Friday, August 7, 2009

EE-KEH-AH

Bet you didn't know that's the correct Swedish pronunciation for IKEA (well, if you know, you're a Scandinavian, or a smart aleck, so be it) - with stress on the second syllable (we normally go ‘Ee-kiah, ee-kiah'), but we decided to pay a visit to IKEA Beijing today (the second largest IKEA store outside of Sweden). I have a few places for Wayne to drive us around to whilst he's on a break, with IKEA being one of them, and today being a week day, I decided that Rosabelle's quick waking up from her afternoon nap was an opportune time for us to go and just walk around the place.

(It was actually more prompted by this mother's cheapo inclination to let her daughter take the whole place as a playground, trying out different seats/toys, and excerbated by the fact that Rosabelle just smashed the alarm clock in the bedroom to bits, thus giving the mother in question further reason to go to IKEA.)
I first placed Rosabelle in this teddy bear furry chair, and she wasn't very happy, being rather wary of it, not daring to move and going 'nnng...nnng...nnggg...' until I carried her up.
Think it was the lack of backing/security, as she liked this oval swiveling stool, and even rubbed her feet against the soft fabric, lifting her leg up to air in joy!
Of course, we also made imprints on the inflatable frog and turtle stools.
This is her being quite happy in the 'Men in Black'-type of orange pod, waving hello/bye bye to nothing in particular. Whenever she eyes something that she wants to grab, or I want her to let go of something, I will ask her to 'say bye bye to XXX', and she will very obediently wave goodbye to it without making noise - I thank my lucky stars and count the days until she decides she should not/does not have to listen to me but can instead protest/whine if she does not get her way...
I even let her have a turn at the slide, but I didn't want to risk creating fire sparks from her thighs rubbing against the plank, so I stopped after a few times when I realised she looked more bewildered than interested.
With so much of her sitting around, I was carrying her throughout, so I decided to have a rest and put her in the stroller whilst Wayne and I shared a plate of meatballs and mashed potatoes, whilst Rosabelle happily munched on her rice cracker, and later could not get enough of her bun biscuits (小馒头).
And of course, how can we miss her favourite ride of all - the trolley? After the usual scrub-down of the handle and surrounding areas, we placed her in it, and thank goodness for a safety rein on the trolley, as she wanted to get out and reach for things a few times. She looks like she's being very angry and scolding somebody here, but it's just her being hyper-excited and screaming happily.
I didn't capture shots here, but I took a rectangular soft pillow to place behind her shoulders/neck/head for support, and she loved it, leaning her head back and closing her eyes to indulge in the comfort of the pillow. I would then lean over and tickle her neck with my kisses, and she'd chuckle before sitting upright, but quickly lean over to lie on the pillow again when I asked her to do so, repeating this 'lean, tickle, chuckle, upright' routine many times over until I was the one who had to wave the white flag.
This IKEA trip at 9.5 months is certainly more fun for her than her first trip to IKEA in Singapore when she was barely 4 months old, where she could only get carried around...
And get besieged by furry animals (surprisingly, she wasn't afraid and seemed to like sharing her stroller with them).
Her second trip to IKEA was in Beijing when we first got back to China in end-March, when she was about 5 months old, and bundled up from the cold weather. We took a shot in the uber-nice family room where I nursed her (and she enjoyed her diaper change as the kids' deco captivated her).
In addition to the replacement clock, we got some new plush finger puppets, an elephant teether, animal shapes cookie cutters (for the nanny to use when next making corn powder pastry), electrical socket covers, and some Daim sweets at more than 50% off (not surprisingly, expiry date's on 1 Sep...). Outings with our growing girl will just get more and more fun, wouldn't it?

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