My husband has this thing about milk. He will be the first to tell you "milk should never hit the counter" and he means this more literally than you can imagine. I despise warm milk as much as the next person, in fact, I put ice in my milk if it's not cold enough for my liking--so I am hardly without a fettish for cold milk. But I do not suffer in the same way my husband suffers if milk sits out on the counter for five minutes, or has to be transported from the grocery store to our house without a refrigerated truck.
Now a short lesson on genes. We ran out of milk this morning and my kids brought in a new gallon from the outside fridge. It took less than a minute to get the bowls and cereal ready for the milk but before the cereal had been poured, I heard my six year old say to my four year old, "We need to hurry, the milk is already warm." Immediately I was both amused and concerned at how my husband's quirky attitude toward milk had been passed to the children. They are too young, I realized, to get the humor in the exchanges and teasing between Brian and I over the milk. I decided it was time for a teaching moment.
I proceeded to try to explain "quirks" to my children and how the inability to let milk be away from the fridge for more than 5 seconds is just a quirk, and that they don't need to grow up concerned that its really a problem. Now if milk sits out for an hour, you may have a problem, I explained, but 5,10 or even 15 minutes isn't going to hurt it. I then told them it would make their life easier if they didn't have this quirk about milk.
"Oh, I didn't know it was a quirk," said my son. "Well now you know," I said proudly, pleased that I had intercepted this learned quirk in my son before it had time to fully germinate. And then he followed with: "But can you stop talking now and pour the milk, mom? It's been an hour, and the milk is getting warm. I like my milk straight out of the fridge...just like daddy."
So you win some and you lose some, and whether by nature, nurture, or both, I now have two quirky men in my family to keep the milk cold for.