Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Rockin' Reads

The Storybook Mom's Reading Corner

We'd like to introduce you to Nili Yelin, the Storybook Mom, who hosts our weekly book readings at our brick and mortar store (and also hosts quite the intellectual birthday party, FYI!). Nili's performance art background and Mommy cred (she's got two little talented cuties!) make her the Reading Diva! Parents and children hang on her every word at the readings, because she infuses the children's books of her choice with animated gestures, different voices, and witty stage whispers for the adults. The following are the Storybook Mom's Rockin' Reads for Valentine's Day, and we are thrilled that we will have a new infusion of titles to tell you about every month!

Valentine's Day Rockin' Reads

My Monster Mama Loves Me So By Laura Leuck
BRIEF DESCRIPTION You will love My Monster Mama because it is a fun bedtime story, narrated by a young monster giving his Mom some props for all she does for him during the day. You'll see their daily activities, that are monster-y versions of your own, our favorite being the part where Mom teaches the young monster to become invisible when the scary things (humans) come out because it promotes understanding about differences, similarities and point of view. The rhyming couplets are a soothing read, the acrylic and oil painted illustrations are dynamic and cheery and the end has the little monster sure of his Mama's love for him, and the reader's Mama's love for them. A perfect Valentine's Day read for Mommy's Little Monster!!! We recommend this book for ages 3 and up.

Fancy Nancy By Jane O'Connor
BRIEF DESCRIPTION Fancy Nancy is a girl who loves her sparkles, trims, accessories and fancy ways of saying everyday things. She despairs over her family, who doesn't have the za za zoom, that in her opinion means you are leading the fabulous life. Nancy is thrilled when her family enlists her help to fancify themselves, and the end result is that Nancy finds out there is not a fancier way in the world (even in French!)to tell your family you love them. Our Psycho Moms and Dads tell us all the time how much their little ones love this book, and we love the joy of Nancy's wonderful message of love being spread to the kids. A fun,glittery heartfelt treat for all! We recommend this book for ages 3 and up.

Click here to Shop Books at www.psychobabyonline.com

Cool, Crazy Person

Six Truly Psycho Questions answered by Nili Yelin, the Storybook Mom.

We look up to the funkiest and smartest people we know- kids! We find their irreverant, fun and completely unique take on the world truly inspiring. We feel a kinship to others who feel the same way, and would like to honor others that are cool and crazy, and have them answer our 6 Psychquestions! Get ready for some giggles from Nili Yelin, the Storybook Mom, and send us your nominations for someone you find totally cool and crazy!

1. What is the coolest thing that has ever happened to you?
"After college I worked at MTV and for my 25th birthday I got to go along on an all day interview with the band U2 and Bono let us hear the first recording of the Band Aid benefit song, "Do They Know It's Christmas" before it was released. He played it on a little tape recorder (technology of the 80's)and he told us all about having just recorded it in London. I remember he also asked me if I could see the chocolate ice cream on his dark shirt and at the end of the day he gave me a kiss goodbye! A rock star kiss...."

2. What is the craziest fashion statement you have ever made?
"I once walked all the way through O'Hare Airport in Chicago with my skirt tucked into my pantyhose. Finally a nice gentleman came up to me and let me know. So basically I showed the whole airport my underwear before it was fashionable to wear underwear on the outside."

3. What is your favorite book?
"Pippi Longstocking. I grew up with red hair and freckles and my Dad called me Pippi as a nickname. Also I admired her curiosity and daring and adventurous spirit."

4. What toy can you not live without?

"The original metal Slinky. It is very soothing to hold it and feel it slink up and down--good stress reliever. Also in a pinch it makes a good bracelet. I like toys that can serve multiple purposes--this both amuses and accessorizes..."

5. If you could have a superpower, what would it be?
"I would like to be able to clone myself--have multiples me. That way I could do storytime all over the world and still be home in time to carpool. I would also like to have the ability that Superman has where I could basically be a superhero and then just put on glasses and be a regular person. Also it would be great to change outfits in a phone booth if there were still any left anywhere....

6. Who is the coolest parent you know (ties between your own Mom and Dad are
totally understandable!)
"The coolest parent I know is my friend Holly because she actually cooks real dinners from scratch,including a green vegetable, and if it wasn't for her my children would never know what a home cooked meal is and her pantry is always filled with great snacks. She always asks me if I would like some tea when I come over and often she has just baked something. Sigh....."

Monday, January 28, 2008

Great Gifts

Part of why I am so crazy about working here at Psychobaby is the value placed on thoughtful gifts that started before we even were a twinkle in the co-owners' eyes. See, I'm not only the general manager of the store, but I am also the gal who'll drive to wherever and back to pick up the right gift. Big or small, homemade or store bought, I put a lot of emotional stock in gifting. You can tease me all you want (Do I hear the words, "Gifty Giftson?"), about my tearing up over that sweetie baby combo you just put together for your friend who loves cow print (I'm mooved!), but I am just jazzed about gifting, and so you can see how it was like finding the mothership when I came to work here for these two fabulous mamas, amidst their vast selection of clothing, shoes, toys, books and accessories all ready to be mixed and matched for individual tastes! I felt like Alice in Wonderland (as in, I am so big and everything around me is so cute and tiny, and cuter yet because it is tiny) and totally got what Lisa and Marlo's vision of the store: shopping with ease, where you could get cool stuff for your little ones and gifts all in one stop, because, like that White Rabbit, what everyone really needs is more time to spend with those they love.
Now, our storefront is an amalgamation of all this cool stuff that fits together, like a gifty puzzle, and we all love nothing more than when a client gets that zowie gifty feeling. Translating all the fun we have sharing gift ideas in our brick and mortar to our online store has manifested itself in our Great Gifts section, which lays out the cool, crazy kids' stuff in a way that (we hope!) is easier for the gift giver to grab goods for the lil recipient. Great Gifts is awesome because you can pick from the theme of your choosing (Cheeky Gifts, Pirate, Monster...) in a matter of seconds, and land on whatever price point you want, so no matter the result, you'll end up with more time to spend with the recipient, and a box full of cuteness!

If you'd like to be transported to our Great Gifts section now, click here.


Now, in honor of Valentine's Day, I'd also like to toss in two gifts I love for their kooky fun and sharp style, so here it goes.

FOR A FEBRUARY BABY SHOWER: I'm partial to the Psychobaby Martini tee, because, on first glance it seems to bring peels-of-laughter kind of joy, and some twinkly-eyed smirking. Now, here it is presented with a Dante Beatrix Heart Messenger and Mom or Dad heart booties to counterbalance its sassy style, so the smirk doesn't overpower that laughter. It can be wrapped by us as such (we'd be happy to do it, because we are gifting geeks!) , but if you're a DIY-er, what would be even funnier would be to roll the tee and place it in a martini shaker with a coupon for a complimetary drink for, like, eighteen years from now and place that in the side bottle pocket.!This one is sure to interrupt that sappy shower crying (yes, that would be me with the tissue, so I can say that!) with raucous laughter!

Source: www.kamibashi.com
In the store, everyone's always talking about party favors, and I know countless folks have benefited from sharing information with their neighbor about those goody bags. This on really curls my ribbons, and I'd love to take the credit for it, but that applause is all Marlo's, and her Powers of Giftyness!
These cutie keychains from the String Doll Gang are made of one continuous piece of string (crazy, huh!) and have special powers that match their individual personalities! A bowl of them would be a great party favor/conversation starter at a kids' party (or an adult cocktail party!) We love their cool powers ("Warrior Woman teaches you to use your powers wisely while Scratch helps you keep your cool when the heat is on") and think anyone 8 and up would love them, too. They are available on http://www.kamibashi.com/

Share with the group! Please send us your gifty thoughts, great party favors or cool presentation ideas! Take care! -posted by kristina


We love Rock 'n Roll!

When we decided to start up this blog, we were all lovey-dovey for a Valentine's Day Playlist! While we were spinning ideas for songs in our heads, we learned that a lot of clients wanted us to do the exact opposite: a playlist for folks that are over Cupid's Day. We went with both, and we hope you enjoy them!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

About Us

We're two Moms, and in 2003, in the midst of the joyous chaos that is Motherhood (ah, super-late feedings, feather boas, dolls with lots of little tiny accessories, impressions of zombies and love... much love) we began Psycho Baby, home to all that is cool and crazy for kids!
As parents, we were constantly running from place to place for our kids- (you know the drill!) play dates and parties and school and our work and that ever elusive "time to oneself" (ha ha!)- and we wanted to create a one-stop shopping experience that would be comfy and fun for kids and adults alike, and that had all the cool stuff for whatever baby or big kid you were shopping for on any occasion. We're happy to do all that gathering "work" for you, so you can sit back and have fun shopping around!
We carry cool clothes, funky shoes, modern toys, classic books and rockin' accessories for babies, toddlers, big kids and the parents who love them! All our fashionable selections work together to make a full wardrobe of fun for your little ones and Great Gifts for all your pals. Our choices are inspired by the funniest, smartest and funkiest irreverent folks we know--- kids! It is their honesty and self-expressive style (along with cool feedback from parents) that guides us along all of our new endeavors.

In 2005, we took it nationwide with psychobabyonline.com so our cool, crazy kids' stuff will be wrapped and ready, and only a click away for everyone, even during those midnight feedings - and we are too!   No robo-humans and plastic sleeves here - just the real Psychobaby crew who wants to make your life as easy as possible!  And there are extra bonuses for being savvy on the interwebs, like: our  Email Club where you can find out the scoop, and a rockin' online community of cool, crazy parents on our twitterfacebook fan page and Blog , where we run contests, talk fashion and share the fun!  We are thankful every day for all the wonderful people we get to meet who have let us into their lives - join in the fun, because the Psychobaby community is hewn from a block of awesome!

P.S. About our crazy name. . .

When we were new parents, and thought of ourselves as pretty cool chicks who just happened to have a kid, we discovered an interesting phenomena which you might be able to relate to: we'd make a simple plan with another cool couple who didn't have a kid. Two minutes before we were supposed to be at the restaurant or whatever, we'd have to call and cancel our plans. Our friends, reasonably dismayed, would ask why? Phone still in hand, we'd look down at the floor and see a creature somewhat resembling our once adorable kid, only now they were purple, rigid, foaming at the mouth, and making a sound like something between stray cats fighting and a car alarm. Dumbfoundedly we'd mutter into the phone, “Psycho Baby”.
And you know, as “different” of an experience as that was for a couple of rookie parents, we certainly wouldn't trade a second of it! When we created this "different" kind of kids' store to celebrate children's individuality and creativity in a style mash-up, we thought that no other name would do!

We are located in Chicago's hip Bucktown shopping district at
1657 W. Division, Chicago, IL 60622
If you want to talk cool, crazy kids' stuff, give us a buzz at 866.545.2815