Getting Through Halloween Without Candy

by Ann Marie Michaels on October 30, 2009

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If you’re like me, you’re not so crazy about Halloween. I love the costumes and the dressing up, but I hate the idea of my 2-year-old filling up on high fructose corn syrup, cottonseed oil and soy lecithin. Honestly, it wouldn’t bother me quite as much if candy were made of refined sugar and real chocolate, but these days it’s all cheap industrial waste products.

The New Fake Chocolate

Even the chocolate isn’t real anymore. I just recently learned that many chocolate makers have started using cheap vegetable oils in place of cocoa butter. It’s a crime! (If it doesn’t say “milk chocolate” and/or cocoa butter, it may be made of the vegetable oils. Be wary of anything labeled “chocolate candy” and anything containing PGPR.)

Our Halloween Plans

I was thinking that it would be a good idea to start some new Halloween traditions before my daughter is old enough to know better.

They’re having a Halloween trick-or-treating party at my daughter’s daycare today. Parents are invited and we’re encouraged to bring treats. I found this great recipe for old-fashioned Popcorn Balls this morning. Perfect! I’ll whip those up, with a few minor modifications. I’ll use coconut oil instead of canola oil, and I’ll cut the sweeteners in half — and substitute palm sugar or rapadura for refined sugar.

Tomorrow morning I’ll get my daughter dressed up in her Curious George costume and we’re going to meet friends at the farmer’s market. After that, we’re going to pick up our raw milk in the valley.

Tomorrow night we’re going to a party in our neighborhood instead of going trick-or-treating. I’ll make some hot apple cider and maybe some homemade cookies or brownies. Or perhaps some candy made with coconut oil, coconut flakes, chocolate and natural sweeteners.

An Ingenious Way to Get Rid of Halloween Candy

Elaine Fawcett, Aurora, Oregon Weston A. Price Foundation chapter leader, shared this fabulous idea on our chapter leaders email list the other day:

We’ve been doing the Halloween fairy thing, where the kids trade their bag of candy for a gift. That’s worked OK, but they still eat quite a bit of candy while trick or treating.

This year I am laying out a variety of inexpensive gifts on the dining room table, stuff I know they like (they almost never get new stuff, so that helps). Each gift will have a price tag with how many pieces of candy it costs. I am careful to save my receipt because it will be returned if there is not enough candy to buy it.

I struggle every holiday season with letting my children be a normal part of American life but not wanting to lose them to the drug-addiction that is a normal part of American life, especially at the holidays. Especially with the flu this year.

The Halloween Fairy thing has always left them feeling a little left out and deprived, so I’m hoping this will be fun and the candy won’t be nearly as valuable as the gifts and the quest to collect enough candy to buy them.

Don’t you just love it? This is the best idea for dealing with Halloween candy that I’ve ever come across. Of course it won’t work with a 2-year-old. They don’t get the concept of money yet. But when my daughter gets older, we are totally going to do this!

Not related to Halloween, but here’s another great idea for teaching kids about money: Why I Pay My Kids in Monopoly Money on the La Vida Dulce blog.

More Halloween Ideas

Here are some more ideas for avoiding candy this Halloween:

The Candy Fairy at The Nourished Kitchen

Healthier Halloween: 25 Alternatives to Handing Out Candy

Finer Things of Halloween: Sweet-less Trick-or Treats on Kitchen Stewardship

Leave a Comment

What about you? What are you doing this Halloween? Please share below in the comments.

Photo credit: riptheskull at Flickr
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