I have always loved Halloween. All those years of making costumes for the kids when they were little was so much fun. They were cute little clowns(not like the creepy clowns of today) when they were toddlers. Then they were devils and a myriad of other characters. I sewed on a regular basis back then so their costumes were homemade and adorable.
When they were 8 or so they had to be creative because I made them make their own costumes with a little bit of my help. By the time they were in middle school, I felt they were too old to go out trick or treating. That is when they started helping me hand out the candy.
Now I get to enjoy seeing what my grandchildren dress up as. My grandson was excited yesterday that Halloween is a week from today.
I remember all of those Halloween evenings going through the kids candy bags and tossing anything that was open or even looked suspicious. My children were not allowed to eat anything until Mom and Dad checked each and every piece.
Besides seeing the joy on the faces of the little ones that come trick or treating the best part of Halloween now for me has been going to the after Halloween sales. They used to only be after Halloween but these days it seems that places like Super Walmart reduce their candy on Halloween. I remember going to shop the day after Halloween and being shocked that there was none left. Other stores seem to wait until the next day to reduce it to 50% off and then 75% off. If there is any left after that, you might be able to pick it up at 90% off.
I always pick up as much candy with coupons that I can find reduced that I know we will use during the year. We use all kinds of chocolate, like Hershey bars, M&M's, Milky Ways, Butterfingers, etc. to bake cookies and cookie bars. I also use the Hershey bars to make smores, fudge and chocolate covered pretzels. I know many people pick up next year's candy and freeze it. We don't usually do that because I need the freezer space for other things and the candy has a long shelf life. I will save out any red or green M&M's to use for Christmas and Valentines candy for the grands. I enjoyed using the red M&M peanut ones to make the kids water bottles( free from LL Bean) for Valentines Day last year.
I use the M&M's or M&M peanuts for party mixes too.
One year I picked up 90% off Smarties to make Christmas wreaths for all of my family. I just tied the Smarties all together following the directions that Tawra has here for making one with other candies:
Candy Christmas Wreath
Stores reduce all kinds of leftover Halloween cookies, cakes, cupcakes, etc in their bakery departments.
Many years I have picked up Pillsbury Halloween cookies for pennies after coupons and froze them to use in the future. Keep an eye out for Halloween cakes mixes on the shelves too.
Let's not forget that decorations and costumes will be greatly reduced after Halloween so that is the best time to buy them for next year. After all of the years I have celebrated Halloween, I have more than plenty now.
Remember that you can buy pumpkins for cheap right after the holiday too. Many grocery stores will cut the prices to get rid of their oversupply. The same goes for farmers markets and produce stores. A tractor company that I know sells pumpkins every year and then reduces them. It is a great time to buy them and bake them. Roast and salt the seeds for a treat. Divvy up the baked pumpkin into portions sizes for breads, muffins and pies.
Keep an eye out for the pumpkin decorated baking cups for cupcakes at a reduced price. The same goes for napkins and plates that you can use right through Thanksgiving. I like to have a supply of these on hand for that holiday to use for snacking all day. It is enough work to wash all of the dishes from dinner.
So now that it is a week before Halloween get your game face on and make a list of what you can use at the after Halloween sales. Put a little bit of money out then so that you can save a lot in the future.
If you buy something at the after Halloween sales that I don't have listed her, please leave a comment and share with the rest of us.