Batten down the hatches and pull out your Spanx pants, because it’s here; Easter, the ultimate opportunity for chocolate over-indulgence.
It feels as if no sooner have we got Christmas and it’s accompanying sugar high out of the way, than the Easter Bunny pops his head round the door brandishing chocolate eggs and chicks. And he doesn’t even have the decency to wait until the beginning of March to start flashing his wares; the first display of Easter merchandise that I saw seemed to appear only a couple of days after Valentine’s Day. Marks and Spencer, shame on you...
Both Boys, of course, are delighted by all this. Forget any religious messages; at ages five and three, Easter is All About The Chocolate. And chocolate doesn’t come their way every day, as I try and push the healthy eating message and so control the amount they get to eat. Add to that the fact that they both have serious nut allergies, and opportunities for chocolate indulgence are limited still further.
In fact, for those who are similarly affected, you may be interested to learn that there is only one UK manufacturer of chocolate – Kinnerton – who will routinely guarantee their product to be nut free. The rest seek refuge behind the catch-alls ‘may contain nuts’ or ‘produced in a factory that uses nut ingredients’. I can’t blame them, of course; in today’s litigation-happy culture it’s best to be clear about these things, but it does force those of us who are affected by this potentially life-threatening allergy to make choices every time we pick up a packet in the supermarket...
But if I’m honest, the real reason for our dearth of chocolate is that if there is any in the house, the chances are that I will have snaffled it long before there is any possibility of it making it into my sons’ snack repertoire.
For I, Potty Mummy, am a chocoholic. I can't help it. If it's chocolate, and expensive, I'm addicted.
I am capable of walking past Rococco and it’s like without so much as a second glance - well, maybe without so much as a third glance – but at Easter? There are just far too many opportunities for indulgence, all dressed up as present buying opportunities for others.
I don’t know who I think I’m fooling. It’s not as if my sons can eat most of it, and let's face it, what 3 or 5 year old wouldn't really prefer a £2.99 milk chocolate Thomas the Tank Engine or Power Ranger egg from M&S - guaranteed nut free - over a plain, boring, unlicensed, totally delicious - oops, getting carried away again - version from Leonidas, Prestat or Rococo?
Still, I buy those shiny sparkly little bags of praline-filled Eggs of Happiness (yes, I do really call them that) kidding myself that I will hand them out to friends and relations over the Easter break. Even though, deep down, I know that if the contraband eggs make it as far as Sunday it will only be because I have suffered a blow to the head and have forgotten what the expensive card bags tucked away on the top shelf of the fridge contain.
Resistance is futile...