I just took my kids to the dentist, and the visit did not go so favorably for us. We like our sweets around my house, and it has shown on our teeth! While I was there the Dentist gave me many tips on how to give the kids good treats (chocolate or ice cream vs fruit snacks and juice). It also got me thinking about alternatives to giving out candy this Halloween. I had asked some of you last year for your ideas, and here is a list we compiled with your feedback:
- Stickers and activity books (get great prices on these items through Oriental Trading Company, love this site, and they are having a FREE shipping sale through today!).
- Mini boxes of goldfish crackers, or other non-candy items like hot chocolate or granola bars
- Mini playdough’s
- Frosty Treat coupons from Wendys
- McDonalds Halloween Treat coupons
- Nicola provided the most creative solution – she had a neighbor who had a big bowl of pennies with a large spoon in it. The kids got to take a scoop of pennies, and keep whatever they were able to scoop out with one try.
Another great resources for more ideas is Green Halloween. This is the same group that coordinates the Halloween Costume Swap we posted about earlier. They have provided an entire page of alternative ideas to giving out your standard candy treats.
Some budget tips:
- shop the party store, or party favor isles at places like Target. You can then buy bags of these items in bulk.
- Buy sticker books and rip out a page per child. Walgreens is another good option, they have these books available for around $.39 cents some weeks with in ad coupon or $.50 ea regular price (cheaper then the dollar store)!
- Don’t forget to head out to stores like Target after Halloween. You can pick up these goodie bags of giveaways for up to 90% off for next years goodies. Best part is that the colors stay the same every year (orange and black) so you wont look out of date!
If your kids get lots of candy, and you want to let them have fun with it, but not necessarily eat every single piece, you can consider a Candy Buy Back Program. These are offered through various dentists who pay kids per pound of candy, or something similar. Call your dentist to find out if they will be offering one of these programs, or can recommend a local dentist that will be. Red Tri compiled this list last year, so you can start here too (but you will want to call and confirm they will be participating this year too).
Molen Orthodontics is not on the list (Sumner, Puyallup and Enumclaw), but I know they are participating (comment below if you know of others too). Stop by their offices between 2:30 and 6:30pm pm 11/1 and kids can sell up to 10 lbs of candy for $2 a pound! They also get an extra $1 for wearing a costume, and $1 for 2 canned goods to donate. Thats a possibility of $22 – not a bad haul for a kiddo! They will also get free milk and cookies!
More ideas? Leave us a comment!