We finally bit the bullet this week and bought the kids some bunk beds at Ikea. When I say "we" I really mean "I did it" because I am impatient and couldn't wait the three more days it would have taken Ryan to have a free moment to go to the store to buy them. I began to regret my decision as I rolled the two giant boxes, along with a kiddie picnic table I found in the "as is" section and some dishtowels, across the parking lot (down hill in a stiff thirty mile per hour tailwind) toward the van, but folding up the seats and sliding the boxes inside was fairly straightforward, except for the part where I tried to push one of the boxes with my leg and twanged my kneecap a good two inches out of place causing me to swear audibly in the crowded parking lot.
Ryan hid the boxes in the garage and on Friday my dad came over to help me assemble them. The original plan was that Ryan and I were going to let the kids sleep on the floor in our room the night before under the guise of "we're getting the carpets cleaned tomorrow" so we could take everything out of the room the night before, but *someone* was uncomfortable lying to the kids, so we left everything where it was. Ultimately, this made for the most satisfying element of surprise later, even if it meant doing lots of furniture moving and heavy lifting immediately before assembling the most complicated Ikea product in the history of the world.
Once we had cleared out their room and vacuumed we opened up the two boxes to reveal a huge pile of nondescript looking wood and about forty-five thousand assorted screws. My dad (BS in Mechanical Engineering) and I (same) spent several long minutes looking from the pile of wood and back to the directions saying things like:
"Maybe this one goes over...? No...?"
"Oh but maybe this goes like this? Wait a minute."
"Here it is! Oh no, whoops."
Finally we decided to separate the one big pile into ten or so smaller piles of pieces that kinda sorta resembled each other. This helped us be slightly less confused and eventually we were rolling.
By the time my mom brought Wes and James home from preschool we had something vaguely bunk bed looking assembled in the room. Wes came upstairs, suspecting nothing, rounded the corner, and said slowly "AAAAWWWWEEEESOOOOMMMMEEE." Two hours later when it was time to get Charley, we were done with only four or five random pieces of hardware leftover.
When Charley came home Wes attacked him. "CHARLEY!!!! COME SEE OUR ROOM!!!!!"
Then I took this picture.
(Also, see that sticker on Charley's shirt? He has two of them. Those are stickers they give out at his school when they notice a kid doing something especially good. Charley hasn't gotten one all year and he got TWO on Friday. He proclaimed school "great!" Dude. He is doing so awesome right now.)
The bed came out GREAT and makes their tiny room SO MUCH BIGGER. We're hoping that they will play up there more so we don't have to spend fifty thousand dollars moving to a house with a second living area so we don't all kill each other. So far they've been spending noticeably more time up there, although Friday most of that time was spent providing any willing neighborhood kid/cousin with the grand tour.
Friday night my mom and aunt and dad and sister and brother-in-law and niece came over/stayed for pizza and ice cream sundaes. The weather was warm and the kids alternated between running wild in the culdesac and hanging out in Charley and Wes's room. James and Mary manned the play gym on the porch. Ryan ripped out that giant dead plant in the background this afternoon. It's Lantana so I'm sure it'll be back by morning.
Here are some randoms:
Wes and James give Mary "crawling lessons."
The weather has been so nice this week I took this afternoon to pull all the kids' warm clothes out of their drawers, add in new/bigger (EIGHT. Charley's shorts are size EIGHT. And I wore his jacket to preschool dropoff the other day. He's practically a MAN) summer stuff from our stash of hand me downs, find all the swimsuits for this year (also from hand me downs, which is awesome), and do seven-ish loads of laundry. I was feeling really good about how great it's going to be when the kids come home from church tomorrow and head upstairs to rip off their nice clothes and put on play clothes, which will be SOOO EASY TO FIND now that everything is sorted, only to learn that tomorrow it is supposed to be FIFTY FIVE AND RAINING. BECAUSE OF COURSE. So now I have to dig around in the bin to find everyone some long church pants because my plan to be all earth-mother and let them wear shorts tomorrow has been foiled by the Zombie Winter of 2014. FOILED.
But let's end on a high note: Friday morning I took this picture of the kids eating breakfast because they were looking so cute and loveable.