Seinfeld Elaine ice cream

Seinfeld Elaine ice cream

There’s that moment each night when my kids are finally asleep, my spouse is watching whatever new Star Wars series I’ve opted not to rabbit-hole into, and I have approximately 47 minutes before I zonk out. This is the time for a large fistful of Goldfish.

To be clear, this isn’t a handful. It’s a massive fistful. The kind where you reach deep into the large 30-ounce carton — not the squishy smaller bag — and grab the largest possible amount of fish. Then, you shovel them with abandon into your mouth. The goal is to fit more in your mouth than one should, the kind of massive portion that you would only eat when no one’s watching because no one is watching. Some might fall onto the floor and yep, you pick those up and eat ‘em, too. This is your time. This is your moment. This is the snack that smiles back.

While scarfing the Goldfish, lalala I’m not listening to the reasons why one shouldn’t eat right before bed. And I’m definitely not reading the celeb profiles that share nighttime routines involving meditation, yoga, expensive skin creams, or something else that feels more aspirational than it does realistic, at least for me.

Because the important thing about one’s ahh-I’m-alone wind down is that it’s uniquely yours, and that it’s something that enables you to take a deep breath. Well, once you swallow all the crackers, that is.

What’s your post-kids’ bedtime ritual? Bonus points if snacks are involved.

Important note: If you would like to substitute another cheese-laden cracker for Goldfish, such as Cheez-Its, I approve but would caution that fistfuls of Cheez-Its are slightly more logistically complicated due to the sharp edges that could graze the roof of your mouth. Instead, I recommend eating them in short stacks of four, which still offer a mouth-is-full scenario without the potential for low-grade injury.

Carey Polis is an editorial consultant and content strategist who lives in Washington, D.C. with her spouse and two sons. She also has a newsletter: Cheese, Book, Restaurant, Thing.

P.S. A sleep trick that’s changing our lives, and Jerry Seinfeld’s bedtime rituals with his kids.

(Photo by Marc Bordons/Stocksy.)