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The Wacky Warehouse

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There used to be this wonderful thing called “The Wacky Warehouse.” It was before the Internet. It was a wonderful, magical place where kids could purchase all sorts of great, colorful items to enhance their 80’s wardrobe.

The Wacky Warehouse didn’t accept money (although it was needed to pay for shipping and handling). Things were purchased with points you collected from drinking sugary drinks.

It was GENIUS!


The Wacky Warehouse was a marketing campaign run by Kool-Aid. As a child, I only drank Kool-Aid or pop. So, needless to say, I really racked up the points. I even had sugar-free Kool-Aid lemonade I sat next to my bed at night in case I got thirsty, so that it would not rot out my teeth.

My membership cards

My membership cards

I ordered so much stuff from The Wacky Warehouse, they sent me a printed sheet of card stock that could be folded into a bank to collect all your Kool-Aid points in, which looked like a little warehouse. They sent me membership cards. They even sent me bonus points!

It was easy to collect the points once I was in the habit of cutting them off of the packaging. The amount of points varied by what type of product it was on. A single packet that didn’t contain sugar was 1 point. Those took too long to earn anything good. The mix packets with sugar already included were 2 points. The mother-load was on the big plastic mix container–5 points!

My set of Kool-Aid mugs

My set of Kool-Aid mugs

I would save them up for a year at a time. (Even at a young age I was organized.) Usually a big display with tear-off sheets for the new items from The Wacky Warehouse would appear at the grocery store at the beginning of summer. I had to be quick and tear one off before all the other kids who probably were not even going to place an order anyway got them first. I always worried that while the order form said the offers were good until 12/31/[enter year here], they also said in fine print “While Supplies Last”. I never wanted to experience the heartbreak of being told that my item was sold out, so I always placed my order by September or October.

It is hot in the summer and I always drank more–a great last chance to stock up on additional points!

I'm on the right, wearing a "Wild Puffalumps" shirt I obtained from The Wacky Warehouse.

I’m on the right, wearing a “Wild Puffalumps” shirt I obtained from The Wacky Warehouse.

I ordered everything from The Wacky Warehouse. Some of it still resides in my house to this day. I ordered sunglasses, friendship bracelets, a T-shirt, and a Hot Wheel that changed from green to yellow in cold water. I ordered a Kool-Aid Man yo-yo, a set of 2 plastic mugs, and a kite. (That was the best flying kite that I ever owned!)

Wacky Warehouse items

Wacky Warehouse items

I never had enough for the Kool-Aid Man pitcher, which was a shame. One of the last times I ordered, I did get a plush Kool-Aid Man wearing an Hawaiian shirt, which is really kind of awesome.

Kool-Aid Man plush!

Kool-Aid Man plush!

I think about the same time I stopped drinking Kool-Aid must have been when they stopped the program. I wonder if they were pressured to stop it because it was targeted to kids? Coke is a drink that is loaded with sugar and they still run a rewards program linked to the purchase of their product. Maybe if the marketing program is focused toward adults, that is alright. I would totally still order T-shirts as an adult with Kool-Aid points if they still had a program for it.

Ahhh. The good old, sugar-coated days of my youth. Oh yeah!

What I Learned This Week – 4/20/14

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This week I learned that my son loves Easter egg hunts.


Last year, he was almost 2 1/2 years old. He really had no idea why we wanted him to collect plastic eggs.

This year, he is almost 3 1/2. I am still not sure if he got the connection that eggs=candy or stickers or money. But he knew he had to grab as many as possible.

While all the other kids at church were lined up on the bright Easter morning, patiently waiting while the pastor explained the boundaries of the egg hunt, I had my arm around my son holding him back as he screamed at the top of his lungs and waved his camouflage Easter bucket in the air.


He didn’t used to be like this. He used to be unsocialized, unsure of new situations. It is amazing what a few years will do.

Next we went to his Grandma’s house. There they color-coded the eggs, to ensure all the goodies were evenly distributed between the three participating children. It was a good system. Except my son had already tasted the glory of grabbing as many eggs as possible. His father and I had to reel him in a little.

He also spent his day playing like a crazy boy with the other kids in the church nursery, and playing outside with his cousins.

He ended the day dog-tired, with two big chocolate bunnies (one milk hollow, one white solid), $14, a new T-shirt, two new books, a new DVD, a toy helicopter, and countless stickers and chocolate candies.

I think he might like Easter better than Christmas. Where we live, it is too cold to play outdoors on Christmas!

Deep Philosophical Question from First Graders

A lot of people seem to be impressed with the things I can remember from my childhood. I always figure this great recall comes from the fact that I was bored and didn’t do much the first 21 years of my life, so I could replay memories of those years over and over in my head. It sort of cemented those things in my head–the good, the bad, the inaccurate.

I might be able to remember character names from Jem & the Holograms from 1989, but let me assure you that I cannot remember what I just walked into the kitchen for. I blame my son for my current state of not being able to remember even the simpliest of information.

So, how crazy is it that a joke I first heard in first grade still haunts me to this day? It is a deep philosophical question with NO GOOD ANSWER!!! And therein lies the beauty of the joke. No matter how you answer, there is a way for your classmates to laugh at you. In fact, this may have been what cemented in my mind that the world is full of a**holes.

Are you ready?

Here goes…


Well…Are you?

Answer “no”. No always seems like a safe assumption, right?


JOKE TELLER’S RESPONSE: Ew, you aren’t potty trained?!

So, the next time you get asked, you go for yes. Because if you are like 7 of course you are potty-trained (or else would lie and say that you are).



JOKE TELLER’S RESPONSE: You are a pregnant teenager!!!

Now, I have no idea why this joke still bothers me. I mean, in first grade no one really understands how anyone even really gets pregnant, except the teacher. And her uterus is shriveling up at an alarming rate from being around a whole classroom of other people’s snot-nosed kids everyday. And if your age is still in single digits, there is no way anyone is going to consider you a teenager.

But I think it bothers me that the question poses a no-win outcome.

And it is so advanced, you know no first grader made it up. They probably got it off the Internet. Oh, wait, no….early 1980’s…  They probably got it from an older sibling.

I always thought I should come up with an original idea of something good that “PT” could stand for to outwit them, but I never did. I am not naturally very smart-alacky. But if I spend a few hours around someone who is, I can usually pick it up and almost hold my own. (Like my brother-in-law. Or my husband’s best friend. Man, I am glad my husband isn’t like that. It is mentally draining to try to keep up with people with those gifts.)

Physics Teacher. (No wait, I HATED the physics teacher at our high school.)

Pony Trainer. (Oh, that’s just lame. See, this is hard!)

Parrot Tracker. (OK, now I am just giving up.)

So, how about you?

Are you PT?

C’mon, are you?

Meijer Moms Sing “Man In The Mirror”

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On Monday, I was at Meijer. I was shopping for a few staple items–lunchmeat, bread, milk, the book “The Age of Miracles” (which is really good by the way, you all should read it), diapers, etc.

It was just my 20 month-old and I. As we were walking through one of the frozen food aisles, I passed a woman with a small child riding in the cart (as mine was) and another child walking with her. The mother was singing along to the music that was playing in the store. It was Michael Jackson singing “Man in the Mirror”. I noticed because usually I am the only crazy person who sings in the store (although on this occasion, I was not).

I turned the corner and went into the next aisle of frozen food. And I once again passed a woman with a small child riding in the cart, singing along to “Man in the Mirror”. I did a double-take to see if it was the same woman. But it was a different one.

Since than, the news has been filled with stories about the Jackson family fighting over Michael’s three kids. I am sure Michael would have hated that his family is fighting over his precious kids and how public it all is. But, I bet if he saw the mothers singing his music as they grocery shopped, it would bring a smile to his face.

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