I grew up in the 1960s and 1970s. Like most children, I had a sweet tooth. My mother had no problems satisfying that sweet tooth, as long as I ate my veggies first. Even after hearing all the horror stories about relatives who had lost teeth–and are now wearing dentures–because of too much candy, it hasn’t hurt me all that badly. Except for one tooth that became damaged when I was six–I have all my original teeth today, the sucker for sugared goodies that I am.
There are five candies in particular that I enjoyed as a kid growing up in Detroit, that I would share with my children–in moderation, of course, and on the condition that they eat what Mrs. Koolbreeze and I place in front of them. I do want them to experience the warm memories that I have until this day. I want to give them a piece of what made my childhood special.
I can still taste the silk-smooth chocolaty taste of a Nestle crunch bar. The nuts in there that made it crunchy, and yet the chocolate that made it so silly, giving that its melt-in-your-mouth, chocolaty flavor.
I like Hershey’s until this day. Not so much the almond bar, mind you–there is something about the almonds in the almond bar that I didn’t like. The taste of the almonds was more intense than the nuts that made the Nestle crunch bar what it was–and still is. I would rather taste the chocolate. That is the essence of why I preferred the regular Hershey chocolate bar, sans the nuts. It was soft, and you tasted the chocolate. I would want to share that one with my kids, especially if they love chocolate.
I also remember the Russell Stover candies that my Dad would get for my Mom on Valentine’s day. I could very easily see myself getting some for my beautiful wife, and sharing any leftovers with my kids. I think I would want my boys to have a taste of that candy, because I would want them to get an idea of what to get their wives or girlfriends–especially if they turn out to be chocolate lovers. The best thing about the Stover candies? The strawberry and caramel fillings!
I also remember the joy that I felt when I bit into a Reese’s peanut butter cup. I still remember the commercial jingle for “Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups” from the Seventies. It still plays in my brain until this day, lover of ’70s paraphernalia and nostalgia that I am. A Reese’s is still a blessing to this 44-year-old tongue’s taste buds.
M and M’s. Need I say more. As the classic commercial said, “they melt in your mouth and not in your hand. They all had the same flavor, although on the outside they were different colors. I could eat them all day, and devour several bags of this timeless candy, if my Mom and Dad would have bought them for me, and let me eat them on the same night. As a reward when they are especially well-behaved, I could easily see myself rewarding my kids with this timeless candy.
These are merely examples of candies that I would like to share with my kids, if only for nostalgia purposes, and to add an experiential dimension to the childhood stories I will undoubtedly share with them as they grow up–and I grow older.