Halloween is fast approaching. As is very evident by the in-my-face candy displays in stores.
Most years (okay, maybe all years) I have eaten Halloween candy. Sometimes in moderation; sometimes not. Some years during Halloween I have been on a diet; some years not. Some years I have been thin; some years… not so much. Some years I thought about the candy for weeks in advance; some years I just took the holiday in stride as it came.
Once upon a time I used to buy what my kids would define as “good” candy. You know the kind: Snickers and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Three Musketeers and Tootsie Rolls and the like. I bought it early, when the selection was good and when it was on sale. (Unless my husband beat me to the punch and stocked up at Costco.) And more often than not, my whole family got into the stash before the holiday and it had to be replenished.
So then I evolved into the “don’t buy it until the last minute” years. But I still got the good stuff. Lots of it, because you never want to risk running out:) And after we shut off the lights on the 31st, there were leftovers. And when my kids sorted through their haul, they gave whatever candy they didn’t like, coconut for example, to me. And sometimes I snuck into their plastic pumpkins, sitting for weeks on the pantry shelf, and searched for something I thought might not be missed. I let me boys eat as much candy as fast as they wanted; the sooner it was gone, the better.
Then came the years when I only bought candy that didn’t tempt me. Like Nerds and Sweet Tarts. My boys liked them enough to eat the leftovers, grudgingly, but I didn’t. That worked pretty well for a while. But sometimes I called out to my neighbors, as we stood in our doorways watching for little costumed Trick or Treaters, and asked what they were giving out. And if it was something I wanted, I traded with them and enjoyed a $100,000 Bar (or two) or Malted Milkballs or whatever else it was that I was too smart to buy for my own stash. But at least it was more moderation than if I had bags of it at home already.
Then my youngest outgrew going door-to-door. And looked forward to our leftovers as his only Halloween booty. So it was back to “good” candy, tempting candy, high fat candy. Like Milky Way Darks and Charleston Chews. I waited to buy it until the last minute. That kept me from eating it before the holiday. But what to do with the leftovers that would sit in my house and call to me!? Then it hit me – store them in my son’s car trunk. During the days, the car is gone, sitting in the high school parking lot. When it is home, I have to make a serious effort to head out to the garage and pop the trunk to indulge. Sometimes that even made me think twice! The trunk became the willpower that I didn’t have.
This year I am already thinking ahead to Halloween. Thanks in part to the candy I just bought for a care package for my son at college. And thanks to the fact that I am an over-planner and way too focused on my eating right now. I have not decided what my approach to eating candy will be this year. I am inclined to commit to eating none. Zip, zero, nada.
But I can tell you this much – I will buy my candy at the last minute, I will not overbuy, and any leftovers will be immediately handed over to my son to hide away wherever he wants. Forget about ME putting it in the trunk and knowing it is there. Let him take it and run with it. He’ll like that – having it all to himself without his dad or me to stick our grubby little paws into the bag. And next year, when my youngest is off at college, my “good” candy buying days will be over! And as the number of Trick or Treaters has dwindled done to almost nothing, maybe the year will come when our outside light will stay off and I won’t buy even one lonely candy bar. Sorry hubby.
How do you handle Halloween candy?