Halloween is a ton of fun: designing costumes, spooky decorations, the festive feeling of family-friendly neighbourhoods on Halloween night. But the main event is tick-or-treat time - and the piles of fully sanctioned candy.
Despite rising awareness of the health implications of a high-sugar diet, the Halloween haul has gotten richer since my days as a trick or treater in the 70s and 80s. The piles of rock hard toffee, liquorice and gum-balls we coveted seem pretty lame beside todays’ de facto treat: the mini-sized candy bar.
Has the sugar high worn off yet?
We normally avoid bringing home junk food because, regardless of quantity, it gets gobbled down in 2 days max. But Halloween is the trojan horse that candy manufacturers use to penetrate our weakened defences via our kids. (Do I sound cynical? Apparently daylight savings’ late appearance in November was heavily influenced by lobbying from big candy, who believed they could sell more sugary treats if it got dark later and kids could trick-or-treat longer)
Yes, I have pilfered my kids candy (after hiding it from them).
Have you ever “appropriated” you kids' candy without their knowledge? I am embarrassed to admit that, despite my best efforts to “shelter” my kids from excessive sugar, I’m a terrible example. My name is Daddy and I am an addict. I live in a post-halloween dread of being discovered eating a mini-bar in my closet or having someone find the empty wrappers I stuffed into the bottom of the garbage bag.
Having accepted our powerlessness in the face of Halloween candy, here are some of the simple rules we’ve implemented to get back to normal as quickly as possible.
The Halloween Candy Plan
Halloween Night: Pig Out
You ate too much candy, therefore you have a tummy ache. Instant teachable moment. (Thank you Halloween! )
For 7 days after Halloween: 3 treats per day.
You can’t let all the precious candy go to waste. After all, they put on a costume and walked 10 blocks to earn it. Let them enjoy their efforts for the following week.
Day 8 On: Get Rid of It!
In the likely event that you still have candy left a week later, you will need a plan...
5 Tips for Managing the Remaining Leftovers
Make a sweet recipe with your child
Make it an opportunity to teach some cooking skills while making something fun and sweet. A quick Google search will render tons of options but here’s a good place to start.
Take it to work
Build some social capital with your kid-less co-workers or give your next meeting a little energy burst.
Regift in Loot bags
Do you, a friend or an extended family member have a kids' birthday party to plan in the near future? Stuff the loot bags with leftover treats.
Drop it at the front desk of your gym
Make it a reward for the people who just burnt off a ton of calories. Better them than you.
Candy buyback program
Teach your kids the value of negotiation by offering a buyback program, or trade it for other items that they value. Unfortunately, you still have to get rid of the candy…..
Dump it in the trash
I have resorted to this after one too many Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. Make sure you put it under something really gross so that you’re not tempted to dig it out again.
How did you manage the Halloween candy haul? Let us know in the comments below!