After October 31, everyone has the problem of what to do with all the leftover Halloween candy and all the candy their kids collected. If it’s put in a candy dish and left on the counter, it’s more likely than not, you’ll be snitching a bite size Snickers and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup on a regular basis. You don’t even have to like those types of candy, they just have to be available when you get a craving for a sweet treat. The pounds of candy available are often too much for the kids to eat on their own. They’ve probably eaten enough already to keep them flying around the room for days. Here are some ideas on how to eliminate the problem.
Find your local Operation Gratitude Candy Buy Back participant.
The Buy Back Program was started by a dentist that was concerned with the dental health of children after gorging on candy for several weeks after Halloween. The concept is simple. You find a dentist that’s participating in your area, have your child take his or her candy into the dentist, they weigh it and pay your child a dollar a pound. The cash makes an impression on the children and so does where the candy go. It’s sent to troops overseas, where they get a small bit of home in the mail and can munch on the candy or give it to local children to improve relationships. If you use this option, impress on your child the good they’ll be doing and of course, they’ll get cash in return. Treats for Troops also has a similar program.
Donate the candy to Ronald McDonald House or other charities.
Ronald McDonald House accepts donations of candy for the parents of the children who are critically ill and stay there. A nibble of sweets can be quite soothing and offer a burst of energy, especially if you’ve been at the bedside of a sick child for over 24 hours. There are other local agencies where the donation will be appreciated. The Homeless Shelter, CAPS, Women’s Shelter and other organizations that help people who just need a helping hand often accept these sweet treats to brighten their client’s day.
Use it in a recipe for the upcoming holiday season.
You can freeze the candy to keep it at its freshest and also prevent it from disappearing too quickly. Once frozen, it’s the perfect extra for Thanksgiving brownies or as Rice Krispie treat extras. Frozen mini candy bars stored in a plastic bag can be set on a wooden cutting board and smashed with a hammer if you want to sprinkle it throughout the treat. Just open the plastic bag when you’re finished, then take off the wrapper and it’s the perfect size for your creation.
- Budget the candy to a few pieces a day if you choose. Those not used for a while can be stored in the freezer and removed when ready for them.
- Introduce the Candy Fairy to the kids. (She’s a sister to the tooth fairy who insures her sis will be collecting good teeth.) You leave the candy out one night and the fairy exchanges it for small toys.
- Do a reverse trick-or-treat called treat-or-treat. Let the gets put their costumes on again and take the candy to a senior center. Not only will they appreciate the treat, they’ll love the attention from the children.
- Use the candy for decorations, such as on the holiday gingerbread house.