I love Chick-Fil-A. I am so glad that these restaurants exist today as an alternative to McDonald's. While I grew up going to McDonalds and going out to eat there was a huge treat (along with Little Ceasar's Pizza Pizza!), as an adult, I feel McDonald's leaves a lot to be desired. The hamburgers taste...weird. Like the meat is not really what it purports to be. The chicken nuggets, once my favorite food has paled in recent years. It began when my older brother, an assistant manager at a McDonald's, brought home several LARGE bags of frozen nuggets that were apparently past the date that they were allowed to be served at the restaurant. While I loved to eat chicken nuggets, they were mostly a vehicle for their sweet and sour sauce and we didn't have any of that. My mother valiantly fried them at home on our stove...every third day for a year. At least, that was what it felt like. And ketchup just didn't cut it. I was so excited to go to Germany the following year, thinking that I would escape the chicken nuggets. After all, I was in another country! Surely I could eat German food and not McDonald's! Alas, my host mother took us (my host brother Mark and I) to the only McDonald's in town every Thursday for lunch. It was her treat, to herself and us. She didn't have to cook because my host father had a Rotary meeting for lunch and Mark could eat as many 99 cent hamburgers as he could stomach, which, at 14, was a lot. The few times I have eaten at McDonald's since high school, the nuggets have made me sick to my stomach.
But, I digress.
I thought sure that, as a parent of a young child, I would have to return to McDonald's because, I mean, how could we avoid happy meals and play areas?
Then Chick-Fil-A came along. They make good food. Chicken nuggets that don't make me sick. Meat that I can identify. Children's meals with fruit and milk and toys that are fun and educational like books, sticker activities and the like. They even give you free stick on place mats so your child can spread their food on the table and it doesn't immediately pick up the germs of the last 85 children who sprayed swine flu there. There are two near us and they both have playgrounds.
We've always liked to go but it may become a regular weekly event for us. We were having trouble figuring out Tuesday night dinners. I have choir practice at church at 7. Now that we live 20+ minutes from church, it seems silly for me to come home from school, eat dinner, and then drive all the way back to school to go to church. But I still need to eat dinner and it is more reasonable for me to get Katie from daycare because it is close to school and church and not our house or Jim's previous job. Well, it turns out that Chick-Fil-A has kids night on Tuesdays. Kids meals are free with the purchase of an adult meal. They have crafts and, of course, the play area. Now I pick Katie up, meet Jim at the Chick-Fil-A near church, have dinner, spend a little time as a family and Jim takes K home while I go on to choir. Jim does the bedtime routine and noone has to worry about doing the dishes after 9pm when I get home or after wrestling Katie into bed.
A win-win for everyone.
Katie hard at work on this week's art project on kids night...
...and eating her absolute favorite food in the world.