Melody has been an online writer for over five years. She is a genealogist who often writes about cultural ancestry and pet care.
Halloween Candy Favorites From My Childhood
Do you remember the excitement that Halloween generated? First, you got to wear your costume to school for a Halloween party. There was a costume parade with your parents taking pictures. You didn't even care that it was hard to sit in your chair in class because you knew you looked scary!
Then you got home and had to wait out the hours in excruciating anticipation of the event that was to come: trick or treating. Your mom made you sit through dinner—as if you could eat anyway. And, finally... finally you grabbed a pillowcase and went out on the street in search of the good stuff.
But that really wasn't the best part. The best part was afterward when you went through the loot. And there it was... your absolute favorite candy. Well, next to your other absolute favorite candy.
Take a trip with me down memory lane to the 1960s and '70s when I went trick or treating with my siblings. These were some of my candy favorites. Some are available today and others are lost in obscurity. These are the ones I coveted and kept away from my siblings. Are these your favorites, too?
Trick or Treating My Family's Way
There were five of us growing up. Add our friends and we made quite a gang going out trick or treating. My dad was the one who took us out trick or treating while my mom manned the door.
Our neighborhood was pretty big and back then everyone handed out candy. We didn't take a flimsy trick or treat bag. We carried pillowcases.
We tried to rush to get down the street. Mrs. Okado, the wealthiest person on our block, handed out the large size bars to the first few kids. Or so the legend went. Now that I think about it, I am not sure I ever saw one of those bars.
It took quite a while to get through the neighborhood. My dad knew everyone from Little League and we often had to drag him away from gossiping.
We were flat-out tired by the time we got home. But no self-respecting child could fall asleep with the task that awaited them.
My mom had these huge bowls. Each of us got one to dump our candy into our own bowl. My mom picked through it for things that didn't look right. Or maybe she was taking out her favorites. I'm not sure.
I can remember sorting out the rest of my candy on the floor: good candy and bad candy—the stuff to trade for more good stuff. Then the good candy was separated into piles of the same kinds. Like everything in our house, this was a competition, too. There would be much whining and evil laughter if someone got an extra candy bar that someone else didn't get.
My mom always let us have a piece of candy before it was time for bed. Then we each found a hiding place for our candy. We had to hide it from my oldest brother who could not be trusted where food was concerned.
It was such a wonderful experience. I feel sorry for kids today who miss out on the community spirit that trick or treating creates. It's the one time people you only know in passing hand out something for free without expecting something in return. And it really makes a child happy... just a simple piece of candy.
My 10 Halloween Favorites
When I was growing up, my parents couldn't afford to buy us candy very often. It was usually a special treat.
When we wanted our own candy, we took our allowance and headed over to the corner store. Daniel and Irene, a local couple, had the best candy counter. You could pretty much get a bag of candy for a buck.
But we didn't always have a buck. So Halloween was big for us. It was the one night candy rained down on us. That candy could last for weeks! Unless my oldest brother got it.
Some of my favorite candy is no longer made, while others are still on the market, though they may be produced by a different company. Are these your favorites too?
Who doesn't like Smarties? These tasty little wafers came in a little plastic wrapper. There was 10-15 in a wrapper. Smarties were like their cousins, Sweet Tarts, but had more of a sweet taste.
I think there was something about candy like Smarties that had multiple pieces in a pack that made them more enticing. Even if they were small, you felt like you were getting more.
Do you remember Flicks? They came in a cardboard tube wrapped in a shiny wrapper that was either blue, green, gold, or red. The candy was like a Hershey's Kiss, only flatter and bigger. The chocolate melted in your mouth.
Flicks were originally made by the Ghirardelli Chocolate Co., but were discontinued. They have been picked up by another company and are currently produced under the name "Flicks Chocolate Covered Wafers."
I always loved getting one of these tubes. For some reason, it seemed like you were getting a lot more candy than you did in a regular bar.
3. Pixie Sticks
This was a sugar lovers delight. The "pixie" was small flavored granules much like Kool Aid. You tore off the top of the stick and poured the powder into your mouth. Or you wet your finger and spooned it out.
They came in two sizes. The smallest size came in a paper tube that you could tear as you went along. The larger size was in a plastic tube. I don't know why but I preferred the smaller size.
4. Wax Harmonica
I haven't seen one of these in years! They were from the same line as the wax fangs, lips, teeth, etc.
The wax harmonica was a toy and a treat. You could play it and then eat it. I used to start out playing it. Then I'd slowly bite off one row at a time.
I'm not sure why these were one of my favorites. The wax turned into a kind of chewy mass that was a bit difficult to eat.
5. Rocky Road Candy Bars
Annabella is a local candy company serving the San Francisco Bay area. I'm not sure if their candy is well known outside of California.
Their Rocky Road candy bar was my favorite. The Rocky Road sort of mimicked an ice cream bar. It was a chocolate bar with marshmallows and nuts.
They were bigger and thicker than most candy bars. It seemed decadent and overindulgent. When you took a bite, you got a mouthful of bar. It seemed like an extra special treat.
6. Hershey Special Dark Chocolate Bars
I don't remember ever seeing Hershey Special Dark Chocolate Bars except at Halloween and Christmas. Usually they only sold them in the large bars at the grocery store and those were too expensive for us. For Halloween, they were part of the pack of Hershey mini bars.
Quite a few people handed out these bite-sized bars at Halloween. I remember that my middle sister, brother, and I all loved the Special Darks. Getting one of them in your sack was like hitting the jackpot.
7. Wacky Packages
These were really popular when I was about 10. Wacky Packages were produced by Topps. You got some gum and trading card stickers.
The trading cards were different than you'd expect. These weren't athletes or rock bands. They were parodies of well-known products. They advertised things like "Quacker Oats" and "Crust Toothpaste." I thought they were hilarious! I collected the stickers and stuck them on everything. This was one candy where I preferred what was inside to the actual candy.
8. Wax Soda Bottles
These little wax bottles were like miniature soft drinks. They were sold in a set. Each bottle had a different flavor. I can remember a cola and root beer. There were fruity flavors as well.
The wax was kind of chewy. You chewed it up and it had a slight taste. I don't think you can buy these at the store anymore.
9. Almond Joy
Sometimes you feel like a nut...and I did!
Almond Joys are made of coconut with an almond center. They are covered in chocolate. There are two bars in a packaging, which somehow made it seem like a whole lot of candy bar. I like their counterpart, the Mounds bar, but Almond Joy was my favorite of the two.
I remember first seeing Whoppers at the movie theater. They came in a box or a small milk carton.
Whoppers are a malted ball covered in chocolate. They kind of melted away in your mouth. Although, I remember every now and then there was a deflated one that really was a disappointment.
Thanks for visiting. Do you have a favorite Halloween memory? Did you go trick or treating? Did your family celebrate in a different way?
Trick or Treat!
Melody Lassalle (author) from California on December 02, 2014:
Besarien, Isn't that the truth! What was the big thrill of chewing up the little soda bottles or the harmonica? I loved it, too, especially the little soda bottles. Thanks for your comments!
Besarien from South Florida on December 02, 2014:
I was big on wax lips, wax soda bottles, and the wax harmonica. It seems a little odd to me now that I enjoyed chewing on wax so much. This was a blast from the past! Great hub!
Erin Hardison from Memphis, TN on October 31, 2011:
I would have loved a wax harmonica too.
JoyfulReviewer on October 31, 2011:
I'd forgotten about the wax teeth and lips. Congratulations on being a Happy Halloween Contest finalist!
Vikk Simmons from Houston on October 31, 2011:
Thanks for reminding me of the cool things we used to do. It's so different now, I think. Congratulations on making it to the finals in the Happy Halloween contest. You know I'd vote for you but Charlie the Pug would take issue and I do live with him. :)
Loraine Brummer from Hartington, Nebraska on October 31, 2011:
I don't remember wax harmonicas, but I remember wax teeth and lips. Maybe I'm just much older than you.
anonymous on October 09, 2011:
I'd never heard of a wax harmonica--those sound fantastic! Nice lens!
Julia M S Pearce from Melbourne, Australia on October 06, 2011:
You must have had so much fun trick and treating!Great lens,I enjoyed your story and the treats of course.
Melody Lassalle (author) from California on October 05, 2011:
@bead at home mom: I don't think I've heard of Mary Janes. Maybe they weren't sold out on the west coast.
Treasures By Brenda from Canada on October 05, 2011:
I remember trick or treating and I still enjoy going with my children (to see the other costumes and the house decorations.) However, my children aren't children anymore so I don't know what I'm going to do in that regard, LOL.
LyricalVenus on October 05, 2011:
Wow, this lens definitely brings back great memories. Trick or treating was usually so cold, we'd either try to make costumes that we could layer over warm clothes or have two, a warm costume and an inside party costume. Fun stuff.
Melody Lassalle (author) from California on October 05, 2011:
@seashell2: It seems like they had a slight orange taste, though I could be wrong.
bead at home mom on October 05, 2011:
My favorite Halloween candy that I did not see listed here were the 'Mary Janes' The caramely type outside cover with a bit of peanut butter on inside. They are generally sported with black or orange wrapping. One more thing, we also use to use pillow cases to trick or treat with because we would go all over the neighborhood 2 and 3 streets over and everyone was giving out candy. Not today though. Good memories!
seashell2 on October 05, 2011:
I remember buying those wax harmonica's when I was a kid, I don't think they tasted that great though! lol Fun lens...