In honor of Halloween, MSN/Money has some suggestions for frugal, healthy Halloween treats. If you ask me, you can’t go wrong with chocolate (and lots of it), but not everyone is on board with the whole junk food thing. Be forewarned… Most of these suggestions actually suck pretty badly, and would leave me disappointed if I were to trick-or-treat at your house. But what are the odds that I’ll actually show up on your doorstep? So if you’re looking to shake things up, then read on…
(1) Money. (Nickel says: I always hated getting a few cents as my ‘treat’ on Halloween. If you’re talking about giving out quarters, then it’s all good — albeit potentially expensive. But if you’re going to low-ball the neighborhood kids, then proceed at your own risk.)
(2) Halloween balloons. (Nickel says: Yawn. Helium would definitely help, but that gets pricey.)
(3) Handfuls or bags of peanuts in the shell. (Nickel says: Unless they’re in a sealed package, there’s no way my kids will be eating them.)
(4) Sugar-free gum. (Nickel says: Sugar-free? What’s wrong with you? It’s Halloween!)
(5) Erasers, pencils, and pencil toppers. (Nickel says: We always had tons of pencils and erasers laying around the house as a kid. Why would I want more for Halloween?)
(6) Small boxes of raisins. (Nickel says: Raisins? On Halloween? Why not just give ’em a can of green beans?)
(7) Plastic novelty rings w/spiders, skulls, pumpkins, etc. (Nickel says: While I’m not crazy about it, my kids actually groove on stuff like this.)
(8) Cheese-and-cracker packs. (Nickel says: Kind of pricey and, again, plain old candy will be much more appreciated.)
(9) Fruit cups or applesauce. (Nickel says: Are you serious? They get this stuff every day for lunch. Why would they want more on Halloween night?)
(10) Make-it-yourself popcorn balls, caramel apples, and cookies. (Nickel says: This might be okay for close friends but, as with the handfuls of peanuts, stuff like this generally goes straight in the trash in my house.)
7 Responses to “Halloween Treat Ideas (or Not)”
Oh, and by the way, the list of alternative treats is majorly lame. If someone had given me an applesauce cup for haloween (assuming they had them in the mid-1960’s), they would have found the cup, upside down, on their car hood the next morning.
The whole “unwrapped treat” thing can work to your advantage. When my daughters were small, we would go through their bags when they got home. I would confiscate all the unwrapped cookies, candy, etc. and then eat it myself. My wife would appropriate all the candy corn for herself. My daughters are in their 20’s now and probably still think that candy corn is dangerous.
Matt: Yes, I’m well aware of that, but I’m still not going to let my kids eat unwrapped or open treats.
Matt, whether it were an urban myth or not, I would still examine my kids’ candy (if I had any), because it does not take very long and it is a basic safety measure. When I was a kid, I always checked my candy over before eating it. Of course, I am not a huge sweets person, and didn’t eat much of it anyway…
Um…you are aware, are you not, that the whole “Halloween candy tainted with poison and razor blades” thing is an urban myth, right?
I kind of like the pencil topper idea. I thought those were pretty cool when I was little, but I have no idea where to get ones that kids would think is cool (I don’t even know what kids like anymore).
I think I’ll stick with candy.
Living on the top floor of an apartment building with a broken buzzer, I do not get trick or treaters. Oh well, we’re still trying to find a house…