Giveaway and 10 Things You Didn't Know About Lucky Charms
To kick things off, I was thinking about the upcoming give away. If you haven't heard about it, you should check out thehappyscraps.com (a super super cute blog with all sorts of fun ideas!) for more details, but basically it's a chance to win a free family portrait from ink puddles by karin. I love the picture Karin did for me of my family (I even had it printed on a bag so I could carry it around and not just "only" look at it on the wall), and getting one for free would be an amazing deal!
So between Karin's cute picture advertising the giveaway and the fact that St. Patrick's Day is next week, my train of thought had one obvious and inevitable destination: Lucky Charms Cereal. Also known as, eating-these-is-the-only-thing-we-do-at-our-house-to-celebrate-St. Patrick's Day. (Well, we do color the milk green. And the mashed potatoes at dinner. But that's pretty much it.)
Want to amaze your children, spouse, and any visiting leprechauns with some clever breakfast bowl trivia next week? You're in luck! Here are ten crazy facts about this cereal that we bet you didn't know:
1. The first "test" sample of lucky charms was made by mixing Cheerios with bits of circus peanuts. Yep, those orange gummy marshmallow peanuts that you've definitely eaten, but don't remember ever actually buying. (Unless you're Karin...in which case these are one of your favorite random candies and you are guilty of helping keep them in production...)
2. The marshmallow shapes were part of a charm bracelet marketing concept. This makes sense since charm bracelets experienced their peak in popularity in the 1950's and Lucky Charms were created in the early 1960's--over fifty years ago!
3. Originally, the cereal wasn't sugar coated. When initial sales didn't live up to expectations, though, a fine mist of sugar was added to the oat pieces, and voila! It was suddenly legitimate to eat dessert for breakfast and sales soared.
4. Lucky Charms is 37% sugar by weight. Yep. More than 1/3 sugar. (No wonder it tastes so good!)
5. Lucky the Leprechaun (aka L. C. Charms, aka Sir. Charms) is not the only mascot Lucky Charms has had. For a brief stint in 1975 the boxes apparently featured Waldo the Wizard.
6. The original marshmallow line-up included pink hearts, yellow moons, green clovers and orange stars. I don't remember them adding the blue diamonds (it was before I was born) or the purple horseshoes (I was little), but I do vividly remember them adding the red balloons in 1989. It seems like there was a big vote people could participate in leading up to it (but maybe that was just the new M & M color?) followed by great commercials with Lucky's balloon getting caught on the rainbow.
7. Speaking of the commercials, can you fill in the blank from this persistent jingle? "Frosted Lucky Charms: they're _______ __________." (Answer: magically delicious.) (Although adult-me is wondering if it has more to do with that 37% of sugar and less to do with "magic"...?)
8. Back to the marshmallows. Each charm shape supposedly represented a magical power Lucky possessed. And apparently he's got some pretty amazing powers. Shooting stars? Power to fly. Blue moons? Power of invisibility. Hearts? Power to bring things to life. (Did you read that? Power. to. bring. things. to. life. Apparently he could have had a whole army of walking trees, windmills, chainsaws or whatever defending his cereal...maybe those kids in the commercials should have been more cautious??) And if you weren't already impressed, there's the hourglass: power to control time.
9. General Mills realized that sales for Lucky Charms increased markedly when there was a shake-up in the marshmallows, so over the years there have been several limited editions with special marshmallows. There have been winter-themed charms, Olympic charms, charms from around the world, and even "magic" charms that appeared when parts of the marshmallow dissolved in milk.
10. And finally, the pink hearts are the only marshmallow to continue unchanged since the beginning. Maybe because Lucky knows being able to bring random objects to life is just too cool of a magic power to trade in for the ability to make things float (which is what the hot air balloons apparently represent???).
Even if you aren't a leprechaun and can't instantaneously travel from place to place (that's the magic power associated with marshmallow rainbows, btw), you can travel the world-wide-web with just a mouse click, so you really should click HERE to visit The Happy Scraps and enter Karin's portrait giveaway!!