Local Business

Marin's Batter World Makes Pancakes Easy!

May 18, 2015

batter world pancakesFor breakfast, nothing beats delicious pancakes hot off the griddle. We love to make pancakes for breakfast, and it seems like we make them every weekend. We always make our pancakes from scratch, and keep a carton of buttermilk in the refrigerator at all times in case the need arises. While it's not hard to make pancake batter from scratch, it does take some time, and it usually makes a mess, so it's not something that's suited to quick weekday breakfasts before school.

That's where local startup Batter World comes in. Created by Leigh Judson and Nicole Palmer, two Mill Valley moms, Batter World offers a line of frozen all natural pancake mixes that you just defrost, shake, and pour. We had a chance to sample all three flavors offered by Batter World—original, multigrain, and gluten-free—and they were all light, fluffy, and delicious. I hate to say it, but they all tasted just as good as our homemade from-scratch pancakes, but were much easier to make… and clean up, of course.

Stylish Nursing Covers from Petaluma's Saving Grace

March 31, 2015

saving grace While a nursing cover isn't totally necessary for breastfeeding moms, it's a nice thing to have when the need for modesty strikes. The unfortunate truth, is, however, that most of the nursing covers on the market are on the ugly side. That's what inspired mom and Petaluma resident Caitlin Vodopals to create her Saving Grace line of nursing covers.

Saving Grace covers are handmade using colorful traditional fabrics. They're also reversible (so you get two styles in one), and can double as a changing mat, sunshade, or stroller blanket, too. A plastic band at the top ensures privacy and allows you to see baby, but doesn't let onlookers see in.

Currently, Saving Grace nursing covers are made by a team of sewers in Sayulita, Mexico, using authentic Mexican fabrics. If the bright and colorful Mexican fabrics aren't your thing, check out their premium organic line, which are crafted from organic cotton chambray with more subtle dots and stripes.

Munchery Makes Dinnertime Easy and Delicious

March 24, 2015

MuncheryIt goes without saying that most families these days have busy schedules, with work, school, sports, activities, homework, and more taking up plenty of time. And I won't even get started on how busy and exhausted most new parents are! Cooking homemade meals during the week is often one of those things that falls by the wayside, but fortunately, meal delivery services can pick up the slack, and offer a healthy and less expensive alternative to takeout or restaurant meals.

We had the opportunity to try some of the delicious food from Munchery, a San Francisco-based startup that's using technology, sustainability, and talented chefs—most of whom are veterans of the Bay Area restaurant scene—to offer some great dinnertime options. Login to their website or launch their app on your mobile device and browse the day's menu, which will offer options ranging from sushi and salads to grilled chicken and lasagne Bolognese. They offer plenty of vegetarian and vegan options, too. Of course they also have plenty of kids' options, too, as well as side dishes, desserts, soft drinks, coffee, wine, and beer.

Celebrate Your Child's Birthday with the Princesses of Marin's Once Upon a Song

March 23, 2015

Once upon a songNeed a princess for your child's next birthday party or other special event? Consider Marin's own Once-Upon-a-Song, a group of extraordinary young actors from Terra Linda High School who perform as favorite Disney characters for families all over the San Francisco Bay Area.

Started by San Rafael drama student Eden Ferguson, Once-Upon-a-Song features beloved characters like Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Peter Pan, a Handsome Prince, the Little Mermaid, and others. We asked Eden a few questions about her and her business.

For more information on Once-Upon-a-Song and to see a list of characters and available party packages, visit their website at www.once-upon-a-song.com. You can also check out their Facebook page.

Who are you and what's you're background?

My name is Eden Ferguson and I am the owner and a performer at Once-Upon-a-Song. I'm 16 years old and I go to Terra Linda High School.

How did Once Upon a Song come about?

I started Once-Upon-a-Song 2 years ago. My dad was in line at the bank one day and there was a woman in front of him talking on the phone with her little girl who's birthday was that weekend. Her daughter wanted Snow White to come to her birthday party, but her mom told her that since the party was the next day, she didn't think

Cloth and Compostable Diaper Services in Marin

March 12, 2015

compostable diapers earthbabyWhen you have a new baby, one of the big questions that comes up is "do we use cloth or disposable diapers?" We all know that disposables are easy and relatively inexpensive, but they aren't exactly ecologically friendly, filling up landfills at a record rate. Cloth diapers have been around for ages, and many parents swear by them. They're ecologically sound, convenient, and comfy for baby. In addition to their eco-friendliness, cloth diapers also result in earlier potty training for children who wear them.

Another recent earth-friendly innovation is the compostable diaper. Wet diapers made of compostable materials can be placed in your home compost container to break down with the rest of your compostable waste. (Not the poopy ones, though; see below for more info).

Regardless of which route they choose, new parents in Marin County who choose not to go the disposable route have a few options to choose from.

Sewing 101 for Kids at Marinwood

February 18, 2015

sewing 101 for kids marinwoodMarinwood is excited to announce Sewing 101 for Kids taught by the creative experts from Novato's Studio 4 Art!

This class is designed to create excitement, comfort, confidence, and a love for sewing. Class will focus on back stitch, over sewing, blanket stitch, and running stitches, while incorporating art skills of screen printing and stamping to create your own fabric! Puppets, stuffies, creatures, pillows and bags are just some of the focus. Students will even gain knowledge in simple pattern making and a light introduction to machine sewing. It will be a fun and educational class for all!

Classes will be held at the Marinwood Community Center on Wednesdays from 3 to 4 pm, from February 25 to March 25. The class is designed for children ages 6 to 10. The Marinwood Community Center is located 775 Miller Creek Road in San Rafael.

To register online please visit www.marinwood.org or call (415) 479-0775. Mention Marin Mommies and receive 15% off!

Family Picnics at Marin's Cheese Factory

February 3, 2015

The Marin French Cheese Company Cheese Factory

One of our absolute favorite Marin picnic spots is on the grounds of the Marin French Cheese Company, located just west of Novato on Point Reyes–Petaluma Road. It's an ideal place to spend a relaxing afternoon, whether it's on a sunny winter day or during the summer, and is a must-visit place for Bay Area residents and visitors alike.

If you haven't been to the Cheese Factory (as it's known to locals), then you've surely seen it as you've driven out to the Point Reyes National Seashore from Novato or Petaluma. Both my husband and I grew up visiting this place, and of course now we come here with our own family. It's well worth the trip at almost any time of year, and it's a great first stop on the California Cheese Trail.

Free Junior Chef Classes in January at Williams-Sonoma

January 2, 2015

The 52 New Foods ChallengeThis January, kids can learn how fun and easy cooking can be with a series of free junior chef classes at Williams-Sonoma. Two of the classes were created by local author Jennifer Tyler Lee using techniques and recipes from her new book The 52 New Foods Challenge, and are designed to make it easy to prepare healthy food and to inspire curiosity and confidence in kids.

Classes begin this Saturday, January 3, at 10 am with 52 New Foods: Blender Bar, which is all about creating healthy and delicious superfood smoothies. Other classes include Baking for Beginners on January 10, Better Burgers on January 17, Fun Finger Foods on January 24, and 52 New Foods: No-Bake Valentine's Treats on January 31.

The two 52 New Foods classes are for kids ages 5 to 13, and the others are suitable for children ages 9 to 13.

Hottest Holiday Toys for Kids 2014: Ages 9+

December 6, 2014

birds glitter boardsFor our Holiday guide to the hottest toys this season, the toy experts at Five Little Monkeys, a great local independent toy store with locations in Novato, Albany, Walnut Creek, and Burlingame, put together this list, based on what kids seem most excited about, what is showing up at birthday parties, what parents are asking for, and staff favorites!

We've also reviewed the top picks for babies and toddlers, kids ages 3 to 5, and kids ages 6 to 8.

Ages 9+ Indoor Fun

Birds Glitter Boards
A set to create fantastic sparkly pictures of birds surrounded by wonderful patterns. Use this set to create pictures of different birds surrounded by wonderful patterns, brought to life by the sequins. Designed for older children, this kit is a great way of encouraging them to be creative. $19.99

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