Monday, October 31, 2011

Sugar in the Landfills

Since it is Halloween, I am going to refrain from preaching about giving kids too much candy today. I do allow my kids to go trick or treating, and they are allowed to eat a few pieces of their treasured loot (after I go through it to find the good stuff, that is). But in about a month I am sure I will be tossing about three quarters of their candy in the trash. Not because I am that mean mommy all the time, but thankfully because they forget about it.

At our house, Halloween is all about the costumes and making a show for all to see. Since we do not live in a great “trick or treating” neighborhood, we travel to Nana’s each year where there are more people to impress. And when Eden dresses up, she plays the part. Since she is a peacock this year, I am sure she will be making that awful peacock cry and fanning her tail. Little Lane will be happy just walking around and seeing everyone.

When the candy comes home, there are rules attached. Eden has been my daughter long enough that she knows to ask before getting into her bucket. I let her have a piece or two of candy a day, usually after she has had something good to eat. After the fourth day, she quits asking, and it just sits on top of the refrigerator. Daddy will go through and find the things he likes – anything made out of chocolate. I am bit pickier; it has to have both chocolate and caramel (I’m so glad that candy costs more and people are less likely to buy it to give out).

So now I am wondering if my family is atypical, or if most families end up tossing a lot of the candy in the trash. I’m also wondering if we should be doing something different these days if our candy money is wasted. Should we be giving quarters to every great costume that comes knocking on our door? I think Unicef used to give kids boxes in order to collect donations during Halloween, but I have not seen that lately. Could we be collecting for local children in need to good food? It would take a great deal of effort to change the tradition, but I am all for it. Now who’s with me? Mars and Hersey’s, please don’t send me any hate mail!


  1. We throw away large quantities, too...usually around Christmas when the kids get another ridiculous amount of chocolate and "junk" to replace what they did not eat from Halloween. Then the uneaten Christmas candy gets replaced by Easter candy...and the Easter candy usually sits around until Halloween (yuck! at this point, there is no guilt about tossing the stale, miscolored and malformed stuff!)

    We also have rules - the kids are really good about asking before eating. This truly baffles me, as I remember gorging myself on all the good stuff in my trick-or-treat bag during the first week post-Halloween!

  2. My daughters pick ten favorite pieces and they take the tooth fairy up on her special offer. They leave the rest by the door and she trades it for a gift. It's a nice way to get the candy out of the house and keep them from the sugar overload.


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