Thursday, October 18, 2012

Less Sugar, More FUN!

Don’t want to contribute to your neighbor’s kid’s tooth decay this year? Not the dentist in town who’s going to profit from all the Halloween candy that’s getting passed out? I don’t and I’m not, so I thought it would be fun to see what candy alternatives I could find. Frankly, it’s easy to spend $20 or $30 on candy for the kids, and I wondered what I could find in a comparable price range. I thought it would be fun to build a grab bag (or grab pumpkin) of fun items. A visit to Dollar Tree yielded the following options at a buck each:
  • Stickers (pack of 30)
  • Halloween pencils (pack of 12)
  • Halloween erasers (pack of 12)
  • Halloween straws (pack of 5)
  • Glow bracelets (pack of 15)
  • Glow finger extensions (pack of 4  - not sure what you do with a finger extension…)
  • Grow capsules (pack of 15)
  • Bubbles (3 bottles)
  • Play Dough (pack of 8 or a pack of 4 of larger containers)
  • Glow Balloons, Flying Discs, and Tops (packs of 4)
Moving on down the road to Walmart, I found water balloons and henna tattoos. Hobby Lobby has Loopy Straws  (8 for $1.59), a 24 pack of bubbles for $3 and light up balloons .The light up balloons are a bit pricy, but I must confess, I wanted one for myself! Oriental Trading also had a ton of great Halloween goodies, like pencils and erasers, in bulk at reasonable prices.

The upside (or downside, depending on your point of view), is that at the end of Halloween, I won’t be left with a bunch of candy in the house that will end up on my bottom line. On the other hand, figuring out what to do with a bunch of leftover toys could be a challenge….

For the kids I know well, I’m throwing in a bag of the Original Chex Mix. Let’s face it, the homemade stuff is so much better than the bags in the snack aisle and since it’s made with cereal, I can convince myself it’s healthy!

Shay, our Social Media Director suggested Rice Krispie treats. Yes, there’s some sugar in there, but I’m going to make a case for these since they are made with fortified cereal, too. And, she had the great idea of adding some chocolate chips and red and yellow food coloring for the black and orange color effect. I think the kids would get a kick out of that.

Jen - our co-founder - says, “If you are making a homemade treat, be sure to put your name on it.” At least if the moms in your neighborhood have a question about it, they can give you a quick call to confirm, which will give you a chance to catch up.

Did you find something you think I should add to my grab pumpkin? Leave me a message in the comments below…

Happy Halloween!
Christine Z, LBDC Co-Founder


  1. As an alternative, if you live in an area where you're not going to get more than 20-30 kids you could just hand out dollar bills! No problems with the leftovers there!

  2. A bunch of great ideas for alternatives to candy. Thanks for doing the research (legwork). I also like the advise about putting your name on the homemade item since before I got to it, I was thinking all the homemade stuff is going to more than likely be thrown away. With your name on it, at least the neighbors who know you well might go ahead and let thier children enjoy the homemade goodness.

  3. I did this last year so that I didn't have all that leftover candy in my house, too. I handed out pencils, erasers and glow bracelets from The Dollar Tree. The kids loved the bracelets and was able to wear them that night. I'm planning to do the same this year, as well. I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one doing this :)