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Archive for July, 2011

Beat the summer heat and take a break to read about the most adorable and fun boutique in Decateur, Texas – Sunshine Square! We spoke with owner Laurie Washburn about the inside scoop on her latest summer deals at her store, warm-weather fashion, her “go-to” items from her store if she was deserted on a tropical island, as well as what she swore she’d never do before she had kids!  Enjoy and become a fan on Facebook below!

108 West Walnut Street
Decatur, TX 76234
940.627.3394
sunshinesquare@embarqmail.com

or go to www.sunshine-square.com for more information

CHECK-IN and JOIN
Sunshine Square’s Facebook page and click HERE

 

1.    What was your inspiration behind opening your children’s clothing store – Sunshine Square? Where did the name come from?
Laurie: Having three children and constantly searching for unique clothing inspired me to have a vision of a store dedicated to great quality boutique fashions. The name Sunshine Square came from a collaboration of friends and family.

2.    Tell us the inside scoop about any special events that you have planned at your store this coming summer and fun deals we can expect.
Laurie: 
We are located on the Historic Downtown Square, so there is something for everyone in the family to enjoy. From special parades, family movie nights, girl’s night out, petting zoos, antique car shows, and Santa Claus, there is always something going on at the square. Of course we just started our annual summer clearance sale to make room for our new fabulous fall styles. We are also getting ready for a big back-to-school sale. I am always thinking of creative sales to offer my customers – so check out our Facebook page and website so you don’t miss out!

3.    What are this season’s latest trends for kid’s clothing? Tell us the 3 “do’s” and 3 “don’ts” in kid’s clothing style.

Sunshine Square's interior features Rabbitmoon's Fall 2011 "Magnolia" collection

Laurie:  This season’s latest trends for kid’s clothing would have to be bold and colorful, fun, ruffles, rompers and tutus.

  • Dress your child in comfy clothes that feel good to move around in.
  • Let your child pick out a few clothing items themselves.
  • Make your child feel good about what they are wearing – make them feel like a princess or prince.
  • Don’t dress your child in restrictive clothing that makes them uncomfortable and fussy.
  • Don’t dress your child older than what they are – cherish every moment they grow up so fast.
  • Don’t judge what your child chooses to wear – they have the right to express themselves.

4.    Tell us…before you “had kids or grandkids, what is one thing you swore you’d never…?” Please share!
Laurie:  
Before I had kids, I swore I would never lick my thumb and wipe my kid’s face clean (also known as a “spit bath”). I did not like it when my mom did it to me and my kids do not like it when I do it to them.

5.    Decatur, Texas sounds exciting! Describe the neighborhood your store is in for us.
Laurie: 
Sunshine Square is located on the Historic Downtown Square. The courthouse sits right in the middle of the square and is made of solid pink granite. It is a beautiful site to see. The square is full of antique shops, clothing stores, gift stores and restaurants. There is shopping and food for everyone.   

6.    What do you feel are the three biggest keys to your success?
Laurie: 
The three biggest keys to my success would have to be:

  • Longevity of the store – Sunshine Square has been in business for 27 years and we see generation after generation shop in the store.
  • Loyal customer base – I always keep an open mind and am receptive to customer suggestions and cater to their needs and wants.
  • Variety and selection – We have a great selection of unique and stylish clothing for our customers to choose from.

7.    If you were a new mom and got stranded on a deserted island – what 5 items could you not live without from your store?
Laurie: 
If I were stranded on a deserted island I could not live without: 

  • Any clothing piece by Le Top or Rabbitmoon – you just can’t beat the softness and durability.
  • An incredibly soft, ultra plush blanket by Little Giraffe – all babies love to snuggle up with this blanket and take a nap.
  • A pair of Mooshu squeaky sandals – the squeaky sound helps me to keep up with my little one.
  • Blossom’s Buddy Blanket by Bunnies by the Bay – plush floppy eared bunny with snuggly soft pink velour security blanket.
  • Kalencom diaper bag to keep all of the great baby items together. 

Their boy's section features Le Top's Fall 2011 "Ready for Takeoff" footed coverall and Rabbitmoon's Fall 2011 "City" stripe coverall

8.    Tell us about a “special” moment that made your day working at your store.
Laurie:
A special moment that made my day was last Christmas when we adopted a family and the kids came into the store and picked out outfits and accessories. The sparkle in their eyes and their smiles lit up the whole store. We all shared a special moment.

9.    Where are the best/essential family hangouts and places to go around your store locations?
Laurie:  
The best family hangout around our location would have to be Sweetie Pies Ribeyes. They have the best steaks around! It is a great family restaurant and the kids love their chicken fingers.

Of course we are only about 30 minutes northwest of the Dallas/Fort Worth area so we are close to everything imaginable – several zoos, water parks, Six Flags, Texas Motor Speedway and much more.

10.    What Le Top or rabbitmoon Spring/Summer 2011 collection is your store’s favorite and why?
Laurie:  
Our favorite collections would have to be the Le Top “Heart’s Delight” for the girls and the Le Top “Puppy Pals” for the boys. We love the bright fun colors and the softness of the fabric. These styles started selling before we could get them unpacked! Of course any Le Top or Rabbitmoon style sells out super fast.

or click HERE for the Sunshine Square website for more information

CHECK-IN and JOIN
Sunshine Square’s Facebook page and click HERE

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Every kiddo and parent knows that ice cream can get really messy in the summer. I just learned this amazing tip to stop the leakage from a cone (and onto the front of your kid’s shirt)!

This post has been moved to our website. To view the full post go to:
http://blog.letop-usa.com/?p=20142

TO CHECK OUT LE TOP BABY AND CHILDREN’S CLOTHING GO TO:

http://www.letop-usa.com

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Today’s Darling comes to us from Diane, the owner of The Velveteen Rabbit, in Chesapeake, VA. Her delightful granddaughter, Ryann (9 months-old),  looks happy as a clam (pictured with mom) and peaceful, snoozing in her swing no doubt with visions of flowers and butterflies in her dreams. Wouldn’t you if you were wearing Le Top’s “Flutterbye Butterfly” one-piece romper or the rabbitmoon “Geranium” collection capri jumper. Congrats to Ryann on being crowned the Le Top Darling of the Day!

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Photo by: LRRB and Co./WireImage

It’s a boy for Bridesmaids star/actress Maya Rudolph, 38, and director Paul Thomas Anderson. Their new little boy, Jack, will be their 3rd child and joins big sisters Pearl, 5 1/2, and Lucille, 20 months.

While pregnant, Rudolph said she was especially excited to discover the sex of the baby, which she and Anderson chose not to find out prior to the delivery. Jack would be so cute snuggling in a Le Top Baby pre-fall “Woodland Friends” footed coverall.

“The exciting part is not knowing who’s coming,” she explained. “You have to wait nine months for a surprise, but then it’s a good payoff because it really is a surprise.”

Le Top Baby "Woodland Friends" footed coverall




Your little fawn will be snug and stylish in this blue woodland friends print cotton footed coverall with asymmetrical wrap styling. Subdued autumn colors and mini fawn embroidery on chest with coordinating forest friends on footies finish this sweet fall look. Side and underneath snaps for easy on and off.

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It’s that time of year again, time to think about back-to-school and WHICH school. Lilah has been in Montessori for the last year. She is now 4 ½ and could start Kindergarten in public school this fall but her Montessori has a Kindergarten program as well. What to do? I’ve been reading many parent blogs and other forums about what has worked or not for their little ones and I’ve been talking to the other parents about this subject. About half of Lilah’s class and close friends are heading off for different schools but for a variety of reasons. Here are some reasons parents are taking or not taking their 4-5 year-old children from Montessori.

Reasons to Leave:

  1. Their local public school is good and the money paid for Montessori can be used for other things like sports, music and dance classes.
  2. Their child is already 5 and they are moving them to another private school that starts at K. Depending on what level they test at the child may move to K or 1st, plus they have been at Montessori for 3 years now and have reached a high level.
  3. Some feel their child will be going to the local public school for 1st grade so if they move now they can start making new friends and get them used to the structure of public school.
  4. The general thinking is that if your child is at a good Montessori they may already be academically ahead of public school kids. Grade skipping is rare so if they move to public school earlier the child won’t be so far ahead that they are bored

Reasons to Stay:

  1. The Montessori program is a full day for Kindergarten (where public is only a half day). Their child is happy (and excelling) where they are AND afternoon child care is not needed. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.
  2. Many children have been looking forward to being the oldest (and wisest) child at the Montessori. This is their chance to take younger children under their wing and for them to solidify the lessons and habits learned in the previous year(s).
  3. If your local public school is not a good fit (either academically or socially) this gives time to find a public or private elementary school that does fit. To switch schools now just to have them switch again next year would only disjoint their lives. Kids need stability and structure.
  4. Since there is a good chance my child will be academically advanced when she starts public school she will have energy to focus on meeting new friends. True there will be a different type of structure in public school but for any child moving from K to 1st grade sitting in assigned desk will be new. If she can follow instructions, and have a good attention span and social skills she will adjust when the time comes.

Did any of you have to make this decision? What are your thoughts on this subject?

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No, I did not say that!

As a mother was peeling her hard-boiled egg, her daughter said

I sure hope there’s no chicken in that egg!”

– Lily, age 4

Editor’s Note:
Please spread the giggles by sharing your funny quotes with us!

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The summer is fully in effect and the sun is shining high! What better way to take advantage of a sunny day than with a picnic? The components are so easy to make that kids can do most of the work themselves. The biggest challenge is organizing and packing everything so that it arrives at the destination intact.

Here are some fun ideas to include in your picnic! Kids love to help put it together…it could be in your backyard, nearby park or even at the beach! My niece, Ella, loves to do a mini “fruit picnic” after her summer day camp!

Veggie Time!
Wash vegetables, then pat dry so they’ll stay crisp. While an adult chops celery and peppers, kids can snap green beans and put cherry tomatoes and vegetables into plastic bags.

Party Mix
Go through your pantry for dried fruits, nuts, and other bite-size sweet and salty snacks. I love dried bananas and cranberries, sunflower seeds, shredded coconut, chocolate chips, raisins, pretzels, cashews, and peanuts. Put a handful of each into a large bowl, and then stir gently. Store in a hard-sided container to keep ingredients from getting crushed.

Graham Sandwiches
These delicious treats are a no-bake alternative to sandwich cookies. To make, spread homemade or store-bought frosting between two graham cracker halves; I love to use store bought chocolate frosting for some, vanilla for others, or both. Stack and store in a hard-sided container.

Pack Fruit in Baggies
I love to pack crisp grapes or plump strawberries for the trip! Throw ‘em in a baggy and go.

Sandwich Assembly Line
Set up a sandwich-assembly line, making sure each sandwich gets bread, meats, cheese and lettuce and even mayo if your kiddo is into it. Make sure to wrap them in wax paper… Seal the sandwiches with different colored stickers; that way you can tell at a glance which is turkey and which is ham, etc. 

CHECK OUT LE TOP PLAYWEAR AT
www.letop-usa.com

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Photo by: Rolf Mueller/face to face/ZUMA

Congratulations to Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner who welcomed their first child, a daughter, on Sunday, July 17 in New York City! Our new Le Top Baby “Pretty Orchid” Collection woven dress and bloomer pant would be precious for the darling city baby!

“I just left the hospital and the baby is beautiful. [Ivanka’s] doing great,” Donald Trump says. “Arabella Rose is the baby’s name — I just found that out by the way.”

Ivanka added her own thoughts via Twitter: “Jared and I are having so much fun playing with our daughter! Arabella Rose is beyond adorable. She’s truly a blessing.”

Dress your little seedling in this two-piece long sleeve pink woven dress and coordinating bloomer pants. Delicate smocking across the bodice and pink satin ribbon rosebuds adorn this sweet look. Ruffle sleeve and ankle detail add delicate flair. Snaps in back of dress and gentle elasticized waist assist dressing.

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Photo by: Pacific Coast News

This week in a revealing bikini picture, French First Lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy was showing a baby bump – making it official that she is going to have a baby – Oui! – and is 5 1/2 months pregnant. 43-year-old baby mama to husband President Nicolas Sarkozy, told newspaper Nice-Matin that her condition is “coming happiness, unexpected and unhoped for.” What a cute little politian to be! We think the Le Top Baby new pre-fall “Baby Love” Collection’s reversible plush double layer blanket would be the perfect unisex gift until we found the sex of the baby! The inscription on the blanket seems just right… “welcome * baby * love” Cheers to the happy couple and baby-to-be!

Le Top "Baby Love" plush blanket embroidered message - Click on on photo to link to Le Top product page



Keep your baby cozy wrapped in this luxurious and generous reversible double layer 30×36 inch carriage blanket. Features soft baby love print patterned pima cotton and plush white velour reverse side for versatility. Finished with welcome baby love embroidery corner message. A perfect gift for any baby for years to come.

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With summer school now and back-to-school in August – every day can be difficult to whip up a tasty bag lunch that your child will want and not feel sick of. A kid may be more likely to eat her lunch if she or he helps choose the menu. When your child uses this magnetic chart to map out her meals for the week, it saves time and helps make grocery shopping easier.

Print the attached magnetic lunch chart (Courtesy of Martha Stewart) on a full size magnet sheet. Then glue colored construction paper to another magnetic sheet. Cut the colored magnetic paper into rectangles. Together, come up with a variety of sandwiches, fruits, healthy snacks, and desserts; then print the names of the meals out onto the mini rectangles and let your child put them on the refrigerator to choose for each day!

Click on photo for larger version



Items Needed:

  • magnetic sheets
  • colored construction paper
  • scissors
  • sharpie marker

Check out the Le Top’s pre-fall back-to-school clothes and our sale on Le Top spring/summer collections.

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