Now, I like candy as much as the next person, but part of me just groans when it comes time for buying candy for Halloween. Let me count the ways:
1. Good candy is expensive - I'm not completely driven to be the coolest mom on the block (although I wouldn't mind being in the running), so I don't like getting the cheapest candy that I can get because it's just that--cheap, and nobody really wants to eat it. So I have to drop big bucks on decent candy.
2. You never know how many trick-or-treaters you are going to get - So do you buy two bags or four? Is it better safe than sorry? Why isn't there a manual on this?!?!?
3. I end up eating too much of it - Inevitably, I end up buying two much candy. Even though we only had a total of maybe 10 trick-or-treaters the past two years, I think "maybe this is the year we get a lot" and then I end up with way too much candy because only three groups came by. And we can't let that candy go to waste now, can we?
So, the solution, in my mind, is handing out non-candy treats. And they don't have to be lame (remember, I want to be the in the running for coolest mom), so check out some of these ideas:
1. Glow Sticks
Glow sticks are great fun and cheap, so they are ideal for giving out at Halloween. You can use this printable or hand them out plain. Plus, you can feel good about making the kids more visible on a dark night. A win-win!
Kids love gum, and with this free printable, you can turn ordinary gum into a fun Halloween treat.
3. Juice Boxes
I think this is what I am going to do this year. Juice is a treat around our house, and I read several places that the trick or treaters are always glad to get something to drink after having all that mouth-drying chocolate. This tutorial suggests wrapping the boxes in electrical tape, but I bet you can get the same effect for cheaper if you wrap it in white crepe paper.
4. Clementines or Mandarin Oranges
A little sharpie can go a long way into turning a healthy treat into something fun. And, in my opinion, these are way tastier than apples.
5. String Cheese
I saw this idea on a list, but I thought the idea of dressing them up with googly eyes or a fake finger nail (on the outside of the package of course) would be a fun way to make them "Halloween." But I couldn't find a picture for it, so I guess that part is an original idea. Who knew?
You can make your own, or you can buy little packs of the premade stuff. And you can make it super cute if you dress it up like these. But, I handed out playdoh last year, and I didn't do anything to the packaging, so don't feel obligated. It's still a cool treat, decorated or not.
7. Instant Cocoa Packets
I saw this on several lists, but I couldn't find a cute label to go with it. Maybe I'll just have to make it. Check back later on that one!
8. Spare Change
I saw this on several lists, too. Put a bunch of change in the jar and let each trick or treater have a handful or two. Just make sure if you do this, don't have just pennies in there.
9. Nail Polish
Glow in the dark would be fun, but you could dress up any kind for Halloween. Girls would love it, and I think guys wouldn't mind either.
10. Mini bags of Popcorn
This is a cute way to give out a fun treat. And who doesn't crave something salty after all that sweet?
What will you be handing out this year?