If you read my post about Little Sugar Addicts, then you know that we don’t do candy in our house (at least not yet). Does that mean we shouldn’t go trick-or-treating? With many holidays centered around food, it’s hard to imagine what is left when you take it away. We wanted JW to have the full Halloween experience without the sugar rush. So, we dressed him up, took him door to door, and had a great time! When you take away the candy there are fun costumes, lights, spiders, pumpkins, ghosts, witches, a brisk fall walk, and meeting or seeing the neighbors.
We went to each door, said “Trick-or-treat”, held out a bag, and said “Thank you” as a piece of candy dropped into the pile of sugar. JW enjoyed reaching into a bowl, and dropping it into the bag, but he really had no association of it being food or anything he would want to eat. When we got home, I put away the bag, and I expect he will never even ask for it again.
Things may be different for you. If your child has ever had a piece of candy, then they certainly understand that they collected a nice treasure tonight. So you took your kids out trick-or-treating to 50 houses and now they have a pillowcase full of candy. What are you going to do with all of it? Let them have it as much as they want, whenever they want it, and you’ve got a couple of weeks of sugar highs and crashes. Ration it out a piece or two a day, and it could be around for awhile. There is another way!
Here are a seven things you can do with that mound of candy, besides let your kids eat at all either quickly or slowly:
- Don’t give out candy at your house so that you won’t have leftovers on top of candy your kids bring home (remember this for next year)
- Offer a trade-in points system to exchange for toys or goodies. For instance, buy some fun toys from the Dollar Store, and your kids can have one toy for ever 10 or 20 pieces of candy. Or have a points system, where chocolate is worth more points than a sucker. One toy for every 20 points.
- Offer a trade-in points system to exchange for money or a trip to the store. Same idea as above, but instead offer cold hard cash or a trip to the store. For example, 20 pieces of candy or 20 points worth, gets you $1 in your piggy bank, or one item of your choice at the Dollar Store.
- Redistribute the candy. We ran out of treats early this year (I had no idea there would be 150+ trick-or-treaters in our new neighborhood). If you take your kids out early, you can let them save a few pieces for themselves, and then they can help give it out to kids that come to your house. (Another one to remember for next year.)
- Give it to the dentist! Halloween Candy Buyback is a program where area dentist collect candy to save kids from rotting their teeth, and send it overseas in care packages to troops. Find a participating dentist near you and watch your kids feel great about making a difference.
- Go to Sleep Candy Exchange. I’ve heard a couple of people online talk about the Switch Witch. Kids leave their bag of candy outside their bedroom door at night, and while they sleep the Switch Witch comes and switches it for something the kid really wants.
- In our house this year, we’re going to give all of the Halloween loot to Daddy. This is my least favorite option since he takes forever to eat it, and it sits around staring at me. But, it makes Daddy happy and we really didn’t get much this year, so my suffering will be short lived.
Above photo is courtesy of StockFreeImages.com.
I’d love to hear more ideas of how you manage Halloween candy in your house. Happy Halloween everyone!