We made a quick trip to Costco yesterday with Trick or Treat goodies on the shopping list. I am always conflicted about the ethics of giving away things that I wouldn’t eat myself, but just turning out the lights seems a bit Scrooge-ish and not likely to endear us to the neighborhood urchins. We don’t get many, since we live in a rural area, but I just can’t bear to disappoint them after they walk up the long, dark driveway to our door.

Most parents are no longer willing to let their kids eat home-made treats or fresh fruit from their bags. What to do? I looked for individually packaged nuts. No luck. Small bags of popcorn without bad fats. Nope. Xylitol-sweetened chewing gum, packets of sugar-free cocoa mix. None of those either. Small dark-chocolate bars. Not even any of those. Finally, my husband suggested Peanut M&Ms. They’re not all candy and the peanut part is real food. They are less bad than the alternatives, so that is my compromise this year. Next time I’ll start looking for a better solution while there is time to order something online. Promise.


(C) 2008, Judy Barnes Baker
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Judy Barnes Baker

The working title for my first book was, “You’ll Never Know What You Are Missing.” It summed up my goal: to make eating for health synonymous with eating for pleasure. Once you discover the secret, you will find that the very best food for weight management, longevity, the treatment and prevention of disease, and over-all health and happiness is also the most sumptuous, satisfying, and indulgent way of eating the world has to offer. You are invited to the feast. Enjoy!
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Judy Barnes Baker
10 years ago

Hi Bill. Thanks for the comment. Great idea to give out $2 bills! I'll try to remember that one.

10 years ago

Until my hearing made me stop,I could not hear themknocking. I always gave money, a dime to the average trick or treater, and more for the special ones, neighbors and friends. For the family, I went to the bank a week or two beforehand, and got $2 bills, that made them squeal, as most had never seen one.

14 years ago

I have the same dilemma. In the past I've handed out packs of sugarless gum. This year I went to the dollar store and bought packs of decorated pencils and small notepads. I emptied the packs into a big bowl and set it out (we were out trick – or- treating with our son.

Our son (aged 11) still enjoys trick – or – treating with his friends so we allow it. But, we have a "chocolate only" policy. When he gets home, we sort through the "loot" and toss everything edible that isn't chocolate (the lollypops, hard candies, taffies, bubble gum, etc.). About a third remains, and we keep that in the kitchen where I can keep tabs on it. He has one piece after his lunch and one piece after dinner. I know it's still too much sugar because most all of the chocolate is milk chocolate, but it's a compromise I can live with. We've done this for the past -4 years and he's pretty reasonable about it.

15 years ago

I save coins in a jar all year and give them out at Halloween. I have been doing this for years. Nell