Gingersnaps: The Freshman 15
Sep 19, 2014 10:35PM ● Published by Laura Ustanovska
Throughout the Lake Country, a drive down the quiet roads, engulfed with burnt hues, always meant one thing in my mind: fall. But this year, the road will be a little less traveled. Kids have headed back to the classrooms, some farther from home than others. Try 150 miles, 1000 miles or 2500 miles. There’s a good chance that you know someone starting their freshman year in college. They surely are in need of some Lake Country love, no matter the distance. Whether it’s your own kids, brother, niece or grandchild, among the term papers and tests on their minds, a care package will never go unappreciated. Let’s simplify the guessing game and get straight to what they really want from their loved ones: the freshman 15—fifteen gifts and goodies that can be found in local shops near you.*
1. Kettle Moraine Crunch Mix by Great Harvest, Delafield: A tasty mix of cashews and chocolate chips compliment healthy almond slivers, shredded coconut and more! Just the name of this treat will remind your freshman of home.
2. Pretzels from East Shore Specialty Foods, Hartland: Move over Sniders! These seasoned pretzels make a perfect pair with tangy mustard dipping sauce… or decadent fudge dipping sauce for late night movies.
3. Rick’s Kettle Corn**: In my opinion, popcorn should be its own food group. A candied corn lover could feed themselves for days with this totally tubular bag of popcorn, and they just might…
4. Caramel Apples from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Delafield: Pick your poison, from “Worms and Dirt” to “Rocky Road” (yes, on an apple!).
5. Wisconsin T-Shirts from Clear Water Outdoor, Delafield: These t-shirts, which sport unique Wisconsin designs, can be worn for any occasion when your freshman is in the mood to display some local pride on campus.
6. Caramel by Becky’s Blissful Bakery, Pewaukee: 100% organic and 100% delicious. These melt in your mouth candies include flavors like “Dark Chocolate Sea Salt” and “Beer and Pretzel.”
7. Socks: Let’s be honest, everybody loves getting nice socks. You can never have enough pairs, and your freshman’s laundry bag probably hasn’t seen the light of day since they got to school. They’re most likely wearing plastic bags on their feet by now.
8. Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap: This soap can cure any ailment. Well, maybe not any ailment, but it can clean anything from your dishes, to your teeth, supposedly, to that laundry that’s still patiently waiting.
9. Running shoes from InStep, Delafield: That freshman 15 won’t be going anywhere unless your freshman gets moving. A pair of quality running shoes might be conducive to getting them off their futon.
10. Reallygoods, Nashotah: These natural bar “things” will work as a great recovery food after a run around the main quad. The ingredients include raw fruits and nuts, and exclude gluten, refined sugars and trans fat.
11. Sweet Potato Chips from Sendik’s, Hartland: These chips are the perfect combination of sweet, salty and addictive. The bag’s contents can easily disappear within an hour of homework.
13. A little chicken scratch, as Great Grandma Elvira put it: Aka, a bit of extra cash, so they can buy that healthy organic arugula at Whole Foods… or organic Oreos… the thought was there.
14. Wisconsin Cheese from Koepke Farms, Oconomowoc: It’s a no-brainer, especially when it comes to these delicious hunks of heaven. This genuine Wisconsin cheese + care package = one happy freshman with a gooey grilled cheese that no dining hall can beat.
15. A surprise visit: Netflix marathons can’t fill the void of a freshman’s homesickness. They may act embarrassed over the endless calls they receive from a parent or loved ones, but no freshman will ever be sad to see the face or get a hug in person from the family members that they miss. The freshman 15 might just be what your freshman needs! So don’t forget to grab your packing peanuts and a (very) big box. Insert mailing address here, from the Lake Country, with love.
*For more specific information on where to purchase these items in stores near you, please refer to the companies’ individual websites.
**To purchase Ricks Kettle corn, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.