Posts tagged: halloween candy

Help! I am Drowning in Candy!!!

By , November 3, 2009 6:20 pm

A few more Halloween candy ideas:

  • Send it to troops overseas for them to pass out to local children.  For more info, go to the Operation Gratitude website, but basically just send your candy (plus an optional but very welcome $11 to cover the cost of shipping overseas) before December 8th to:

Operation Gratitude/California Army National Guard
17330 Victory Boulevard
Van Nuys, California 91406
ATTN: Charlie Othold

You can also send it anytime to Operation Shoebox at this address:

Operation Shoebox
8360 E Highway 25
Belleview, FL 34420

(Keep in mind that soft or chocolate candy might not travel so well, especially to a hot climate.)

  • Find a local dentist who is participating in a Halloween Candy Buyback program.  Participating dentists give your kids $1/pound of candy and then they send it to troops overseas!  Go to the Halloween Candy Buyback website to do a zipcode search for participating dentists in your area. Consider encouraging your children to donate their dollars to a charity that interests them.
  • Some food pantries, soup kitchens and homeless shelters accept candy.  Be sure to call first to find out if yours wants it.
  • Buy inexpensive cellophane party favor bags and make pretty little candy packages.  Tie the top with a scrap of ribbon or yarn and donate them to your local charitable thrift store for them to sell.  Great stocking stuffers for someone!
  • Of course you can always do a Candy Bank too, and then use one of these ideas as the final destination for your traded candy!

It’s Halloween: Dust Off Your Candy Bank

By , October 30, 2009 9:45 pm


Get your Candy Bank ready, it’s Halloween tomorrow!

If you are unsure about what to do with an influx of massive amounts of candy into your house, then read on.

If your children are young (younger than maybe 4 or 5?) you can probably get away with the “Hide It and They’ll Forget About It” method.

If you have older children, take it from me, that will not work.  Either let them have it all in moderated doses (and “lose” a few bits here and there and hope they don’t notice), or try a Candy Bank.

We have a jar into which all extra candy is put (as well as any junky little toys that somehow show up).  We use it throughout the year for birthday party candy, but Halloween is where it really comes in useful.

Once the Candy Bank is full, the kids get money for charity in exchange for the candy.  The first time I did this, I let them each choose a small present in exchange for the candy.  Ever since then, I have given them $10.00 collectively to donate to a charity of their choice.

I like that it goes to charity (rather than just more junk to fill the house) and I also like that they must agree amongst themselves as to how the money will be applied.  I can only hope that this will encourage a lifetime of negotiation and cooperation!

Happy Halloween!

By , October 31, 2008 3:28 pm

Wondering what to do with all that candy?

Check out my Candy Fairy and Candy Bank posts for some alternatives to eating it!


The Great Candy Dilemma

By , October 1, 2007 8:10 pm

Fall is here which means that Halloween is coming. My heart sinks when I think of all the candy my kids will receive, and of course want to eat.

Until now, I have always taken the wimpy way out. My Method One is to allow them to eat one or two pieces a day. Eventually they lose interest in it, at which point I whisk it away and hide it at the back of a high kitchen cupboard. If no one mentions the candy for a few weeks, then into the trash it goes.

My Method Two is to throw away one or two pieces of candy a day so as to make it disappear more rapidly. The most effective approach used to be a combination of Methods One and Two.

But as the kids get older, they seem to remember the existence of the candy for a longer period of time each year, which makes Method One increasingly more difficult to carry out successfully. They also now have a complete mental inventory of every piece of candy in their bag, so Method Two no longer works at all. This year it is clearly time for me to reconsider the Great Candy Dilemma.

MC Milker, the Not Quite Crunchy Parent, wrote a great post the other day about The Candy Fairy. The solution she proposes and has actually used successfully is, in my mind, PURE GENIUS. If there can be a Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus, why couldn’t there be a Candy Fairy? Children leave their Halloween candy on the doorstep at night and in the morning the candy is gone, but a small gift is there in its place. Brilliant! Why didn’t I think of that when my children were younger?

The Candy Fairy can come at Easter too. And why not after birthday parties where candy has been a bit too generously doled out?

According to MC Milker, it is advisable to start talking up The Candy Fairy well in advance of the holiday. For example, starting now for a Halloween Candy Fairy visit insures that the brain washing is fully in place by October 31st. Plus, there are complicated logistics and negotiations that must be handled. When does The Candy Fairy come exactly? How much candy does she expect to receive? I am obviously a novice when it comes to all this. For more expert advice, you should really read MC’s post.

The only problem I can foresee in my own situation is how to explain the sudden arrival on the scene of The Candy Fairy to my 5 and 7 year-old who are regular customers of Santa and The Tooth Fairy, but who have never ever heard of The Candy Fairy. I just don’t think they would buy into the fantasy.

After mulling it all over, I have come up with my own “Mom” variation of The Candy Fairy:

This Halloween I will offer a choice. They can keep their candy, or they can cash it in for a surprise from me. I expect that they will opt for the latter. To make it fun we’ll leave the candy outside the front door which is where they will find their surprise the next morning. I think that this idea has great potential. I’ll report back after Halloween.

Now that I think of it, if this works, perhaps we could start a kind of “candy savings account” where all birthday party candy, Valentine’s candy etc. can be accumulated until there is enough for The Candy Fairy to take in exchange for a gift.

Wouldn’t this encourage saving and spending in addition to making the dentist happy?

Thank you for sharing this exciting idea MC! You may well have changed my life…perhaps I am being a tad dramatic…but I think you have resolved my Great Candy Dilemma for another few years at least!

Thanks to and photographer dieraecherin for the candy photo.

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