Do you remember being sick as a child? I really don’t. I know I had to have had the flu and the common cold, but the only memories of illness (thankfully) are when I had my tonsils out. Not that I remember the pain but I remember Fudgsicles. Lots and lots of what I now call Mama’s Pity Pops.
I try not to do that with my family, but dagnabbit, food is love, isn’t it? Plus, when you grow up in a family that excels in food appreciation, it’s easy to get in the trap of pushing food. Like when your husband had a rough week or your daughter gets pneumonia. They require the food nurse to save the day.
I need a truck full of Fudgsicles, stat. Let’s go, people. I don’t have all day to hang out in a Costco checkout line.
Slight exaggeration on the amount, but true, nonetheless. I needed a bunch of pops to heal my daughter’s soul. Many generations before me have had this success.
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The problem seems to be when a family member requires a creamy, cold, stick of chocolaty love, I forget I don’t need one, too.
One for you...four for me…
Hence, two boxes. If my family were to stop getting sick then I might have a chance to get the cold treats out of my freezer, but it’s not even winter yet. Good thing we don’t buy a cow for the meat because there’s no room for real food in here.
But now since I have a special part of the freezer dedicated to my icy, sweet pops (and shh, extra backup boxes in the basement fridge), I’m always ready to heal anyone with a hangnail, stubbed toe or an extra big sneeze. I’m very efficient at my job.
I was looking up how to spell Fudgsicle correctly online, and I didn’t know the sweet treat used to be called Fudgicle. For those of you who don’t have the keen proofreading gene, it’s missing the “s.” Also, from 1938-1939, the fudge bars were the advertisers for the Popeye radio show. I would have put my money on spinach sponsors, but they didn’t ask me.
Then, since I’m a sucker for a good story, I discovered the guy who invented Popsicles was an 11-year-old boy named Frank Epperson. It was 1905, and he left his drink with a stirring stick out in the cold overnight and bam, it turned into an icicle. I know it’s not rocket science, but someone had to be the first to make a dime on it. Mr. Epperson called his invention Epsicles, and continued to make them until he had his own children. His kids started calling them Pop’s sicles. Now don’t ever say you didn’t learn anything here. You’re welcome!
As I currently sit next to my daughter’s bedside, listening to her raspy breath and preparing to take her temperature yet again, I remain calm and steady. Her fever and cough have me worried, but I know with a watchful eye and the prescribed antibiotic by her pediatrician, she will be fine. The coughing spasm subsides and she opens her beautiful blue eyes from an afternoon nap. Looking up at me, she says, “Mama, my throat hurts. Do we have any Fudgsicles?”
“Of course,” I reply. “I’ll get you one.” Turning to her door, I offer with a smirk and a wink, “I better get one for me too!” All is well as mother and daughter share a generational bonding moment, yet again over Fudgsicles.
I better get to the grocery store pretty soon though. Last time I checked, I could see the bottom of the first box. And with my girl’s sore throat, she and I might be going through the pops faster than I had thought.
Stacey Hatton can be reached at email@example.com, in between Mama’s pity pops.