A loaf of bread, a container of milk, and a stick of butter

Of all the TV I consumed as a young child (and there was a lot of it) this clip from Sesame Street may very well be the most pervasive in my mind still to this day. I remember the whole thing to a tee, save that in my mind she says “quart of milk” not “container of milk.” What’s interesting re-watching it after 30 some odd years—besides the fact that it is some beautiful animation, particularly when she is walking to the store—is that the whole thing is about the promotion of memory through repetition, and ya know what, it works. I still recall and quote this episode when on my way to the grocery store or someone happens to say stick of butter. The mind is a very bizarre thing, and the power of the tube still amazes me despite the fact the new and flashy internet is all the rage these days.

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19 Responses to A loaf of bread, a container of milk, and a stick of butter

  1. Brad says:

    This belongs as a chopped up sample in a Jurassic 5 song.

  2. Lisa says:

    One of my favorites… but I think I also remembered it as a “quart.” Weird. Thanks for digging it up.

  3. Andrea_R says:

    This is also one of my long-time faves. My Mom got me Season 1 of Sesame Street on DVD and this was on it, so my youngest has been introduced as well.

    Lots of great references to it in our house now.

    “We need groceries,”

    “A loaf of bread, a container of milk and a stick of butter?”

  4. Carey Pohanka says:

    I sing this to myself almost every time I go to the grocery store. Glad to know I’m not the only one who remembers this!

  5. pumpkiny says:

    Wow, brings me back. I learned to speak english from Sesame Street! =)

  6. I’d forgotten that one till you mentioned it. Very nice trip down memory lane. I remember more clearly the song for “123FOUR5,678NINE10,ELEVEN TWELVE.” 🙂

  7. Reverend says:


  8. Cassandra says:

    Love this clip! My family and I were just discussing whether it was a quart of milk or a gallon of milk. lol “We were all wrong it was “a container of milk.”

  9. Rutger says:

    I also remember “Quart of milk”… Vividly.

  10. April Merrick says:

    Love this! My mother says she also read me a short story that was in a collection of short stories that had this story in it. I wish I could find it to read to my own children.

  11. bill says:

    i remember it as “a loaf of bread, potato, milk, and a stick of butter”

  12. rob says:

    I remember it as “bottle of milk”

  13. Kristy says:

    I also remember it as “a quart of milk”. My sister and I still say this if any of these thre grocery items are mentioned.

  14. Amelia says:

    Does anyone have a memory of this actually being a black BOY, not a girl? He says “loaf of bread, quart of milk, stick of butter.” Help.

  15. Jen says:

    I love this. Was just listing off items I needed and when I got to stick of butter, I repeated the list 🙂

  16. Emily says:

    My brother and sister and I have been saying “a loaf of bread, a quart of milk, and a stick of butter” for two and a half decades now. There was no doubt in my mind that’s what it was until I saw the clip online recently in which the little girl said, “a container of milk.” Was it re-recorded at some point? Or maybe different regions got different versions? We were growing up in Tennessee. Also, to acknowledge another person’s question, I distinctly the little girl in a yellow dress with big bow.

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