My Dad and I are two peas in a pod. Some of my fondest memories from growing up are of things I did with him- mushroom hunting, racing slot cars, trains and RC cars, playing baseball outside with my brothers, Walley Ball in the garage, fishing over at the neighbor’s pond, etc, etc. I could go on and on and on!
|Dad's Graduation from Indiana Wesleyan|
To this day, we still have things that we do much the same way. We both lose gas caps. We read a lot of the same books and listen to books on CD during long car trips. I remember once when I was riding in his old beater truck- I believe it was aptly named “J.T”, which stood for “Junk Truck”- the door fell off as we were going down the road. Funny enough, the other day my door fell off, luckily not while I was going down the road. (Another story for another blog, I’m afraid…) I half cut my thumb off the other day while cooking and a band-aid wouldn’t stay on because it was bleeding too much. How did I fix it? Duct tape, of course! One of my mantras in life is that Duct tape fixes everything, and I learned this from my dad. As I was wrapping my thumb with a wad of paper towel and the ever-useful grey tape, I thought to myself, “My dad will be so proud of me!”
Something else I learned from my dad is that a trip to the dentist should be topped off with a trip to the ice cream store. When I was growing up in Greensburg, there was a Cow Palace that was in the same parking lot as my dentist. Every time Dad took us to the dentist, we ended up stalling the required time for the fluoride treatment to set, and then we’d head over to Cow Palace. They sold a gallon of milk in a bag that you put in this weird contraption so you could pour it out, and they sold the best ice cream in town. Sadly enough, that Cow Palace in Greensburg went out of business ages ago, although there is still one in Shelbyville. When I was at Franklin College (Go Grizzlies!), I brought lots of my friends to Shelbyville for the best ice cream around. And when I had to take that stupid biology summer course, I always stopped on my way for a Swiss Chocolate Almond milkshake to make me feel better about feeding worms on my summer break. Trust me; that was almost as bad as going to the dentist…
Because ice cream was linked with making things better in my head, I felt that it was especially cruel that I couldn’t have any when I most desperately needed it during the dark days of this adventure. They do have soy ice cream, coconut ice cream, almond milk ice cream and I’m sure others, but they just didn’t have the creamy texture that I so desperately craved in my ice cream treats. Even covered in vegan hot fudge I made, it just didn’t do it.
Fast forward to about 3 months ago. Chris and I had taken the boys to Broadripple and decided to get some ice cream. We went to this little place we found on the Monon called Brics. As I finished ordering for the boys, the gal says, “And what about you?” I say, “None for me- can’t have diary.” She shocks me by pulling me to the back room and showing me a small freezer full of dairy-free ice cream that I had the choice of to put on my gluten free ice cream cone! She went on to tell me that they always keep a stock of dairy-free choices in the store and try to keep the GF cones as well. Every time I have been there, they have never disappointed! And, they introduced me to my favorite diary-free ice cream- Trader Joe’s Cherry Chocolate Chip soy ice cream. I’m telling you, it is heaven in a bowl with the perfect texture- and reasonably priced as well.
So now, when we go out for ice cream as a family, Mom gets to have some, too. And when the world is just ticking me off, I have the ability to have a bowl of yummy goodness in the comfort of my own home. I also recently learned that Hershey’s Shell doesn’t have anything that I react to in it, so the Trader Joe’s vanilla soy ice cream has a special place in my heart right now, too.
Not long ago, we had a party for one of the boys at my Mom and Dad’s house. I took ice cream for everyone and my own ice cream for me. I offered my ice cream to anyone who wanted to try it. A family friend looked at me with a slightly disturbed look and said, “Val, if it doesn’t have milk in it, then it just isn’t ice cream!” That may be true, but it sure takes the sting out of going to the dentist!