Anticipating Daddy Dates
by Nicholeen Peck
Memories are priceless! And, memories with daddy are extraspecial. I know not all households have daddies, so if there isn’t adaddy at your house you can apply this article to mommies, grandmas,and grandpas too.
When I was young my daddy deliberately made time each week to takeone of his children on a date. I couldn’t wait for my turn to comearound. I knew that every five weeks my daddy and I would make aspecial memory and become better friends.
In our family, we have adopted the daddy date into our familyculture too. This is not to say that I don’t do dates. My childrenlove mommy dates too, but the daddy dates are more anticipate-ablesince daddy always does them on Thursday nights.
Deliberately setting a date creates anticipation. The child whogets the dedicated time with daddy thinks about it and plans for itall day. They create expectations and feelings of excitement all daywhile dreaming of their outing with Dad.
One time, my husband Spencer, forgot how much the children lookforward to the daddy date and tried to call it off. He was tired and
wasn’t in the mood to go out again. When he suggested doing the dateanother day Porter became emotional. I could see he was doing hisbest to accept a no answer, but he was obviously holding back tears.
All day long Porter had talked about the date with Dad. He hadcarefully planned what he would tell Dad he wanted to do on his date,and was ready to go by the time Dad got home.
When Spencer suggested calling off the date because he was tootired, I pulled him aside and explained that Porter had beenanticipating the daddy date all day and had dreams inside his heart of theperfect outing together. I explained that this anticipation was whatmade the memory last a life time.
After I explained the anticipation principle to Spencer he changedhis plan and suddenly increased his energy. He realized then thatthe memories he was making with his children by doing scheduled daddydates were being created when he wasn’t even there. His mainresponsibility was to come home and participate in the dream.
Daddy dates are one of the best choices my parents ever made in mylife, and they are one of he best choices we have made for our familytoo. Families who schedule time together each week are historicallyhappier families than those who don’t. As you know, our family alsodoes weekly family activities. We try to create as much family playtime as possible. And, we try to give ourselves time to anticipatethe activities so that valuable memories will be made.