|And so it begins....|
- Donate candy to our troops. Operation Gratitude has a Halloween Candy Buy Back program where local dentists buy your unwanted candy and then donate the candy to Operation Gratitude to be sent to our trips. Check Halloween Candy Buy Back to see if there are dentists in your area participating. Additionally, some schools in your area may be collecting candy for the troops as well. (My daughter's is but there is no buy back.)
- Freeze the chocolate bars. Sometimes, I am really surprised by how many chocolate bars kids get for Halloween. You can freeze these bars to use later in the year. Remember to put it in a freezer bag and push all of the air out before sealing. I have read that chocolate can keep up to a year this way.
- Use in baking. You can easily use M&M's, Reese's Pieces, Peanut Butter Cup, and Hershey Kisses in baking. Think monster cookies, peanut butter blossoms, surprise cupcakes, and more!
- Don't forget the gingerbread houses! I am sure that there is a ton you can pillage to construct houses in the upcoming months.
- Make a Halloween candy bark. Ok, I know, this will still induce some sugar shock. However, maybe you can make some for a get together and unload a bunch of candy? All you really need to do is crush or break up some of the candy of your choice. Melt some chocolate and pour the chocolate into a lined dish. Pour the broken up candy onto the melted chocolate and press it lightly into the chocolate. Chill in the fridge. Real easy! You can check Annie's Eats for a more detailed recipe idea.
- Use the hard candies in art. You can make some cool mosaics with the candy. Also--think about buttons, eyes, etc for snowman projects in the future. Or, maybe you can adorn some cute ornaments with brightly colored candy?
- Confiscate the hard candies to use when you are the kids have a cold, soar throat, etc. Another thing that never ceases to amaze me--how many peppermints, Werther's Originals, and other sucking candies my daughter receives. Since I have monstrous allergies, I use tons of sucking candies each year. We usually nab these from my daughter's stash to use when we have allergy issues, colds, etc.
- Bring it to work. I know my coworkers love me for this! Remember, your office will most likely be inundated with treats the next couple of months. I prefer to wait until mid-January to bring some candy to work. By then, there aren't as many treats at work and the post-holiday letdown/winter doldrums have begun. Time for a pick me up!
- Pick out candy to use for the holidays. I like to have a bowl of candy for guests when they come over for the holidays. If I see anything appropriate from the Halloween candy, into the bowl it goes!
For some more ideas, check Parenthood.com.