post off: do you have a shoe rule in your house?

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With our tragic combo of white carpets and athletic kids, we had a firm “shoes off at the door” rule in my house growing up. Cleats, track spikes, heels, you name it; whatever we had on usually came off to prevent scuffing the floor and tracking dirt all over the house. We had a shoe bin where we’d toss them in the interim, and they’d only emerge if we were going back out, or if the dog missed us. (He made a habit of sleeping on our shoes when we were away at summer camp — that’s love!) It wasn’t militarily enforced, but it became a routine that surely spared the oatmeal carpet in the den. Ours was a cleanliness thing, but others remove their shoes for courtesy or cultural reasons. How about you? What’s your shoe strategy? — Sarah C.

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creative ways to document baby’s first year

candyland
spacemila

If you haven’t already, I highly suggest you visit Mila’s Daydreams, the adorable blog where uber-creative mom Adele Enersen crafts whimsical dreamscapes around her daughter Mila as she sleeps. What a great way to record an infant’s first year! Over at Young House Love, the Youngsters have been recording their daughter Clara’s growth through colorful weekly updates with numbered onesies in their Flickr stream. I love clicking through and seeing her progress – those first months are so fleeting! They grow up so fast and these inspiring documentaries are motivators for me to put effort into creatively recording my little one’s first years, whenever he or she decides to arrive in the distant future. What do you think, readers? Have any crafty techniques to share? – Sarah C.

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healthy frozen treat: ikea-pop yogurt-sicles

yogurtpops

We have a new favorite summer treat in our house — homemade frozen yogurt treats. I realize this not anything groundbreaking, but their simplicity is stunning. We simply poor some drinkable yogurt into a Midsommar pop maker from Ikea, $2, and freeze. Sometimes we mix it up by combining two flavors. Or when we’re feeling fancy, we’ll make layers by freezing a little juice, then pouring the yogurt on top it. It’s a wonderful way to get an insanely fussy toddler to eat something remotely nutritious, but honestly we love them, too. And the Ikea pop maker is one of the best we’ve tried. Grab one if you can! — Angela M.

From our partners
From our partners

neat and cheap: wrap a stick in yarn

wrapped sticks

Are we nuts, or would this deceptively simple craft be a colorful addition to your summer decor? The folks at Ohdeedoh recommend wrapping sticks in yarn as a fun and super-easy summer craft for kids. We find it appealing for craft-challenged adults as well. (Let’s just say we didn’t master the god’s-eye in Girl Scouts.) What do you think?

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