Starting with the bookshops, on Thursday I went in to get a copy of Practical Magic in preparation for the blog party, and a copy of Garden Spells, due to its recommendation from said blog party. Waterstones didn’t have either one in stock in Glasgow, and, worse still, Practical Magic was out of stock in the warehouse too! Apparently it’ll be a couple of weeks before they’ll be in stock, good job I didn’t leave it till the last minute! Still, at least I got to pay with the last of my Christmas book token, so it wasn’t all bad.

Anyway, for some time I’ve been debating the display options for my bear fair, and had come up, thanks to a recommendation on TT, with the idea of using some display cubes. My original thought was just to build them myself out of MDF, however several people were sure they’d seen some in Ikea. Add that to the fact that I’d been rereading an old article written by Dawn James about what you needed to take to bear fairs, which included table coverings, which you could get at reasonable prices from Ikea, and a broken desk chair, I decided I’d head over there.

The idea of Ikea at the weekend fills me with dread, so I decided Friday night seemed the best time – and I was right, it wasn’t exactly deserted, but it was pretty quiet, so I had plenty of time to dander round without tripping over pushchairs, whiny toddlers and little old ladies. It transpires that they do lots of cube shaped storage and shelving, but it’s actually rows of cubes, if you see what I mean, that is a shelving unit with 4 cube shaped openings and similar ideas. I did find a small cube in the kitchen area, but it was too small, so I guess it’s back to creating them myself (which I didn’t think would be that hard anyway!)

I did, however, successfully find a desk chair, replacement uplighter for the one in the corner of my living/creation room, table coverings, a small stepping stool (I have visions of bears on different levels), a small metal ‘traditional’ style dustbin, and a number of touch lights, which I can use in the cubes at the fairs. Yay for successful shopping, but boo when you consider, along with the shopping I also had to hit Sainsbury’s and Tesco for just after this, how much I had to carry in from the car! My first 2 kindness moments came in the car park at Ikea, when I was in the middle of trying to stuff the lovely flat pack boxes into the car (I have a small Citroen C3) around all the other junk already in it! The first was an offer of help from a passing lady and her daughter, and the second was from a family who caught my trolley, which had made a bid for freedom as I put the chair in the back seat of the car! My next moment came, very unexpectedly, when I got home, and having lugged up the shopping and bin in one trip, I was a little overambitious about atempting to get the chair and stool (which had a handle on its box) in in one shot. My neighbour, who had just stuck her head out the front door to call her daughter over about something, offered me a hand in. This was unexpected in as much as she had only ever spoken to me once before, and that was to shout at me for parking in ‘her’ space (we live on a public road, we don’t have spaces…). Still, I thinked her, but turned her down and returned the stool to the car for another trip in with the uplighter box, which was smaller, and a less awkward shape than the chair was.

I’m now sitting comfortably in the new chair typing this, and will be lighting up my room this evening with the new uplighter just as soon as I’ve assembled it. The bears have eyed up the dustbin, and are waiting expectantly for the stool to be built, not to mention the cubes! They’ll have to wait a couple of weeks for the cubes though…