If It’s Sunday, It Must Be Ice Cream

Yesterday was a chilly, drizzly, dreary day in Virginia Beach.  My husband and I always go down to the Oceanfront late in the afternoon or early evening for our Sunday ice cream trip to Dairy Queen.  I get a chocolate dipped cone and my husband opts for chocolate sprinkles.  We never vary.  It’s our routine.  Yesterday, however, when my husband asked if we should go or if maybe it was too cold, we looked outside at the grey day and the trees frantically waving in the increasing wind, and we both decided we would skip it this time.

It’s hard to break a routine.  When it is something you look forward to, it’s comforting to repeat it time and time again.  Something seems missing when you forego it.  We started the Sunday ice cream routine when we were first married and living in Storrs, a little hamlet in rural Connecticut.  We’d go to a soft ice cream stand about a mile away, or we went to the dairy bar at the university.  When we had our children, our Sunday ice cream routine continued at Baskin Robbins in Alamo Heights in Texas.

I remember our Friday night routine with my father when I was a child.  Friday was pay day, and that meant we got to eat at Rawley’s Drive-in in Fairfield, Connecticut, my hometown.  Rawley’s was a hole-in-the-wall place so close to the railroad tracks, it shook every time a train went by.  But they had the best  hotdogs I’ve ever eaten, loaded with kraut and bacon, and no one could beat their milkshakes.  Whenever I visit Fairfield, I go there for lunch, and all those great memories of our Friday nights come flooding back.

When our kids were little and we were living in San Antonio, our Saturday morning routine was going to Rolando’s Super Tacos on Harry Wurzbach Road.  Never in my life have I had a better bean a cheese taco, and their hot sauce was amazing.  Yes, the little roaches that crawled around on the floor were a little disconcerting, but man-oh-man were those giant tacos great!  Then one day when we went for our usual Saturday taco breakfast, we found Rolando’s was gone.  I suspect the health inspector might have had something to do with it, but honestly, Rolando’s hot sauce would have killed any germs from those pesky roaches.  Alas, our comfort food was no more.  But wait!  Rolando’s was next door to a Dunkin’ Donuts, so that became our new Saturday morning routine.  I know our children remember those years fondly.  Recently my husband and I have reinstituted that doughnut routine for the two of us.

Before you point out the obvious, I will say it for you.  Yes, I know that all my cherished routines seem to revolve around food.  But I’m sure we have other routines that are just as noteworthy, and if you give me awhile, I’m sure I could think of some.  When I was trying to think of something to write for today’s post, I asked my husband for suggestions and he said to write about our Sunday ice cream routine.  In that case, I said, in spite of the weather, we’d better head to Dairy Queen.  Research, you know.

Hubby buying me my ice cream cone

It was a wild and windy Sunday at the Oceanfront

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About Coming East

I am a writer, wife, mother, and grandmother who thinks you're never too old until you're dead. My inspiration is Grandma Moses who became a successful artist in her late 70's. If I don't do something pretty soon, though, I'll have to find someone older for inspiration.
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35 Responses to If It’s Sunday, It Must Be Ice Cream

  1. Leah says:

    First of all, I see nothing wrong with traditions revolving around food. And second, I have a special spot in my heart for DQ too. That was my first job in high school. I have a particular fondness for dipped cones.

    • Coming East says:

      I’m with you there, Leah, on food traditions. I had my usual chocolate dipped cone Sunday night at the Oceanfront, though this time was much warmer than last week.

  2. LOL! I think Wife knows you pretty well…it is amazing that we aren’t “bigger” people!

  3. Huffygirl says:

    I think just about everyone has some special memory that revolves around a food routine. It’s not just the food – it’s the tradition and the warm feelings that go with a family activity.

    We used to get ice cream after every trip to the beach until I became allergic to dairy. I still miss it.

    As kids, my family went to Tastee Freeze just about every summer Sunday night, after a long drive in the country. Hard to believe it now, but taking drives in the country was actually entertainment back then. No one thought it odd. Thanks for bringing back old memories.

    • Coming East says:

      We used to go on Sunday drives, too, HG. We’ve even taken a few since we moved to Virginia Beach. We’re very close to North Carolina, and when we head in that direction, towards Knott’s Island, there’s a lot of pretty country along the way.

  4. Robin says:

    There is something calming about routines, especially those that involve comfort foods. 🙂
    When you mentioned it was cold and gray there, I didn’t realize it was THAT cold and gray. The ocean looks like it was churning.

  5. pattisj says:

    It had to be cold down there, Sunday! Oh, well, maybe the ice cream lasted a little longer–unless you were running the heater in the car!

  6. great photo of the beach, been there in that kind of weather! Could almost smell the beach. Have to agree that all my favorite memories and traditions do include food. I can eat my way through many cities and amusement parks! Great post. Thanks for sharing with us! DAF

  7. It’s NEVER too cold for ice cream, is it? When we moved to southern Arizona, you can imagine my dismay that the closest DQ was 50 miles away!

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  9. Ah, the best routines and rituals revolve around food and more importantly, the sharing of food. Treasure it. 🙂

  10. Lenore Diane says:

    Funny. Last night we went out to dinner – the four of us. As crazy as it sounds, we don’t typically go out to dinner as a family. The boys are young, and when I eat dinner – I like to eat the dinner and not worry about the behavior of young kids. Still, for whatever reason, it seemed like a good idea, so we went. We had a wonderful time. Now that the boys are older – dinner was a pleasure.

    My parents had their routines, too. Sunday night was pizza night at a local joint, and we’d always be home in time for 60 Minutes. After the kids moved out – my Dad started taking my Mom to ‘Dave’s Place’ on Friday nights. ‘Dave’s Place’ was – of course – Wendy’s. My Dad never called it Wendy’s though, it was always ‘Dave’s Place’.

    During dinner last night, Joe said, “This is nice. We should do this every week.” I’m not sure our fiances could afford it – but I quite agree. Maybe once a month. 🙂

    Great post!

    • Coming East says:

      I think you’ll find that the more you take the boys out to dinner, the better they’ll behave because they will come to know what is expected of them. We didn’t go out much for dinner when we were a young family because we just didn’t have the money.

    • Coming East says:

      L.D., I didn’t see your whole comment the first time I read it. What a lovely story of “Dave’s Place.” yes, when the kids move out, you have to come up with some new routines to fill the emptiness. Loved your whole comment!

  11. Amy says:

    I’ll add, food and friends go together happily!! Hope weather will be a little warmer this weekend for your Sunday ice cream trip. Thanks for sharing the nice photos and sweet story!

  12. I always enjoy your photos. I especially love the one of your hubby getting the ice cream as you wait for the delivery. Chivalry is ALIVE!

  13. Al says:

    OK. This is the second post today that mentions Dairy Queen. http://pegoleg.wordpress.com/2012/05/21/ive-fallen-and-i-cant-get-up/. It’s hard enough to resist a Butterfingers Blizzard without seeing it plastered all over WordPress! Please, all of you, in the name of all that is holy, stop!! (Actually, I think I’ll go with the Reese’s Pieces Blizzard today).

    • Coming East says:

      You are in luck, Al (or out of luck, depending on how you look at it). There are two DQ’s at the Oceanfront, and we have one half a mile from our house. We walk to it in the summer. See how lucky you are?

  14. As a child Friday night (same reason as you – payday) we were off to Howard Johnson’s in Media, PA. For me it was fried chicken every Friday night! Wow! You have a pink DQ – love it! Ours is plain old white with the red and blue. We don’t have the neon either. Ice cream bounces between DQ and Martels, a local homemade ice cream place with about 30 flavors at a time (1/3 on a revolving schedule). We spend the winter waiting for the first day of spring when Martels reopens… but we don’t have routines that revolve around food here… must be a southern thing!! LOL

    • Coming East says:

      My husband worked in Media, Carol. He was an administrator at Delaware Community College. Anyway, I don’t think the food thing is a southern thing because my first food routines were in Connecticut.

  15. We’re creatures of habit and also love our traditions — I can so relate to this!

  16. Oh DQ calls out to Rick whenever we go out to the country. Never MacD, it has to be DQ. To save my MIL from cooking, my in-laws used to go in to town to pick up a burger or ice cream. It made me smile to think they considered it such a treat, too.
    When I was a child we used to go on Sunday nites to the Frostop, a root beer stand that served the best hamburgers. Occasionally, we will see a giant root beer mug on the roof of a Frostop when we go through a TX small town. It amazes me they are still around.
    Yes, by all means, you must do your part to keep this American business alive.

  17. This might just be me, but it seems all your cherished routines revolve around food… 🙂 haha. Sometimes it’s those little routines that give us comfort, isn’t it? Great pics!

    • Coming East says:

      Thanks, Wife. Yeah, I might as well admit it. I can’t think of cherished routines that don’t revolve around food. What does that say about us? Ha-ha!

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