Meet Jonas Paul. He was born in March of 2013 with a rare disorder that limits his vision. At almost 2 years old, he has been submitted to numerous surgeries, medications and treatments in hopes of improving his sight. Jonas is the driving force behind Jonas Paul Eyewear. Watch the video to learn more… continue reading
Modern India takes great care and pride to retain the extraordinary refinement of its many palaces, old temples and ancient forts. We’ve fondly named our newest delivery, Paisley Palace. From the stunning marble dome of the Taj Mahal to the ornate arches of the Mysore Palace to the spectacular paintings that adorn the Amer Fort, there is no lack of inspiration in the architecture in India. Many of our designs in this collection are named after these great palaces! Take a look at the history of these great sites to better understand the story behind the design.
The Amer Fort was built by the conqueror Raja Man Singh who ruled from 1590-1614 AD. On our visit here, we rode painted elephants and admired the red curtains that framed the fort. We were inspired by the elaborate painted motifs on the walls and ceilings in the Jaipur City Palace.
In India, trucks are called lorries and they can be found zooming along streets and highways. Driving in India is a bit hectic… the streets are a symphony of constant horn blowing and busy cars. The lorries are painted in all kinds of crazy colors. The idea is that if you’re loud and bright, everyone will see and hear you coming and get out of your way! We found it all to be beautifully chaotic. continue reading
We’ve teamed up with papaya+post to bring you a Holi festival giveaway fit for a party! As we kick-off the giveaway, we’ve asked Mugdha and Avni, the brilliant ladies behind the brand, to help explain the history of Holi and share their favorite ways to celebrate the colorful festival.
At papaya+post we believe in “Traditional, with a Twist”. Basically celebrating the world’s festivals in a way that respects age-old roots but that adapts them to our modern lives. Holi, the Indian festival of color, is one of our very favorites. continue reading
This holiday season, we have been celebrating and sharing modern traditions. We had the pleasure of collaborating with Salli Swindell and Nate Padavick, a brother/sister design and illustration team known as Studio SSS. Sally and Nate shared a cranberry sauce recipe from their website, They Draw & Cook and we were hooked! Salli and Nate also have another amazing website, They Draw & Travel, home to the largest online collection of illustrated recipes and maps by artists from around the world. They kindly offered to share their two travel inspired books with Tea, Make Map Art by Nate Padavick and Salli Swindell and their first published book, MAAAPS by Aunyarat Watanbe.
Salli and Nate’s book, Make Map Art, came about after they attended a stationary show in New York where they met an editor at Chronicle Books. Their love for travel and storytelling mixed with their wonderful illustrations creates a great informative activity book for kids and adults alike. “The book is designed as a project portfolio kit to help anyone who is interested in exploring mapmaking.” says Salli. “Included in the portfolio is a guide book with ideas, definitions, prompts and examples along with templates and pages of icons. There are all kinds of different maps to make, everything from mapping your favorite city to creating a map of your mind!” Make Map Art is a great interactive book. Let your little citizens explore and create their own maps — even share them on the They Draw & Travel site! continue reading
With the holiday season in full swing, we know many of you might be looking forward to spending a day at home. No need to get out of your pajamas. Take a day to relax and reconnect with your family! Here are some fun indoor activities you can enjoy that don’t involve a TV!
Musical Instruments That Won’t Give You A Headache
Homemade instruments don’t have to involve pots and pans and a lot of noise! Make these easy and soothing shakers and let you kids put on a show! Have them help you make put them together and teach them how to shake to a song!
What You Need:
- - Tin cans, cleaned and the labels taken off
- -Balloons with the end cut off
- -Rubber Bands
- -Rice or beans
Instructions: Find some empty tin cans in your recycling and clean them out thoroughly. Fill them 1/3 of the way with rice or beans. Cut a balloon so that you can fit it tightly over the tin can. Place it on the can and secure it tightly with a rubber band. Put on a song or sing a well known tune and let them take the stage!
Tea’s mission? Make the foreign familiar. We travel the world to bring it home to you in a new collection for each season. We dive in head first, eyes wide, arms outstretched… with an open mind and ready heart. We hope to spark conversation in your home which will help make the foreign familiar to your little citizens. Here are a few other companies who are working hard to also open the eyes of little ones – encourage exploration and adventure – to make a difference in the world.
ImagineNations: Beautiful hand crafted, whimsical, one-of-a-kind worlds of art by Wendy Gold, created on vintage globes and maps. We love the idea of working with Wendy to create a unique globe for your little one. Help them discover far away places while starting their very own art collection!
National Geographic Kids: Let your little explorers discover the world through National Geographic Kids Magazine. Learn about wildlife, play games and read about far off adventures!
Get a 1 year subscription for only $12 here. Offer valid on new orders only. Expires 12/31/2014.
Little Pim: Inspired by her own bilingual childhood, founder Julia Pimsleur Levine (daughter of Dr. Paul Pimsleur, who created the Pimsleur Method), wanted to give her young son the same opportunity to learn a foreign language. When she discovered that there were no high quality education materials for teaching toddlers a foreign language, she set out to create them herself. Little Pim’s program supports foreign language learning which multiple studies have shown improves memory and analytic abilities and strengthens problem solving skills. Little Pim’s Entertainment Immersion Method makes it fun and easy for kids to learn. Use at home or on the go. Available in 12 languages. Give your child a leg up at LittlePim.com.
Get 25% off with code LittlePim. Expires 12/5/2014.
The Global Fund for Children: Since its founding, The Global Fund for Children has touched the lives of more than 9 million children worldwide. With the help of their donors, they’re poised to reach a total of 10 million by 2015. Their impact means thousands of children are going to school instead of to work. Thousands more are protecting themselves from HIV, escaping the bonds of slavery, and getting the childhood they deserve. As of 2013, the Global Fund for Children has awarded over $31 million in grants to more than 550 grassroots organizations in 78 countries. Make a donation today.
Little Passports: Every month, follow Sam and Sofia as they embark on a new country adventure. Your first month’s Explorer Kit arrives in a suitcase and contains everything your child needs to get started: a letter from Sam and Sofia, a map, a passport, stickers, access to online games and more. Country specific packages filled with fun souvenirs, letters, stickers, photos, activity sheets and more arrive every month thereafter.
Get 15% off a subscription with code GLOBE. Expires 11/25/2014
Putumayo Kids: Putumayo World Music was established in 1993 to introduce people to the music of the world’s cultures. The label was started as an offshoot of the Putumayo clothing and handicraft company, after its founder, Dan Storper, was surprised by the extraordinary response to the international music he had begun playing in his stores. Putumayo’s meticulously researched and curated musical journeys were so successful that, in 1997, Storper sold the clothing company so he could focus his attention on the music business. For the past 21 years, the company has been known for its joyful compilations of great international music that support the company’s motto: “Guaranteed to make you feel good!”. The company’s commitment to helping communities in the countries where the music originates has led to the label contributing more than one million dollars to non-profit organizations around the world.
Tea Collection: Shop Tea’s globally inspired children’s clothes and gifts. With books, pajamas, accessories and more, there is something special for every little citizen in your life!
Diwali [dih-vah-lee] is the Hindu festival of lights and one of their most important holidays. It celebrates the return of lord Rama from exile and the victory of good over evil. When Rama returned, they welcomed him by lighting “diyas” (lamps and candles). To celebrate, families have feasts, eat sweets, play games, give gifts and light fireworks.
To pass this great tradition down to our kids continue reading
We’d heard that the Jiuqian Music & Arts Center was just 15 minutes from our Shanghai hotel. But the Chinese-speaking driver just kept driving and driving… An hour passed and we were officially very, very far from the urban, international city of skyrises.
The driver slowed down, checked his map, then pointed out at a field, and looked at me with a very puzzled look. “I’m beginning to think this is a wild goose chase.” Adam, my 7 year old son asked, “What’s a wild goose chase?” I assured myself that this would be a story to tell for years to come. But I also couldn’t stop thinking about how much my family needed a bathroom after a long day out and about in Shanghai. We turned around, nearly giving up but then we saw the address posted on a small gate into a set of four industrial buildings. I’m pretty sure the driver was disappointed we weren’t headed back to Shanghai, & that he was stuck with us out in the middle of nowhere.
“mypootle helps travelers discover destinations with soul” and because of this, we thought they would be the perfect partner for our Let’s Go To Morocco Sweepstakes! You read right… we’re giving away a Moroccan adventure to one lucky family. We went there. Now you can, too! This sweepstakes will kick off on Monday June, 2nd and we can’t wait to share all of the details, but until then, mypootle is sharing their top hotel picks for family travel. From African safari’s to Normandy Chateau’s, mypootle has you covered!
Toddlers, tweens or teens, travelling as a family poses some quite interesting challenges. Ever since the mypootle HQ increased its headcount with a pint-sized pootler, trips away have become really rather complicated; once dreamed of havens of stylish tranquility we realize are actually adult only retreats with their doors and swimming pools firmly shut to anyone under the age of 14, although the suite may be roomy with a claw-foot bath, we now seek inter-connecting rooms so that we don’t tiptoe around our slumbering mini-explorer in the dark. Whilst the restaurant may come with all sorts of stars, it’s important that we have a kiddy meal available at 6pm. From baby-sitting to self-catering apartments, playrooms to early dinners, here are our pick of the best places for families; places that will ensure that you’ll all have an enjoyable holiday.
Long haul flights can look a little daunting if you have an active, energetic toddler in tow, but if you are coming from England’s winter then we suggest South Africa. With its sunny climate, dramatic scenery and unbeatable wildlife is top of our list. More Quarters, Cape Town is the perfect city-escape for families with kids of all ages. Super stylish and spacious apartments, the 1-bedroom spaces can sleep 3, the 2-bedrooms sleep 4-5 and there’s even a house for 8! Apartments come with a fully fitted kitchenette, so head to Neighbourhoods Market in the Old Biscuit Mill to stock up on artisanal goodies including organic veggies, cheese, wine, olive oil, pesto and chocolate. Kid plus: See penguins at Boulder’s Beach.
No trip to South Africa would be complete without a safari and Madikwe Safari Lodge is a fantastically kid friendly lodge in the malaria free Madikwe Game Reserve. There are two family suites and a mind-boggling number of activities to keep the little ones busy, from family safari drives and Bug CSI to making molds of tracks, painting and drawing. If your little one wants to squelch around, then they can help the ranger wash the safari vehicle whilst there are also chances to try out their culinary prowess with pizza making in the boma. Kid plus: The Ecohouse will keep them out of mischief in case of bad weather.
Pack the bags and family and retreat to Monte da Vilarinha in Portugal, a hilltop refuge in the southwestern corner of the Algarve, just a stone’s throw from the unforgettable beaches of Costa Vincentia. With a mix of apartments and studios, most with their own kitchen (a few share kitchens) or kitchenette, there is a family friendly spirit at Vilarinha and children (from babes to teens) are welcome. There is no shortage of things to do! Little adventurers can swing, slide and climb in the adventure playground, there are mountain bikes to ride, a lovely pool, over 30 hectares of valley to explore and beautiful beaches close by. Kid plus: For toddlers, there is a playroom with many toys! If you fancy European city hopping, then let us suggest a few seriously stylish children friendly boltholes. In Florence, stay at Casa Howard, an eclectic B&B just moments from the city’s beating Renaissance heart and book the Play Room with its connected sitting room and free-climbing wall. Kid plus: There is a Walt Disney library to pick and choose from, perfect for tired little pootlers at the end of the day. In hip Berlin, Ackselhaus & Blue Room offers a great way to experience the city as a family. Some rooms and apartments sleep 4 and many come with their own kitchenette. It’s leafy and secluded, located close to cafes, parks and sights and breakfast is served until midday, so no need to rush in the morning. Kid plus: iPads to rent – pre-loaded with films, music and books!
Safari in Kenya’s Northern Frontier at Sabuk Lodge. Set slightly apart from the main lodge, the Eagle Cottages come with 2 en-suite bungalows (one king and one triple), a sitting room, plunge pool and a dedicated team to look after you. The lodge itself is still a family home and inside is comfortably, elegant and rustically stylish, there are sofas with colourful cushions to throw yourself onto, woven rugs and through it all runs gnarled wood, stone boulders and makuti thatch. There is no minimum age, a baby listening service and early meals for those with early bed times are available. Kid plus: Camel trekking! Live like an aristocrat and take the family to a French chateau in green gastronomic Normandy. Chateau de Saint Paterne is brilliantly child friendly; some rooms come with a little side room with both single and bunk beds while baby monitors can be provided. The gardens are home to a gorgeous pool, trampoline, badminton, croquet, Ping-Pong and plenty of run-around let-off-steam space. With the delights of Normandy to explore, its idyllic villages, beaches and rolling hills, a short stay here may not be long enough… Parent plus: A little port decanter sits in the bedroom. Dar Les Cigognes is a supremely stylish boutique hotel in Marrakech. The riad, which takes its name (“house of storks”) from the long legged birds that circle their nests on the palace ramparts just across the street, is a former wealthy spice merchant’s house which has been extensively redesigned by the architect Charles Boccara transforming it into a luxurious and stylish Moorish retreat. This hotel has large central courtyards complete with fountains, citrus and palm trees, numerous little salons and staircases and is one of the few riads to offer inter-connecting rooms. Irresistibly calming, Dar Les Cigognes is the perfect place to retreat to after a day spent haggling in the souks or sipping mint tea and taking breakfast on the terrace is breathtakingly lovely. Kid plus: Helping to make the yummy pastries… or maybe the best bit is actually eating them!