Lucky Charms With A Side Of Mothballs

As a child, I spent many summers visiting my grandmother in Colorado. I loved everything about going to see her, but there was one thing that always made each visit special to my middle school heart.

Aisle 6 at her market.

Now you’ve got to understand, as a child I was not allowed to have any breakfast cereal where the first ingredient was listed as sugar. My mother strictly enforced this rule. You can imagine the delicious cereals this ruled out. It was a total childhood buzzkill.

My grandmother didn’t adhere to such tomfoolery, so one of the first activities when visiting her was a trip to the local market to pick out any cereal I wanted! Such sugary freedom!

The decision to pick a cereal was one I took very seriously. I would always start out thinking that this would be the visit where I would choose something different. You know, maybe I would grab life by the reins and take a risk.

Maybe I would try Cookie Crisp! After all, what would be better than a bowl full of chocolate chip cookies for breakfast? Or perhaps I would go for Fruity Pebbles in all their yummy sweetness. Wait! Would this be the time that I picked out the Frankenberrys and prepared myself for drinking the strawberry milk from the bowl when I was finished?

Time and time again, though, I always chose the same cereal. I knew it would not fail me. I knew just how I would eat it and what it would taste like.

I always, always chose Lucky Charms.

Each morning I would pour a heaping bowl of cereal and begin the intricate process of attempting to eat all the actual cereal, while preserving as many marshmallows as possible for the end. Was there anything better as a kid than winding up with a bowl of delicious marshmallows perfectly softened by milk? I don’t think so.

So, when I came across the “retro” box of Lucky Charms at Target, you would expect that I would feel instantly transported back to the days of yore and purchase it immediately! Heck, I’d probably want to buy boxes and boxes–hoard them even–just to recapture the sugary memories of my youth!

You would be wrong.

Because instead of being “kitschy” and cute in its attempt to be a blast from the past, it just made me feel like it was old and gross. Like if you walked into my grandmother’s old house at this exact moment and opened her hall closet, you might find this box buried in the back next to case of Ginger Ale that she always kept there.


So Lucky Charms, while I appreciated the quick trip down memory lane, your marketing attempts backfired on this lifetime fan. Turns out, I prefer my magically delicious cereal to be manufactured in this decade.




Lucky Charms With A Side Of Mothballs — 112 Comments

  1. Lol maybe they are cutting costs by raiding pantries of the 80s?! I personally am a frosted flakes kind of girl, you can’t get anymore sugary than that!!

    • That is totally how I still eat them…the only reason I even noticed the retro look of the Lucky Charms was because I was buying some! πŸ˜‰

  2. We got sugar cereal at Grandma’s house, too! Luckily, she lived nearby, and our Cap’t Crunch and Lucky Charms feasts were a weekly departure from our dreary Raisin Bran and Corn Flakes existence.

    • Awww man, see if this had been more than a once a year (sometimes twice) occurrence for me, I probably would have branched out into the world of Cap’t Crunch…was anything better than the filmy, waxy way the roof of your mouth would taste after a bowl of those?! πŸ˜‰

  3. I still eat all my same cereals lol frosted flake is my favorite I put extra sugar on top. I still eat Froot Loops too they better not ever get rid of my cereals because I will picket general mills to the fullest

  4. This makes me laugh because my kids keep complaining that Dad won’t buy them Frosted Flakes due to the sugar content. They have it any chance they get while at daycare or with my parents. Since my hubby does all the grocery shopping, I don’t even know what a current Lucky Charms looks like. I think I would have fallen for the retro box though. I love retro things. πŸ™‚

    • The current Lucky Charms box is cute…and it has the added bonus of looking like it was made in this decade! πŸ˜‰ I normally like retro things, too, but this was not for me!

  5. I grew up eating Fruity Pebbles. Today, I’m not sure I would even touch them. Never cared much for Lucky Charms – except picking out the various shapes!

    • Fruity Pebbles were awesome! Although, they always left the roof of my mouth tasting weird…totally worth it, though! πŸ˜‰

  6. {Melinda} My mom was the same way!! I used to have dreams about Cookie Crisp. It was so forbidden in my house, I actually thought it was an egregious sin to even think about asking for it. Even just once in a while. I felt like such a “bad girl” when I had it at a friend’s house. What a rebel I was.

    And I always thought the Leprechan was creepy. πŸ™‚

    • Ha ha ha…the fact that it was so forbidden that you felt like it was a sin to think about it made me laugh! That is awesome! I always felt a little guilty when I splurged on the good cereal at a friend’s house, too! πŸ˜‰

  7. Aww…too bad it turned you off. Probably because you had too much as a kid?
    You know I don’t like breakfast cereal at all…but I do love pancakes πŸ™‚

    • Oh, I still bought the Lucky Charms…I just picked up the box that was the new one! πŸ˜‰
      My girls both adore pancakes!! πŸ™‚

  8. You had me at Frankenberrys! I actually called General Mills and asked where I could find them year round instead of just at Halloween. The answer to that would be nowhere and yes, they did answer me like I was crazy. You guys know from reading my blog that Lucky Charms is an obsession of mine…well…just eating the marshmallows out of the box (which I am aware is Lucky Charms blasphemy) but I totally agree with the retro box. Ick! And the Leprechaun looks scary. I like mine more cartoony.

    • My hubby is OBSESSED with Frankenberrys! I will be sure to let him know that you have done the leg work already on their availability! πŸ˜‰
      Eating the marshmallows out of the box and not in milk??!! Oh, Ann Marie say it isn’t so! πŸ˜‰ One of my favorite things about you is that we share a Lucky Charms addiction!

    • Don’t worry…I still bought some…just the newer box design! πŸ˜‰ My mother adored Frosted Flakes, too! πŸ™‚

  9. I was one of five kids and we were only allowed to pick out a sugar cereal (“junk cereal”) on her birthdays, but since there were five of us, we got to reap the benefits of all five birthdays. I chose Cookie Crisp once and it was gross! Lucky Charms was my all-time favorite. Still is. And we had it for Valentine’s Day (pink hearts!) and St. Patrick’s Day (green clovers!) too! That was up to seven chances to have it, although my lame siblings made more boring choices.
    My daughter loves Lucky Charms but I can’t get past all the ingredients so we buy the Mom’s Mallow Bites or whatever it’s called at Target or the co-op. I promise you it’s worth a shot if you haven’t had it. I like it better.

    • What a fabulous tradition in your house! Love that you all won when someone had a birthday! πŸ™‚ Sorry your siblings didn’t see the fun in picking the good stuff! πŸ˜‰

  10. I totally have Cocoa Krispies, Lucky Charms and Rice Krispies in my cabinet right now. I live alone and often one of these is my dinner! I don’t think I could purchase a retro box either though….

  11. That totally went to the left…
    I definitely thought you would have picked up a box. This was the ONLY cereal and one of the few foods I ate when I was pregnant with my first child. Everything else made me puke.

  12. I’m glad you have such a good memory of your Grandma and Colorado. That’s what grandparents are for, to spoil the kids. I think we mostly did Frosted Flakes, you could eat them right out of the box.

    • So many good memories…I could write an entire post just of my Colorado visiting memories! πŸ™‚
      Frosted Flakes do lend themselves to being eaten out of the box!

  13. Great memories!! Grandparents are wonderful like that. My parents wouldn’t buy the sugary stuff either…it was always fun to go to a friend’s house! Grandparents didn’t live close by for us. My fav was Captain Crunch.

    • Cap’t Crunch was completely delicious…I especially remember it from college with the yummy dorm cereal bar! πŸ˜‰

  14. I ate Lucky Charms the same way! LOL Great minds think alike! I kinda feel the same way about the “blast from the past” boxes. I’d rather they do a “trip down memory lane” on the back in pictures and leave the front to look like the box isn’t expired, ya know?

    • Thank you Julie. Exactly. Totally agree with you…do the retro cover on the back and leave the front the same! πŸ™‚

  15. I like the vintage box! It doesn’t mean that the Lucky Charms inside are actually as old as the design!

    I think it should have taken you straight back to 1987. What General Mills is trying to tell you is that since you haven’t forgotten what a special role Lucky Charms played in your childhood summers, it hasn’t either.

    • I won’t even lie, this comment made me laugh out loud! General Mills should hire you to write their taglines! πŸ™‚

  16. Now I’ll be looking at those “vintage” cereal boxes a little differently. I’m a Fruity Pebbles girl. But not the “real” ones, it has to be the generic brand in the bag. Those ones don’t get soggy as quick.

    • I have never had the generic ones…but I will definitely check them out…my daughter loves Fruity Pebbles!

  17. I could see how that is a little disconcerting, although I kinda like it.

    And as someone who did grow up on sugary cereals (as well as soda with dinner–man, it’s amazing I have any teeth left!) Cookie Crisp is waaaaaay overrated. I tried it once and even as a child who loved cookies, I couldn’t eat the stuff. But give me a bowl full of Lucky Charms any day (and I too would meticulously eat around the marshmallows and save them till the end!)

    • Oh yeah, we had soda, too…like actual real Coke and crap…cannot even imagine giving that to my kids yet!
      Glad to know I made the right call on the Cookie Crisp…phew! πŸ˜‰

  18. Hahah oh my god this was so totally me and my cousins! My grandparents always bought that Costco 10 pack that had five awesome cereals and then the five gross ones. Whichever cousins got there first got to stake their cereal claim, so if you were late, you ended up with plain corn flakes. My mom typically only let us have cereal with less than 8g of sugar or something. Ohhhh lucky charms. So delicious. But that retro box is creepy (that’s what she said).

  19. I don’t think I’ve ever had Lucky Charms with milk on it. I’ve eaten plenty of it dry though, as a snack. Our fun cereal growing up was Froot Loops! Those are yummy and full of sugary goodness! Except they’ve changed the recipe since then to make it healthier. YUCK! I mean all know that Froot Loops aren’t supposed to be healthy, right!?!

    • Yeah, Fruit Loops used to be so much better…I totally agree with you! Why do they have to mess around with a good thing??!! πŸ˜‰

  20. My friends, have you not seen my facebook post? (Because of course you read them all as I am your favorite friend!) FRUIT LOOPS WITH MARSHMALLOWS. Hallelujah. For real. Ahhh. Yum.

    But yes, that is a kind of weird and not cool retro thing they have happening there.

    • How in the world did I miss that post??!! Oh my Gosh, bring it on. Fruit Loops AND marshmallows. Don’t even stop me!!

  21. So funny! I remember sneaking spoonfuls of sugar totally more of an entire box of Lucky Charms onto my Cheerios or Grape Nuts. I remembre once when I thought I’d died and gone to cereal heaven by tasting Kix and Kellogs Corn Puffs. I think our moms may have gone to the same seminar.

    • Why have I never tried Kix and Corn Puffs together?! Given all the cereal combos I tried in college, I can’t believe this one didn’t make my list! YUM!

  22. Hilarious! I’m the same way with my kids so they look forward to visitng my mother in laws house for Waffle Crisp cereal. Maybe I’ll rethink that stance! πŸ˜‰ I wrote a post recently about what kids remember from their childhood vacations – things like Frosted Flakes cereal and unlimited hotel television watching were high on our list!

    • Isn’t it amazing the stuff that kids remember…and it is always the little things it seems. Always. Love it! πŸ™‚

    • My dad absolutely loved Honey Smacks, too…please disregard my insult of them in the earlier comments! πŸ˜‰

  23. Ohhh…don’t mess with Lucky Charms! They have the best marshmellows! My favs growing up were the Count Chocula Coco Puffs. Remember those? And Cookie Crisp was my other fave. Ahhh…cereal. I’m now going to get a ziplock bag and pour some in and snack from it like I did when I was a kid. πŸ™‚

    • My hubby adored Count Chocula…he still talks about it! πŸ™‚
      I give my girls Ziploc bags of cereal all the time!

  24. This got me thinking about my grandmother and yummy treats at her home too. Whenever I went there is was BLT’s galore – and not the turkey bacon/health nut kind either – the REAL kind – YUMMY!!!! She also always always always had boxes of assorted chocolates and I always went straight for the square, caramel one – YUMMY AGAIN!!!
    As for cereal – my hubby will happily eat any kind for dinner so we stock up. Not always the healthiest option but at least once a week it works for me!!

    • Cereal for dinner is the greatest! Cereal for a snack after dinner is also quite tasty! πŸ˜‰
      Isn’t it fun to remember your grandmother’s house and all the cool things there…my grandmother also enjoyed the assorted chocolates…I tended to go for the chocolate covered cherry that would drip the red filling all over my hands! πŸ™‚

  25. MY MOTHER EITHER. So my sister and were forced to lie to my aunt when we were little and she asked what we had for breakfast and we told her, in unison, “Fruit Loops.” They were the best things ever. And I still totally love them. In almond milk now, but whatevs – just as good. πŸ˜€

    • BWAH HA HA HA!! I wonder if your aunt ever caught on?! πŸ˜‰ And look at you totally making them healthy in the almond milk…that rocks! πŸ™‚

    • I am super impressed that Honey Nut Cheerios were your junk cereal…I totally considered those healthy! πŸ˜‰ And the yummy honey milk at the end, well don’t even stop me!

  26. I love this! I have so many memories of my grandma spoiling me and letting me do stuff my mom would not allow. She always had Lucky Charms in stock because it was one of my favs, and I used to eat it just like you did! Save the marshmallows till the end. I can even remember sitting in a highchair at my grammie’s eating dry Lucky Charms off my tray-if it was dry I ate the marshmallows FIRST! Crazy that I remember that. I still enjoy a bowl every now and then, but it’s not as yummy as I remember.

    • Isn’t it weird how it tasted so much better in our childhoods?! Love that you ate Lucky Charms in your highchair…that is the best! πŸ™‚

  27. My mom would let us pick out 2 or 3 boxes of pretty much any kind of cereal… as long as we all agreed. Can you imagine 6 kids agreeing on what kind of cereal to buy? My favorite was Sugar Frosted Flakes and Sugar Pop (although now the names are changed). I rarely eat cereal anymore.

    • My mother adored Sugar Pops…they were her total faves…and yes, the irony of her liking a cereal with sugar in the actual name is not lost on me!! πŸ˜‰

  28. I’ve seen a lot of those retro boxes. I was only allowed 1 box of cereal at a time. Boo. Now that I’m a parent I let my kids have tons at a time. Because cereal can get boring.

    Now I want some Lucky Charms.

  29. Sugar cereals in my house growing up? NEVER! My fondest vacation memories were waking up in hotels and being allowed to eat whatever sugar cereal I wanted out of those individual serviing boxes. For me it was Frosted Flakes!

    • The individual serving boxes were the greatest…I think they mark all childhood vacation memories for me, too! πŸ™‚

  30. Our mothers and grandmothers were cut out of the same cloth. We were lucky because my mother had a baby brother who was just 10 years older than me and my grandmother bought him all the “good” cereal, so we could eat his when we were at Grammy’s. It was plain Cheerios at our house!

    Fruity Pebbles were my favorite!

    • My sister was a fruity pebble fan, too! πŸ™‚
      Plain Cheerios were the worst ever, right??!! πŸ˜‰

  31. I’m an honest to goodness Lucky Charms girl…always have been. My kids are Lucky Charms kids too so the fight over who had the last bit of cereal is always epic.

  32. Oh I know what you mean. The best memories I have are the ones from the vacations with grandma. She used to buy me this really tasty chocolate with lemon cream, But unfortunately I cannot find it anywhere nowadays, and I tried all the other brands with the same flavor, but it just isn’t the same.

    • YUM! That chocolate with lemon cream sounds totally delicious! Sad that you can’t find it anymore, though.

  33. This made me laugh. I always love the retro/throwback stuff, because it reminds me of all the fond memories. Isn’t it funny how differently people can react to certain things?

    I was never a fan of the “sugary cereals” even as a kid. My only exception is Frankenberry and Booberry on Halloween – I still buy them every year. πŸ™‚

    • Frankenberry and Booberry are totally staples of Halloween…they simply must be purchased! πŸ™‚
      My sister also enjoys retro/throwback stuff and thinks I am weird for not liking this cereal box! πŸ˜‰

  34. SO funny! I too was deprived of those yummy sugary cereals when I was a kid!! I had to consume the frosted mini wheats as I licked the sugar off in delirious delight. Or Life Cereal… Wheaties too. So old school parenting…

    I just had five bowls of Sugar Corn Pops last night. They are right next to my all time favorite- LUCKY CHARMS. But our grocery is upscale… the box looks to be from 2013. Hmm…but perhaps I should check the expiration date!!

    • Nothing was better than licking the sugar off of the Frosted Mini Wheats…SO YUMMY!!
      Our grocery store also only stocks the boxes from 2013…Target, on the other hand, totally fell for the retro box! πŸ˜‰

  35. My mom wasn’t strict on that growing up, but I still never liked Lucky Charms. My daughter on the other hand loves them now. He does look kinda creepy on that box.

    • You probably didn’t really like them because they were not forbidden! πŸ™‚ Totally creepy, right?! πŸ˜‰

  36. Oh, wow, did you get a blog makeover? Lookin’ good! And look at all these comments you have! You two are rockin’ the blogosphere!

    My parents were the same–no sugar cereal allowed! Not even on vacation. I was very jealous of my cousin who could eat Sugar Pops when she went on vacation!

    • We did! πŸ™‚ Thank you so much Ginny Marie!

      Not even on vacation??!! Oh man, that is a total bummer!

  37. LOL. I’m laughing at the humor of this post AND at the fact that I always thought the Lucky Charm’s marshmallows tasted to me like stale marshmallows. LOL.

    • Ha ha ha Andrea! They probably totally do taste like stale marshmallows…I think that is why I like them so much! πŸ˜‰ I am the person who enjoys Peeps best after they have been out for a few days! πŸ˜‰

  38. Love this! I also very much love Lucky Charms and I also try to keep as many marshmallows soaking in the milk as I can, so at the end I have a spoonful or two of just marshmallows.

    And you were smart not to go with Fruity Pebbles. Who wants fruit for breakfast? However, Cocoa Pebbles are where it’s at, and i still buy them every now and then. Of course, they never bothered to change their box so I don’t have to feel like they’re retro.

    Hee hee…change their box. What am I? A thirteen year old boy who laughs at the reference to a box?

    Yeah, I totally am. πŸ™‚

    • The end of your comment totally made me laugh out loud!! So damn funny! πŸ™‚
      Cocoa Pebbles completely make the best after cereal chocolate milk ever…so much tastier than Cocoa Puffs! Now, I think I need to go buy some! πŸ˜‰

  39. Holy diabetes, ladies! This post sure got a lot of conversation going. I have had so much fun reading the comments, they brought back memories of all those sugary cereal Saturday mornings laying in front of the TV watching cartoons. Lucky Charms, for sure, but there was an optimum time to eat the marshmallows. Too soon, and they were all crunchy. Too late, and they were mush. Oh, and who can forget the disappointment of getting a box and finding out the marshmallows were “gummy”. Aaaagggh! The whole box was ruined. Thanks for the memories, you guys rock!

    • Ha ha ha at the holy diabetes line! The comments are definitely the best part…and yours makes me want to start a whole conversation about Saturday morning cartoons…those were the best! πŸ™‚

  40. I’m not much of a cereal fan but I always liked Lucky Charms. I do have to say that I feel the opposite. I loathe change so when something gets put back to the way it’s supposed to be out makes me happy.

  41. Awww! My favorite is and always will be Fruity Pebbles! Because of the kids now, they are starting to make me love Captain Crunch Berries, but I shall not be moved! I LOVE me some Fruity Pebbles!

  42. Pingback: If We Eat Rolos For Breakfast, Can We Still Have Twinkies For Lunch? - The Dose of Reality

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