If you are rolling in $ and want to spoil your kids silly, or want to make them the most popular kids on the street, why not splurge on a custom play- or tree-house from Barbara Butler, who makes a living carving handmade play structures out of sustainable redwood.
A dear friend of mine used to do marketing for the artist. The artist got her start twenty-odd years ago building decks for the likes of Bobby McFerrin, who requested a "unique play structure" on top of all the other work she was doing to his backyard.
I like how brightly colored the pieces are - and how sturdy they look. I have to admit I always dreamed of having a tree-house and outfitting it with modern luxuries like a rug and cozy place to curl up and play board games. There is just something delicious about the idea of holing up in a secret hideout, isn't there?
Prices range from $12,000 - $175,000. Yes, which is more than some "real" houses!