The Real Candy Crush

We are on the sixth day hangover from Halloween and I’m wondering at what point the witch (me) flies in to make the candy disappear. I suppose as a parent I could evoke the “because I said so” veto and put an end to the consumption but I won’t. What’s the point of trick or treating if Mom is going to take it all away. They dressed up and they rang the door-bells. It’s their stash.

I love watching the post Halloween sorting and trading. First they separate the Milky Ways from the Snickers and toss out the Almond Joys to a hovering parent. Then the real trading happens. “I’ll give you my full-sized Nestle Crunch bars for all of your Skittles.” The negotiating can get pretty intense especially since the brothers are two years apart. There are four years between me and my brother and there was no negotiating. I pretty much got what I wanted. Sorry bro.

There are several ways to get rid of Halloween candy. Some people call on the Switch Witch – leave your bag of candy outside your bedroom door the Switch Witch will exchange it for a toy. Good on the parents that know about this technique and employ it on the inaugural Halloween. As for the rest of us, introducing the Switch Witch to an eight-year-old is a laughable offense.

Another way to get rid of candy is steal small amounts on a daily basis. They theory here is to reduce the stash without their knowing. Be prepared to say goodbye to skinny jeans if you choose this approach. Do not attempt if you overhear you child counting their candy. They will figure it out and most likely blame a sibling. Be prepared for some intense fighting.

I’ve heard of a dentist who told his kids they could eat all the candy they wanted on Halloween. The catch? They had to relinquish the rest the next morning. Given their belly aches I’m sure they were happy to hand it over. This technique is gluttonous yet effective.

I usually let the kids have a couple of pieces at lunch and after dinner for the first week and a half. Basically if they ask, I’ll say yes. By then they have eaten all the “good stuff”. At some point we toss it into a communal bowl for another week and then I just freeze it or pass it along. Easier once the novelty of having free access to candy has worn off. Do I feel like a great parent when I’m letting my kids have lots of candy? No. But I remember growing up with the same set of rules and I think it worked out okay.

This year the school sent home a notice asking the kids to donate candy for the troops. I read the announcement to my younger son and he was all about it. I was shocked when he unflinchingly unloaded more than half his bounty. “Mom, this is for the people who protect our freedom.” He gave generously. Not just Almond Joys and Tootsie Rolls but loads of the good stuff too. Then he culled out a bag of Twix for the teacher’s helper and a giant Snickers for his teacher. “Mom, my teacher Mrs. Diamond loves Snickers.” Before he sealed up the bag he stuck in a little note – To: Mrs. Diamond – Love:  E. It was very sweet. Now that’s a real candy crush.

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