When you're a little kid, some of the most run-of-the-mill, mundane things can seem like the fanciest thing in the world.
I know, for me, the fanciest things in the world were going to Applebee's, people with canopy beds, and having my mom spray Sun-In in my hair during the summer.
1. "I once thought of Dave & Busters as a super fancy place that adults regularly visit because going to an arcade was usually a special occasion as a kid. I later learned that most adults don't spend their Saturday nights playing claw machines and ordering chicken nuggets like I imagined."
2. "Packed lunches — I remember the only friends I had who didn't get school lunch lived in the more expensive part of town. They even had Babybel cheese, which my parents REFUSED to buy. I was lucky if we had Polly-O string cheese."
3. "I definitely thought Olive Garden was a five-star restaurant and would always get dressed up in my 'fancy' dresses to go."
4. "An ice/water dispenser on your fridge. I thought it meant you were RICH RICH! When I was a kid, one of my neighbors had one — I used to eat the crushed ice with a spoon from a cup."
"My grandparents had one, and when I was younger, I got so excited to use the ice machine and also get water from the fridge. I thought it was insanely luxurious. Now, we moved, and my parents splurged and got one, and we still geek out over it."
6. "I thought riding the subway would make me feel 'posh' and like a 'somebody.' Boy, was I wrong about that!"
7. "Continental breakfasts. I'd always hear about them in movies and TV shows, and I guess the word 'continental' made me think, 'Ooh, so European, so elegant!' It wasn't until I stayed at a hotel for the first time in my teens that I saw what it really was lol."
8. "Drinks in glass bottles, especially IBC Root Beer. It’s not cheap compared to normal soda, so now, I get why my parents rarely bought it. I still buy IBC for a fun treat, and it always makes me happy."
10. "A store-bought birthday cake. My mom always made ours from scratch since we didn’t have a lot of money. One year, she splurged and bought me store-bought, and I thought we had MADE IT."
13. "Working in an office building. I thought having to dress in business attire and working in a cubicle or small office was the definition of making it. Then, I worked my first cubicle job. I got out of there fast!"
14. "Those tins of General Foods International Coffee, like 'Cafe Vienna' and 'Suisse Mocha.' I figured that surely was the kind of coffee rich people drank every morning."
16. "Buying things from a grocery store bakery. If it was dessert behind glass, I thought that was an unattainable level of fanciness. My mom told me to be happy with my off-brand Oreos. Haha!"
18. "Cheez Whiz. When I was a kid, nothing looked more lavish than being able to squirt cheese from a can onto a Ritz cracker. For me, it was the height of luxury."
19. "Going to a night club. Growing up I didn’t know there were just regular ones for regular people to get in. I always assumed you had to be on a list to get in."
20. "French tip manicures. Only fancy, rich ladies could afford the white line across their nails. As a kid, I did the best I could with Wite-Out lol."
21. "'Kid Cuisine.' In my mind, French words = something that was inherently fancy."
23. "Golden Corral was our go-to for special events like birthdays. I was an adult before I knew it was a chain restaurant."
24. "Any drink with a piece of fruit in it was so fancy to me. Occasionally, I'll look back and chuckle at how fancy I felt when my grandma would put raspberries or cherries in drinks, and how I thought I was a damn duchess. LOL."
25. "I thought for a long time that cartons of orange juice were fancy. Especially the brand name stuff like Tropicana. Mostly, we used to get the canned concentrate."
27. "Any restaurant that gave you a buzzer to let you know your table was ready. Getting to hold that little device while you waited felt like a major responsibility and privilege that only came with the highest class establishments."
28. "Showers that have a seat. We moved into a house with one, and I thought it was the ultimate luxury. Really, it was a cheap, pre-fab insert."
29. "Ferrero Rocher chocolates. The ones in the golden little packaging. I thought it was the epitome of fancy. Also, the Danish butter cookie tins. As a kid, I though both these sweets were not easy to afford, and I think it was because of the actual packaging and their 'aesthetic.'"
Thank you to everyone who submitted your story! Y'all really had me laughing and feeling nostalgic AF. :)
Note: Submissions have been edited for length and clarity.