Sam & Bellie Chalk mats: For toddlers on the go

02/23/2007 at 03:30 PM ET

40042Perfect for when we go out to eat and are waiting for thefood to be served, the Sam & Bellie Chalk mat is small so it’s easilytransportable. The chalk mat is a very simple concept: decorative fabric on one side (ours has paperdolls) and chalk cloth (like a soft blackboard) on the other. I roll my chalk mat closed and tuck it intomy diaper bag and then, whenever I need to distract my 18-month-old, I roll itopen and hand her a piece of chalk. The chalk comes off with a dry or wet wipe,no problem.

Gwen Stefani, Vanessa Williams and Angela Bassett handpicked Sam & Bellie’s chalk mats at the 2006 Golden Globe events.

Chalk mats will run you about $25 and you can find them (andother cool products) at the Sam & Bellie website:

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parentoftwo on

I’d think twice before ordering here. They have beautiful items, but doesn’t have a posted return policy on its site. I learned this the hard way when I ordered some bibs. They arrived damaged, with stains on the cotton seam binding. When I tried to return them, I was charged for shipping both ways, plus a $3 additional shipping fee (am not sure what this was for; my emails asking about it went unanswered) plus a $2+ paypal refund fee.