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Jessica Wiant: Dessert with dad a special memory

He'd order coffee, and I'd get milk.

We'd both go all-in and order Hot Fudge Cake.

I might've gone rogue and ordered Apple Pie A La Mode once.

In all reality, I probably only went for dessert with my dad three or four times, but the memory is so strong we might as well have done it weekly.

Just me and him, so he could have his coffee and we both could have our sweet fix, and I could have some alone time with my father.

When I was a kid, we would always go to the beach for one week a year, and I think that's when it started. There was probably a Shoney's right by our Motel 6 on the way south and so Dad decided to treat me. Then, at least in my eyes, it became kind of a tradition.

I don't remember what we talked about or what my mom and brother were doing in the meantime, but I can remember how Dad's coffee, with cream, tasted when I stole a sip or two.

On our summer vacation the year before I broke out into total teenagehood, it was ice cream at the pier arcade that we went for.

I watched the cool, local teens hang out -- sans parents -- and felt, well, a little uncool (not to mention flat-chested and awkward) for the first time letting my dad buy me a mint chocolate chip waffle cone.

As we left, he made it a point to tell me I was the prettiest girl in the building, and I was just young enough to believe him, if only for a moment.

As Father's Day approaches (it will be my husband's first as a dad, and Mother's Day marked my first as a mom), I have been thinking about the special times I have had with my dad, but I've also been wondering about what father-son moments my husband will create for our boy.

Even though our son is only 7 months old, he already lights up when his dad walks into the room. My husband's top two specialties are spoon feeding and turning our boy into a giggle machine.

After weeks of me trying to get our baby to say "dada," he imitated his father when he did it only once, even if it came out sounding like "gaga" at first.

As proud as I am to be a mother, it's just as nice to sit back and watch my baby interact with his dad sometimes.

Sure, the grown-ups pay the bills, do the laundry and teach us life's lessons, but there's something extra special about the one-on-one time between a kid and a parent, when we forget about all the stuff that needs done and just enjoy being together.

Those are the moments that make fathers and mothers worth celebrating. They are the moments that mattered to me, and I hope my son will have plenty of them, with both of us ... and from time to time Grandpa can provide dessert.

Contact Jessica Wiant at jwiant@nvdaily.com. For more "That's Life" and other family news go to www.nvdaily.com/moms.


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