More and more parents are doing it ... are you?
Vivian Manning Schaffel: Who knew IKEA was good for far more than chic, reasonably priced tumblers and graphic Euro-hip bedding? In this New York Daily News article, parents admit they go to IKEA to ditch their kids at IKEA's in-house daycare service in order to have an actual two-way, unmolested convo with their Significant Other.
Designed for parents to navigate their jam-packed aisles in peace, the article states that the free care room, Smaland, comes complete with counselors, a ball pit, and an arts and crafts station. There's a staunch time limit of only 45 minutes per kid on weekdays and 30 minutes on weekends, yet parents still clamor for the chance to sign 'em up.
According to the article, "They come a few times a week. It's just a way for the parents to have a little bit of their own time," said the store's spokeswoman, Lorna Montalvo. "Sometimes, you see parents come by, drop off their kid, and then go right upstairs and have a meal," Montalvo said.
Since an IKEA opened in her neighborhood (and not a five-minute drive from my place), my friend Jennifer is admittedly guilty of this ditch. "When our second daughter was born, we were desperate for some uninterrupted conversation. So we'd stick the baby in the Bjorn, check our big kid into the ball pit, and sit down in the café for some quiet time. Our big kid loved it and we loved the free babysitting. I'd highly recommend it to anyone!"
A half-hour of uninterrupted conversation with my spouse for the low, low price of ... nothing? And my kid has a blast and gets his ya-yas out in the meantime? I think many folks will join me in saying, hell -- if it's free ... it's for me!
|Vivian Manning-Schaffel has written for Babble, Parenting, The Advocate, The New York Post, Business Week and a variety of other publications and lives and works in the heart of breeder Brooklyn with her husband and two kids. She authors two pop culture blogs: The Mad Mom and A Hag Supreme, and is on the web at vivianmanningschaffel.com.|