Saturday, October 29, 2005

Toy or Treat?

I live in a section of San Diego County that is a bit removed. I have one neighbor and a lot of property. Or I should say my mom does. I hang out there when I don't have a dog-sitting gig, because it's just too damn expensive to live in San Diego...and my paycheck isn't big enough for a car payment AND rent. So there you go. Anyway, concequently, I haven't dealt with kids at Halloween in years. That will change this Monday, because I am house-sitting in a very kid-friendly neighborhood, and I expect a lot of knocks on the door here. My clients didn't leave any candy, and I could have just turned off the light and ignored the event, but I'm sort-of up for the challenge. These clients left me extra cash anyway, so what the heck. I don't want the poor kids to get yet another few pieces of the common Costco blend, so I wanted to find something a bit unique. I headed to Walmart, where I figured I'd get the best value. The irony is that I work at Costco, but that's beside the point. Anyway, I'm pretty proud of what I came up with. No digital camera, so I have no photos (yet), but check it out! I figured I'd give the kids their choice between a toy or a treat.
I got a package of 12 plastic animals for 88 cents. Cool, huh?
Mini playdough at 10 for $4, so 40 cents a piece is acceptable.
Packages of two glow in the dark bracelets, 44 cents each.
And two packages of pencils (30 per) for $2 each. Not too shabby.
I bought pencils once upon a time when I lived with my boyfriend. He was mortified until we had kids lined up outside, screaming, "they've got pencils here!". Go figure. I heard a dentist in the neighborhood gave out mini tubes of toothpaste and a mini brush, with similar results. Like I said, it's all about something different. Why have 25 Milky Ways, when you can have packages of cheese popcorn? That's what I'm talkin' about!
Anyway, for treats I got packages of Oreos (6 cookies packs, and 12 per box) for $4.
Ditto with boxes of Cheez-its and Keebler cookies.
I figure if I have left over snacks, it's something I myself would want in my lunch. I thought about individually wrapped Ding-Dong cakes, but I thought they might mush.
Then I went to Costco, and they were out of cheese popcorn, so I got a 36 count box of chocolate chip cookies.Pretty darned decent though (I hope the kids agree).

other ideas: bubble liquid, cheap jewelry (bangles, rings, etc), stuff from the craft store like letter beads in little packages (my rule is under 50 cents). Stuff from the party supply store-like favors that are toys and weird goodies. I got candy necklaces. They had pixie-stix. Packages of rice crisy bars, snack-size chips, packages of stickers. Art supplies like small boxes of crayons or paints. Funky band-aids? I'm reaching now.


Blogger quiltpixie said...

I love your idea of toys! I'm lazy when Halloween comes, and simply rush out at the last minute and buy candy that I don't mind if I've got leftovers, but bracelets and the like are a wonderful plan! My hips would appreciate them too :-)

6:27 AM  
Blogger Gina E. said...

Halloween isn't as big in Oz as it is over there, so every year the response is different. This year and last year, there were no kids at all door knocking in our street, but the previous three years were quite busy, and I enjoyed having the kids at the door in their cute costumes, choosing what to take from the tray I held out! I even bought a really UGLY mask once and answered the door wearing it, and one of the kids nearly fell backwards down the front steps, he got such a fright, so I decided not to do that again!

3:21 AM  
Blogger tweety said...

Great ideas for trick-or-treaters. I, too, waited until the last minute, dashing out to buy candy. I think I got home just before sunset! Then I had just a few children come to the door (they must have found your place!)

11:19 AM  

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