They opened the largest Ikea in the US this weekend near us in Burbank and can I just say that is like going to Swedish American Disneyland? I had my Google Fit on when we went and I walked over a mile. I’m glad I brought my cane.
It’s huge and so very cool. Because it was the grand opening they opened a half hour early and sent everyone to the new cafeteria. It holds 600 and that wasn’t enough. They finally had to close it because of so many people. I was disappointed because the breakfast was something they were calling the Swedish American breakfast, meant Swedish pancakes but American scrambled eggs and sausage and potatoes. No herring, no gravad lax and they weren’t making the Swedish waffles and there were no pastries. My sister got the Swedish American and I just got pancakes which were almost exactly like mom made. ( I was an adult before I finally realized most people in America do not make their pancakes that way). Alison loves lingonberry juice so she was happy. They had a fountain that dispensed juice the way America fountains dispense soda and it was full of elderberry juice, pear, lingon berry and one other juice I can’t remember) I got milk which came in tiny cartons. Swedes are some of the biggest consumers of milk on the planet, they needed bigger cartons even if it looked like we were the only Swedes in the place. Mostly it was Asian and Armenians and a scattering of generic middle-aged gay men.
They have added a lot of stuff that they didn’t have room for before like kitchen appliances and more kitchen wares and linens and rugs. We got to test all the couches, we are going to need a new one soon, the one we have now is bordering on being able to give butt piercings. And there was a rug we really liked too.
We actually did have a shopping list and would have gone to the old Ikea if the new one hadn’t opened. It because readily apparent last month that my 30 year old comforter was no longer able to do its job for someone who likes to sleep with the windows open even in 30 degree weather. We were raised just to put more covers on and I prefer a nice comforter to a pile of blankets. It’s easier to get one foot out if you have a hot flash and I don’t tuck anything in. Alison had gotten a new one last month because her cat keeps peeing on her old feather one so she has a washable one now of the warmest variety but it comes in two degrees, cooler and warmer and she got warmer. She likes it a lot and the cat doesn’t smell her kitty that died which I think might have been the problem. I decided I needed the cooler. So I found one that can be washed easily and picked up a duvet cover that I liked, actually two. The sheets and the duvet covers are in two different areas and there was a botanical print one that I fell in love with but they didn’t have there in the duvet cover section so I got one that looked more like tole painting and then I went and grabbed sheets, I thought. I saw the botanical print sheets and grabbed the one that was labeled Full/Queen got it home and went to wash it and discovered we’d grabbed the duvet cover after all. Someone had put it in the wrong spot and I didn’t look carefully. Since it’s the one I wanted I can’t be too mad and next month, hopefully I can get the sheets. Didn’t budget for that this month.
I love botanical prints, the hazards of being a plant fanatic and Alison did notice it looked suspiciously like my favourite print from the British Museum of Natural History. That was a whole ‘nother adventure. ( I used to work at the Broadway, when they were still around, in college and about once a week I would get stuck in the lamp and art section and there was a botanical print of British plants that cost $100 that I coveted soooo much but paying for school was more important. For my graduation, mom sent me to Britain for a month alone and the first place I headed after the Girl Scout House/Olave House was the Museum of Natural History. I spent hours there and as I was leaving I went to the Gift Shop to buy books. I came home with 60lbs of books but anyway there was my coveted print for 50p and some others almost as fun so I got my print after all and it’s hanging up in our upstairs all, woodland plants and heath plants.
I also got lured into the Swedish food section which has been expanded and came home with more groceries, Pepparkakor (ginger snaps), Skorpor fullkorn (Wheat crisp rolls), Blue Cheese, Knackebrod (Rye flatbread crackers) and a bunch of Daim chocolate that I had no business buying and a teeny tiny little phalaenopsis orchid that called my name as I went by.
When we go I’m always struck by how much my design sense and food preferences got shaped by the Swedish side of the gene pool. Mom and Grandma always talked about the Scottish side but the Swedish stuff was more subliminal like the pancakes and the fact that there was milk at every meal. Or that Granpa had herring for breakfast and dinner if he could sneak that. We had mom’s homemade pea soup and we only ever had Swedish meatballs and never any in red sauce. The only thing we didn’t have besides the lutefisk that stopped when great grandma died was salmon. Mom didn’t like it and I had to discover it on my own. I love salmon.
So we had adventures at Swedish Disneyland, errr Ikea, and it was way fun.