When we first learned that I got my new job a year ago, and that we had six weeks to move, we made an executive decision to leave most of our decorative items (pictures and all of the other "stuff" that we had collected over the years) in storage. With a 5 month old, two careers to wrap up, and a house renovation to finish, the move alone was overwhelming. We just wanted to streamline it however we could. Since all of these things were already in storage from the renovation, it was easy to do. It was convenient. It seemed like a good idea at the time.
Except, now we are living in Europe and we have none of our things. Our entire townhouse is painted cream and white, with white wall-to-wall carpeting throughout most of the house (blond floors in the kitchen and dining room), and gold (yes, GOLD) striped curtains in EVERY room. It is neutral, neutral, neutral, and bland. Needless to say, the walls have been closing in on us for a while. The walls are screaming out for paint and art. I would have painted this week, but the I don't want to paint while pregnant, so that's out. So what's a girl to do, especially in a country where prices are at least 30% more than in the U.S.?
I headed to Ikea.
I had to limit my purchases, since I had to carry them home on public transportation. But I still came home with a very cool carpet for Miss M's play area, two pillows, five plant pots, three storage boxes for the bathroom, and a very cute plastic chair for Miss M (part of a table set, but I didn't have enough hands for the table!). I think I'm going to go back tomorrow. I saw two pictures that will look cute in the play area, I want to get the table and other chair for Miss M, and I also want some picture frames. Ooh, and this really cute circus tent. Right now I have a tent full of balls for Miss M, but it is truly ugly and cheap. The one I saw today is much cuter. The only problem is the bottom is flat with no lip, so the balls will roll out. I'm going to look to see if I can attach a little piece of fabric to fix that. I'm toying with the idea of taking a rolling duffel with me, so I can really load up on stuff tomorrow.
When I got home from shopping today, I rearranged the living room and Miss M's play area, making it bigger and much better. I emptied the bottom three shelves of both of our bookcases and filled them with Miss M's board books and toys (and moved the grown-up books up higher on the shelves and safe from little hands). I unrolled the carpet, and put the little chair together, and I have to say. . .it's so bright and cheerful and happy. I love it, and I think she's going to love it. T is going to hate it (more stuff! More clutter! More ways she can make a mess!), but he'll grow into it.