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814 W. Francisco Blvd. San Rafael, CA 94901

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

We're in the middle of "40% off for 4 Days"!

Ah, the scent of a good deal...follow it to our store! Clean and organized atmosphere, our friendly staff will help you locate whatever you need (without having to sniff it out).

Are you on a time schedule? Call ahead to know if we have what you're looking for in stock or ask at the desk when you arrive. We can get you in and out quickly if you like!

Or...are you a browser, like to take your time when shopping, try things out? Feel free to search high and low for all the goodies we have in stock. We are no-pressure yet helpful sales. We want you to enjoy your time with us!

Come by for FORMAL DRESSES for moms-to-be and girls. We have button up shirts, slacks and blazers for boys. FANCY SHOES are here, too.

Have a Spring Event, Wedding, or other special occassion? Our Formal Rack is waiting for you. You find High End items there, as well.

I know you're waiting for it....YES, we will be taking in items on Sunday, 1/2/11! Please see our link to the right for FULL INFORMATION.

Monday, December 20, 2010

4 shopping days to go and we still have gift items!

We hope you are enjoying this holiday season!

Check out this article about us in Marin Mommies, click HERE

Just a reminder that we will be closed on the following days:

STORE CLOSED: Friday 12.24 through Sunday 12.26

We will re-open on Monday 12.27 with a big sale!
... 4 days at 40% off!*

STORE CLOSED: Friday 12.31 and Saturday 1.1.11

We will be taking in consignments as usual on Sunday 1.2.11 - Remember to check "Accepting This Week"!

****There will be some exceptions to the sale, for example: Pacific Rim crib & organic bedding in the crib; any New Ergo item; designer sample clothing, and items with signs in the store.****

Friday, December 17, 2010

Our Christmas List (for you!) and a GIFT!

We hope you have been enjoying all holidays this season. For those of you still looking to purchase gifts I am listing some items we have in the store right now, perfect for...

- Carseat carrier: GoGo Bayz (we have 2!)
- Flight vests: Baby B'Air (4 for infants and 1 for toddler!)
- Pack-n-play by Graco (navy & white)
- Back pack carriers, Slings, Front carriers, New ERGOs
- Snow clothing from Infant Bunting to big kids snow jackets, pants (select sizes)
- Snow boots, Snowboarding boots (size 1), Ski helmets (we have 2!), Ski boots (Head sz 26.0 only $99!)
- Toys to keep kids busy in the car, on the plane or if you take an aeroplane

- Art Easel, Barbies, Groovy Girls, Rescue Heroes, Thomas, Leap Frog toys, vintage kid's piano, Instruments, Science/Arts & Crafts, Horse (on a stick), Cabbage Patch Kid (New, blonde boy, $16.50!), Chicken Elmo, Classic Pooh stuffed characters, Fisher Price Little People Garage & Barn (and some random characters!), Lite Brite, Mega Bloks, Neurosmith Jumbo Music Block, Martial Arts equipment set, In-line Skates, Electric Skateboard ($100!), Train Table (Nilo, only $80!), Melissa & Doug puzzles, Books, Melissa & Doug My First purse (new), Cranium Mega Mask/Giggle Gear (new), rope & wood ladder
- Maternity formal wear, Nursing Pillows, Diaper Bags, Pregancy to Child-rearing books
- Fancy dresses, Tights, Designer Samples (Haven Girl, CR Kids, Neptune Zoo)
- Slacks, Button Down Shirts, Blazers
- Fun/Cool shirts & onesies
- Pottery Barn Kids pink patchwork TWIN quilt & sham ($49.50!), Baby Blankets
- and Stocking Stuffers: Shaped crayons, Jump Rope, Puppets, Mini games, Rattles, Vehicles

- Bjorn Potties
- Girls' Purses, Barbie Backpack
- used ERGO inserts (flat style)
- Baby "sleeping bag"
- Bassinet sheets, Co-sleeper sheets
- Heart beat bears, Crib Mobiles
- Red wagon
- Changing tables, Changing Pad, Changing Pad covers
- Bugaboo Bee replacement seat
- Maclaren stroller pad
- double Maclaren Rally, double Maclaren Rain Shield
- single purple jogger by Baby Jogger
- Restoration Hardward Circus Train plates (2 sets @ 4ea, $9.50/set!)
- Twin clothing
- Bouncer Seats, Infant Swings
- INCREDIBLE Pacific Rim Arts & Crafts solid maple crib treated only with linseed oil and beeswax, with bed conversion kit,  $500! We also have an organic mattress, organic pad, organic puddle pad, organic sheet, organic bumper. (This is a drop-side crib, all parts included, NO recalls, and properly maintained it is legal to sell or resell until June 2011)


12/18 & 12/19
note: some exceptions to the sale will apply

Reminder: 40% off for 4 days is 12/27 to 12/30!!

See you soon,

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Safety Site from CPSC: "On Safety" plus Drop Side Cribs to be completely discontinued

Clean layout with lots of information:

Also, information on NEW drop side crib prohibition:


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Help a homeless child have sweeter dreams from Project Night Night

A note from a wonderful organization...

Sponsor a Night Night Package for $20 for each person on your holiday list.

This holiday, we invite you to honor the special people in your life by making a tribute donation to Project Night Night in their name. The Project Night Night Team will send the person y
ou honor a lovely tribute card notifying them of your thoughtful contribution.

Happy Holidays,
The Project Night Night Team
P.S. You can make a tribute donation for everyone on your list!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Giving furniture a second chance...another way to recycle and reuse

I love the idea of a fine old dresser being refinished or repainted to live a second (or third or fourth...) life in a new home.

Give it a sanding, a coat of paint and new hardware...voila! A whole new piece of fine old furniture in my house. I also love that old furniture no longer exudes formaldehyde. According to the EPA, "In homes, the most significant sources of formaldehyde are likely to be pressed wood products made using adhesives that contain urea-formaldehyde (UF) resins." Click HERE to read the whole article.

I have high hopes that I can redecorate using old pieces given a new life. I got inspired when I read my friend Celeste's repainting projects. She repainted a dresser for her girls (see it HERE) and a dresser for her son (see it HERE). I must admit that I was so jealous of her fine work! I saw her posts and thought, "I can do that!" In other words, "If Celeste can do it, I can do it!" Inspired, yes...jealous, talented as, no.

I started with a dresser for my son's room that had to be less than 33" wide...he wants to keep his floor space cleared and therefore the dresser is going in the closet. Here's what the dresser looked like before I started.

No finished photo yet! That's right, it's been about 2 months and 3 coats of paint, but I hope to finish it soon. "De-nile" is more than a river in Egypt, my friends. I have successfully blamed the delayed completion of this project on the rain....wet weather = wet paint. Can't put on the next coat until the last coat dries, right?! Given my problem with starting projects that I can't seem to find the time to finish (see post below about my love of crafty projects...I love 'em, just can't find the time to actually DO them!), I resorted to finding finished products on Craig's List.

Today I found a perfect recycled masterpiece on Craig's List to go next to the a large nightstand. What is it with tiny night stands, anyway? Once we have the lamp in place, there is no room for a pile of books! Forget about a glass of water or my iPod, my glasses, pencils, and the myriad of army men that seem to follow me around. We need a small dresser for next to the bed. And I found one through a lovely recycler at The Second Rvivl. Check out her web site HERE. She takes older furniture and gives it a second life.

Here it is! It's still in the back of my car, I just picked it up. It's all shabby-fied, so I won't worry about scratches but I might add a little piece of glass to the top. And it's the perfect size: 30" tall x 32" long!

I hope we can get some other kid-friendly recycled furniture into the shop from The Second Rvivl. If you or someone you know likes to recycle kid-friendly furniture, please contact us! We'd love to have more furniture for sale in the shop.

- Melissa

Monday, December 13, 2010

Loved Twice needs an Angel! Can you help?

When you donate 0-12 month clothing through us, most of it goes to a local charity called Loved Twice. They desperately need funding to keep going. Please think hard about any contacts you might have access to and could pass along to Lisa Klein, Founder and Executive Director.

Click HERE to go to the Loved Twice website to make a donation, every bit will help!

Here is a bit of information about Loved Twice. To receive the full find-raising packet, please email Lisa Klein through the Loved Twice website: click HERE

"Imagine a baby only 3 days old leaving the hospital headed straight to a shelter with little to keep her warm besides the hospital issued blanket. This is happening all the time, right here in the San Francisco Bay Area. It is the reason we started our nonprofit, Loved Twice.
OUR MISSION: We supply free baby clothes to underprivileged newborns. Since 2005 we have delivered an estimated $700,000 worth of gently used clothing to more than 3,500 newborns in the Bay Area. That’s 25,000 pounds of clothes! Considering a newborn onesie weighs just over one ounce, this significant volume has been saved from landfills and recycled back to the most precious among us. Keeping babies warm and reusing these items accomplishes two important purposes.
HOW WE STARTED: The idea for Loved Twice began in September 2005 when Founder Lisa Klein was watching the heartbreaking news of Hurricane Katrina. Katrina was especially devastating to disadvantaged mothers who simply needed to keep their babies warm. Just having had her first child, Lisa was deeply motivated to help. She found a posting on Craig’s List from a church in Louisiana requesting donations of baby clothes to help displaced newborns. By sending out one email, Lisa collected over 200 pounds of baby clothing in 4 days from her friends and neighbors and mailed them to the church. Witnessing the impact, Lisa realized this simple idea could be extended to an overwhelming local need. Lisa started collecting gently used baby clothes and made her first delivery to Highland Geneal Hospital in Oakland, CA. Donors and supporters spread the word of Lisa’s work via newspaper articles, blogs, and mothers groups. Every week Lisa had bags and bags of baby clothes dropped off at her doorstep by anonymous donors. Lisa set up official Loved Twice collection bins throughout the Bay Area to deal with the popularity of the organization. Loved Twice received 501c3 status in 2009.
HOW WE DO IT: Community members drop off gently used baby clothes to any of our 4 collection sites at popular children stores in Oakland, Lafayette, San Ramon and San Rafael. Volunteers then sort, fold, and lovingly pack the clothes into boutique boxes marked for boy or girl. These boxes are then distributed to over 30 local hospitals, prenatal clinics, shelters, and safe homes in underserved locations, who then give the boxes directly to new mothers in need. In addition, we also collect unsold merchandise from local children’s consignment stores. Each baby receives a box of 75 items, including newborn clothes, hats, socks, books, and a warm soft blanket. Each box also includes local childcare resources and a way to order a free new parent kit supplied by First 5 California."

- Melissa

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Crafty Projects to Reuse and Recycle by Melissa

I've been trolling DIY blogs for fun crafty projects that focus on recycling and reusing (no big surprise!). As I sat at my computer, searching for ideas and inspiration, I was listening to NPR and who should come on? Amy Sedaris, humorist and writer, aka sister to David Sedaris. Michael Krasny (moderator on the show Forum, local station KQED 88.5FM) was talking with her about her new book Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People.

Now let's get this straight, Amy Sedaris is a humorist. She sounds serious when she talks about her topics. Michael Krasny interviewed her as if she was a serious crafter. Perhaps you have to know that this is a parody before you hear it, and knowing this kept me in stitches the whole time. It was hilarious! Judge for yourself...listen to the interview HERE.

By the way, this is NOT a craft book. It is a PARODY, completely intent on making fun of crafts and the people who make crafts. Isn't it fun to laugh at ourselves? Be sure to read the reviews before you buy it!

Here are some REAL crafty projects you can do with your kids (not at all inspired by Amy Sedaris):

  • Local mom and blogger Celeste at My Greenbrae Cottage does a holiday ornament project with here kids that looks like fun: click HERE
  • Another crafty local mom, Alex, creates a ball wreath HERE.
  • And posted some clever inspirations for advent calendars HERE. (it's not too late to start!)
  • Check out the Acorn Cap ornaments (you can collect thousands of acorn caps at the beach at China Camp State Park) HERE.
  • I loved this post about covering old ornaments with glitter, thus "Upcycled Ornaments" HERE.
  • She has a number of simple and inexpensive crafty ideas for the holidays. 2009's articles "My fruity Kitchen at Christmas" was full of simple and fun ideas HERE.
  • An, finally, here are a few from Make It and Love It that I liked: Simple Christmas Decor HERE.
  • Cute Treat Jars HERE (take-aways for your child's next party?)
  • and blogger Ashley has a whole series of wonderful tutorials HERE.
I am sure you have some posts of your own to share! Please do.

- This was another special visit from Melissa Hereford (how long can I continue to mark my posts as "special"? Think I can get away with one more?)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Transforming toys for the holidays

I'm sitting on the floor looking at a brown paper bag full of used plastic toys.

I have no idea what they are but as I pull out the first one I can see part of a truck, wheels, a head, a face. I ask my 5 year old, "Do you know what this is?" He runs over, excitement shining in his eyes. "Mommy, these are Transformers! Cool!" He sits down next to me and plays for an hour with a bag full of what I now see are Transformers. I watch as he clicks one part, turns another, clicks and turns until a tall plastic figure turns into a truck. And I'm thinking, "For $5 I can give my kid a slice of heaven without all the fancy packaging."

Flash forward 2 months to Christmas morning or Hanukkah evenings or whatever holiday your family might celebrate that involves gift giving. My son opens a gift, happy, thrilled, wanting to play...but wait, who has the scissors...20 minutes later we are sweating and swearing as we continue to unwind the plastic twisting ties and cut through the layers of non-recyclable plastic. Oh, look how much fun he is having with the box!

As we head into the holiday season (Yes! We are!), think about what gift giving means to you and what you are teaching your kids about these important things: how to share, how to reduce waste, and how to give meaningful gifts to one another.

A few ideas:

1) Teach your kids how to re-use paper bags. Wrap your gifts in brown paper bags, decorated with kid drawings and scribbles or photos, stamps, paint, stickers. If you wrap early enough, you can have art projects for weeks to keep the kids busy.

2) Teach your kids how to share. Have a toy exchange with friends. Ideally you will have a variety of ages involved, so the older kids are passing their loved Legos and Playmobil, Barbies and Groovy Girls onto the younger children. This gets easier as they get older, so you might have to pull a switcheroo on the younger ones. But you didn't hear that from me, I would never do anything like that to my child. Ahem.

3) Teach your kids that a previously loved toy is a good thing. When your children run into preschool in the morning do you think they care that many other children played with that toy before they did? Make a choice to purchase 1 or 2 gently loved toys this season as part of the mix. At Marin Kids Consignment, we love consignors who bring in their beautiful outgrown toys and the children who receive them as gifts love them even more! I promise you that children do not care if the toy has been played with by another child. If you feel guilty about giving your child a previously loved toy take the money you would have spent on a new toy and put it in your child's college fund.

4) Teach your kids that bigger is sometimes better. Consider making a subtle step in reducing waste by giving choices: do you want 3 or 4 little Lego kits (let's say one from each family member), or would you prefer us all to put our gift money into one big Lego set? Often the bigger kits are cooler than the smaller kits. Show your children photos so they can see what you are suggesting.

5) Teach your kids that quality is better than quantity. Spend a little more to get fewer more durable toys that last: My Lego-maniac son gets new Legos. He pours over the Lego catalog for months, weighing the pros and cons of each kit. Legos are indestructible. Legos never need replacement parts. They can be (and are) passed down from generation to generation.

6) Teach your kids that Santa lives in the North Pole, not in China. Consider telling your children that Santa's elves do not make those cheap plastic goodies you saw at Toys R Us, so they cannot be requested as gifts.

Looking down at this bag of Transformers, I see how much we have in common. Although I could not see their function at first, I now see clearly how one idea can transform into another, one click and turn at a time.

*Written from behind the secret curtain at Marin Kids Consignment, a visit from owner Melissa Hereford

Friday, December 3, 2010

Dates we'll be closed this holiday season & Notes

Happy Holidays:
We will be closed 12/24, 12/25, 12/26, 12/31 and 1/1/2011.

Store Hours -
Meanwhile we're open seven days a week, 10-5, for your shopping needs!

Keepin' It Green -
Please remember to bring in your own bags to carry all the goodies you find at our store.

Save 10% this Month -
Use your available store credit and receive 10% off your purchase.

This Month's Sales -
10% off Books
15% off CD's and DVD's
25% off Maternity & Nursing clothing