My eldest is hitting the age when I really want to get him started on some of the fun intro to programming projects at Code.org. Of course, this means he needs easy access to a computer. One where he can be supervised. And, for that matter, it’d be nice to let the younger one to spend some time with the various early learning websites we used to use with the older one.
The laptop isn’t an issue. Since I got my shiny new computer for Christmas last year, my old laptop is just hanging around feeling sad. It’s easy enough to make it something they can use. But then the question arises…where to put it. We’re all about kids being supervised while on the computer in this house. Especially if they’re online. The Internet isn’t what I’d term a safe or friendly place for kids.
And so, after a brief discussion, we decided we needed a desk of some sort to stick in the living room to hold the laptop. We kicked around a few of the odd pieces of furniture that we have in other places (you know how sometimes tables collect up, right? Or is that just us?) But none of them would really fit. Or if they did fit, they didn’t work as a desk.
My first thought, I’ll admit, was something cheap from Target. I wasn’t thinking long-term furniture. Just something to get the job done. But…have you looked at the prices on Target’s furniture lately? Cheap quality? Yes. Cheap price? Not so much. So I poked around and it was Ikea to the rescue. Again.
So this morning, we piled in the car and headed off with the promise of meatballs for lunch if everyone behaved. I don’t know about you, but I love Ikea. I love to wander through their displays and look at their arrangements. And the tiny apartment set up they show (what is it, like 400 square feet including the kitchen and bathroom?) makes me think I could easily live in a tiny house. (Then, thankfully, reality kicks in. Because yeah. I couldn’t live in a tiny house for more than a week.) But wandering Ikea with kids is a whole other ball game. If you’ve got the kids with you, you need to do a surgical strike–take advantage of the shortcuts to circumvent as many areas as you can, and have a vague notion of what it is you want before you show up in the parking garage.
We got to the workplace area fairly quickly, with only one couch jumping incident. Well, okay, two. But no one shouted, “I love this woman!!” and effectively doomed their marriage right there. So I’m going to call it a win. I zeroed in on the desk I had in mind, considered the various storage options that were possible and then tossed them as unnecessary. And my sister (bless her, she came along) managed to keep the boys from destroying…much. (There were spinning chairs on casters. No one can keep kids off spinning chairs with casters. No one. Not even gravity. Though gravity did manage to get them off the spinning, rolling chairs. But no one was injured. At least not seriously. And I don’t think we broke…much.) I scribbled down the bin and the aisle and, all things being equal, they’d been good, so meatballs were next on the list.
Of course, Ikea, not being stupid, makes it impossible to get from their display floor to the warehouse where you pick up your items, without having to walk through miles of household items you had no idea you needed until you saw them. We now have new bath mats for all the bathrooms (and really, I did need them, and I’d been putting off buying them because they’re stinking expensive at Target. But only $10 at Ikea! Honestly, maybe I need to rethink my relationship with Target.) And bendy straws. You can’t really have too many bendy straws, can you? (We have 600 now. We might have too many. I’ll get back to you.)
Finally, we got to the check out and only added new toilet brushes to our pile while we were in line. (My theory? If you don’t know when you last bought a toilet brush, and you have a vague notion that your toilet brush might actually be older than your children, it’s probably time for new toilet brushes. Especially if they’re 99 cents.) And then there was frozen yogurt. Cause, well. Frozen yogurt.
But, we also now have a desk. And I even assembled it all by myself (well, not completely true. I had “help” from the 7 year old. which actually means I should get more credit than if I had done it by myself.)