Sometimes it is hard to tell which is the 'chicken' and which the 'egg,' eh? :) Are hexagon designs popular online because of their presence in home decor (attested to by the rug hanging in the IKEA Marketplace shown above), or are hexies finding their way into home decor because they are so popular online? :)
Yesterday (Saturday) I drove north through Baltimore to the IKEA store at White Marsh. Remember that I bought an EZPass when I thought I would be driving down to Gaithersburg last Monday? I needed to use it before the money I had paid went to waste - so decided to drive through the Ft. McHenry Tunnel (toll) to get to WM (and thus activate my EZPass). :)
I had not been to IKEA for several years (I don't remember exactly when my last visit was, but I do remember that it was in the immediate pre-Christmas time frame). This Saturday was overcast and humid though not overly hot (mid-80's?) and I'd swear that every third person in the entire Balt-Wash metropolitan area had decided to shop at IKEA that day! I have _never_ seen it so busy and we've been shopping there since the store was built. :)
Hugh chose not to go so I was alone and could stroll through the store at my leisure. I walked through the showroom slowly, taking note more of the wall and window decorations than the furniture, to be honest. I did spend a bit of time in the table area - Skip has offered to set up our surplus laserjet printer on my computer directly so I don't have to wait for him to be home to print things out (the printer we have is networked via his machine to the three 'puters here at home and he won't open access to his machine unless he is at home; my husband does IT security as part of his job and is, imho, a bit paranoid about his machine:).
Anyway, I need a small table of some kind to put the printer on to keep the carpet fluff and kitty feet out of it. So I spent a little time looking over the small side tables and office possibles. I found two that looked likely and took note of their names and locations in the self-service warehouse. :) There were so many shoppers that I had no choice but to move slowly through the place, so the perambulation was not at all tiring. :)
When I finished looking around, I took the elevator up to the resturant area. I like the food they offer and it is reasonably priced so I usually eat there when I shop. Amazingly, amongst all the strangers, there at the door of the eatery was Becca (from the Baltimore Modern Guild) and her guy! She extolled the virtues of the almond chocolate pie which (of course!) got my tongue watering. Grin!
Although I _am_ on a diet, I have found that it is best for me to not deprive myself of sweets when I want them. I only eat actual sweets occasionally and so I figure their calories (empty though they might be:) into my daily allotment. I chose a really tasty shrimp and egg openfaced sandwich and the almond dessert:
I am definitely not a 'foodie' (despite my bulk:), so I'm not sure what made me take this photo. Maybe it was the teeny, tiny shrimp (the smallest I have ever seen)? :) It turned out that the sandwich and the dessert had the same number of calories in them according to the MyFitnessPal ap that I use to keep my food journal (it was recommended by my nutrionist and so far has been excellent:). Delicious!
After lunch I strolled through the ground floor Marketplace - picking up some new kitchen towels and wooden clothes hangers ('racks' was what we called them in my natal dialect:). Also looked at each of the two tables in the warehouse and chose one (luckily light enough that I could lift it without trouble). The checkout aisles were so crowded that people were being impatient with one another and every possible register was open. A lady was moving through the crowd handing out cookies (Sweedish ginger snaps) and candy (Sweedish fish) to keep the peace. :) I, of course, took a pass on those.
By the time I was on my way home, it was raining so the overcast skies had some excuse. Traffic was very heavy on I-95 southward, but moving along. I was reminded of how long it has been since I've visited Ikea by the amount of road construction going on along the way - none of which I had ever seen before. By the time I got home, I was too tired to take my purchases indoors and I spent the evening quietly, with my leg up, watching movies on Netflix and knitting.
My sweater project is coming right along - I have only one sleeve left to make (well, and the collar, which doesn't get knitted until you sew the sweater together). I'm really happy with how well I've managed to stick to the project, given my usual cricket ways. :)
Today (Sunday) I slept late - I'm in that insomniac stage I hit sometimes where I don't fall asleep until four or five a.m. and sleep until early afternoon. :P The weather here was overcast and it had clearly rained earlier. Not hot (high 70's maybe) but incredibly humid and not a breath of breeze. :P
After breakfast and morning knee exercises, I decided to be brave and go for a walk in the neighborhood. Uh, not brave because it is dangerous - I live in a comfortable small city area with a very low crime rate - but because the walking surface is real world, uneven and apt to be trecherous if you don't pay attention. :)
Astonishingly (for those of you who know me:), I actually thought ahead and took my house key, my driver's liscense and a bottle of water along. Thanks to my friend Aurelia from Sew & Tell, I even have a nice sling carrier for the water. :) I took a short walk that I've done dozens of times since we've lived here (moved into this house in January, 1987):
The most uneven part of the walk is at the beginning, going downhill gently along WindHarp Way. The grayed marks on the map are mostly walking paths between the houses, generally used by kids walking to school. The path abuts back yards on each side - this particular one is somewhat wooded so it is shady and cool. Still humid, of course. :P
Along the way I found something I have not seen since childhood:
This is the outgrown exoskeleton of an annual cicada. When I was little, we saw these everywhere in late summer. The cicadas hook their foot-claws to tree bark and wiggle out of their old skins as they grow. The remnants are the consistence of waxed paper and somewhat fragile. Since I love hearing the song of the cicada in the depths of hot summer, finding this skin was exciting to me. :) I _am_ easy to please. I also enjoyed the bright green of the moss growing on the tree's bark:
There might be a small quilt in this photo somewhere! :) For now, all I can do is collect ideas.
I expect I'll spend the rest of this evening on the computer - watching a movie and knitting my last sleeve, I hope. :)
PS Two patterns I ordered to make maternity shirts for my daughter arrived earlier this week. I'm looking forward to doing some garment sewing, soon. Haven't done that for a while, either. :)