Thursday, July 24, 2008

Dates and Vending Machines

I've just had some random thoughts bouncing around in my head lately. I don't really know why, but here's one of them.

When I was a little girl, my father would take turns taking each one of us children out on a weekly date. There were six of us, and so my turn would come around every month and a half or so. I loved these dates. The child got to choose (within reason) what was done for the date, and it was just a great time to spend with my dad. I remember my choices being pretty varied. We would often go up the mountain for a drive or to play on ATV's, but one time I chose to attended the grand opening of the new Skaggs Alpha Beta (kind of like a Super Wal-Mart or Super Target now). Another time we went to a local drugstore, where we discovered an old fashioned soda/ice cream fountain. That soon became a favorite place, as well.

Anyway, many of our dates started, oddly enough, at the hospital. My father (as I've mentioned here before, but some of you might be reading this for the first time so I'll mention it again) was/is a family practitioner, and so our dates often started out with us dropping by the hospital. I would wait in the ghetto Emergency Room waiting room (it's much much nicer now) while my dad made his rounds. It usually took between 30 and 60 minutes. There was a television there that I would watch, and I would often stare curiously at the other people that would come into the room, wondering why they were there. But most of all, I would salivate over the vending machine.

There were two vending machines in the waiting room. One was filled with soda, which wasn't all that exciting to me, and one was filled with candy & snacks. That's the one that I really loved. I would look longingly at the contents, and imagine which bars I would get, and how they would taste, and how wonderful it would be to sit there in the waiting room, watching television and eating chocolate, all while I got to anticipate the fun date that I was going to have with my dad.

Looking back, I'm quite certain that had I asked my father, he would have bought me something out of that vending machine, at least most of the time. Honestly though, it never occurred to me to do so. I knew from my trips with my mom to the grocery store that the food in the vending machine was significantly more expensive than the very same food in the store, and I guess I just figured that we weren't a "vending machine family".

So, now that I have my own money to spend, sometimes I'll head down the hall around 3:00 or so and buy a Twix or a Snickers bar. I know I could get it cheaper in the grocery store, but I enjoy the indulgence. Call it one of the joys of being an adult.

Still, I highly doubt that the family Eric and I have started will turn out to be what I used to think of as a "vending machine family". We'll see.

My favorite scene from one of my favorite movies

On another (quick) note, a few months ago, Eric was trying to keep our 5-year old nephew Spencer entertained and occupied. As it turned out, he did so by helping Spencer write out a menu for a very special restaurant for a very special date (Spencer's choice, not Eric's). Eric thought it was kind of odd that a five year old boy would be so keen on the dating scene, but I explained to him (Eric) about our daddy-date tradition, and told him that it was this practice that Spencer was probably referring to. As it turned out, I was wrong. My brother later informed me that Spencer had recently seen the DVD of the movie Enchanted, and ever since then (you remember how Giselle is so intrigued by the concept of a date?) he'd been kind of fixated on the whole date idea.

And that's what I've got for today. Eric should be setting up our crib today sometime, and I need to make some kind of "I didn't make visiting teaching appointments and the next 10 days are crazy, so here, I'm just dropping by with a little morsel of something" treats.

Good, good times.


Tonya said...

Very sweet memories..pardon the pun. Are you going to post pictures of the crib?

Jake said...

I remember that vending machine. I always figured that I only had one treat per date and I didn't want to waste it on a candy bar when I could get a texas donut.

We're hoping to implement the daddy dates once this medicine month is over.

Charlotte said...


The crib came together great! But, the nursery that the crib is in is kind of a disaster area at the moment, so I'm going to wait until we get it a little more put together before showing it to the world.

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