It's that time of year again, when grown adults turn into jelly at the mere sight of adorable green-clad girls selling cookies.
Girl Scout cookie season officially starts in Broward and Palm Beach counties on January 22. (Note: If you really need your cookie fix earlier, Miami-Dade's cookie season starts January 16.)
Along with old favorites like Thin Mints, peanut buttery Tagalongs, Samoas, Trefoils, Peanut Butter Sandwich (also known as Do-si-dos), and Savanna Smiles, two new cookies will be introduced this year, including a gluten-free variety.
You might have seen morning shows like Good Morning America talking about three new cookies types, but Lisa Johnson of Girl Scouts of Southeast Florida explains that the Girl Scouts use two different bakeries, based on region, and ours offers two of the three new additions to the 2015 GS cookie lineup.
Johnson assures us that the cookies are delicious, especially the gluten-free Toffee Tastic, which are described as "indulgently rich, buttery cookies with sweet, crunchy golden toffee bits." Johnson, who is vice president of marketing and brand management of the Southeast Florida chapter of the organization, says that people in gluten-free households should stock up on the new cookies, as supplies are limited, noting that they had to pre-order the total amount for the entire cookie season.
The other new cookie, Rah-Rah-Raisins, are "made with whole-grain oats; these new hearty oatmeal cookies are packed with plump raisins and Greek-yogurt-flavored chunks."
This year, Girl Scouts also have the opportunity to sell cookies "digitally," setting up their own website, so don't be surprised if you see some girls with iPads in hand, filling your orders electronically (and taking credit cards). The new digital capabilities also allow you to ship cookies to loved ones or have them delivered to your door (in case you find yourself wanting to hoard Trefoils).
Johnson also reminded us that Girl Scout selling season is an educational tool for the girls as well as a way for the troops to raise money for the coming year. "Girls learn valuable marketing and communication skills," she says. To help these girls get the most out of cookie-selling season, Johnson suggests asking the girls questions about what goals they have and how they'll be using the money raised by their troops.
So, what do you do with all those cookies after these precious little sales executives talk you into buying four dozen boxes of Thin Mints? You can always share with your office mates or squirrel them away. As Johnson says, "The cookies freeze really well, especially the chocolate ones. And they work really well with ice cream."
In South Florida, that's a really useful tip.