It started when I got a television back in 2003. I'm pretty sure I was the only person working at NBC without a TV so my colleagues took it upon themselves to present me with a gift card to Best Buy. The TV soon needed a TV stand and all the books that I was no longer reading while I watched TV needed shelves to perch on. Off I went to Ikea to buy a huge TV stand-combo that would surely leave my apartment looking tidy and neat. However, I soon realized that, through no fault of my television, my tiny closet couldn't contain my clothes anymore, so off I went to Ikea again for a wardrobe. It was then I had to admit that I worshiped at the altar of Ikea.
I don't know how Ikea does it, but they seem to predict your every need, whether it be for measuring cups or coffee cups; futons or photo frames. Ikea has affordable and durable gadgets for items you could use every day and somehow seduces you to buy things you wish you used regularly.
This infatuation with Ikea only increased after I got married (my husband is also an Ikea aficionado) and had kids. My friend and fellow parent and I used to go to Ikea, ostensibly for household items or toys, but mostly because they had a kiddie play area and secretly addictive ingredients in their meatballs. I can't recall the number of times I escaped unscathed from the furniture section only to be assailed by the pastry brush I had to have and the photo boxes I'd surely need as soon as I organized my photos.
Recently, I returned to Ikea to buy Monkey a twin bed so that Munchkin could move into his toddler bed. I researched bunk beds, daybeds, and all sorts of arrangements, but alas, Ikea not only had the best and most affordable option--a kiddie loft bed--it had my heart. Ikea, I wish I knew how to quit you, but I don't.