The living room, dining room and bedrooms are piled with boxes upon boxes of plumbing fixtures, flooring, light fixtures, ceiling fans and assorted hardware. A refrigerator, dishwasher, stove and microwave are sitting in the living room alcove, and another full-sized refrigerator resides beside the back door. Furniture is covered with quilts to keep sticky little hands off. My checkbook ledger is always out on the desk, to keep tabs on how the money is holding up, and the latest incarnation of the floor plan or cabinet configuration is always visible. Then there's the perpetual laundry basket, as trying to keep clean clothes for the grandsons and clean towels for the adults is a daily challenge, as is the constant picking up of toys and shoes.
Now IKEA pieces are being assembled.
And that brings me to the subject of my epiphany about the generation gap. Most baby boomers have a younger attitude and physical appearance than their parents had at 50+. For the most part, we watch the same shows on TV as our 30-something offspring, we still listen to cool music, and we haven't started wearing sensible shoes. However, a generation gap still exists, but it's not differences in politics or philosophy that divide the young from the old. It's IKEA. Because if you're over 50, chances are IKEA drives you crazy.
The whole IKEA experience makes me nuts, from battling the ever-present crowds, some of whom are in such a rush that they practically run you down with their carts and some of whom are milling so aimlessly, with no concern for the traffic jams they're causing, that you want to ram them with your cart. And what's up with the maze of departments that practically necessitates a GPS to negotiate?
Don't even get me started on assembly. Today I'm putting together a very small medicine cabinet, and suffice it to say that I won't be putting together anything else. I'm foisting off the Expedit assembly on my SIL and daughter, using the threat that I won't move to the apartment till it's together as leverage.
After much soul searching about how much money to spend on cabinets in what will essentially be a guest house to potential buyers, I abandoned the plans for the dark cabinets in favor of birch cabinets from IKEA. (I changed directions with the countertop too, but I'll share more about that later.) One trip to IKEA was all I can stand though. I plan to phone in my final order...and pay for assembly and installation. As long as I don't have to turn another screw or tap in another dowel, I'll be happy to shell out the money.