Rushville Republican

September 12, 2012

Ward: The Tooth Fairy and other traditions

Bill Ward
Rushville Republican

RUSHVILLE — Not surprisingly, inflation has hit the Tooth Fairy. Inflation has become a normal situation, but even the Tooth Fairy has had to finally admit that it was time to increase the stipend given to youngsters for their used baby teeth.

When I was young and had baby teeth that were ready to drop out I actually looked forward to that situation. I knew the Tooth Fairy would be generous and if I left the tooth under my pillow I would get a whole dime Ñ a dime that meant I could get a Coke, one scoop ice cream cone, comic book or even a Snickers bar. All this was fine and dandy and most people actually got involved with this little scam on their children.

I was listening to a talk radio station the other morning and they came up with the great news break that the Tooth Fairy this year was on average giving out $3 for a tooth. Boy, did that hit home. As I stated, I got a dime. My children got quarters (or if I was without coins, a dollar bill). I remember telling my children if I had to part with a dollar that the Tooth Fairy was paying ahead for the next couple of teeth too, and I pretty well got away with it.

I must admit, I would never (and I mean never) think that the going price for a used tooth would be $3. Just goes to show the dollar sure isn't what it used to be.

The Easter Bunny was another of my favorites when I was a lot younger than I am now. I have always managed to enjoy candy of most any sort and Easter was my day.

We had eggs, real eggs colored and hard-boiled, as well as candy. I always got a Hershey chocolate bunny, a solid one that grew as I did. I started off with a small bunny then went on up until the fun of it ran out. My daughter today still gets a chocolate bunny and loves it as much as I did and still do. Mine used to be solid, but it is becoming more and more difficult to find one that is solid and not so small that you would have to use a magnifying glass to see it.

I liked the hard-boiled eggs too. We did not have nor cared to have plastic eggs. I remember Mom and her friends getting together, boiling eggs and making a full day of it.

Paas was the desired dye to use for the eggs. You heated water, put in the tablet and you got that color. Each package had a small wire contraption that would hold the egg as you immersed them in the dye. If you wanted to get fancy, some would figure out how to tri color the eggs. You would put grease on the egg where you did not want color to stick and then wipe it off and dip the egg into a new color. Worked fairly well, but as with most things someone would try to out do everyone else and things could get out of hand.

It was a fun thing to do and everyone enjoy doing it.

There were few bought Easter baskets because they were expensive (could be a buck or two).

We would use baskets available in the house and only have to purchase green grass to put in the basket and keep the eggs from breaking. In my family we just had the baskets and not hiding the eggs around the house or

yard. Dad felt that was silly so we basically did away with that particular Easter event.

Halloween was another good one for me. Candy and fruit galore. Of course,

there was a lot of candy, but also apples and oranges were readily available as well as popcorn balls. Apples and oranges in my youth were a great treat and one not always available. Because they were seasonal, I guess that made them much more desirable for us. We knew there would be no problem with the treats because we all knew each other and no one would intentionally want to harm anyone else. I was to bring my booty home and Mom would then dispense them as she saw fit. And I did notice that sometimes what I thought I had amassed was a lot less than I felt I got back over time. Guess Mom liked candy, apples and oranges too!

Things have truly changed, some for the good others not so much.

Everything is more expensive and, unfortunately, much more store bought than in my youth. The family is nowhere near as close as it was overall in my


Some things remain the same, but they change as well. In my day the stores would not have Halloween stuff out until a couple of weeks before Halloween. Today, they are out before Labor Day; before Halloween Thanksgiving stuff will be out, and before that Christmas stuff will show itself.

Much more today is purchased, not home-made, and that is a sad situation.

Yes, I loved my youth and honestly miss it very much.