Thursday, March 7, 2013

It's Girl Scout Cookie Time

This time of year abounds with girls of all shapes and sizes selling Girl Scout Cookies. It is estimated that approximately 200 million of these cookies are sold with Thin Mints being the most popular. It is the Girl Scouts' main fundraiser of the year and has a long tradition. As early as 1917, girls were selling home made cookies. In 1934, the first commercial Girl Scout cookies were sold in Philadelphia and that blossomed into the tradition that continues today.

I was a part of that tradition long, long ago. Girl Scouts were a big deal in my family of four girls. My mother, bless her heart, was a Girl Scout leader for 23 years and was cookie chairman many times. However, my sisters and I were not top sellers. We lived in a neighborhood with many older people on a fixed income and my mother wouldn't let us go to those houses. In addition, I was often competing with my sisters which further narrowed down the pool of potential buyers for each of us. However, we did sell some cookies which was very important because a portion of the profits went to help us pay for camp. The rest of the profits went to troop and council activities.

I had one favorite customer every year, Mrs. Thompson. She was an older person in the neighborhood, but had a little more money than some, so we were allowed to go to her house to sell. She always bought a couple of boxes. However, the best part was when I delivered them. She invited me in, opened a box of cookies, and offered me some. She said she didn't like sweets and I would do her a favor by eating some cookies. I don't know if that was true, but it sure made me happy.

Today, when I see a girl selling cookies, it takes me back to an important part of my youth when I was a Girl Scout. As a scout, I learned many things and had some interesting and wonderful camping experiences that I will never forget. I want to support that for girls today, therefore I am a softie every time one of them asks me to buy a box. I say yes to all of them. Luckily, I live in a small neighborhood and I've never had to buy more that 5 boxes any one year. However, my sister has a different approach. She gives a small donation to the troop of anyone who asks her because she doesn't want the cookies. She trying to cut back.

As long as the cookie tradition continues, I will be one of its supporters. I guess it doesn't hurt that I have a big sweet tooth and like cookies. Someday, maybe I will just make a donation like my sister and leave the cookies behind. In the meantime, I'm off to have some Thin Mints.

Did you ever sell Girl Scout cookies?