Monday 2 April 2012

A family day out to Ikea!

I'm a parent who really knows how to show her kids a great time in the school holidays... Today I loaded mine up in the car for an hour plus journey down the M6 to the joys of Ikea in Warrington. My daughter couldn't remember her last trip when we went to the Lightwater branch and my son was just a baby so it must have been a long time ago...

Before we left Kendal I made sure that they were sufficiently fed and watered to keep them happy on the drive down. I gave my 8 year old the road atlas and instructions on telling me to get off at junction 22. There was a slight issue that the page for junction 22 didn't have the start of our journey on it but it made her feel important to have the map. My 5 year old had the job of reading the junction numbers as we went to see how far we had to go (I was impressed at how well he subtracted them). A bit of a sing song also helped to pass the time. Once we got off the motorway my daughter used the Maps function on my phone to navigate the last stretch. 

On arrival at the store I was pleased how easy it was to find a parking space before we headed inside for lunch. I don't remember the funky multi layered cafe trollies that allowed more than one tray to be carried by one person. I do remember long zig zag queues but they did seem to move fairly quickly. We all opted for a kids' portion of meatballs but had a mix up of which ones had gravy on but eventually we all sat down to our Swedish lunch:

Then with children warned not to stray or pick stuff up we headed into the labyrinth that is the showrooms. You could tell my children were new to the experience as they were totally impressed by the room layouts and all the finishing touches. I've never seen so many doors and drawers opened! On our journey we saw quite a few temptations but also managed to get the children to agree to a the main items of furniture we had gone for. By the time we had passed through the Marketplace (we bought no candles incredibly!) our trolley was rather full and we had to grab another to collect the flat pack items in the warehouse.

It was a pretty smooth trip through the checkout as my daughter was very helpful about loading the trolley back up. A quick refreshing drink and a purchase of some meatballs and we were heading back out to the car park. At this point my daughter failed to see a large concrete bollard and drove her trolley straight in to it "it's not my fault why did the stupid people put it there?". We managed to squeeze us and all our shopping into a rather small car and headed off home (with a minor detour to get Playmobil Easter eggs at ToysRUs!).

Back home and my daughter helped to unload the car. This gave me a chance to realise how much fun work I have bought myself:

Luckily I am not daunted by assembling flat pack furniture having been an Ikea fan for nearly 2 decades. The simple bedside table for my son was quickly knocked up and then I moved on to the more advanced drawers. These had slightly more scary looking instructions:

But despite offers of help from my 8 year old and the lack of a hammer I soon had drawer 1 assembled:

Only 3 more and the outer shell of the cabinet to go... and it appears I may have forgotten to buy handles for the drawers - oops!


  1. I do the same, mine both love ikea and they love the garden center. I think it may boil down to the fact that we always have lunch when we go places like that. Son will even tolerate Tesco if Nana is going and we're having lunch there, only cos he wants the lunch.

  2. That's quite funny, you live in the beautiful Lakes and take a day out to Warrington! I live near to that Ikea store and we often pop over for our tea (evening meal). Might bump into you there one day?


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