A few blog updates!

My girls are now almost 6.5 and 5 years old, and while the crux of our blog and brand haven’t changed, there have been a few other things we’ve started enjoying lately now that they are a little grown up. Besides one-of-a-kind kids fashion, you can also expect to see more blog posts on the following topics:

Cooking with kids - Living in the city, and before we had kids, my husband and I never really cooked that much and heavily relied on dining out and take-outs. Let’s just say if I had a choice, I would pick many other things like reading, walking around in the city taking pictures, etc. over cooking. But I’ve always regularly cooked fresh food for the girls, and now that they are older and their palates are expanding, we love introducing them to different cuisines. We have also started involving them in the kitchen and making meals together when possible! It’s fun, healthy, and so gratifying!

Traveling with kids - We firmly believe that not all classrooms have four walls. We’ve always enjoyed making short day trips to places near Boston - there’s so much to explore here in New England! Now with the kids a little older, and more holidays to fill (winter, spring and summer breaks!), we find ourselves enjoying a couple of short trips a year - sometimes to visit family and spend time with them since most of them live far away.

Family traditions - Daily routines of working parents and school-going kids with myriad activities is always too hectic. My husband often travels during the week so we always look forward to Fridays. During my busy months photographing (especially spring and fall), I’m always working on weekends as well, but I consciously try to relax on Fridays. As a result, Friday dinners and movie nights have become a little family tradition of ours. In the winter months, one of the adults (depending on who has more time that evening) cooks dinner and then we pick a movie to watch with the girls. My favorite way to spend a family evening! In the summertime, we try to grill on Fridays or have a low-key family picnic - mostly in our own backyard.
Art, music, culture - Art has always been present in our home and I hope to create more culturally enriching experiences with the girls as they grow up. Theater/Museum visits on weekends/holidays, learning languages (my girls are fluent in English & Hindi and learning Mandarin. My plan this year is to introduce them to Spanish.) It’s also important for us to incorporate music in our everyday lives - from car sing-alongs to spontaneous kitchen Bollywood dance parties, we love to tune in to hear all kinds of different music.

Book Club - We started a little book club last year for my daughter and her neighborhood school friends when they were in kindergarten.  We are eight months in and meet once a month. Now that the girls are in first grade, they are becoming such confident readers. It’s a pure delight to watch them read and take control! Also, it gives us moms a reason to catch up and share a beverage! This is a monthly ritual we really enjoy and look forward to. I’ll be sharing the books we’ve read so far and future picks in a separate post. Stay tuned!

Weekends - Kids’ activities and social calendar fill up most of our weekends. I work quite a few weekends so I plan most social activities around my work schedule. Since we are starting to enjoy cooking and entertaining more than we used to while living in downtown, we love to invite friends over when we can. We definitely try to give ourselves some downtime on weekends to recharge for the week, however. (I’ve learned this the hard way!)

Mindful - This sounds extremely cliche, but I am trying hard to be mindful of where my time, money and energy are spent. I’ve blogged on and off over the past 6 years, all while juggling other demands in my life, but after much deliberation of whether or not I should continue writing I’ve realized that I really enjoy blogging. I love discovering and sharing the unique. From fashion finds to cultural nourishment, I hope to inspire and connect with other like-minded parents in a simple, honest way.
Life comes at us fast, this is my way of slowing down and being deliberate about the things I like to enjoy. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of our busy days. This blog is my perfect reminder to spend more time enjoying meaningful activities and sharing snippets via photography.


family lifestyle blog: Beginning an Art Collection for Kids

I may sound like an oddball here, but I really don’t believe in buying kids ‘stuff’ just because it’s expected for birthdays, major holidays or any other special occasion! Of course, if they specifically want something and it makes sense for them to have it, we go for it. But a lot of the time, even the girls don’t sound too convinced about what they want. My younger one has a January birthday (almost exactly a month after Christmas!) and generally most of her wishes - and then some! - have already been met by then. I mean how many pretend play dresses, coloring supplies or Lego Sets does she really need?

I also firmly believe in buying kids experiences -- hiking, visiting a museum, taking a cooking workshop together or playing at the beach -- as a special birthday treat! I feel like memories made doing activities together are much more powerful and long lasting than the excitement of a shiny new toy. Critics may disagree, but after more than six years of parenting, this approach to gift giving is something I firmly believe in.

I’ve also been thinking of other gifts that will make a lasting impression and buying a special piece of art on each of their birthdays came to mind. When I say buying art, I absolutely don’t mean this in a stereotypical or highfalutin manner. Most artwork I’ve bought for the girls’ room has been less than $40 per print. My idea is to buy something special that they can keep with them for a very long time. Perhaps the prints will even find a new home in the girls’ very first apartment or dorm room.  

How do you choose what art to buy for your children? Sometimes, a memorable piece of art can even be as simple as their own artwork framed and nicely displayed. There are tons of age appropriate options to choose from; however, buying artwork now for when they will be young adults might be a little challenging. It’s certainly doable though - by introducing them to art early on and taking their input in the buying process, visiting vintage stores and flea markets or browsing online together.

I am working on a separate blog post to give some ideas on how this can be accomplished - stay tuned! But even I am wondering at what age should we start? Art is so personal. Your kiddos may grow up and not appreciate some, or all of it, so there is a risk associated. Should I limit myself to milestone birthdays and graduations? Taking it slow and carefully choosing abstracts or classic watercolor paintings might be a good starting point.

My younger daughter Ona just turned 5, and she had already asked for some coloring supplies as her birthday present. While I don’t have any piece of art in mind at this time, I will certainly keep my eyes open and plan on making a ‘small investment’ when the right opportunity arrives. With genuine interest, an art collection can be started even with a very small budget.

Like I said, I am still figuring out the best way to do so but I truly do love the idea of gifting each of my girls a unique piece of art to signify their special days over the years. And as they grow older, their appreciation for art will hopefully grow, too, so they can cherish these pieces for years to come!

What are your thoughts on gifting experiences and long lasting artwork as opposed to the new “must have” toy? What are your go-to gifts for your kids?

Be sure to read my post on top 10 wall art ideas for kids room.


kids fashion blog: fruit inspired summer style - part 1

The SS18 children's collections are trickling in stores and online as we speak and the word on the street is 'fruity.' While some styles are already available for purchase, others are eagerly awaited in the next couple of weeks. The vibrancy of these refreshing, citrusy arrivals sure has us craving sunshine. Your little ones will love wearing these colorful pieces as they frolic around on warmer days. The playfulness of the lemon showerhead tee and the banana print will surely have them smiling. And let's not forget about the cute embroidered pouch or long-sleeve for those cooler summer nights.

Which one of these styles is driving you bananas? ; )

Orange sweatshirt
Pink printed tee
Apple sweater
Strawberry tee
Fruit ombroidered pouch
Banana spaghetti straps swimsuit


Travel with Kids: New York City - Day 1

Back in September, the girls and I tagged along to New York with daddy on one of his work trips! It was mid September, beautiful weather, and although we didn't really need a break right after school started back up, we were ready for an adventure.

During one of my previous New York trips, I came across the Children's Museum of Arts (CMA) while walking around in lower Manhattan. The place looked like a creative wonderland for the littles. I looked it up online and had been wanting to bring the girls since then. This mini trip was our perfect opportunity to do so. 

CMA has a ton of skill-based art classes, fine art activities, media lab, clay bar, special exhibits in a 10,000 square-foot space. The kids (and adults!) can basically let their imagination run wild, work together on various art projects, and can easily spend a few solid hours there. 

If I remember correctly, there was no cafe within CMA and food is not allowed beyond the lobby area. So if you are planning to visit, keep that in mind and eat beforehand or carry snacks with you! On non-busy days, they do give you a sticker to come back in if you need to step outside to grab food. We went there on a weekday and the girls and I ended up stepping outside to take a food break. We found an amazing Mexican food truck right around the block and we brought our food back inside the museum to enjoy in the little seating area by the front lobby.

I don't always carry my 'real' camera with me so enjoy some quick cell phone snapshots of our day at the museum!

The girls started the day off at the Fine Arts Studio.

We then enjoyed dressing the mannequins and making dolls with open-ended art materials. Daily projects and activities keep changing so there is something different to look forward to if you are a local and visit often.

We then spent some time in the Media Lab learning to create a short animated movie while we waited for our turn at the Clay Bar. This was our favorite part! The girls were asked about their favorite food and were then taught how to make sushi and cupcakes with clay. Such a fun hands-on activity!

Up next was the Swirl Studio with Spun Chairs designed by Herman Miller.

Our final stop was the WEE Studio. This studio is appropriate for kids 5 and under. There weren't any activities going on here at the time so it was a quick stop mainly to check it out before we headed out for the day!

We spent more than three hours at the museum and it was a perfect creative escape. After this, the girls and I were ready for some chocolate at Jacques Torres. After we satisfied our cravings, we took a cab to Bryant Park.

A walk around Bryant Park's lush gardens and city views is always enjoyable, no matter what season. I have been taking the girls for two summers now. I grab myself an iced coffee while the girls enjoy the Le Carrousel and the outdoor mini library. It's a good 30-40 minute pit stop to recharge before heading on to the next adventure in the city! (Psst - fake smile alert!)

It was a long and eventful day so we were ready to head back to the hotel and wait for daddy to take us to Pippali for a delicious biryani dinner. After eating to our hearts' content, we were ready to turn in for the night and get some rest before the next day's adventures.

P.S. Check out our NYC High Line experience!


5 tips for quickly dressing kids in the morning

As a busy parent, you understand the craziness that comes with each new morning. You never know what the day might bring so it’s best to set yourself up for success early on - especially when it comes to your kids! Morning clothing battles ring a bell? Anyone? Below are five tips I’ve learned after years of early mornings with my two girls. Hopefully they’ll make your life a little easier when it comes to outfit choices.

1. Lay-out outfits the night before

This is a no brainer - lay-out outfits ahead of time  (including socks, boots and jackets in the winter time!) Doing so will save so much time in the morning! Depending on my energy levels at night, I have also realized that I pay a little more attention to take out clothes from the bottom of the pile, and just mix and match and get a little more creative. In the morning, all bets are off and I grab ANYTHING I can basically lay my hands on.

2. Check the weather ahead of time

Be sure to check the weather the night before so you can include layering options if you have to. I try to keep 5-10 extra minutes in the winter to put on all winter gear and to apply sunscreen in the summertime!

3. Make sure your kids are on board with their outfit

Absolutely no changing of minds allowed in the morning! If there are any outfit battles to be had, they can all happen at night and not when everyone has to be out of the door by 7:15 a.m. I show the girls exactly where their outfits are the night before so there are no questions asked in the morning and we can all start our days off on the right foot.

4. Have basics and neutrals on hand

Neutral basics can be easily worked into any style. For my girls, I always like to keep gray and black tops and leggings ready to wear. Simplifies life when we are rushing and don’t have enough time to perfectly coordinate an outfit. Plus, neutral basics can be mixed with stripes and patterns or worn with colored solids so you’ll have plenty of options.

5. Team work is key!

My girls are independent and dress themselves in the morning, after their outfits have already been laid out for them. However, if I happen to have two extra minutes some days, I prefer to quickly help them put clothes on especially in the winter time with all that layering. Surprisingly, my 5-year-old is very efficient in the mornings but my 6.5-year-old can be a slowcoach(!). Teamwork is key to expedite the process!

Rushed mornings don't mean compromising on style, right? Do you have clothing battles with kids in the morning? Do you have any useful tips to share?


Kids Fashion: Top 10 Style Tips on How to Dress Your Children

Children’s fashion shouldn’t come with any rules. Adult fashion shouldn’t either, but sometimes due to one’s profession or cultural expectations, our outfit choices may not be all that exciting. At Third Eye Chic, we are all about tasteful and comfortable kids clothing that keeps their youthful and creative spirits alive. And, makes us parents feel good about our clothing choices for our kids. Blending fashion and function, and specifically using my daughters’ closets as examples, here are my 10 style tips for dressing your little ones. 

1. Print mixing - Don’t be afraid to mix prints and patterns! Mix whimsical graphics with geometric prints or bring unusual colors together in an unexpected way to create a fascinating outfit. These types of outfits are our speciality.

2. Mixing high and low fashion - Mix and match pieces from curated boutiques/ independent designers with some basics from mainstream retailers like H&M and Target. While our conscious decisions are quality driven, convenience and practicality are equally as important. I am always grateful for mainstream stores I can rely on for making a last-minute run. (Tights and leggings guys, no matter how many I buy, we never have enough!)

3. Buy less, choose well -  Good quality clothing that can stand the test of time and also be dressed creatively in the future is the goal. I am lucky to have two girls who are 18 months apart so I usually get 2-3 years (or more) from a single piece of well-made clothing - especially knits, sweaters and jackets. The quality, longevity and the overall satisfaction are totally worth the price tag! And yes, my younger daughter gladly wears her sister’s hand-me-downs. I also try to be increasingly mindful of our environment and look for sustainable clothing options when possible.

4. Timeless - There are some pieces that never go out of style. Choose simple cottons and linens in soft colors. So effortless and breezy, especially in the summertime.

5. Personality - My older daughter tends to like flouncy, girly details while my younger has a more offbeat style. Of course, they share clothes but while specifically shopping for one of my daughters in mind, I am instantly drawn to outfits that fit her specific style. I believe in clothing that truly reflects a child's personality and doesn't conform to a cookie cutter look. Instead of dressing the girls identically and in complete matchy-matchy looks, I prefer coordinating outfits and colors if I can. 

6. Comfort is Key - While we love being stylish, comfort is key - especially for everyday dressing. School, activities, playdates, a lot of outdoor time (when the weather permits) calls for super soft cottons and comfortable fabrics. Anything tight, itchy, or even slightly uncomfortable or irritable is an absolute no.

7. Vintage - We love clothing that tells a story and transcends trends. Well-maintained clothes transferred from one generation to the next are so classic and special. Girls below are in some of my childhood clothes.

8. Playful - Cheerful, whimsical clothing that celebrates childhood and lets kids be kids.

9. Basics -  Neutral basics that can be easily worked into any style. For my girls, I always like to 
keep gray and black tops and leggings on hand. Basics simplify life when we are rushing and don’t have enough time to perfectly coordinate an outfit. Remember, neutral basics can be mixed with stripes and patterns or worn with colored solids.

10. Accessories - Unnecessary bling and overdone hair are no-go for us. Of course, the girls love accessorizing, we just do it elegantly. Never limit their imagination, though. Always keep plenty of time for pretend play so your little ones can wear all the crazy accessories they desire, while still keeping their day-to-day style on point. Halloween looks can’t be an everyday thing, but creativity is always encouraged.

Keep it simple, chic, and comfortable. Mix and match patterns, brands and enjoy creating unexpected looks. Be conscious of your choices, while keeping an open mind and staying practical at the same time. Remember, dressing your children should be fun and creative. There’s no need for stress, even if you have to deviate from your usual norm to simplify life!


Valentine's Day Trends from Melijoe's Nathalie Genty

If you’ve followed Third Eye Chic long enough, you know we have an eye for quirk and are obsessed with mixing and matching funky pieces. We believe in clothing that truly reflects a child's personality and doesn't conform to a cookie cutter look. We are always so happy to introduce like-minded brands who share the same philosophy!

Meet Melijoe.com, a highly curated online marketplace for trendy kids and their tasteful parents. Paris-based founder and mom of five, Nathalie Genty, saw a gap in the online children’s market and launched Melijoe in 2007, a few years after her first son was born in 2003. The online boutique has grown tremendously since then and has become a one-stop shop for the very best of kids fashion.

Nathalie Genty with her children

Photo credit: William Beaurcadet c/o Melijoe.com

Melijoe offers a mélange of chic and offbeat styles -- from mega fashion brands to up and coming designers. Plus, their online magazine will keep you up to date with fashion news and the latest trends for your little ones. Offering true luxury and a wide assortment of styles, the pioneering e-tailer continues to inspire thousands of parents worldwide, including numerous celebrities.  

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, we thought it would be fun to share some of Nathalie Genty’s top picks from the new season and some of our favorites from the past season for this love-filled day. These pieces will surely give you a taste of Melijoe’s cool aesthetic. Red, pink, graphic and frill - let these fun pieces bring you some Valentine’s Day magic!

Graphic Cardigan
Reversible Heart Nighlight
Embroidered Sweatshirt
Printed Leggings
Sweatshirt with flounces
High Top Trainers
Embroidered 'Peace' Blouse
Mother-Daughter Sunglasses
Strawberry T-shirt

These are just a few of the many beautiful designs available on Melijoe. From sophisticated to edgy and formal to casual, you’ll find endless options to spice up your kids' wardrobes while still giving them the comfort and creativity to keep their youthful spirits alive. With over 1.5 million monthly visitors to their site, Melijoe continues to add new and unusual styles to keep their customers coming back for more. Check out what all the hype is about and be sure to create your own mix and match looks, a Third Eye Chic specialty indeed.