I love holidays, but I do not love the onslaught of sugar they bring. In my opinion, Halloween is not the worst offender. It only lasts one night, unlike Christmas which can seemingly stretch for a month full of indulgences. But it is the hardest to change, unlike Easter when you can change what goes in your child's basket or what your child hunts for during an egg hunt. Halloween is all about the candy. Whether your kids are trick or treating, or going to a harvest party, sugar is everywhere.
Enter the Switch Witch
One intriguing solution is to introduce your children to the Switch Witch. This good witch makes a late night visit after Halloween to take the candy your child leaves for her in exchange for a toy.
Introducing the concept to your child
If this sounds like something you would like to try to combat the pile of high-fructose corn syrup filling your home, start with the following ideas.
- Tell your child about the Switch Witch. A little like the Tooth Fairy, but instead of using the currency of lost teeth, she works with candy.
- Help your child write a note to the Switch Witch. This may look a little like a letter to Santa Claus in that you want your child to request specific toys.
- Set the stage by putting candy out for the Switch Witch before your child goes to bed. Choose a location far from your child's bed. By the front door, on the fireplace or bottom step is more appropriate than under your child's pillow!
What is the point?
Aside from reducing the amount of candy your child eats over this holiday without curbing their fun, employing the services of the Switch Witch teaches moderation in a whimsical way. You can let them keep a certain amount of favorite candy, but bring the Switch Witch in to buy back some of the loot.
Special solution for special needs
This is also a great alternative for kids with food allergies or dietary restrictions. Take the temptation away without having the child feel deprived.
This is simply a possible alternative. Of course you can make up your own mind about the Switch Witch. Some parents may not want the extra expense of a toy; others gladly allow a single gluttonous night, or do not have convictions surrounding sugar intake. The option is there for those who need it.
More by Sylvie Branch: