It’s that time of year. No, I’m not talking about pumpkin lattes or the beautiful fall colors. It’s the time of year when our kids get enough candy in one night to make Willy Wonka jealous. Our adult hat can’t wait to sneak a few of their treats, while our parent hat is not looking forward to the impending candy meltdown, when we tell our kids they can only have a couple pieces before they turn into the very hungry caterpillar.
What if I told you it doesn’t have to be this way (not the part about us sneaking some of their candy, because that HAS to be that way)? What if I told you, that if you let your kids go nuts with their candy that night, that most of them would actually not eat as much as you think? I know that it goes against everything we were all taught as kids. But this is the year 2021! While some things haven’t changed (mom jeans are cool again!), many things have (myspace is gone, many of our friends now know how to make sourdough), and if we give our kids the chance to listen to their bodies, they may surprise us with the right choice.
One of the leading resources for feeding kids, Feeding Littles, supports this concept with some top recommendations including, offering a filling dinner before trick-or-treating, allowing them to eat as much candy as they want that night, then using one of their trademark guidelines after Halloween night — “you provide, child decides.” Check out their post for more detailed recommendations.
We started doing this in our family a few years ago, and the candy meltdowns have reduced drastically. After sorting their haul, we let them have free reign that night, then each night thereafter we let them choose one to have with dinner until it’s gone! We help it disappear a bit quicker as well — Mama needs her Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup!