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Thank You, Lord, For Tic-Tacs

As I’ve mentioned before,
we’re gradually stepping down off our recent ride on the
Refined Sugar Pony, and it’s been a little rough going. Cora
especially has developed quite a sweet tooth, and complains
vociferously – and vocally – when she doesn’t get
enough of the sweet stuff.

Fortunately, there’s Tic-Tacs.

I carry around a rather large stash of
breath fresheners – when you’re onstage you’re a
bit paranoid about your breath. So I’ve always got a pack of
Trident and a plastic box of Tic-Tacs in my purse, and of course
Maddie and Cora discovered them quite some time ago. We made Maddie
wait until she turned four to try gum, and she thinks Trident is
the best treat ever. But both girls are allowed to have Tic-Tacs,
and by keeping them “special” in the minds of the
girls, I’ve been able to give myself an out from several
sticky situations.

Kid whining and refusing to go home from the mall without a cookie?
Lovingly and firmly say no, but she can have a Tic-Tac in the car
after she’s neatly strapped in. Daughter throwing a
world-class fit because you won’t let her eat the candy her
school gave her right away? Promise a Tic-Tac when you get home if
she can settle down. You see how this goes.

The Tic-Tac thing has worked so well that my girls both seem mildly
addicted, and do a rather disturbing dance when they’re
allowed to have one. On our recent trip out of town, I hid a packet
of Trident in Maddie’s bag and a plastic case of orange
Tic-Tacs in Cora’s. When Cora saw hers, you’d have
thought she’d won the lottery. “ORANGE
TIC-TACS!!!” she screamed, and I swear Maddie looked a little
wistful that she “only” got gum.

Tic-Tacs also come in handy when your toddler or preschooler has a
sore throat and you don’t want to give out cough drops
because of the whole choking thing; they’re small enough that
they won’t choke a two-year-old, and the kids quickly figure
out they should suck on them instead of chew them. If Cora’s
got a bad cough I’ll “prescribe” a Tic-Tac and
it’ll help keep the throat moist.

The girls probably get a Tic-Tac about every other day, and they
clearly wish it was more often. I’m sure Santa will be
bringing each girl a festive flavor for each stocking, and bet
they’ll be the hit of Christmas.

Here’s hoping their wishes are always so cheap.


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