Unfortunately this post is not about the show Cupcake Wars from the Food Network, although writing about such decedent masterpieces sounds enticing. Rather, I feel led to share more on the negative side of those tasty treats and the war they rage in the work place. I have been working in childcare since I turned 18. I have a passion for teaching and empowering young children to discover the world around them. However, if there is one thing I can say I despise about working with children, I wouldn’t hesitate to answer birthdays! It seems like there is a birthday party every day of the year and do you know what the number one way to celebrate a birthday is…CUPCAKES! Whether homemade, chocolate, vanilla, confetti, butter cream or cream cheese frosting… it doesn’t matter how they come, but they do and in multitudes! Parents bring them because they are easy and because they are a special treat, special indeed! In order to be positive they have brought enough for all the friends, they bring extra… And where do you suppose those extra go? Well I’ll tell you, they end up in the teacher’s lounge haunting all the passerby’s, staring them down with temptation as the innocent try to resist while eating their lunch. The war has been set in motion, the drummer boy announced it with a loud and squawky happy birthday jingle. With fire in our eyes and desire on our lips we fall under the mighty power of the “sweet tooth” fallacy. It’s bad enough that we indulge once in class alongside the happy preschoolers cheering for their friend, but I’m not the only one who does it again when the left-overs hit the lounge. With a stomach ache and defeat smeared across my face, I continue the rest of my day driven only by the depression my actions have caused. Poor kids get a sluggish teacher to finish out the day… lucky them. The funny thing is that I always tell myself that I don’t need one because I know what it taste like. I try and muster the courage to reject cupcakes and somehow I end up talking myself back into eating one. It’s a vicious cycle that is very difficult to break.
Obesity is a very serious issue. Not just with birthdays, but every decision made when it comes to eating. I know the responsibility I have in choosing whether or not to indulge in a cupcake, but I believe for a child that responsibility falls onto the parents and older influences that help mold their decision making skills. Foxnews.com posted an article about some states trying to ban cupcakes from schools to promote health and wellness, but they argued that cupcakes are a birthday tradition, stating that, “Annual birthday treats aren’t what’s making this nation obese and I will not allow cupcakes to be made a scape-cake for obesity!” To read more of that article click HERE. I agree that there is more to obesity than just eating cupcakes, however, I believe that there are some changes that need to be made regardless. Instead of injecting the children with High Fructose Corn syrup, fat and unnecessary amounts of sugar, how about whole grain muffins, fruit bowls or even combine all the birthdays into one day? It’s outrageous the amount of cupcakes we consume at the preschool level and the children are being effected just as much as the teachers. The cupcakes are winning this battle and it’s time we took a stand against the preferred treat of choice.