Twenty-six years ago, working mother Karen Scott had a light-bulb moment. She envisioned a one-stop children's clothing, toy, and furniture emporium. Karen and her husband set up shop in their garage, connecting new moms and dads to high-quality baby clothes, nursery furniture, and educational toys. They meticulously researched products before creating their own catalogue, and as a result watched their enterprise blossom into a lucrative online business. Today, One Step Ahead employs their own in-house design team responsible for exclusive labels of kidswear such as Cozy Cub winter wear Sun Smarties swimwear and summer gear.
Regular meetings with a Parents' Panel keep One Step Ahead designers in touch with the needs of modern parents. Seeking out their input has led the design team to create products such as a fleece-lined car seat for comfortably toting a baby in cold weather and a hanging closet organizer for managing a child's superhero identities.
Lake Forest Hardware Cards and Gifts was started by Keith and Mary Jane Morgan in 1991. We have everthing you need, in a unique,friendly atmosphere. Our staff is always willing to go the "extra mile" to make sure your shopping experience is enjoyable and stress free. Come meet our experienced staff , get what you need.
The toys at Beanstalk are not guarded behind a counter for children to look at, but not touch. Instead the owners line up train sets, touch-and-feel books, and plush dolls at just the right height for kids to stage a hands-on meet and greet with each plaything before taking them home for new adventures. With young ones playfully preoccupied, parents can browse the store's selection of high chairs, rocking bassinets, and luxury strollers that safely and smartly outfit newborns and babies. A certified elementary school teacher selects the catalogue of books, crafts, and learning aids, catering both to the tactile toddler crowd as well as new readers who are first navigating the sounds of vowels, consonants, and accent marks on sippy-cup lattés. Beanstalk's collection of crooked, cartoonish playhouses suggest hours of outdoor fun, and the store's regularly scheduled lineup of storytelling events and dress-up parties supplies rainy-day amusements.
Hidden Creek AquaPark's sprawling grounds swim with watery entertainment for guests of all ages, from kids waiting beneath the water playground's dumping bucket to grandparents reading a good book atop lounge chairs. Swimmers can slip down the winding slide or take the plunge from a drop slide, which spits them out into the deep end of a pool that gradually descends from its zero-depth entry. Meanwhile, kids can keep themselves busy building castles and multistory housing units in a sand area. After practicing swan dives and cannonballs off the diving board, guests can storm the concession stand or relax on the lawn.
When faced with lemons—or many other fruits—the proprietors of Oh, Olive! don't contemplate lemonade. Instead, they envision freshly pressed batches of extra-virgin olive oil, such as their tangy Eureka-lemon variant. The family-run shops specialize in this flexible condiment and stock their shelves with estate-produced Delizia oils. Their catalog covers both plain and fused types with flavors that range from the spicy notes of chipotle peppers to the sweetness of blood oranges, a fitting complement to cuts of chicken and fish. They also vend balsamic vinegars from Modena, Italy. Fruits feature heavily in the imported collection, which includes pomegranate, blackberry-ginger, and cinnamon-pear vinegars in addition to a dark-chocolate infusion and the 18-year balsamic—a traditional vinegar aged in oak barrels and given a high-school diploma.
Often, the staff members don't separate the acts of purchasing and cooking with their wares. They prefer to interact with customers and host tastings, classes, and contests to encourage innovative recipes. Amid more than 60 kinds of oil and vinegar, Oh, Olive! sells meal add-ons as well. Tiesta Tea produces soothing, toasty brews, and stuffed olives contain hidden servings of jalapeños, sharp cheddar, and asparagus.
Walter E. Smithe's huge showrooms contain more than 500 collections of high-quality designer furniture and home accessories, stocking brands including Drexel Heritage, Nourison, Hancock and Moore, and Bradington-Young. Fill a brass-trimmed vase ($119) with flowers, pencils, or wishes, or keep winter moisture stylishly contained in a hand-painted umbrella stand ($99). Walter E. Smithe's selection of four-legged pieces includes an Ontario end table ($299) and a Louise chair ($599). Most products come with impressive warranties, including a 10-year guarantee for every cushion on the comfy Kayla sofa ($1,749).