We hope you had a fun Halloween yesterday! If you’re anything like us, then you currently have way too much candy on your hands. Here are a few ideas on what to do with the leftovers:
1. Send it to our troops overseas. Organizations like Operation Shoebox (which is specifically asking for candy for holiday shipments) and Operation Gratitude accept items to include in care packages sent to those serving abroad, and while candy may not be at the very top of their wish lists, it will certainly bring a smile to their faces (especially if your kids were to include a hand-written letter!).
2. “Sell” it. Many dentists and local businesses participate in candy buy-back programs where they use coupons, toys, toothbrushes, etc. to “buy” candy from kids and then send it to one of the organizations above. You can find participating businesses here (if you live in NYC, Red Tricycle has a list of local options).
3. Give it to children who were unable to trick-or-treat. Ronald McDonald House Charities accepts candy donations for kids who couldn’t take part in the holiday. Search for your local branch.
4. Donate it. Food pantries, nursing homes, and local shelters will be more than happy to take your leftover candy off your hands! In NYC, you can check out Citymeals, an organization that provides nutritionally balanced meals to homebound seniors. Organizations like Meals on Wheels or YWAA have local programs throughout the country as well, and don’t forget your neighborhood shelters, food banks, and places of worship.
4. Support the unsung heroes of your community! Your local Police & Fire Departments, mail carriers, teachers, and sanitation workers will appreciate the kind gesture.
5. Save it and get crafty: make an advent calendar, decorate a gingerbread house, or incorporate it into your holiday baking (candy has a long shelf life!). Or, if there are any November/December birthdays in your family, use the candy in a piñata!
What do you usually do with all your leftover candy?