Some years ago when we lived in Charleston and when my 3 sons were small and their stomachs smaller, we would celebrate what I called "5 star Doorknob Friday." To the boys, it was "5 star Doughnut Friday"; they were correct, of course, for it was the school day when we dropped by Krispy-Kreme Doughnuts on the way to school. There was a certain criteria for this: getting up and going to school with no hassles from Monday through Thursday. My oldest two went with me as I took them to elementary school. On the way there, I would kid them about the "chocolate covered doorknobs" and the cream filled doorknobs they used when they took the lock out. The boys corrected me time and again, but the silliness continued. It became an "event," a time to be with Dad and for me to be with the boys.
Fast forward to 2007 in Rock Hill, SC. After a year or two off, the 5 star doorknob Friday tradition is back. We took the time away for two reasons---no Krispy Kreme Doughnut place in Rock Hill (Krispy Kreme vs. Dunkin' Donuts is a great debate for many people) and the doughnut place was not on the way to the school as in Charleston. My youngest son (who missed most of the fun at the Charleston Krispy Kreme since he was in pre-school at the time) is now in 5th grade; he and I carry on the 5 star doorknob tradition each Friday now. The other two boys could go, but they opt for more sleep time and dad bringing home the sugary treats home for when they get up (oh, I pity the teachers on Fridays!). The youngest and I sit in the Dunkin Donuts at 630am on Fridays talking about his new safety patrol assignment or Harry Potter or whatever else is on his mind. We laugh and plan and imagine and sing songs together--- this morning, we alternated between James Brown's "Living in America" with Weird Al's "Living with a Hernia."
I guess it could be bagels or Waffle House or anything really. But the important thing is the time together. I can remember time with my dad fishing on the lakes of Santee Cooper and going to Furman football games. Catching a fish was nice, winning the game was good, too. But the time together with my dad was even better. I guess when the youngest moves to middle school next year we will look for other traditions and occasions to be together... to laugh and talk or be silly...to be fully present with one another...and find moments of special memory for the life ahead.