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Showing posts with label candy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label candy. Show all posts

Thursday, May 17, 2012

#GBE2: Guilty Pleasures

It wasn't my birthday, Christmas, or any other reason to get a present; however, my dad took me to the store and told me to pick out a game. Dad paid four dollars for The Game of Life and helped me make a permanent memory of the joy of getting a present for no reason at all. 

We weren't poor. In fact, we were quite well off. I had everything I needed; I just didn't have everything I wanted. Is that so bad?

Most of today's kids don't understand the true thrill of getting a gift since they are constantly bombarded with the spoils of childhood. My parents never bought me a new bike yet ocassionally bought me new toys. Add that to the hand-me-downs from older siblings, and I had a terrific stash! 

My kids went to camp with a bunch of spoiled Dallas kids. Forgive me Texans, but these brats were ridiculous. They received care packages every single day of a month long session. One mother mailed her daughter bottled water because that from the tap was not good enough for her darling. Can you imagine how expensive it would be to mail water? Postage would probably cost more than the water itself. As the kids got these packages, they'd carelessly roll their eyes and poo poo the contents. 

"I have enough beach towels. Anyone want this one?"

No joke. My daughter would come home with all sorts of care package goodies, so why spend the money to send her one? Don't get me wrong. She'd get a care package or two over the course of a month. When they arrived, they were appreciated too.

My daughter's best friend in the cabin also received as many care packages as my kid. One night the counselors confessed, "You two are our favorite campers!" Gee, I wonder why?

So, when the group asks, "What's your guilty pleasure?" I'm not thinking of something fattening or expensive. My mind goes for something I don't need--such as candy. It has no nutritional value nor does candy fix hunger or thirst. I don't need it, and there is no point in spending even a measly two dollars on something like this. Therefore, here is my sugar free, low calorie, cheap, guilty pleasure. You're probably thinking, Is that all?

Yes. That's all. I've learned to be content with my lot, and furthermore, I don't buy things that truly make me feel guilty. It's not worth it. Ironically, candy was the 10¢ item my mother would often break down and buy me as we went through the grocery store check out. So, I guess in that way, I got what I wanted.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Writer's Post: Ghosts of Halloweens Past

Once upon a Halloween, I was a kid who didn't need parents to escort me from door to door, nor did I wear expensive store-bought costumes. After someone brought me a poncho from Mexico, I was a Mexican Hat Dancer for three years. Of course being a hat dancer meant planning a routine because someone would always ask me for a trick. 

Get it? "Trick or Treat." In the St. Louis of the 1960s that expression meant exactly what it said. Kids rang the doorbell, said "Trick or Treat," and gave the homeowner a choice: Give candy immediately or ask for a trick. As a Mexican Hat Dancer, I did a dance. In other years, I wandered the neighborhood with a joke to tell. 

When I mention this tradition around Memphis, people look at me cross-eyed. That's not the only Halloween culture clash from moving 300 miles south. The first time my husband left to take our son trick-or-treating, he came home and asked, "Did you give out a candy?"
My kids: Halloween 1995

I said, "Sure. I gave out lots of candy. One to this kid, another to that."

He said, "But did you give out a candy?"

I hadn't a clue that he was trying to find out whether or not we had candy left. Go figure. We've yet to give out a candy, except for the year that the neighbors threw a huge party with gazillion kids, but didn't tell anyone they were coming.

Another Halloween memory of mine was Mrs. Zimmerman's Donuts. Every year, David's mom made homemade donuts that she'd give to all the children. I never ate one. 

Kids can be quite literal, and that I was when Mom always said, "Never eat anything unwrapped." So year after year I'd skip those sweet smelling snacks that all the kids would go out of their way for. If I could go back in time, I'd eat one of her donuts on Halloween; but, it's not all bad. The memory of skipping donuts inspired my latest novel. I wonder if this manuscript would even exist if I'd eaten a donut. I also wonder if her son, who grew up to be a chef, bakes these donuts on Halloween. If he does, I just might have to go to St. Louis and ring his bell.