What wonderful childhood memories I have of Halloween! I can remember my dad taking us up and down the block, and it seemed as if we had walked miles to collect the most candy possible. Back in those days, no one worried about kids being obese, candy rotting your teeth, or your stash of goodies being contaminated or laced with harmful substances.
Life was good then and there was always that one neighbor who was completely serious when he told you he expected you to do a trick before you got a treat. Not to mention the one house that had the whole front yard decorated like a haunted house or a grave yard, and somebody jumped out and scared you on your way up the front walkway!
Today many parents are prohibiting their children from eating too much candy and “junk food.” There are many alternatives to giving out Halloween candy, though. Kids shouldn’t have to miss out on this childhood activity that is so much fun and provides parents opportunities for taking pictures that will embarrass the kids later!
Halloween Candy Alternative – Stickers
I know this doesn’t seem like a very exciting suggestion, but little kids love stickers! You can buy mega rolls of them at most “dollar stores” and give each child several tear-off sheets of them-they’ll think they’ve hit the jackpot!
Halloween Candy Alternative – Temporary Tattoos
Like stickers, kids love tattoos! These are also pretty widely available at discount and craft stores in a variety of themes. The tattoos and stickers could even be combined for double the fun!
Halloween Candy Alternative – Goldfish Crackers
Individual serving packs of Goldfish crackers are a great alternative to Halloween candy. They are healthy and I’ve never met a child (or an adult, for that matter!) who didn’t like Goldfish. Goldfish crackers are available in lots of colors and flavors, too.
Halloween Candy Alternative – Pretzels
Like Goldfish crackers and other types of snacks, pretzels can be purchased in single-serving size packages. Purchased in a mega-pack at Costco, Sam’s Club or Wal-Mart, these snack items are very inexpensive.
Halloween Candy Alternative – Cereal Bars
Cereal bars or snack bars are a great Halloween candy alternative. They are generally healthy-or at least not pure sugar. Cereal bars can be purchased at the dollar store, or just about anywhere and are a great alternative for kids who can’t eat chocolate or whose parents don’t want them to have too much candy.
Halloween Candy Alternative – Post-It Notes
Is there a child alive who isn’t fascinated by post-it notes? The three year old I nanny for goes nuts with these modern wonders! She can write and color on them, of course, but the most fun is sticking them everywhere!
Halloween Candy Alternative – Pencils
You read correctly! Pencils can be purchased anywhere in just about every color, décor, theme and design imaginable. Not only are pencils practical, but kids love them! By the end of October, most of the back-to-school pencils are pretty boring and the erasers are worn down, so this is a great goody bag alternative to candy.
Halloween Candy Alternative – Crayons
A little 4-pack box of crayons is a great Halloween candy alternative. Kids will certainly enjoy crayons for a lot longer than they would candy. Kids can stick them in a tote bag or back pack for trips in the car, to use while sitting in a doctor’s office or other places with a long wait.
Use your imagination and you can make Halloween fun and candy-free for the little ghosts, goblins, fairy princesses and superheroes who ring your doorbell this year.