EARN YOUR CANDY RUNNING/WALKING, THEN GIVE SOME TO OTHERS We usually overbuy candy for giving to Trick-or-Treaters on Halloween night. I am the one who selects and purchases the brands and sizes that we will have ready in a large bowl near the door. Every year we really, really, hope that there are lots of little ones that come by, with parents standing off a bit, holding flashlights.
And we enjoy the older kids who don’t need the company of moms or dads. They are more mercenary about the holiday and go to neighborhoods that will give up a large haul of candy. Each year a few teenagers will show up on the doorstep, without costumes, somewhat shy but also a little defiant. As if ready to proclaim they are not too old, but at the same eager to see what loot is being given out. We're so happy they still want to participate in this tradition.
That is why I buy the full or king-size candy. Snickers, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, KitKat Bars, Sweet-Tarts. I want us to get the reputation of being a top house for Trick-or-Treating. HOWEVER, the weather sometimes changes the habits of the parents and children. If a rainy and cold evening, everyone seems to pack into vans and head for high-density subdivisions. I just learned that now there are official ‘safe” trick or treat nights organized by some townships. Parents pull into a parking lot, open the hatch or trunk, and the kids go from car to car, collecting candy from people they know. Or the fire stations host a night for providing games and treats.
Which means there are fewer and fewer ghosts, witches, pirates, and princesses ringing our doorbell and going away with candy. Which means it stays in our house. A problem arises because I’ll keep eating it unless it’s given away. Some can be taken to work, but everyone else has their own leftovers to unload somewhere, so it's not always appreciated there.
Cindy Ma, the nutritionist who calculated how much walking or running would be needed to burn off fun and snack-size Halloween candy (see previous BLOG post), suggested another more generous way to make our home a candy-free zone. DONATE IT!
Ma says, “If the sugar cravings hit too hard, the safest route is to avoid a scenario with you left alone with a bucket full of candy. Bring the leftovers to the office, your dentist, a local charity (think: nursing home, food pantry, homeless shelter) or send it overseas! Sharing is caring!”
The link the Ma article provides to “Operation Gratitude Blog” which, in turn, links to a page that maps the nearest drop-off location for the sweet stuff is not active (here is the active link).
Upon reading her piece, I recalled a Christmas season years ago that we “adopted” a soldier as a chartable activity. I contacted him and asked what our family could send to make his tour overseas in the Middle East a bit easier. He wanted snacks and candy. After the night’s duty-watch there was nothing to eat; the canteen was closed. Being a mom, I sent candy but included granola and protein bars, peanut butter and cracker snacks, and other items I thought were more nutritious too.
The Ma article provides a link to “Operation Gratitude Blog” (here is the updated active link), which has a link to a page that maps the nearest drop-off location for the sweet stuff. Another organization with similar activities is OperationShoebox.com.
If donating seems to be an ideal way to avoid having Halloween candy in close reach for days and weeks after the big night, plus do good, THINK & PLAN AHEAD. Buy healthy items a soldier might like, a dentist would think are good for young teeth, or the needy staying at a shelter could find comforting.
Now that our home isn’t likely to be welcoming very many trick-or-treaters on Halloween night, my purchases are PLANNED IN ADVANCE to donate to these alternative recipients. It’s a wonderful way to feel included in the holiday and show our generousity.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
BRIDGE TO PHYSICAL SELF
Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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