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The little book with BIG resources!

30 Plus Fun Candy Alternatives For This Halloween

Are you looking for ways to avoid the Halloween sugar rush this year? Here are a few easy ideas to contribute to your kiddos Halloween parties and fun alternatives to pass out from your door step!  Take a look!

halloween candy alternatives

30 Plus Fun Candy Alternatives For This Halloween

Food allergies are on the rise and many popular candies have peanuts and other allergens. With your kids getting candy at school, the bank, other houses and almost everywhere they go, why not you be the house with kid-approved fun alternatives to high sugary treats, I guarantee other mamas with thank you!

Small plastic toys are a great idea!

My daughter will be entertained with small toys for weeks after Halloween, passing the tinker toys back and forth between her purses and shopping cart. Tiny toys can be found at any party supply store or craft shops.

  • Bubbles
  • Mini puzzles
  • Kazoos
  • Whistles
  • Yo-yos
  • Bouncy balls
  • Whistles
  • Wind-up toys
  • Spin tops
  • Glow sticks
  • Mini play-dough

Dress-up items:

  • Plastic bracelets
  • Necklaces
  • Temporary tattoos
  • Sunglasses
  • Snap Bracelets
  • Plastic spider rings
  • Glow bracelets

Fall or Halloween themed school supplies:

  • Pencils
  • Sticker
  • Erasers
  • Rubber stamps
  • Mini crayon sets
  • Bookmarks
  • Stencils
  • Rulers
  • Post its
  • Pencil toppers
  • Mini notebooks

If you are still looking forward to handing out treats, here are some yummy healthy food alternatives for your trick-or-treaters

  • 100 calorie packets,
  • Granola bars,
  • Mini box of raisins
  • Low-fat packets of popcorn
  • Peanut butter or cheese cracker packs

If you plan on having a steady stream of friendly faces at your house, here are some fun ideas for those close neighbor friends, school mates or family members that will be stopping by

  • Hot apple cider
  • Caramel candy apples
  • Goody bags full of little treats, stickers and anything else age appropriate
  • Draw a pumpkin face with a black sharpie on oranges
  • Activity kits with crayons and a small coloring book
  • Small container of homemade slime (for the older treaters)

I hope these ideas will make all the kids feel extra treated this Halloween!

From iFamily to Yours,


The Art of Gift Giving; Teaching Kids To Help Others In Need

Gift giving can sometimes be a bit of a struggle!  With the number of toys that most households with small children usually have it’s hard to know what the perfect gift may be.  Max, from our iFamily Mom & Dad Squad shares with us a unique way that his family has found to give!  Take a look…

The Art of Gift Giving; Teaching Kids To Help Others In Need

There are so many little details that go into parenting that you’ve probably never thought of.  Some that actually wouldn’t think of until the situation you need them for comes up. One of those situations, for us, is gift giving.  Especially as our kids get older.  The dilemma is that our kids simply have enough toys. It is to the point that we are keeping some of them in the basement.  This way we can incorporate “new” toys into the selection for our children from time to time. There are several different resources available for how to cycle your toys, so we know that we’re not alone in this situation.

​​I have also witnessed the crazy number of toys that our friends’ children have to play with on visits over to their houses. Every time we go shopping for a birthday party (usually at Target) and walk the aisles looking at all of the shiny plastic toys, I just can’t help but think about all of the half-broken/half-played-with toys sitting around my own house. I actually feel kind of bad for my friends to be adding to their existing problem with my give. Plus, I have to wonder what the message and meaning behind all of these toy options at the store really is…

As you can see…

The dilemma is a pretty major one and the first solution I came up with was to get the kids books! My wife and I figured that the kinds can never have too many books and gifts like that fit our personalities since we both have a background in education. When you give a book, you’re giving a greater gift than just a toy since books have deeper meanings and messages for the readers. They’re not just an item. The one thing to be cautious about is making sure that, when you do give a book, you’re not buying duplicates of books that your children (or your friends’ children) already have. After all, nobody needs four copies of “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom”.

This ​​left ​​us ​​with ​​the​ ​new dilemma​​ of​ ​knowing ​​that ​​we ​​did ​​not ​​want ​​to ​​add​ ​to​ ​our ​​friends’ ​​collections ​​of ​​plastic​ ​toys.  Now we were also ​​feeling ​​that books​​ may ​​not ​​be ​​that ​​different​ ​from the ​​original ​​problem.

For ​​us, ​​the ​​solution ​​has ​​become ​​to ​​donate ​​to ​​a ​​charity ​​in ​​the ​​name ​​of ​​the ​​child. ​​

We ​​try​ ​and choose ​​a ​​charity ​​whose ​​mission​ ​is ​​a ​​concept ​​that ​​the ​​child ​​will ​​understand, ​​like ​​clean ​​water. ​​We also​​ realized ​​that ​​it ​​is ​​beyond ​​anti-climactic ​​for ​​a ​​child ​​to ​​receive​ ​a​​piece ​​of ​​paper ​​as ​​a ​​gift. ​​That is​ ​why ​​we ​​make ​​sure ​​that ​​we ​​also​​ include ​​a ​​book ​​about ​​the ​​topic ​​of ​​the ​​charity’s ​​mission. ​​So, ​​if we​ ​donate ​​to​ ​Charity ​​Water, ​​we ​​would ​​get ​​a ​​children’s ​​book ​​that ​​explains ​​the ​​fact​ ​that ​​there ​​is only ​​so ​​much ​​water ​​on​ ​the​ ​planet ​​and​ ​that ​​not ​​all ​​kids ​​have ​​access ​​to ​​safe, ​​clean​ ​water. ​​

We were ​​a ​​little​ ​hesitant​​ the​ ​first ​​time ​​we ​​gave ​​this ​​as ​​a ​​gift ​​because​ ​we​ ​did ​​not ​​want ​​to ​​seem pompous ​​or ​​offend​ ​anyone, ​​but ​​it ​​went ​​over​​ great. ​​The ​​child ​​was ​​excited ​​to ​​get ​​a ​​new ​​book ​​that had ​​a ​​science angle ​​and ​​the ​​parents ​​were ​​excited ​​because ​​it ​​gave ​​an ​​easy ​​opening ​​to ​​a discussion ​​about ​​the ​​broader ​​world. ​​I ​​like​ ​that ​​it ​​also ​​gives ​​us ​​an ​​opportunity ​​to ​​talk ​​to ​​our children​ ​about ​​charity ​​as ​​well ​​as, ​​the ​​concept ​​of ​​giving​ ​a ​​gift ​​with ​​meaning.

​​We​​ can​​ talk​ ​and​ ​ask our ​​kids ​​what ​​kind ​​of ​​charity​ ​they​ think​ ​their​​ friend ​​would ​​be ​​interested​ ​in​ ​helping. ​​It ​​is ​​never ​​too early​ ​to ​​start​ ​these ​​conversations ​​and​ ​start​ ​the ​​empathy ​​building.

From iFamily to Yours,


5 Spooktacular Ideas For Celebrating Halloween in the Classroom

 Halloween is going to be here before we know it!  Here is Ruth, from our iFamily Mom & Dad Squad with some spooky ideas for celebrating Halloween in the classroom!

celebrating halloween

5 Spooktacular Ideas For Celebrating Halloween in the Classroom

Halloween comes around once a year, and there are a lot of ways to make it special without adding lots of sugar and hyper kids into the mix. Many of you are already planning out ways to help your child’s classroom celebrate this year. Here are a few ideas that are great for the classroom!

#1 Do-It-Yourself Games & Activities 

DIY games are a great way to celebrate parties at school. Most of the time they are cheap and use items that you can find at home such as ghost bowling.

Items: bowling pins or empty water bottles, crepe or toilet paper, googly eyes or black paper and a small ball. The kids can even help prepare the activity. For directions and other DIY party games check out this link from Good Housekeeping.

#2 Skip the Sweets 

Non-candy Halloween treats are a delicious and healthy idea for the classroom party. There are a lot of fun and healthy alternatives that can be made at home and sent in without giving every child a sugar buzz. Mini mummy pizzas, ghost bananas and spider crackers are just a few ideas to get you started. Listotic.com has 64 ideas to choose from.

#3 Get a Little Crafty 

Crafts are usually a winner with kids. They love things that are hands on and it’s also the best way to teach young ones new skills. Parents.com has some fun ideas for party crafts that kids can create at school as well as some other fun ideas for costumes and decorations. These ideas are simple to create and there are video tutorials for some of them as well!

#4 Don’t Be Too Scared to Keep it Fit 

Make it a fit Halloween by adding in some themed movement activities. You can do a Halloween dance party, do story yoga, spider parachute toss, zombie tag or a variety of other exercises that will be fun to get them up and moving. These activities are geared toward PE teachers but they would work well out on the playground too! GopherSport.com has some great ideas for Halloween!

#5 Every Good Ghoul and Goblin Loves to Read 

Get those kids reading with Halloween themed books and songs.  Fortunately, there are books out there for all ages at the school library or book fair. You can do buddy reading or a group story time. You can make it more fun with puppets, finger plays, or let kids act it out and tell the story to each other. The more participation that is included, the more fun it will be for everyone. Here are some fun book ideas for younger elementary kids from StorytimeKatie.com.

I hope you find some of these ideas useful for this year’s Halloween party!

From iFamily to Yours,