When I was about 9 years old, my Dad made the colossal mistake of allowing us kids to buy the Easter candy. And he financed the deal.
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Childhood memories are malleable, but this is how I remember the blessed event. It was Holy Saturday and, for some reason, Mom hadn’t yet procured the candy. All five of us were beyond believing in the Easter bunny (I never really bought into that one), so Dad suggested that the kids do the shopping.
We piled into the yellow Wonder Wagon and my sister Karen drove us to Target. When we got to the store, she had the biggest smile on her face. She told us we could buy any candy we wanted. Anything. Dad had given her a $100 bill.
Do you have any idea how much candy you can buy for $100? Especially in the early ’80s? I remember running down the aisles with my brothers and throwing things into the cart. Full size chocolate bunnies. Stuffed animals. Bags and bags of candy. Easter grass in a rainbow of colors. There was dancing and laughing. Pure joy.
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When we arrived home and proudly placed the booty on the kitchen table, my mother was shocked. Speechless for a few moments, she turned to my dad and asked how much money he had given us. Dad looked into his wallet and began laughing.
He said, “Dear, I thought I gave them a $20.”
I didn’t believe him then and I don’t believe him now. The glimmer in his eyes betrayed him. Our baskets were epic that year. And we had candy for weeks. It was the sweetest Easter of my childhood.