Preventing the flood…of Halloween candy:

How do you handle your sugar-monster after trick or treating?

I have fond memories of coveting and obsessively sorting my Halloween goodies as a child. I can clearly remember dumping out my bucket and arranging them a million ways: chocolate versus non-chocolate, hard versus chewy, “keepers” versus ones I would be willing to trade with my brother and friends, etc. I also remember the childhood rite of passage of eating so much Halloween candy that my teeth felt fuzzy and my stomach hurt.

Now, as a mom of a four-year-old, I’m facing this for the first time from the parents’ perspective. My two sons trick or treated ahead of the storm, and they got quite a lot of candy. We generally don’t eat a lot of candy or junk food in our house, but I don’t want to spoil the fun of the holiday. The mom in me wants to ration it out carefully, making it last for weeks and weeks, and brushing my son’s teeth after anything gooey or gummy. The former-kid in me wants to say “Go nuts! And start with the Kit-Kats and Twix because they ROCK!”

We’ve handled this dilemma so far by allowing a “candy free-for-all” on the day of the trick-or-treating (the weekend before Halloween this year), during which my son ate no less than two ring pops, some gummies, and a Fun Dip (gaaaasp!) and we all lived to tell the tale. I “super-brushed” his teeth right after, and he said he wasn’t in the mood for more candy (pheeeew!). Now his bucket sits in the cabinet, and he knows he can pick one after lunch piece and one after dinner piece. He hasn’t tried to sneak extra, and we’re both satisfied with the arrangement.

How have you handled the sudden influx of pounds of candy? Do you secretly weed it out? Sneak some yourself (and yes, I did take a couple for me, oops!)? What has worked, or hasn’t worked, to avoid the tantrums over candy this year?

Bring on the sugar.


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