IKEA What?-Part II

…continued from IKEA What?-Part I

We knew that we wanted to go back to IKEA and look deeper at what we would enjoy having in our home: if we saw something that we liked there, we could get it, and if not, we would at least make a fun day of it.  I was settled on purchasing new bedroom furniture, or possibly new living room furniture; but, we were pretty much open to anything.

We decided that New Year’s Day would be a perfect day to go.  We both had the day off, and they had an annual sale going on that week.  We borrowed a friend’s trusty old Suburban (we weren’t going to try and jam whatever we got into our little Saturn…not that we haven’t done things like that before…), and headed off to the Baltimore suburbs around noon.

During the hour-long drive, we got to talking about what we really wanted.  We began to lean away from the bedroom and living room furniture, and towards a new kitchen table and chairs.  Let’s just say that at the time, our current dining room set had a lot of history behind it; but nothing matched, and it was not the sturdiest thing in the world either.

We arrived at the store, and immediately went to eat at their restaurant.  They had a special where you could get fifteen Swedish meatballs, mashed potatoes, a cream sauce/gravy, and Lingonberry jam for $3.99, so we both went for that, and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Afterwards, we went searching.  We grabbed our pencil, card, and shopping bag, and headed in.  Almost immediately, the first thing that caught our eye was the most interesting and innovative–but simple–tie rack.  My ties usually just end up on very generic tie rack, and overflow onto a bent-out-of-shape hanger.  This one would clean everything up just how we wanted.  One thing about IKEA, which you will find out about more in the next post in this series, is that they are the masters of organization.  We grabbed the information on it and continued on…

My new tie rack

Eventually we came to the kitchen and dining area.  I think that this is one of their most unique and popular parts of the store.  They have a wide selection of kitchen organization solutions, as well as plenty of dining room options.  We looked around–back and forth–for about a half an hour, trying to find something that would fit our needs.  Neither of us had a clue what we wanted exactly in a dining room set.  Their were some very nice sets that were a bit out of our price range, but all together, nothing caught our eye–expensive or inexpensive–like the elegant (did I just write that word?) GRANÅS set of table and chairs.  It gave off a little bit of a modern look, without being way out there where it didn’t feel like home.  It is has a tempered glass tabletop, sitting on a sturdy black steel frame and legs.  One perk is a second lattice style tabletop/shelf underneath the glass that can be used to display decorations without cluttering the eating area (it is kind of difficult to see in the pictures below).  The chairs are made from the same simply constructed black steel, but also have a woven cane seating pad, that promotes comfort and styling–plus made it much easier to match with the rest of our kitchen.  We were extremely happy with our purchase: it is very well built, and looks great in our home.  With the table, we also purchased four place-mats that go well with the set.

We bought a few other things as well, but that will be saved for the last post in the series…

Amidst a Country in Turmoil

Well, I guess this is my first post.  These definitely are crazy times in this country.  Even with all of the turmoil with the government takeover of health care, with union thugs involved now, the life of Andrea and Dustin Speckhals goes on, thank the Lord!

Here in little Brogue, Pennsylvania, we feel far away from Obamacare and Pelosi; even though–believe it or not–we are less than two hours away from Capitol Hill.  Our life is blessed!  We are living through some of the greatest times of our life.  I think it’s some of the same things newlywed couples have experienced for decades.  Here is just one funny story in the life of the Speckhals’


So here we are, in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania Dutch country, looking forward to moving into our own home.  It sure will not be huge or fancy, but something we will love.  Actually, yesterday we found that wonderful place in Red Lion, PA.  It is perfect, and we are signing our lease today!  The problem is that our furniture repertoire is minuscule…or just non-existent.  Andrea was looking on Craigslist on Monday and saw a FREE kitchen table and 2 non-matching chairs to go with it.  We ended up telling the people we wanted it, and planned going out to get it after I got out of the office.  One little ‘problemo’…all we had to transport it with was our little Saturn SC1.  It’s a great car, but it’s very small!  “Why not borrow a truck?”, you ask.  No one was at the church except for us, and I didn’t really feel like asking someone to come all the way out there to get it.  Oh well, I thought, we’ll figure it out.

After work on Tuesday, I grabbed Andrea and we headed down some winding roads through the ‘wilderness’ to Stewartstown or somewhere nearby there.  We get to the table (which looks high quality and in pretty good shape), and the rest is history.  First we try putting it through the trunk…doesn’t fit.  Then we tried through the passenger door…doesn’t fit.  Then, thankfully with that Saturn, it has a third door on the driver’s side.  We wiggled and shifted that table around and got it in with no damage to the table or car at all!  The sight was simply magnificent!  Somehow we got the two chairs in too, got everything as tight as we could, and drove back to the church.


For the last two months, Andrea and I have been living in the beautiful Prophet’s Chamber at Mt. Zion Baptist, and now we’re ready to get our own home.  Now we have a table and two chairs: our first bit of furniture.  The rest we will buy over the next couple of weeks.  God has blessed us so much.  I can say that it’s a lot of fun being newlywed;  you all should try it some time.