I’m glad my parents didn’t know about the Halloween fairy! JIt’s really not about the candy. Kids have fun when their parents get involved and have fun themselves. Part of being green is focusing on people instead of things, so try to reduce the amount of ‘things’ you incorporate into your Halloween by increasing the focus on fun. Here are some ideas for making your Green Halloween fun for your kids and for you:
- Make a big deal of your child’s costume – getting dressed, taking pictures, etc.
- Have a neighborhood party and forgo trick-or-treating all together. Ask your child’s school to consider making their Halloween celebration green as well.
- Have a charity-themed party. Instead of giving out prizes for games, allow children to pick from a list of charities and make a donation in their name.
- Have a Halloween gratitude party. Deliver handmade cards to your local farmer and take a tour of his/her field. Arrange before hand for each child to bring a mini pumpkin home.
- Talk to your neighbors about what they will be giving away in advance. One option is to trick-or-treat only at homes where you know Green Halloween items will be passed out.
- Show your Green by displaying your own Green Halloween sign and ask your Green Halloween neighbors to do the same. Turn looking for the signs into a hunt for treasures. The Green Halloween sign on your own door will announce to trick-or-treaters that they’re in for a great surprise!
- Give kids a full, healthy meal before they go out trick-or-treating so they are not hungry.
- Talk to your kids about what is in candy and why it is not healthy. Ask them to come up with creative, kid and Earth-friendly alternatives that your own family can hand out and feel good about.
- When trick-or-treaters come to your door, shout, “Happy Hallo-green!!!
If your child does collect candy:
- Invite the Halloween Fairy to come to your home. Tell your child a story, or use our book to talk about how the Halloween fairy turns candy into magic fairy dust and so needs as much candy as she can get her hands on. Explain that if a child leaves his bag of candy outside on the porch, the fairy will gladly come to take the candy, and because she will be so grateful for the help with her fairy-dust-making, she’ll leave in the candy’s place a very special gift. Some parents make the exchange while their child is brushing their teeth, others wait until their child is asleep. Either way, make a big deal of it! Act surprised! You may also want to consider letting your child keep a small amount of candy and leaving the rest out for the fairy. Please don’t donate your leftover sweets to charity, though. Other people’s kids don’t need the candy either.
- Have a candy trade: let your kids trade their candy towards other little gifts or give them a “pumpkin point” for each piece of candy they collect. Use pumpkin points to “buy” a toy or do a special activity with your child.
- Let them choose a limited amount of candy to eat (for example, one piece for each year your child is old). In many cities, the leftover candy can be recycled and turned into compost! Just be sure to remove candy from its wrapper first.