A Date With Haagen-Daz

The first couple of years or BC – before children – my wife and I never talked about date night. There was no need. We just went out when we wanted to. Staying in was not a terrible option either, wink, wink.  Anyway for the first years AC, or after children, we talked about the need for having a date night.

Well, we finally committed to it a few years back.  We go out once a month. One month my wife handles the arrangements and the next month, it’s my turn. Now, I think that sounds fair, reasonable, equitable. Except it does not work that way. I am the one who ends up pushing to go out and making the plans.

Checking out a retro jazz band, wandering a museum featuring an exhibition of our favorite artist, eating at this new restaurant that got written up with a great review in the paper. Alex, “that would have to be what are dates we never go on?”

I can plan a great date. I have planned plenty for us – if I do say so myself.  These days I am not the greatest at planning dates. No, I am not being hard on myself. Half the time, we end up at the Starbucks in Barnes and Noble. We sit in the comfy chairs while sipping our caffeinated beverages and talking about the children. About a mile away from romantic – ehh? It’s actually pleasant and easy if a little staid.

In reality, my wife and I enjoy a fun date as much as the next couple. Two issues often come up which tend to make this not occur: Time and Money. Are you familiar with them?

Anyway, our most recent date ended at Haagen-Dazs. You might be thinking to yourself that doesn’t sound so bad. And I would agree. Yet, there’s more.

Picture courtesy of Google.com

Picture courtesy of Google.com

The date had begun 45 minutes earlier in Shop Rite.  No, this is not another one of MMK’s food shopping stories. Just being practical – we were out of milk and cheese and so food shopping we went.  It was actually quite special. We laughed, we cried, we bonded as we made it to the refrigerated section. Our relationship was at a new level by the time we went through the 10 items or less express lane.

From food shopping, we went to AC Moore.  I have never been to AC Moore before. I never want to go back to AC Moore. It’s not personal. Anyway, we were wandering around looking for a picture frame. Yup, it was truly fun. I just wish they sold rings so we could have renewed our wedding vowels by the matting section. How special that would have been.

At that point in the evening, well late afternoon might be more accurate, we had twenty minutes left till we had to be home. It was then that my wife brought up the ice cream idea. I looked at my wallet and saw I had just $8. When the cashier at Haagen-Dazs said, “That’ll be 6.37,” I smiled and happily handed over the money before joining my wife who had already begun munching on her ice cream cone.

Yes, all’s well that ends well.  But, I think I need to make a plan next time. Suggestions?

Again and Again

Wife: Go upstairs and brush your hair.

8 yr old BR: But I brushed my hair yesterday.

Me: Hahahahahahhaha

BR was convinced he had a good point. When I noted he had dessert yesterday and still wanted to have some today, he did not quite get the logic. Actually, he probably did get the logic but was not interested in hearing it. This conversation got me to thinking about how some tasks most people are happy to repeat over and over again. Here are 5 of mine:

1. Eating chocolate: I love chocolate and I am happy to eat it whenever presented with the option. I am really flexible like that.

2. Tickling my children: I love hearing them laugh. It brings me a joy that I never knew existed before they were born.

3. Reading a good book: When I come across a book that I find engaging, I am thrilled. Sometimes, I walk around Barnes and Noble and wonder what it would be like to have time to read all the books.

4. Waking up after a good night sleep: This is a beautiful thing. That feeling of being rested and refreshed is just plain sweet. It makes me want to run and accomplish something.

5. Hearing my wife laugh: When I can make my wife laugh, particularly those type of belly laughs where noise stops for a moment, I know that although we may get some things wrong, we are okay.

Yup, you will not hear me complain about these things. I am happy to do them over and over again. Give me Groundhog Day (an underrated movie – in my humble opinion). On the other hand, there are some tasks which I would be fine to never do again. I know, I know, never is a strong word and be careful when you use it. Understood. Never! Here are my top 5.

1. Mowing the lawn: I’ve written about mowing the lawn before. I like when it looks neat (even ours looks okay with all the rain we have had lately) and enjoy the smell of freshly cut grass. However, I would enjoy the smell of the freshly manicured lawn much more if I wasn’t the one bringing it to the pristine state.

2. Making the bed: I would not call myself a neat freak. However, I am on the verge of this semi-flattering title and feel uncomfortable in dirty places. I think having an unmade bed makes a room look sloppy. So, I always make the bed. In fact, I even make the beds (not completely) when I am at a hotel. However, I would be happy for the bed to automatically make itself. I don’t hold out much hope – not even the Jetsons had such a device.

3. Doing homework with BR: When I send my children onto the school bus, I tell them, “Have fun and get brilliant.” I have tremendous respect for knowledge and appreciate those who have gotten an education. Yet, doing homework with my son is a big pain. I never know if I am doing it with Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde. The explosions come out of nowhere.

4. Waiting for the morning bus: My commute each morning requires me to take a bus and then a subway. If I miss the bus or it’s tardy, I will be late for work. Each morning, there is a part of me that worries the bus won’t show up.

5. Wiping SY: He is 5 ½ years old. Shouldn’t he be wiping his own but by now? I should be patient with him as he has O.T. issues and some delays. However, hearing him call out, “Can somebody wipe me?” freezes my wife and me. Sometimes, he’ll ask for her and other times me. I have no idea how he decides who to call for and I am not sure if I want to know. Of course, if I did, maybe I could rig the system, so that he would always call my wife. Hmmmm.

Well, I guess I’ll have to take the good with bad. So, what about you? What’s on your list?