitations and a rundown of the event at least 3-weeks in advance Use a service like Evite or Paperless Post to send invitations for the shower. Let guests know the event will take place online and forward to more details to come closer to the date. To build excitement, think about telling guests about a game or two you plan to play and that you’ll have mom-to-be opening gifts live. It’s nice to give everyone a heads up as well so they can plan to send a gift that can be opened. Make sure everyone is aware of where to send gifts (to mom-to-be) so there’s no confusion. Send a reminder email 24 - 48 hours before the shower This is the time to give everyone the link to the virtual shower and explain how to use the platform for anyone who’s unfamiliar. Sending this email a day or two in advance allows guests to download the platform app or familiarize themselves with it.  In your email be sure to include your custom background (if using) and instructions for how to upload it and access it during the shower. It does take a little time to set this up for anyone unfamiliar with Zoom but totally worth it when you see the end result.  Send mom-to-be flowers the day of her shower As a sweet gesture, send mom-to-be flowers that arrive on the day of the shower. She’ll feel extra special looking at her beautiful stems during the event, making all of this feel a little more normal.  Give guests a 10-minute buffer before you begin As the host, make sure you’re logged in on-time and ready to start chatting with guests as they arrive (virtually). Give around 10-15 minutes of time before you jump into the first activity allowing everyone to sign on and get settled. During this time have a few talking points ready to fill any awkward silences.  Open gifts during the shower  Virtual showers are immediately less personal than an in-person event so think about having the mom-to-be open her gifts live in front of her guests. We played Bingo while gifts were opened adding a fun element. Thank everyone for coming and being flexible!  In a time when we’re all craving in-person connection, thank everyone (including mom-to-be) for being flexible and open to a virtual event. These are crazy times and we could all use a little appreciation. 
Mother’s Day Gifts We Love From Women We Love

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Mother’s Day Gifts We Love From Women We Love

by Kara Neff on Apr 27, 2020
Get an idea or two from our top wish list picks for this Mother’s Day. Mother’s Day shouldn’t just be a day of recognition and appreciation, it should be a day of empowerment. Women supporting women--and, where we can, mothers supporting mothers-- is our favorite way of raising one another up, especially on the day we get to call our own.  Because while breakfast in bed is great, something about a gift made or created by another woman is even better. This Mother’s Day put the gifts that matter on your wishlist. We’ve put a few of our favorites for your consideration below.    1. Purlisse Cosmetics Jennifer Yen is the founder and CEO of this thoughtfully curated collection of skincare products. Inspired by her Asian heritage, Yen created a line of products that blend modern science with ancient wisdom. The result? A glowing complexion (even after a sleepless night, which, even on Mother’s Day, is a real possibility).    2. Sakara Sakara was founded by two incredible women that came to the realization that, when you treat food as medicine, your body will respond in incredible ways. Featuring a good and good-for-you menu of inspired meals, plus a Clean Boutique with everything from granola, to detox water drops, and probiotics, too, Sakara is an amazing gift for mothers in a multitude of ways. For days where you prioritize everyone but yourself, Sakara’s no-brainer meal delivery service makes it easy to remember that indulging in good, nourishing food is the fastest way to nourishing your soul and spirit and replenishing your body’s essential nutrients.   3. Sweet Loren’s  Anyone else have a sweet tooth like us? If you’re sheepishly nodding at your screen, meet Sweet Loren’s, the gluten-free and non-GMO treats that leave us feeling a little less guilty about our favorite indulgences.   4. Lake Pajamas  Show Mother’s Day your soft side with the gift that perfectly complements breakfast in bed, or your most relaxing mornings. Lake Pajamas are the perfect accessory for lounging around and may turn bedtime into your favorite part of the day (if it isn’t already).    5. Banner Day  It’s no secret that, most days, we’re living in a t-shirt. But this Mother’s Day, don’t hesitate to add a bit of luxury to your closet. Banner Day blends a mix of east coast with west coast, and turns an effortless t-shirt into an outfit that’s totally fun.   6. Daydream Weaver  If jewelry is more your thing, opt for something that’s totally unique. Daydream Weaver is made for the modern girl, and founder and creator Sara Titone weaves a little magic into the perfect pairings for date night, coffee runs--or even Mother’s Day brunch. 
The Virtual Baby Shower Gift Guide

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The Virtual Baby Shower Gift Guide

by Kara Neff on Apr 13, 2020
Our favorite gifts to send when you can't be there in person As baby showers are being moved from in-person celebrations to virtual affairs, there is still a running list of things that the mom-to-be in your life needs. Let's face it, quarantine or not, that baby is coming.  Essentials can mean a little something different for everyone. But what really matters is what makes the new mom feel her best. Use this list as a guide for the things that might have missed the baby registry--but will certainly be appreciated. ToteSavvy Gift Sets At ToteSavvy, it’s our brand’s mission to simplify your hectic lives. This is why we created not just the ToteSavvy, but these thoughtfully curated Infant Gift Sets, too. Packed with true essentials, you’ll unlock a world of tiny treasures--like an organic cotton sleeper, the coveted Sophie La Giraffe, and so much more. Each piece has been thoughtfully picked to keep time at home with a newborn as easy as possible.  Meal Delivery Eating may seem like a no-brainer, but when you’re a new parent, sometimes the only person you’re thinking about feeding is the thing you just baked for nine months. So one of the best gifts for a fresh mom is a meal delivery service, and ideally, one that keeps her immunity up, helping her to heal faster--and feel like her best self. Plus, when going to the grocery store isn’t an option, meal deliveries work two-fold to keep you healthy.  Diaper Subscription  Diapers aren’t simply an absolute necessity, they’re also expensive, and something that constantly needs replenishing. To further simplify things for the new mama in your life, get her a diaper subscription. She’ll thank you for having one less thing to think about, and she’ll be especially grateful for at-home deliveries when she’s stuck at home in quarantine, too.  Guava Lotus Travel Crib  Even if traveling the world with a little one isn’t on her agenda (which is most certainly the case for everyone right now), new moms will love the Lotus Travel Crib by Guava. Not only is it dummy-proof (it’s super easy to pack and unpack), but you’ll also probably use it way more than you think--like as a baby bassinet for those first few months they’ll be in your bedroom, or as a playpen for the living room so you can have eyes on them while you cook or fold laundry.  A Boppy Pillow  Similar to the travel crib, the Boppy Pillow packs way more versatility than you’d expect from its little size and is ideal for time spent at home. Mom can use it as it’s originally intended (a nursing pillow), then as baby grows it can be used as soft structure to support baby while sitting up and playing.  Blackout Curtains  One of the most important first steps in becoming a new mother is setting a routine for your new baby, and the best way to do that is by setting the mood. Blackout curtains will set the scene for bedtime, especially for any summer babies that get daylight until 9pm, or intrusive streetlights that never turn off. If you're unsure of the aesthetic of baby's nursery, you can find blackout curtain liners that attach to most curtains.  Extra Large Water Bottle  New moms, especially those that breastfeed, are told to imbibe a lot of water. And no matter what, hydration is essential. The best solution? Keeping a filled water bottle with you at all times, like this one--which is easy to open (and does so quietly, without a squeaky or cumbersome lid). This gift is perfect in times where mom and baby are at home, and the most travel they're doing is from room to room, she’ll find this is an easy option for staying hydrated while roaming the house.  Sweatpants Birthing a child is a full-body experience--one that is beautiful yet exhausting. Pair that with sleepless nights and new, around-the-clock expectations, and the thought of putting on a pair of jeans (if they even fit), is completely out of the question. Every new mom should have a pair of comfy, cozy sweatpants on hand. Bonus points if they’re cute because she’ll be living in them for a while. Our recommendation: embrace it!  Sound Machine  Sound machines aren’t just for blocking out auxiliary noise that might wake baby, they're also excellent at soothing them. Plus, it’s another amazing way to set the mood for bedtime, creating the building blocks for new nighttime routines. Mom and dad-to-be will continue to thank you for this gift as it continues to keep bedtime under control for years.   Bottle of Champagne or Wine (or Sushi) A nice basket compilation featuring their favorite pre-pregnancy indulgences isn’t just thoughtful, it may just be deemed essential as well! But when takeout or a trip to the liquor store is out of the question, consider meal delivery services that will keep you well-fed, like UberEats, Seamless, GrubHub, Doordash, and Caviar. As for wine… Plonk Wine Club delivers organic wines right to your door, making us think maybe quarantine isn’t so bad.  
What's in my ToteSavvy -  Hillary Folkvord

Inside ToteSavvy

What's in my ToteSavvy - Hillary Folkvord

by ToteSavvy Team on Apr 06, 2020
Hillary Folkvord (@hillaryfolkvord) has been using ToteSavvy since her first born was an infant. As her daughter grew, so did the contents of her bag. Her family recently went from three to four and her use for ToteSavvy has changed yet again. Read on to see how this mama of two under two packs her bag.  Since becoming a mom of two this year, my organization skills have gone to the next level. Before having children, I never fully understood the need for a dedicated diaper bag. I would see mothers hauling around oversized bags, and wonder what could be in there. But after becoming a mother, I now understand babies do need a lot of stuff. The Totesavvy original actually was one of my first purchases, with the hope to organize my tote, but to also save the interior of my bag with all the mess that comes along with babies. I’ve also realized, in order to get out of the house on time, my diaper bag must always have the essentials. My two-year-old is finally out of diapers (halleluiah), however we are back in the diaper phase with our newborn. I also like to take the minimalist approach to packing for two. FOR OUR NEWBORN Diapers Travel Wipes Disposable Changing Pads Sanitizing Wipes Hand Sanitizer Lip & Cheek Balm 5 in 1 Cover Swaddle Pacifier Baggie for dirty clothes Back up onesie FOR OUR 2 YEAR OLD Snack / water bottle Colorless Markers Amazon Kindle Fire I aim to have at least one diaper for every 1.5 hours and a couple of extras…things happen. Babyganics makes a 40-count wipes package, the perfect size and not too heavy. I love the Babyganics sanitizer wipes  Perfect for wiping hands, faces, and other surfaces you know your kids will touch. Disposable changing pads are key. How gross the changing pad surfaces can be. Hand sanitizer, this is must with a newborn. I love this brand, it’s a clean hand sanitizer version. Lip balm, I love the brand Erbaviva  It’s my go to for both kids. I like this 5 in 1 cover. We put it over our son’s infant car seat, and I use it to nurse in public. Swaddles  these come in so handy. They are lightweight, not bulky, and great to layer on baby. Pacifier, yes I am a binky mom, love this brand. Extra baggie for soiled clothes. We all know blowouts will happen, and extra baggie is great for these situations. Back up clothes always! For our toddler, she is definitely getting easy to go out with. Snacks are everything! I carry Puffs  Bars, and a banana. We also love this water bottle. She loves to color and I love the colorless markers. No mess. And for emergencies, I carry our Amazon fire kindle. There are a few movies downloaded and the Disney Color game she loves. 
quarantine tool kit for moms

Inside ToteSavvy

The How-To's for Getting Through Quarantine

by Kara Neff on Apr 02, 2020
An exclusive look at how moms around the country are getting it done (and how you can, too).  Quarantinis aside, there are close to a million ways you can get through your shelter in place. And though a cocktail helps, it’s the times where you’re in the thick of your inbox, your kids are climbing all over you, you’ve already succumbed to letting them watch their third episode of YouTube trash, and you’ve relinquished your will, committing to sweatpants for the third (fifth?) day in a row. When you look up, you realize it’s barely 9:30am, and you’re wondering how in the hell you’re going to get through another day.  In a weird way, quarantine has felt strangely familiar. It’s like a longer, more drawn out, and much more stressful newborn period. The days blend together, time seems to lack any type of structure, and you’ve forgotten when you showered last. With no place to go, and a seemingly endless to-do list, we’ve been sequestered inside. In the not-too-distant past, days spent at home, together, may have seemed like a dream. Maybe it’s the anarchist in each of us that wants to buck the system--is it just because we’re being told what to do and how to do it that makes this so unbearably hard?  Actually, no. It’s the fact that we’ve just been asked to become teachers, parents, therapists, yoga instructors, and, for most of us, bosses or employees. It’s never been more clear than now that work life and home life are distinctly separate for a reason. In this current climate, we’re being asked to be everything simultaneously, a feat that is not only completely, irrefutably difficult--it’s impossible. And that’s not cynicism, it’s just a fact. We can’t be everything at once. Put simply, we have but 1 mind, 2 hands, and 24 hours. No matter how you slice it, things at present are challenging, to say the very least.  But every cloud has its silver lining, and if we’ve learned anything from this, it’s that community is paramount to getting through. For you, even just reading this means that you’ve enveloped yourself in the warm embrace of someone that, albeit digitally, gets it. Even better, we just pooled our rockstar mama resources to bring you the full monty: the most insightful Quarantine Survival Guide to date. From this point forward, fear not. When you’re feeling down and out, this list is here to help you find the light.  FOR THE MAMAS (AND PAPAS) From Elizabeth A (@trustle_): I am a child psychologist by training and am the founder of a parent support organization called Trustle.  We are currently offering 1:1 parent support sessions to help parents manage this difficult time, discuss ways they can support their children, and help them design a schedule and distance learning/play/connection routine that works for their individual family.  You can learn more here.  From Tara (@thismamasoul): We are offering free prenatal/ postpartum yoga streaming and have a beautiful bookstore online. We also sell the amazing CBD salve for all the pains and stiffness of being stuck at home.  From Lauren K (@totesavvy) Working from home is always challenging. Adding a house full of kids, pets, and a significant other just adds to the noise and stress levels. On top of our normal workload, we're also expected to play the role of teacher, make meals, sanitize everything that comes inside our home, along with a laundry list (oh yea... laundry 😒) of other things on a daily basis. Personally, I felt overwhelmed 5 minutes into our shelter in place order. Each day has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride but I've learned a few little tricks to help bring some normalcy back and get myself through each day. If you don't have a quiet area to get work done, put in headphones and blast your favorite playlist for an hour or so while you concentrate on one task at a time. For me, music can be inspiring and helps me focus. Hearing my children fight with one another, on the other hand, is not. P.S. If turning the TV on for an hour lets you have this time to yourself, do it! Get on a homeschooling schedule. Our 1st grader is given worksheets to complete weekly. I print them all out and divide them among file folders labeled with the day of the week. She knows she has to finish those worksheets before she can watch TV or play on her iPad. It gives her the flexibility to choose when she wants to sit down and do schoolwork while also enforcing that she does have to participate in learning daily. Make sure you're making time for yourself. No matter what, you need to prioritize yourself at some point during the day to ensure your mental health is not overlooked. From Amanda W (@amandapanda_abracadabra): On Self-Care: This might sound silly, but my husband and I have been going to bed EARLIER and waking up earlier. I'm so exhausted at the end of the day with full-time parenting and trying to run our business, I feel like I don't even really enjoy running a bath or a movie at night after the kids go to bed because I'm physically tapped out and just thinking I'll have to do it all over again the next day! I have been waking up early to give myself more time, and have been taking my morning coffee out to a lounge chair (I'm literally in my bathrobe, this is not fancy) and I take a big blanket and just enjoy some fresh air, REAL quiet (there are hardly any planes flying overhead, and everyone in the neighborhood is at home and sleeping in), and mentally get ready for my day.  In the mornings, I have been doing the following after getting out of bed and drinking some water: a short meditation, 5 minutes of journaling, 10 sun salutations, and having my coffee with either just silence with hubby or a good book. It's been amazing! Going for a run - it's a safe way to be socially distancing! I also imagine 'running away' from the virus, this weird new reality, and anything else that's bugging me (is that weird? probably). On Beauty (Haha): I don't dye my hair yet, but I have been getting regular eyelash extension treatments for years, as well as eyebrow treatments to make those bad boys fluffy and filled in. Now I basically look tired. I am using this time to grow everything [out]: I ordered lash and brow serums, and I'm also trying to 'train' my hair a bit more to be washed fewer times in a week.  I get my exercise clothes out, clothes for the day after I've exercised and washed my body, and set out everything around my Riki mirror (what a major purchase that was for me!) to do a bit of makeup in the morning - that is the main beauty thing I'm doing to make me feel human every day, act like I'm going somewhere! That includes putting on nice jewelry too - why not? From Melissa R (@melissarosenfield): For hair color: I ordered clear gloss from Target (Kristen Ness) because my colorist said it will enhance my color and add shine without changing my balayage and probably the lowest risk until we can color again.  For skincare: Still using sunblock because of all the blue light and large windows.  For working out when it isn't an option: Obe, Bala wrist/ankle weights as I clean around the house and using my 6-month-old as a barbell.  For reading: Audible and real books which means I am not on the computer or watching TV all day which is helping my brain.  From Kelsey S: (@shopmilimili) 3x a week Zoom happy hours with friends once the kids go to bed. Some are game night themed, some are digital book or movie clubs, some are just chances to gripe with my best friends about how shitty this all is. But it's nice to have human connection outside of our house, and I'm finding I’m seeing and talking to my out of state friends more often than I did before Covid. From Tara C (@thismamasoul) On the hair side!!  Art and Autonomy is making hair color delivery. I have a hair contact there, her name is Mary. You can send a photo of your hair and she will put together either a gloss or at home product.  Related, from another genius, Kaitlin Strobel: Reach out to your hairstylist to see if they can re-create your color and send it to you to do from home and help keep their small businesses afloat!  From Shea K: (@shea_kluender_) I like to use self-portraiture as a form of self-care. I lead with weekly creative prompts and supportive conversation, which could be a great resource to include in the survival guide for those seeking a down-to-earth artistic space. Mamas simply create a Pathwright account to log-on to the 2020 Self-Portrait Community virtual space from home - the weekly "lessons" and discussions are all online. This course regularly costs $30/month for unlimited content and community, but it will all be free the rest of the year in support of offering a resource to mother ourselves and each other during this crazy time.  From Misha V (@mishavayner) I’m a holistic health coach & wellness blogger that supports overwhelmed mamas in feeling their best without the stress. This has been a focus of mine always, but now more than ever.  My blog has tons of resources, such as my Busy Mama Cook Book & Mindful Mama Guide , & Self Care Tips , How to Support yourself during stressful times, natural ways to fall asleep, how to reach your health goals when you're exhausted, easy ways to quickly get nutrient-dense foods such as my top 3 vegan, delish, drinkable soups and on and on and on.  I send out weekly newsletters focused on this with relevant content! (Find her here!) Time blocking the calendar has been really helpful for me but my fave online offering at the moment [is] Kidville. My kids’ ages are 2, 3, and 6 and they have LOVED their content and classes. FOR THE KIDS FROM ALLI OF WILD CHILD GYM  (@wildchildgym) Wild Child Gym has been producing free classes and posting on YouTube. We’ve been getting amazing feedback and a following worldwide! The program is a combination of movement, skills, and activities like puppet shows and dance breaks meant for young children to be active while still providing content allowing their imaginations to flourish.  We are a small family business and our gorgeous studio is based in downtown Culver City, CA.  In addition to 2 episodes every week, we are posting mini videos with ideas for indoor play, like: three games to play using a blanket, fort building, and more! We are community-focused and have been sharing our ideas on stories to help keep little ones engaged. Like neighborhood walks with a purpose that turn into a fun activity, like rainbow hunts, texture hunts, and nature soup. We are organizing a community Easter egg (art) hunt. Kiddos are drawing Easter eggs and displaying them on front windows/doors and then we ride around the neighborhood to find the eggs. From Amanda W (@amandapanda_abracadabra) We put a whiteboard up in our kitchen, and after dinner each night we write down our schedule (loosely!) with our kids for the next day. What we are doing after breakfast, after lunch, what are we having for meals, etc., we pick baking projects or art projects for the afternoon after any classes or lessons, etc., and because my husband and I run a business together, that's a good time to discuss who's watching the kids at what time based on work, meetings etc. It is NOT very warm by us right now (we're in the UK) but we have a small back garden, and unless it's torrential rains, we are outside with our boys doing literally anything anytime we don't have an inside activity. Right now they are just loving taking things they don't normally take outside, outside (like books, mega blocks, their IKEA table and chairs to do coloring, etc.) Yoga videos together: for some reason, my kids love trying to do what we do - so we have been doing a ton of yoga videos online (literally anything) and then the game is copy! Forts: we have done indoor and outdoor forts, they take a good amount of time to set up and perfect, and then any activity inside seems more fun (most of the time). Last choice: movie (we try to find something like Wall-E, etc., where we can have fun watching but also talk about it afterward) From Melissa R (@melissarosenfield) To de-stress: Coloring with my babe. He likes to see what I am doing and it's literally the most relaxing activity. We have lots of coloring books but a few museums are putting coloring pages online that you can print of famous paintings. From Kelsey S (@shopmilimili) Khan Academy Kids - for my preschooler. She decided to stop napping during this whole thing (just icing on the quarantine cake), so I give her one hour of this learning game and she is obsessed. And I get to get some work done, or tend to baby, or prep dinner or whatever I can squeeze in.  From Lauren D: (@circletimefun) As far as classes go, I am using Circle Time, the company I work for. They have lots of classes so all three can take their own class or we all do a cooking class together. To be honest, once we do a couple of classes I feel less guilty about the IPAD ad Netflix time.  Benita G (@zesttorganics) This is a very small detail and probably sounds silly but the best piece of advice I've gotten is to start using a snack basket.  I have a 4-year old who loves her snacks. On the weekends we never really policed it but now that she is home all day, she was on a snack hunt every hour (or at least it felt that way)! We started with the basket last week and never looked back! I'm honestly surprised at how well she responded. I load it up with a few things every morning (fruit, crackers, cheese), put it in the refrigerator, and it is hers for the taking.  She knows the rules: (1) you can only have what is in the basket (no more asking for a million options), and (2) once it is empty, snacks are done for the day. It's made life so much easier! The first few days she cleaned it out entirely but the last two there have been a few leftovers. Again, super simple but definitely one less "thing" on my plate during this crazy time :)  FOR THE FAMILY  From Amanda W (@amandapanda_abracadabra) I have standing FaceTime and Zoom 'appointments' with family, my best childhood girlfriends, neighborhood mums, friends around the world that my husband and I socialize with, and former colleagues. It really helps to have these in your calendar to look forward to!  And finally - laughter really is the best medicine for everything. I have one of those husbands who uses any excuse to 'take the piss' and while I am usually the center of these jokes, I'm learning that just laughing and taking it easy/letting things just be funny because funny is so crucial right now, has been fantastic for lightening the burden and heaviness I've been feeling, worrying for my family, my parents, siblings and nephews, friends and loved ones all around the world. From Kelsey S:  Daily walks - we all get dressed like normal humans and go out for a 30-minute walk every morning. We see other people and say hi, enjoy the California sunshine, and we all feel so much better afterward (especially the dog). From Lauren D: As far as self-care, I am teaching my three littles (7,4 and 2) how to do dance cardio so I can get in my cardio and have a dance party with my kids. Also, they are learning the ways of face masks and mani-pedis.   This piece was written by the ToteSavvy team with love, but made possible by the HEYMAMA community, a huge resource for working moms--in quarantine and not. Make sure to share with other mamas in your life!
The 10 Essentials for Your Diaper Bag

Inside ToteSavvy

The 10 Essentials for Your Diaper Bag

by Kara Neff on Mar 22, 2020
Every must-have you never want to leave home without.  Perfecting your diaper bag packing list is an ongoing game of trial and error, and one that every mother is constantly scrutinizing. And not only is the reason that the list is long--like, crazy long--but more so that, as your baby grows, that list starts to evolve. And evolve. And evolve a little more, until you reach a point where things become vaguely familiar and a little bit comfortable. In a surprise to probably no one, it then evolves again. Between picky eaters, tantrum soothers, loveys they can’t live without, and every essential in between, we jam-packed our top must-haves into this top 10 list of diaper bag musts. Read it all here:      1. Nose Frida Don’t knock it ‘til you try it. This bad boy will save the day better than any nasal aspirator we’ve tried. And when your sick little babe can’t find any other form of relief, we’ll bet you’ll try anything you can to fix it too. (Hint: we never leave home without this one.)  2. The Medibuddy First-Aid Kit A first-aid kit might seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised at how hard they can be to fit into a diaper bag--until now. The Medibuddy First-Aid Kit packs everything you need into one easy, grab-and-go case that fits into even the tiniest of spaces--but that fits particularly well into a ToteSavvy pocket.  3. Dr. Bronner’s Organic Hand Sanitizer Spray  When you become a new mom, you discover pretty quickly that hand sanitizer is crucial to keeping your hands clean. And in spray form, Dr. Bronner’s made it easy (plus, the calming lavender scent makes every chaotic moment seem just a little bit easier to handle).  4. Organic Applesauce Pouches  Fruit pouches have fast become a mother’s best friend. And let it be known that applesauce in a pouch is absolutely no exception--especially these tasty and easy to grab-and-go options from Prince and Spring.  5. Muslin Swaddles A lightweight muslin swaddle is the greatest asset to any brand-new mom. Easy to roll up and stash into any bag, they serve as the perfect feeding time cover-up, lightweight blanket or swaddle for any chill, and a burp cloth or rag for any messes (and these ones get bonus points for getting softer with every wash).   6. Rags Onesie Ready to roll--literally--the Rags Henley Romper is an easy option for smartly bundling into your ToteSavvy (and available in sizes 3-6 months all the way up to 5-6 years).   7. Soft Hat  When the sun’s out, and shade is hard to find, a simple, soft, foldable hat that easily tucks away--but is just as easy to grab--is one essential we always like to have on our bag.  8. Solly Baby Wrap Solly Baby + Babylist just did the collaboration of our dreams: a lightweight, easy to fold up and go baby wrap that’s made from soft, sustainable fabric--and it’s never not in our bags. 9. Energy Super Bar In a world of many a sleepless night and days jam-packed with the tireless game that is motherhood, we’ll take the energy where we can get it. This Sakara Life energy bar just happens to be plant-based and particularly delicious (which we like to call a win, win).  10. Cutie Pat Flat Pacifier  Gaining mass recognition rather quickly, this pacifier was made for babies with and without teeth, meaning that it grows with them from infancy to toddler life. Plus, you won’t lose it because it fits into your ToteSavvy pockets like a charm. 
mz wallace totes

Inside ToteSavvy

Why We Love MZ WALLACE Totes

by Kara Neff on Mar 09, 2020
Plus every reason they make the perfect diaper bag when paired with ToteSavvy.  For lightweight functionality that goes the extra style mile, we turn to MZ Wallace, the brand whose signature quilted designs epitomize easy-going luxury. We’re huge fans of this light-as-air bag, and the totes that work just as well as our go-to purse, not to mention our favorite tote-turned-diaper bag. Which is exactly what we’re talking about today. Up ahead, get a sneak peek of all the ways we use our MZ Wallace bags, and every reason it’s ToteSavvy’s favorite must-have diaper bag.    KEEPS OUR LIVES TOGETHER  The ToteSavvy bag organizers are essential to motherhood as they’re built to keep everything you need on-the-go in one easy-to-find (and easier to reach) place. Built-in pockets and a thoughtful design simplifies even the most chaotic moments, and its consciously-created construction makes it the perfect fit for your MZ Wallace tote bag.  MEET YOUR MATCH THE BAG THAT CHECKS ALL OUR BOXES MZ Wallace’s signature quilted composition is the backdrop for our approval, replete with a million little boxes just waiting to be checked off. And though the reasons we love this brand abound, let’s start with a few that round out the top, including but not limited to the incredibly lightweight structure of their totes. For a diaper bag that’s sure to be packed to the brim with all of baby’s necessities, a sturdy, leather-enforced strap and lightweight feel is always top of mind, and this bag has both. Plus, its other signature, an easy-to-clean nylon material, makes wiping up messes all the easier. (And messes, as we know, will be plentiful.) When you’re not using your bag, it rolls up compactly thanks to its pliable, puffy shape. But the reason we love it most? Its modern-meets classic style has urban street cred, meaning you can keep your good style rolling into motherhood without ever blinking an eye. That is, after all, exactly why we created ToteSavvy. Cheers!  
What's in My Bag - ToteSavvy Founder Lauren Kutting

Inside ToteSavvy

What's in My Bag - ToteSavvy Founder Lauren Kutting

by Lauren Kutting on Mar 02, 2020
  Since launching ToteSavvy in 2014, the contents of my bag have dramatically changed. I remember as a new mom, I packed copious amounts of diapers and the largest pack of wet wipes one could find. My "diaper bag" was actually a small weekender with a ToteSavvy Original inside for extra organization. The pairing worked brilliantly!  Now that my kids older (4 and up), and potty trained **happy dance!**, I'm able to pare down my list of essentials and pack a somewhat minimalist bag that gets me through my daily routine with little fuss.  // WHAT'S INSIDE MY BAG //  wet wipes hand sanitizer  mineral sunscreen mini first aid kit chapstick + lipstick hand cream notebook highlighter + pen laptop snack bars x3 for the kids snack bar x1 for me sparkling water wallet / keys / phone      These are my absolute essentials that I make sure to have inside my ToteSavvy Deluxe at all times. Wet wipes, hand sanitizer, and a mini first aid kit are key for the ages of my kids. They seem to always have sticky or dirty hands and tend to need a bandaid more often than not. My beauty essentials are pretty pared down based on what I really use when away from home. Anything I don't use regularly is removed to make room for something more crucial. My work items are also minimal due to everything being digital these days. I do have a weakness for beautiful notebooks and prefer taking notes with pen and paper. Everything else is on my computer or phone. Snacks and sparkling water are other musts for my ToteSavvy. My kids always seem to be starving so packing snack bars for them is imperative. Anything to avoid hangry preschoolers!  Since the launch of ToteSavvy Deluxe, I've pretty much switched over to using Deluxe every day. I love having a dedicated space for my laptop and a pocket to keep my sparking water cool. It's also a perfect fit inside the Clare V. Simple Tote (pictured) and my MZ Wallace Metro Tote (large) which are my go-to bags at the moment. 
5 Steps to Cleaning Out Your Handbag

Inside ToteSavvy

5 Steps to Cleaning Out Your Handbag

by Kara Neff on Jan 20, 2020
The quick and easy steps to keep you totally organized for every season and every occasion.  Our bags are our life source--they hold it all together for us and keep us looking the part, too. But they can become overwhelmingly busy quickly so that we find ourselves in disarray. Amidst a flurry of old receipts, gum wrappers, lost mints, lost keys, lost pacifiers, bribery candy, loose change, lost hair ties (are we seeing a theme here?), and that chapstick we thought we’d never find again, it’s all too easy to forget that our bags are our most trusted allies--and the thing that carries us through life.  Up ahead, read the step by step guide to get down to the bottom of true organizational bliss.  THE STEPS  1. Empty the full contents of your bag onto the floor, laying it all out in front of you. Throw away trash, old receipts, old candy, etc. (and reference the above list for anything else that could possibly be caught in the abyss). 2. Think about only what you truly need inside your bag. Make sure that what remains are items that will be used daily (or even weekly)--nothing else. 3. Spread your ToteSavvy organizer open on the floor in front of you. Then, begin placing items on top of the pockets to best plan where they'll go, seeing what fits most intuitively to your frequency of use or item size.  4. Once pockets are planned, place your items inside their respective pockets and close your ToteSavvy. Make sure bulkier items aren't across from one another. More on how to pack without bulkiness in this video.    5. Slide your organized ToteSavvy inside your bag and it's ready to go! Keep your handbag tidy year-round by always putting items away in their proper pocket, and doing a monthly check to remove any unnecessary items.    ToteSavvy doesn’t just let us keep our sense of self. Slipping it into our favorite bags is just a really amazing perk. The real magic happens when we put it to use, letting this workhorse bag organizer do all the heavy lifting for an accessory that looks good and feels better. So take this opportunity to finally sift through all those lost and buried treasures at the bottom of your bag. The result: an essentials-only bag and the quickest route to a full-on organization that promises to keep your year in perfect balance.