Ikea was absolutely everything I dreamed it would be (C does not approve, but my feeling is that it's better than Target or Walmart). J ate all his meatballs (kids eat free on Tuesdays, which is why we went today) and got a compliment from the table next to us about how well behaved he was at the table and how nicely he was eating his lunch. To me, it's just every day, but this guy actually said he wished his granddaughter was as good! I love hearing that my kid is awesome, and it's so nice to get kudos from total strangers.
Things got scary when J wandered off. They have lots of little model rooms/apartment type setups, and James went in a bedroom which I didn't realize had another door. He went out that other door, and just kept going, and by the time I realized what had happened he was nowhere to be found. I have never been so terrified as I was when I could not find my child. Fortunately the Ikea people are well-equipped to deal with such things, and also with tearful moms (yep, I cried in front of a bunch of total strangers). It turns out he'd made his way about 1/8 of the entire floor and was hanging out with some women he'd attracted. He'd just followed one lady, saying "Mom? Mom! Mom?" and she asked him if he was lost. He said he was, and told her his name. Thank goodness he knows his name and can even pronounce it reasonably well (our last name is a 4 syllable Polish name, and when he says it, it comes out something like Wakowski). I got to him as fast as I could and I hugged him so tight he got embarrassed, and I cried in front of some more people. I am actually tearing up now just remembering. Motherhood is hard, man.
We did buy a couple of things, including a tiny plush snake (for J) and a tiny plush moose (for L), and a plastic bag holder for all the bags we have for picking up after the dogs. Suddenly our front closet is way less messy!
In all, a very memorable trip.