June’s Date Night with Doug and Teaching Him how to Clean the Kitchen Floor

Date Night With Doug – June

For June’s date night with Doug we went all out Mexican. I am not talking about a quickie trip to Taco Bell or Mighty Taco here folks. We drove an hour to taste authentic Mexican cuisine in Medina, NY, but first, date night with Doug always starts off with a little shopping before dinner.

Father’s Day was coming up and a few weeks before, I had spied the perfect gift for Scott at Tractor Supply, a broadcast seed spreader for the lawn. I know that doesn’t sound very interesting to most of you but when you are a guy who is obsessed with obliterating every single dandelion in the lawn this is the perfect gift. While we were at the checkout we told the cashier where we were going for dinner and she thought that was great fun. She commented that she was still going to dinner with her dad and she was 26!

Next we went to Game Stop and Doug turned some of his old video games into store credit and purchased a couple of new games with it. He loved that!

Now on to dinner. After traveling what seemed like forever we finally arrived at our dinner destination Mariachi De Oro Mexican Grill in Medina. When we pulled in, the parking lot was packed, which is always a good sign, especially for a Tuesday night.

We waited for a bit in the doorway, not quite sure how they seated people but soon we were being led to our table for two. It was a colorful, bustling restaurant with many people sipping giant margaritas chatting animatedly at each other.


Looking at the menu, our dinner choices were many, but after much consideration Doug decided on steak and cheese quesadillas and I decided on steak and chicken fajitas.



Our appetizer as you might guess, was salsa and chips.


Everything was really, really good. Nothing was overly seasoned or greasy. Everything was fresh and colorful. Now about dessert.

Doug ordered fried cheesecake. I ordered the flan. Neither one of us had ever had either of these desserts.



Doug’s dessert was impressive to say the least. I have to give this restaurant an “A” on its presentation. He ate more than half of it before collapsing against the seat giving in to his full belly.

The flan was very different for me. It’s texture was not something that I would really order again though I have nothing to compare this restaurant’s interpretation of a flan to. The honey it was draped in was sweet and luxurious tasting but I didn’t enjoy the cold, rubberiness of the flan. I will have to give it a try somewhere else to compare.

It was another very successful date night with my son. I enjoyed every minute with my young foodie. July’s date night is at Otto Tomato’s in Victor, NY. Can’t wait!

Teaching Doug How to Properly Clean the Kitchen Floor

Doug is 13. He doesn’t really want to clean anything, let alone the kitchen floor. However, when one wants to buy himself a brand new XBox One, one has to work for the money to buy it.

When Doug wants to earn money we play the card game. The card game is getting out a deck of playing cards and every playing card has a certain point value to it.

Cards 2 through 10 are face value, Jacks are 25 points, Queens are 50 points, Kings are 75 points, and Aces are 100 points.

Now if you really want to step it up a notch you can throw in the Jokers for 500 points. That’s a lot though and this time we took the Jokers out of the deck.

So to earn a point you have to pick something up or do a specific task. Examples, fold 25 pieces of laundry or put away 10 pieces of silverware from the dishwasher. You get the idea. Not only does this game promote counting in younger children, it also gives older children a sense of the work it takes to do the chores that we as adults do every day.

I forgot to tell you what a point gets you in this game. A point gets you a penny. Yeah that sounds like a lot of work for a penny but it really adds up. Today I told him I would double the penny value to 2 pennies per point.  He picked the first card off the top of the deck (be sure to shuffle them first) and he was off and earning money. After washing and folding all of the laundry, emptying the dishwasher, vacuuming his bedroom, and deadheading all of the peony bushes outside he was looking for more. I told him he could sweep and mop the kitchen floor and hallway for 100 points.

After about 10 minutes he said he was done. Yeah right. We have a huge linoleum floor in the kitchen and it is white. Who installs a white kitchen floor you say? Apparently my grandmother thought it was a good idea at the time. Me, not so much. It shows everything.

I went in to inspect. As I suspected the edges were still full of dirt particles and he hadn’t cleaned under the desk nor moved the bar stools. The mopping needed more attention too.

One thing I have learned while employing certain kids at the bakery is that no one has really ever properly taught them how to sweep and mop. Seems like a simple thing but not everyone is good at it.


So I had Doug move things around, sweep under the desk and workbenches, and mop a couple more times around the room. He didn’t think he deserved the 100 points because he hadn’t done very well the first time but I told him after we both worked on it together that doing chores was also about learning as well as doing. We will keep working on his sweeping and mopping skills. By the end of the afternoon his double scored playing card game had earned him $18.36. Not bad!

By the way here is a picture of Douglas smiling on the last day of school with a celebratory caramel latte. His favorite. Sheesh, I don’t make the kid work all of the time ya know! -MM


Published by marymargaretripley

I am a professional Bakery Manager at a privately owned grocery store. I also owned my own bakery for over four years. I have been baking for 15+ years professionally. I also teach canning and preserving classes and have been gardening since I was 5 years old. I live in Western, NY with my husband, teenage son, Bernie the Cat and Muffins the Hamster.

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