Don't tell cousin Erika, but we recently went to IKEA to buy some last minute furniture to send to Angola with the remainder of my parents' worldly goods. Erika apparently really loves going to IKEA to play in the ball room.
It turns out that Elizabeth also loves going to IKEA but although she meets the toilet trained criteria she doesn't yet meet the minimum height requirements. I doubt she'd be happy there without Mom or Dad, so perhaps it was for the best. In any case, IKEA has a lot of "unsupervised play areas", especially in the children's area. Elizabeth gleefully "cooked" a large plush sausage and made about a thousand cups of soup. She was a bit put out by the lack of forks and "foons" (spoons), but after an exhaustive search came to the conclusion that Mommy was right and she COULD just pretend. Lots of fuzzies (stuffed animals) to play with. Luckily she isn't at the age where she wants to take everything home; I could see this store being a challenge otherwise!
She galloped the rocking moose for a few minutes but after hearing the giggles from two other little girls spinning in a swivel chair she decided she had to try that too. Spinning around and around and around was too much fun and she cried when we eventually decided to drag her away.