Best of Houzz Two Years Running

by

Best of Houzz

Best of Houzz 2014 and 2015

THANK YOU to all of our customers who helped us earn the “Best of Houzz” award for the second year in a row. Because you took time to share your experience with our store, we received “Best of Houzz” in Customer Satisfaction in 2014 and 2015. If you haven’t seen our PRO page yet, we invite you to check it out at Sweet Retreat Kids Houzz. We feature samples of our children’s custom furniture, outdoor playhouses, custom hand-painted wooden letters, custom princess carriage wagons, and more. Check out our projects and get inspired!

Accessories to Bling Out Your Bunk

by

Maxtrix Accessories

OK, so a bunk bed shelf and other bunk bed accessories probably don’t qualify as “bling.” I may have oversold that, but they’re definitely essential add-ons to any kids’ bunk bed or loft bed.

Kids won’t want to get all cozy on the top bunk only to have to get out of bed to fetch their favorite book or a sip of water? A bunk bed table will let them keep essential items handy.

Will the Maxtrix accessories fit my bed?

Most brands don’t offer these accessories, so we get a lot of inquiries about Maxtrix bunk bed accessories from parents with a different brand bed. While we can’t guarantee the fit on any brand other than Maxtrix Kids, we can give you some information to help you determine if they will work for your bed.

Maxtrix J-Hook All Maxtrix wooden bunk accessories – including the bedside tray, beverage holder, magazine rack, and bedside box – all hang on the front guard rail using J-shaped hooks. The Maxtrix guard rail is roughly 7/8” thick, so their J-hooks are sized to fit.

 

If you want to attach the accessory to something that is thinner or thicker, you’ll need to find an alternative way to attach it. You may be able to find a different size J-hook at a local home improvement store.

Another common question is whether the accessories will fit on the headboard or footboard of a Maxtrix bed. The bed ends are too thick to accommodate the included J-hooks, so you’ll need an alternative way to hang a bunk bed shelf or other accessory on the ends of the bed.

#sweetretreatkids #maxtrixkids

Handpainted Letters Add a Personal Touch

by

Can you make custom handpainted letters to match my bedding?

Looking for a way to personalize your child’s bedroom or nursery? We have the answer – custom handpainted letters that spell a name or a special word or phrase.

Check out hundreds of samples of our custom wooden names and letters, but don’t worry if you don’t find the perfect design. We can create a custom design just for you. If you send photos of your child’s bedding, paint colors, or other décor, our talented artists can make handpainted custom wood letters in a coordinating design.

You’re welcome to give as much input as you want. We’re happy to follow your detailed instructions regarding the colors and patterns on your child’s name letters. Alternatively, if you don’t have an artistic side, leave it to our talented artists to take care of all the design work.

It’s helpful for us to know your child’s wall color, so we can ensure that the background of the custom name coordinates but doesn’t blend into the wall color.

If you don’t find a sample design on our site to meet your needs, use this link to order completely custom letters for your child’s name. You can enter custom requests at the time of order. If you choose to email photos to us, be sure to include your 4-digit order number in the email, so we can connect it with the correct order. As always, don’t hesitate to contact us if you we can help!

Handpainted Letters

Handpainted Custom Letters

 

#sweetretreatkids #customletters #wallart

Help your kids feel safe at night

by

Three Easy Ways to Help Your Little One Feel Safe Sleeping In Their Own Room

We have been the most incredibly blessed parents in the world when it comes to bedtime. I have heard the horror stories of the nightly game of whack-a-mole played by most parents at night, but not us. Nope. Our daughters go to sleep at bedtime, safe and secure sleeping in their own rooms.

Want to know our secret? A regular bedtime routine and nightlights. It really is that simple. I could say it’s just a fluke, that our daughters are just the kind of kids that go to sleep easily, but our sons were the same way.

If you’re ready to end the madness of bedtime and get your kids to feel safe sleeping in their rooms at night, here are three easy tips you can implement right away.

scared of the dark

  1. Establish a Time for Bed: Seems like a no-brainer, but no matter how small your child, whether an infant or a grade-schooler, a regular bedtime is important. If you establish it early on, it creates a bio-rhythm that allows your child to develop their own healthy sleep cycle.
  1. Create a Routine: A normal bedtime routine can go a long way in helping your child feel safe and secure at bedtime. To help create a routine, do the following:
  • Announce that bedtime is near. Even when your child is an infant tell him/her “It’s almost bedtime.”
  • Do the same things in the same order every night. Your routine might be take a warm bath, read a story, play soft music, turn off the lights, pray, and turn on the night light. Or it might look completely different. The point is to have a routine and stick to it.
  1. Get a Nightlight: And speaking of nightlights, get one (or more than one). The dark is a scary, scary place. Even as adults, we sometimes fear the dark. A simple nightlight can be so incredibly reassuring to a child. Allowing your child to help pick out his/her nightlight can even be an important part of the process that helps your little one feel a little more in control about the situation.

Training your children to feel safe sleeping in their own room is something you can easily accomplish. All it takes is nailing down the routine that works best for your child, giving them some control about their environment, and then being consistent with these three great tips.

#sweetretreatkids #nightlights #scaredofthedark

nightlights for kids

Pink Rose Petal Night Light

Vintage Baseball Nightlight

Vintage Baseball Nightlight

Zebra Print Nightlight with Dark Pink Bow Magnet & White Ribbon Rose Magnet

Zebra Print Nightlight with Dark Pink Bow Magnet & White Ribbon Rose Magnet

 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

by
Oopsy daisy Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

Oopsy daisy Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

In 1969, Eric Carle was working with a simple, handheld hole puncher while organizing his office. Inadvertently, he punched through two pieces of paper at the same time, prompting the brainchild we now know as The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Originally, the caterpillar (and the book) was named Willie the Worm, but Carle’s editor helped him see that a worm wouldn’t be a very lovable protagonist (Thank God for editors.) Although it took him a long time to find a publisher willing to take on such a sizable production, he did eventually find someone who saw the potential in his work and in his unorthodox style.

Here we are, forty-six years later celebrating the anniversary of what is considered to be a classic in children’s literature. It is estimated that there is a copy of this book sold every minute of every day, 365 days a year. Don’t you just know those publishers who initially turned down Carle’s book are kicking themselves now!

Believe it or not, the multitude of publishers who turned him down were concerned that no one would want a book with such irregular pages in them, nor were they sure about the art of collage being a style of illustration children could relate to.

Boy were they wrong.

Not only do the books sell like crazy, but Very Hungry Caterpillar themed products, including children’s furniture and caterpillar clothing are also a part of the charm (and marketing bonanza) that go along with Carle’s book.

Recently, my twin six-year-olds and I used The Very Hungry Caterpillar to talk about healthy eating habits. Think about it, in the story, the caterpillar only eats fruit in the beginning. But then his wayward hunger and desire to binge eat takes over and before you know it, he’s eating everything from chocolate cake and pickles, to lollipops and salami, (boy can I relate to that).

We used the story to discuss how occasionally having a treat is okay, but how if we just eat anything and everything, we feel yucky on the inside and the outside. We also made notice of the fact that in the end, he returned to eating fresh fruits and veggies, took a good long nap, and awakened a beautiful butterfly. As a mom, you should always work in the importance of a good nap. (wink)

So this year, in honor of Eric Carle’s masterpiece anniversary, we are going to read the story, have a healthy picnic and take a good long nap. Who knows, maybe we’ll all wake up as beautiful butterflies too. A girl can hope.

#sweetretreatkids #veryhungrycaterpillar #ericcarle #childrensbook

Very Hungry Caterpillar Furniture Set

Very Hungry Caterpillar Furniture Set

Everyone loves a good fairy tales!

by

National Fairy Tale Day

You may not be aware, but February 26th, 2015, is National Tell a Fairy Tale day. I have long wondered who makes up these weird holidays and how in the world they arrive at the distinction of being a “national” holiday.

For example, did you know there is a National Dress Up Your Pets Day? And there is a National Streaking Day? Or how about “National Cheesecake Day?” (Okay, that’s a good one, actually.) Some of them I think are just kooky, but I love that with all these wacky national holidays, you can really make life fun if you want to be intentional about celebrating small things.

Because I have two little girls who pretty much live in a land of fairy tales anyway, I thought we would celebrate National Fairy Tale Day in style.

First, let’s be clear about what a fairy tale is. According to Wikipedia: A fairy tale is a fictional story that may feature folkloric characters such as fairies, goblins, elves,  trolls, giants, mermaids or gnomes and usually magic or enchantments. The term is also used to describe something blessed with unusual happiness, as in “fairy tale ending” (a happy ending) or “fairy tale romance” (though not all fairy tales end happily). A “fairy tale” or “fairy story” can also mean any far-fetched story or tall tale; it’s used especially of any story that not only isn’t true, but couldn’t possibly be true.”

In our land of make-believe, all good fairy tales must start with “Once upon a time,” and they all end with “and they lived happily ever after.” Our fairy tales come complete with castles adorned with fairy tale art, and bridges adorned with fairy tale trolls. The good guys (girls) always win, and the bad guys always see the error of their ways. And if somehow they can work a kiss into the story, you can bet there will be one!

So for National Fairy Tale Day, we are going to make up an elaborate story, write it down, illustrate it, and then act it out! It’s going to be a fun day. We’d love to hear your made up fairy tales too!

Enjoy 10% off everything fairy tale.  Just click this link and take a look around. www.SweetRetreatKids.com.

#sweetretreatkids #oopsydaisy

 

FairyTale Fleur de Pink

FairyTale Fleur de Pink

Fairy Tale Personalized Once Upon a Time Canvas Artwork

Personalized Once Upon a Time Canvas Artwork

 

Fairy Tale Happily Ever After Personalized Artwork

Happily Ever After Personalized Artwork

 

Sleeping Safely on Raised Maxtrix Kids Beds

by

Triple Bunk Bed by Maxtrix Kids

Maxtrix Kids bunk beds and loft beds are about as fun as a kid’s bed can get. Of course, safety is an equal priority, so let’s talk mattress options.

“Will my child be safe on the top bunk?”

Your Maxtrix Kids bed will accommodate any standard twin or full size mattress, depending on your bed size, but there’s more to the story. The main thing to keep in mind is the mattress thickness. A thinner mattress offers more protection from the safety rail because it covers less of it. Maxtrix Kids makes your child’s safety a priority by making their guard rail extend a full 16.25” above the mattress support. This is higher than any kids’ bed manufacturer we’ve found. They also offer a 5” safety height mattress for optimum protection. This is the mattress pictured on all of the Maxtrix Kids beds on our site, so the bed photos will give you a good visual reference. Their eco-friendly mattresses are made with BioFoam and Organic Cotton and are available in 4 styles. While the Maxtrix Kids mattresses are a great option, you aren’t limited to the Maxtrix brand. If you prefer to purchase a different mattress brand, we recommend staying in the range of 5-8″ in thickness. If you already own a mattress that you would like to use, we suggest an absolute maximum thickness of 10″. Please note that these recommendations apply to Maxtrix Kids beds only. If your loft bed or bunk bed has a lower safety rail, you’ll want a thinner mattress to ensure safety. Sleep safe and contact us with any questions you might have. 281-516-9222

Maxtrix Mattress

Maxtrix Castle Bunk Bed Now Available

by
Custom Maxtrix Castle Bunk Bed

Exclusively at Sweet Retreat Kids

Maxtrix Castle Bunk Bed? Yep, we can do it!

So you love the look of the Maxtrix castle beds, but you really need a castle bunk bed? Maybe you’ve been told that this configuration doesn’t exist, but we have good news. We’ve got a Maxtrix castle bunk bed listed exclusively at Sweet Retreat Kids.

We teamed with a talented designer to create an amazing little girl’s room using this fun configuration. The Maxtrix castle tower was designed to fit their low loft configuration, so it isn’t long enough to reach the floor on a bunk bed. Lucky for you, the castle tower lines up with the underbed curtains so perfectly that you wouldn’t want it any longer.

Now it’s possible to get a castle theme on a Maxtrix LOW or MEDIUM bunk bed. It’s the perfect addition over a slide. So, it’s official. You CAN get a Maxtrix Kids Castle Bunk Bed with Slide.

Even better, you can customize the wood color, fabric color, ladder style, and bed end style, so don’t worry if the sample bed pictured isn’t your style. We have options for boys and girls. It’s even available with a staircase.Let us know how we can help you design the perfect castle bunk bed.

#sweetretreatkids #maxtrixkids

Kids storage beds RULE

by
Low loft storage bed by Maxtrix

Maxtrix Kids Low Loft Bed w/ Built In Dresser & Bookcase

I have a serious dilemma these days, and by serious I mean I don’t want to have to do what I’m thinking about doing, but I know I need to, so I am seriously dragging my feet.

(How’s that for a build up?)

I need to put my twin girls in separate bedrooms. There, I said it, so it’s practically already decided . . . mostly.

It’s a serious decision for many reasons. One, they are twins and they have slept together since the womb, literally. So separating them is kind of a big deal. Two, they are six-year-olds, and though I pictured at some point they’d want to have separate rooms, I didn’t think the day would come so soon. And three, our remaining “extra” bedroom is small, and it will require some creative storage options if I am going to make it work.

I know you are asking yourself, “Well, if it is such a big deal to separate them, why are you doing it?” And you would be perfectly justified in your question, so I’ll answer it this way. One of the girls is a, how should I say it . . . a very noisy sleeper, and by very noisy, I want you to imagine someone building furniture in your bedroom, in the middle of the night, every night. And then I want you to picture what it would be like to try to sleep through that.

Not fun.

So, I saw these cool Maxtrix storage beds the other day, the ones with the built in dressers and desks, and I was thinking this might be an option for my space problem. I want to put a bed in the very small room, but the room is definitely NOT big enough for a bed, a dresser, and a book/toy shelf, so I need a way to create space in a small room.

They have a super cute one that has some under-the-bed type storage, which I could totally use as a dresser. They also have one that has a bookshelf at the end of it, which would be great too! I can use it now for toys, and later for books and a great place for homework! (Can you tell I’m trying to talk myself into this?!)

Now that I have my mind wrapped around this, I’m actually kind of excited about it! The girls are going to have so much fun playing in each other’s rooms. I can picture it now, the tea parties, the parades back and forth between rooms, the trail of toys leading from one room to the other . . . wait . . . what am I thinking?!!!

LOL. Oh well, at least their rooms will be organized.

High Storage Bed in Chestnut by Maxtrix Kids

Maxtrix Kids HIGH Loft Bed with Storage Dressers

Mid loft storage bed in natural by Maxtrix Kids

Maxtrix Kids Mid Loft Storage Bed for Boys

Strawberry Napoleon Tart

by
Strawberry Napoleon Tart

Strawberry Napoleon Tart

Sweet Eats Series – Strawberry Napoleon Tarts

Here’s another great idea from our Sweet Eats series. Surprise your little ones this Valentines morning with these fabulous Strawberry Napoleon Tart treats. Or spend the morning making them together. This Sweet Eats comes from Driscoll’s, who has over 100 years of experience growing some of the finest berries on the planet. Although any berries and fruits will work for this project, we definitely recommend the Driscoll brand.

INGREDIENTS:

1 ready-to-roll pie crust
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 package (16 ounces) Driscoll’s Strawberries
2 tablespoons semi-sweet chocolate chips
fresh mint leaves

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Unroll pie crust on a lightly floured surface. Cut 6 hearts with a 4-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter and place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool.

Meanwhile, beat heavy cream, sugar and vanilla in an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Melt chocolate chips in microwave. Cut one strawberry in half. Set aside. Hull remaining strawberries and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices.

Place one baked heart on a serving plate. Top with one quarter whipped cream and sliced strawberries. Top with second heart and repeat. Top with third heart and strawberry half. Drizzle with melted chocolate and garnish with mint leaves. Serve immediately.

Send us your photos after trying this crazy fun Sweet Eats! We’d love to see them!

#timetogether #sweeteats #itsreallyaday #sweetretreatkids

Brought to you by Sweet Retreat Kids

Want to allow your little one to help make this delicious recipe with you?  Consider The Learning Tower in Apple Green by Sweet Retreat Kids.  It will help you create a safe environment so she can help in the kitchen. Creating a love for cooking, and making healthy food choices, at a early age, will teach him valuable lessons and they will love you for it.

The Learning Tower in Apple Green

The Learning Tower in Apple Green