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Nebraska Discoveries 5: Kool Aid!*

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Friday, May 14, 2010

Nebraska Discoveries 5: Kool Aid!*

*Yes, you read that correctly!

I introduced Kool-Aid to the kids recently.  I guess they'd had it before at birthday parties and stuff, but I never made it for the boys the good old fashioned way: the little packet, 1 cup of sugar (give or take) and 2 quarts of water (give or take.)

It got me thinking (can you smell the smoke?) about Kool-Aid in general.  How much I grew up with it as a kid -- there are dozens of pictures of me as a kid with Kool-Aid mustaches, and I tried to find one, but I couldn't find one easily.  But I did find this picture from April 1977:

From 1977 04 California-to-Hawaii

See? That's how much I must have loved Kool-Aid...

Or was it that my Mom made me so much Kool-Aid, she sent in 50 envelopes for a free t-shirt? I contemplated doing that with Mr. Bubble for my own boys...

Anyway, I got to thinking about the history of Kool-Aid, and I happened across this website.  Go about 2/3 the way down the rather verbose history and you'll see the breakthrough information...Edwin E. Perkins introduced Kool-Aid to the world from Hastings, Nebraska in the late 1920s.

Well would you look at that? Kool-Aid was invented in Nebraska!  The city of Hastings is about 2 1/2 hours west of where I am now. And look what else! In August there's a Kool-Aid Days right there in Hastings! That sounds, um...INTERESTING. Not sure if I'd make the big trip west expressly for that, but I'll stick it in my hip pocket if we're desperately looking for something to do the weekend before school starts...but I'm guessing we won't.

Back at the home front, I broke out my two-quart pitcher and whipped up some grape Kool-Aid for Timmy. He guzzled the first cup down so quickly! In fact, I had to chide him for gulping too loudly! "Glug, glug, glug!" Ha ha!

That batch lasted about 2 days, and yesterday I made fruit punch and even poured some into two cups for popsicles.  I should try to find some legitimate molds, but for now plastic cups and craft sticks are working just fine...

I like the idea of my boys enjoying Kool-Aid. It's cheap to make (20 cents for the packet, about 30 cents worth of sugar, the negligible cost for the water). So 2 quarts for less than the cost of 1 16 oz. soda or Gatorade.  Without the high fructose corn syrup.

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