As a kid one of my favorite activities was to visit the local planetarium. Not only did they have the greatest activities and star shows, they also had astronaut ice cream – that dehydrated block of tasty goodness. I remember wanting to be an astronaut just so that I could eat that tasty treat while floating around in space. I remember as a teenager I once turned down a free pair of box seat tickets to a Utah Jazz playoff game because I didn’t want to miss the members-only preview of the new laser show at the planetarium.
Looking back I see that as much as I enjoyed the planetarium, it was really just a great excuse to spend time with my family. My parents were always great about spending family time as well as one-on-one time with each of us kids. Now that I’m a parent my wife and I try to do the same thing.
Sometimes our activities are silly, like putting on swim suits and playing out in the summer rain, and sometimes they are a bit more serious, like yesterday when I took my son to help stack wood with a group of young men. It doesn’t seem to matter what we do, my kids just love spending time together.
A few weeks ago my youngest daughter and I decided to hang out together. She has been doing a great job at school as well as at home, so we decided to do something special – ice cream. And not just any ice cream, we decided to conquer the Dog Dish Challenge at our local ice cream parlor. Imagine a huge metal dog dish with 10 scoops of ice cream and 5 toppings, covered in whipped cream. It took us almost an hour, and it was a bit painful, but we did it. I think the happy memories we made were worth the extra pounds I’ve added on – but next time I’m going to stick with the less-filling astronaut ice cream.