Kid stuff and the perfect breakfast


I think I already told you the story of trying to fool the tooth fairy. I’ll try to be brief in my re-telling.

I had a lot of storybooks by the author Richard Scarry when I was a kid. He usually told stories with the use of animal drawings. 

There was a story of a rabbit losing a tooth and the adventures that followed.  In my kid mind, I thought the little rabbit’s tooth looked exactly like the cap of a toothpaste tube. So, that night, I removed the cap of the toothpaste, put it under my pillow, and hoped for the best.

After all, the bunny in the story got a shiny quarter. It might work.

Another quest I went on as a kid was to plan and set out the perfect breakfast. Remember when we were kids and there were interesting things on the cereal box? Sometimes, there would be a picture of what I thought was the perfect breakfast. 

For a time, I would even cut out the picture after the box was emptied and keep it for reference. Once, I tore out another such picture from my grandma’s McCall’s magazine.

I remember the summer morning when I tasked myself with creating the perfect breakfast. Mom had been to the store and I saw that she had purchased stick butter. I had to have stick butter for my perfect toast, not the spreadable butter in the plastic tubs that we would later use as cereal bowls. 

Mom had also purchased a new bottle of orange juice and I’m sure there were new, bright boxes of cereal available.

My first thought was that I should focus on the toast. I toasted at least six pieces of bread, maybe more, until I had the perfect pigment I was looking for. When I finally did, I carefully sliced off the square pats of butter, which I did not know was unsalted.  

I searched the upper cabinets for mom’s fancier dishes and found some small glasses. The perfect breakfast had small glasses of orange juice and milk beside the perfect toast and perfect bowl of cereal. I poured both and was ready for the next step.

In my McCall’s photo, there was a small glass pitcher of milk. I assumed this was for pouring on my cereal at the last minute.  After all, keeping my cereal from becoming soggy was paramount in planning this perfect breakfast.  So, I finally found a fancy looking glass pitcher that wasn’t exactly the same but would work.

Lastly, I had to cut three pieces of a banana to add to the top of my cereal. I arranged the banana on top of the cereal and sat down to pour my milk from the fancy glass pitcher.

What a shame that no one was around to witness this perfect breakfast.  

These were the days when I was up at the crack of dawn to watch Saturday morning cartoons, and I’m thinking everyone was still in bed. I hadn’t yet received my own camera. We did not have cell phones in the 1970s.  

This breakfast would be only a memory, once consumed.

I do remember thinking that everything should have tasted better than it actually did. I sprinkled a little sugar on top of my cereal, just like the picture dictated.  Eating sugary cereal and then sipping orange juice from your dainty cup is not as tasty as it sounds.

By the time everything was ready, my toast had gotten cold and the perfect pats of butter had wilted a bit.

Still, I remember sighing a little with contentment, knowing I had achieved or at least come close to my goal of creating the perfect breakfast experience.

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