A lot of you won't know that in 2011, before I started this blog, I had a nostalgia blog where I posted about all the things I remembered from my childhood or teenage years. It had movies, music, clothes, pop culture, makeup, toys - I took it offline two years ago after it was just overrun with spam, but I decided that I'm going to repost something from The Irish Nostalgic here for Throwback Thursday every week.
Or until I forget.
This week - I'm focusing on Cereal Toys.
Ah, cereal - the staple diet of a whole gaggle of hungry children in the 80s and 90s. Cereal was usually eaten in the morning before school, again when I came home from school, and later before I went to bed. We rarely had chocolatey cereal - it was usually Cornflakes or Rice Krispies - but on rare occasions, my Mum would buy Frosties or Lucky Charms. Lucky Charms were discontinued in Ireland and the UK by the mid-90s, but I think they're available in those shops that sell US food.
The best part of cereal in the late 80s and early 90s was the free gift - there was something in almost every box. You name it, we had it - frisbees, pencil toppers, stickers, cars, monster in my pocket, puppy in my pocket, bike reflectors - just about every single cheap plastic thing available at the time was shoved into a cereal packet. The best part, if you had siblings, was the dash to help bring the shopping in - then spot which bag the cereal was in, rip the top off the box, shove your hand in, and grab the toy before anyone else in the house even had a look-in. In the summer holidays when we went shopping with her, it was a mad dash across the back seat of the car - you'd be finding Rice Krispies down the back seat of the car for weeks. Many a row we had because my sister would open the box pretending to be hungry when she was really just after the toy.
It's a wonder my bicycle wheels could rotate at all, the amount of Kellogs cockerel reflectors I had on them (I always seemed to get yellow ones). I loved the series of holographic "Casper" stickers that came with Frosties in the mid 90s - presumably around 1995 when the film was released.
Sometimes, cereal companies (mostly Kelloggs, I can't really remember having any other cereal bar the Lucky Charms) would have tokens on the box, so you could collect them and send off for something really good. You'd have to sellotape a big old 20 pence piece to the cardboard form, sent it off, then sit and wait for the guts of a month for your coveted item to arrive. I remember collecting tokens for a Polly Pocket - took ages to arrive, but it was so worth it! Years later, I collected tokens to get my first Discman. It was an AIWA one, and I loved it - even though it went through batteries quicker than Kylie Jenner goes through lipliner. A major collectors item in 1998 was the Kelloggs Cockerel radio. We never had one. *sob*
I don't know why they stopped putting toys into cereal packets - you'd imagine the fact that kids wanted more cereal boxes would have appealed to Kelloggs. I know that the tokens still pop up from time to time for spoons or bowls, but I haven't come across a toy in a cereal box in decades. It seems that lots of people were pretty fond of the bike reflectors - the ones in the picture there on the left sold on eBay in 2011 for over €25.
There are still others listed - we had so many of them! There's a lot on Snapchat at the minute about advice to your 18 year old self - well if I could give advice to my 12 year old self, I'd tell her to hang on to all her stuff, because one day she'll be 32 and wishing she took better care of it.
Truffleshuffle have an amazing range of vintage Kellogg's memoribilia in stock - I picked up the little Frosties mirror a while ago, and it just brings me great joy whenever I see it in my bag. You can check them out here.
At the moment, Kellogg's have a promotion going to collect cereal bowls (with 3 sons that means 9 tokens.....I finally understand why my mother made us eat so much cereal if we wanted to collect something), you can check that out here.
Do you remember cereal toys? Anything in particular?