Friendly Advice on a Saturday

"Don't go in there, man. Just--don't do it. You'll never make it out."

Words of advice from a kind stranger. Warning us not to do something we might not regret; something that might possibly change our outlook on life for the rest of all time.

The place? The moment?

IKEA on a Saturday afternoon.


I am not new to IKEA. I have never lived within a half hour of the place, but I am used to the strange magnetism the store uses to draw in outsiders who live both near and far. Something about the strategic layout of the store and the way everything is set up in an almost-real living area is kind of magical. Even as a teenager, shopping for home furnishings never seemed as fun anywhere else.

Something about growing up, though, and visiting IKEA multiple times a month, takes a little bit of that magic away. Sure, there's still that smell of cinnamon rolls as soon as you walk in the front door, brightly-colored furniture that you never would have dared put in your home until you actually saw it set up in a cohesive living room set, and the joy of knowing that you can customize basically anything in the show room in any way you want. But today, with all of the extra people, those things were somewhat overshadowed.

People are great. People can be your friends, and people are vital to the growth of this society we all live in. I think we all know, however, that people tend to act a little less people-y and become kind of overwhelming when packed into droves. I'm talking a packed parking lot, floods of humans strolling or standing in every direction you want to walk in, and the ever-present screaming children. No one know where these children come from, where their parents are, or why they insist upon running around in circles while emitting the most annoying, high-pitched squeals their tiny, little lungs can belt out. Nevertheless, they always show up in situations like these, and as you wait patiently (okay, not so patiently) for their parents to quiet them down, it's not really a surprise when you find that no one wants to claim them.

It's okay; the picture's not blurry--its actually the people. IKEA people are crazy and blurry.
Anyway, the trip was not a total bust, as Brad and I knew exactly what we were going in for. Voila--a new cabinet/table for our living room:


Brad put it together all by himself, as he tends to do with all of the furniture we bring into this house. He's quite handy to have around--if you don't already have one, I highly suggest finding a boy to help you with all of your furniture assembly needs.

I also told myself to lay off the food pictures for a bit, but I had to take a couple of our lunch outing (like most of the other photos in this post, they're taken on a cell phone, so they're not great). We ate at Olga's, one of many places around here that Brad's been promising to take me to since before we moved to Michigan. The food was good: a wide variety of wrap sandwiches (lamb, chicken, turkey, etc.) served with curly fries in a Panera-esque dining room with tall, industrial-style ceilings. And to top it off, we had a two-for-one coupon from Arts, Beats, & Eats, so we got out of there for around ten bucks. Even at full price, though, I definitely plan on going back to try as many of the menu items as I can.

Chicken Caprese Olga Wrap
 Better get some sleep--more to come tomorrow!