We are lucky that even where we are now, the closest Ikea is a mere thirty minute drive down the Schuylkill (I avoid the Blue Route at all costs). My mom and I took a trip today, with Cutter of course, and while I had specific items on my list, the most enjoyable part of the trip was the browsing. Observing and making mental notes about ideas and inspiration we perused the rooms upstairs, and then headed to our true destination - the marketplace. I picked up a few frames and some storage boxes so that I can officially start organizing our office space. My mom and I spent considerable time in the baby/children section and I wish I could have taken it all home with me. We picked up a few cups and bowls, some stacking cups, and I found a few things that are on my mental wishlist that we may go back and get later.
I have such a newfound respect for Ikea after our trip today. I loved Ikea before I had children, but now that I have a young one I love them even more. I feel I must outline why they are such a wonderful, family-centered store.
Allow me to explain.
While I did bring food for Cutter with us, they offer healthy and low-cost options for children of all ages, including jars of organic baby food. They have highchairs available for use in the cafe and an entire section within dedicated to kids who are a little older with fun utensils, cups, and activities to keep their attention during mealtime.
They have an entire room set aside for changing diapers (separate from the restrooms), and it is set up like an actual nursery - changing table, pad, diapers, wipes, decorations, toys on the ground, and a rug. It was so comfortable and I did not feel germy one bit.
Cutter is past the point of needing this but they also offer nursing rooms for mothers which in my book is a home run. Nordstrom's in the King of Prussia mall offers this (a Mother's Room) and when I discovered that option it opened up worlds of opportunities to me!
For older children they even offer a babysitting service if the parents are going to be planning a kitchen or anything else that would take a large chunk of time. I could go on but I think you get my point.
Family first is a win for me. Not that I needed an excuse, but we'll be making many trips back to Ikea. I guarantee it.
Cutter enjoying his cheerios at lunch today