Cranford is a Halloween town! The little ghouls and goblins were out in FULL swing on Halloween night! The kids take great pride in counting and weighing their trick-or-treat candy booty and comparing it with that of their friends. And the amount of candy they come home with is nothing short of ridiculous (which, on the positive side, is a testament to the giving and kid-friendly nature of the community). Paying for dental fillings is no fun, so what to do with all of that candy now that it is collected?
Not to worry – there are options. Give each kid a baggie, (you choose the size), tell them to pick out their favorites to fill it with, and when it’s full, they’re done. Candy DOES usually freeze well, especially chocolate, so that’s an option. Or putting it into a “family community bowl” in the TV room could work.
But if you’re looking for options to actually RID yourselves of the stuff, there are other alternatives. Many dentists take part in Halloween candy buy-back programs. There are several in our area, in Westfield, Union, and Roselle Park. Check to find one by you at http://www.halloweencandybuyback.com/ . Or consider a buy-back program of your own. Have a few purchased toys or gift cards, or even dollar bills, on hand, and set up a system among yourselves. (5 pieces of candy = $1, or one toy, etc.)
This is a great opportunity to teach your kids about charity and to think about others. Have them make baggies (and definitely have them do the hands-on work for this to make it more meaningful) of candy to give to friends, relatives, elderly neighbors, or hospital patients, (check dietary restrictions, of course). If you have any left-over, unopened bags of candy intended for trick-or-treaters, Cranford Family Care (61 Myrtle St, Cranford, (908) 276-3530), is always looking for donations for their food pantry, and that’s a great way to help out those in your community by bringing a sugary smile to their faces! For that matter, consider sending some candy to Operation Gratitude, an organization that accepts candy donations for our troops
Of course, you do all this AFTER mom an Dad have picked out all of the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups for themselves. Just sayin.’