That moment when you wonder how you will fit it in the car

The seven children at home and I took a little trip to IKEA today. It seemed easy enough. J. and I figured out how we could swing some new loft beds for TM and D. that will give them each their own desk and their own delineated space. (Anyone with multiple boys ages 12+ in the house will understand the need to keep the young bucks from knocking their antlers together all the time.) In order to get everything sorted out and ready to use at the beginning of our school year, today was the day I needed to go get them. I also hoped to get a small shelf unit for K. so that he can store things in a drawer rather than scattered across his floor (a pipe dream, I know) and a couple more kitchen chairs so that R. and T. have somewhere to sit when they come home. We already had a bench out of the van and it is a big van, so I figured we were good.

It was a lovely day. My intentional nurturing of the little girls is paying off and everyone remained pleasant and regulated. We even managed lunch. When it was time to go, we head down to the self-serve aisles and pick-up everything we need minus the beds which are at the pick-up counter. I'm still feeling pretty darn confident about getting it all in the van. It's big, IKEA stuff comes flat, no problem.

After a rather longish wait, our number is called and they wheel out not one, but two carts each with filled with six very long boxes. I will admit to my confidence going down a notch or two, but kept assuring TM (whose visual-spacial skills are really quite excellent and who was immediately skeptical about our success) that of course it will fit. 

Here is the pile we needed to load in. Yes, all of it. All four carts. Note how very loooooong some of those boxes are.

Entertaining little people while I went to get the van.

Well, it took a while. And some of the boxes were put in and taken out more than once. We eventually had to rearrange seating and make the non-loading group get in so we could pile boxes around them, but we did it. I have to give a huge amount of credit to P., TM, and D. who worked their tails off and were extremely helpful and good-natured. It was also mildly amusing to watch the process, especially at the end when D. had to climb through (somehow) to hold up the boxes tipping upwards so that the back door could be closed without the boxes sliding back down and out. I kind of wish the people loading next to us stuck around to see it all go in, because it seemed the general feeling was we weren't going to be able to do it. Heck, at one point I didn't think we were going to be able to do it and was trying to estimate how much the home delivery option would be.

The van going home:

The ride home was uneventful and made more pleasant by the addition of Swedish fish as a snack. And more kudos to my older people for completely unloading the van immediately upon arriving home without me even having to ask them.

Guess what we'll be doing tomorrow? Yes, J. will be getting to pursue his very favorite occupation of assembling large IKEA furniture. I know he can't wait.


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