After the trick or treating is over, the decorations stored, and the costumes have been put away, we are left with one thing: tons of candy. We limit our geekette’s candy to one to two pieces a day, if that. The best thing is, she kind of self-limits. We have the candy sitting out in a plastic bag on the counter but she rarely asks for a piece. She forgets it is there.
So last year, round about August when another Halloween was rapidly bearing down on us, we found ourselves with a two gallon baggie full of candy. I started hunting around for something to do with it.
Turns out, there are quite a few options. Here are some things you can do with all that candy. The best part is most of the ideas can be turned into quality family time. Be sure and contact places to make sure they are accepting donations and keep in mind some Halloween candy has holiday specific wrappers so they may not be good to use for other holidays, or may expire.
- Blue Star Mothers: our local chapter takes candy donations and put them in care packages for the troops overseas. Check with your local chapter and see if they take candy donations.
- Ronald McDonald House: find your local chapter and see if they are accepting donations. Many of the kids and their families that are staying here don’t get to go trick or treating.
- Local children’s hospital or nursing homes: head over to your local children’s hospital or nursing homes and your kids can reverse trick or treat. Rather than knocking on doors asking for candy, they can knock on doors and give it to the residents. They can even get some extra wear out of their costumes. Be sure and check with staff at the facility and get the OK before going.
- Separate the items into plastic baggies and save for presents for teachers or others to whom you would like to give small gifts. You can decorate the bag with ribbons or a fancy paper tag.
- If you are into cooking, save the candy bars to make candy bar pies or use them to top brownies or add them to cheesecakes for the holidays.
- Save it for your child’s birthday pinata. That way the other kids get to take most of it home.
- Make Christmas decorations. Use the particularly colorful candies and either string them together for a candy garlandor hang them with fishing line from the tree. You can also glue them to a foam wreath or Styrofoam tree shape to decorate your house or use them to decorate a gingerbread house.
These are just a few ideas to get your started. What do my fellow GeekMoms do with your candy haul?