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What? No Candy?

November 1, 2012

When I was young, growing up in New Jersey, Trick or Treat was always on October 31st, but I suspect no one was out last night going door to door int eh Garden State. Here in Huntington, our time was moved from Tuesday to Thursday because of the storm.

Sometimes this whole concept of eating better gets way too serious. Between learning that we’ve all been eating genetically modified organisms for at least a decade to trying to avoid saturated fats, trying to walk a healthy line can sometimes feel daunting.

Halloween is coming up. Traditionally here in the United States, it is the day when we spend a whopping $950 million to feed each kid about 3 cups of sugar. Candy sizes have increased and the age range of trick or treaters has also grown. Last year one young mom said the candy was for her newborn…….get real.

In years past I have tried all the tricks….buying candy to hand out that I didn’t like in order not to eat it myself to buying alternative items. Always searching for some way not to be tempted myself, I end up buying my favorites in other years in the hopes there are leftovers. There are never leftovers.

I thought it would be interesting to poll people to see what alternatives they try to offer on Halloween

“I think it would be hilarious to do jello shots for the adults. Or maybe Dixie cups of hot cocoa and Baileys. Other than that, candy! But, I’ve also done Halloween-size packs of microwavable popcorn and that was a hit, especially among the tweens. I got them in bulk at Costco the year we did it.”

“Last year I gave out books. The kids were so excited and the parents very appreciative. This year I plan to do the same. You can get children’s books very cheaply through the year at garage sales and thrift stores and library sales. Some of the older children were picking out books for their younger siblings. Sweet.

“I thought about doing temporary tattoos, but we have too many older trick or treaters. Really they just want candy…[Also] I have given out glow necklaces in the past. Michael’s has 12 glow necklaces for a dollar.”

“Halloween-themed pencils, stickers, tattoos, and eraser puzzles.”  I’ve done this one myself…bought a huge bag of spider rings and other fun items from Oriental Trading Company…it lasted me several years!

‘I was so happy to find a big bag of Snyder’s pretzels in individual, 1 oz bags. There were about 30 in the big bag and I got them at Walmart. Even kids want a break from all the candy sweetness.’

“Don’t forget change for UNICEF! Folks can still get boxes at Hallmark stores.”

“All the kids hate me…seed packets. They want candy, I want them to grow veggies.”

Replace chocolate bars with granola bars and fruit chews with dried fruit packs. Also consider adding single serving bagged pretzels, juice boxes and cheese sticks to your treat bowl, but keep them low-calorie, low-fat versions.

Okay, enough foolishness. We know it will be chocolate again this year.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 22, 2012 9:52 am

    They’d hate you more if you handed out toothbrushes/toothpaste and floss! My dentist always gave us an apple for halloween…a nice long diatribe on how bad candy i for your teeth/health. In large amounts, of course!

    • November 22, 2012 11:13 am

      It’s a fun time for kids. I remember well. But it is interesting to see young parents with infants out collecting “for the baby”. And the little kids wanting to grab 3 or 4 candies. I asked several how long their haul would last and they all said they would eat it all that night. Perhaps that is not so bad…they will get sick and it will be done and over with for another year.

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