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Bunk bed shopping

Bunk beds are currently our holy grail. I have one kid who goes to sleep like a champ. An elaborate routine, but if you hit the "story, snack, snuggle" checklist you'll have no problem. The other kid is often still awake with us on the couch at 10pm demanding we switch places to hold her, demanding extra cups of chocolate milk, and leaving us wondering where we went wrong between the two kids.

Getting them both asleep in their room together has long been a goal. We're not-so-secretly hoping that bunk beds are the trick. Plus, it would free up room to move their toys out of our dining room and get our dining room table back from the basement storage. Eating a meal somewhere other than the couch or floor has great appeal at this point.

So, on a Saturday with no dance class or swim lesson because of Easter, we headed off to IKEA. Neither of them had been before so we tried to prepare them for the mix of department store, playground, and adventure they were about to experience. It did not disappoint. They loved the elevators, escalators that grab your cart, displays of merchandise, and view from multiple floors. Of course, we didn't come home with bunk beds. But that was the plan all along.

The real reason for our visit was to just see some furniture in person. You can get great deals online, but it's one of those few remaining possessions where you need to go to a showroom still. Over the course of our visit, we gradually came to realize that the kids don't care as long as we put, respectively, Spider-Man and princesses on for sheets. Good to know.

We learned a few other important which beds to rule out because they're really lofts more than bunk beds. We're not opposed to having a raised bed for my son with space for a perpendicular, normal bed for my daughter (it's already been established who will sleep where). It's just that a few are so far off the ground they'd really be unsafe for a soon-to-be 5 year old. A couple of them were more well-made than others. Or the kids had opinions about style, where the ladder should go, or which was the favorite. We'd have to have our selection delivered and have a rival from another store that separates into two normal beds if you wish. So we will have to price the total and see who comes out on top (pardon the pun).

In the end, we got a salad spinner, dish rack, drinking straws, popsicle trays, some play food, and wine glasses. And the entire time we were there, I wondered to myself how hard this thing is going to be to assemble.