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Give It Away, Give It Away Now

I don’t know about you, but I’m still coming down from my weekend sugar high. With two kids who really GET trick-or-treating and one who was very content with strolling around the block (even if her gumball-machine hat only lasted about a minute), we spent at least a couple of hours filling our pumpkins at our town’s trunk or treat event and going house to house. The urgency on kids’ faces when they start ringing bells because everyone we know is just giving out candy — and they only have to say “trick or treat” and “thank you” to get it  — is hilarious.

But then you have THE CANDY. And not only the pumpkin buckets full of candy, but also the candy that you bought to give to trick-or-treaters. I never know how much to buy, so I almost always overshoot it. Then I forgot to leave my bowl out when we left the house, so we missed valuable time to give it out. The kids we had later in the evening got really lucky as my 3-year-old was giving out handfuls to them — and I still have leftovers. I’ve had my fair share of pumpkin peanut butter cups and candy bars already, so now I’m ready to make the sacrifice and get rid of it. Here are a few options if you need to do the same with your excess.


1. Troops. Send your candy to troops overseas. Here’s how.

2. Local dentists. Some dentists will buy back candy (and some participate in giving it to the troops!), so check around to see if any nearby dentists in your area are participating.

3. Those in need. My kiddos’ school is taking donations of Halloween candy to donate to an organization that provides support to the homeless and families needing housing assistance. If your school doesn’t have a project like this, it’s relatively easy to spearhead. Women’s shelters, nursing homes and soup kitchens all might take donations of candy.

4. Take it to work. Take the bulk of your candy to the office break room or common area. Sure, you may still treat yourself here and there, but at least you’ll be splitting it among other people!

5. Save it. Use the candy to make goody bags for birthdays or special events or to throw in a candy dish in a guest room — or even to stuff a piñata. You just have to be disciplined enough to keep it out of your sight!

What Halloween treats are your weakness? I wouldn’t even be tempted if there wasn’t chocolate involved — all the fruity stuff would sit around until next year. But damn the peanut butter cups. —Erin

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