You already know Santa, the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny. Now meet the Switch Witch.
Like Santa and the Easter Bunny, the Switch Witch visits while your kids sleep.
But unlike Santa, who brings toys, or the Easter Bunny who loads kids up with chocolate eggs, the Switch Witch swaps Halloween lollies for something healthier.
This could be a toy, some sports equipment, stationery, or something experience-based, like tickets to a movie or an adventure you know they’ll love.
It’s sobering to think about the sheer volume of sugar consumption at Halloween.
What's concerning is not the one night with a few extra lollies, but the ongoing consumption of extra sugar collected at halloween over the days or weeks that follow. If your trick-or-treating child visits 30 houses and got 2 fun size chocolate bars from each, that would equate to a jaw-dropping total of 120 teaspoons of sugar – the entire recommended daily allowance for 20 days!
The idea with the Switch Witch is not to be a complete killjoy.
It just allows you to exercise some portion control around the amount of sugar your kids are consuming. The Switch Witch also helps children understand they can have fun without sugar.
Allow your kids to choose some lollies from their haul to enjoy, and then leave the rest at the foot of their bed or by the front door for the Switch Witch to take away overnight. If you'd prefer your kids don't eat any of the sugar they collect, then get them excited and focussed on the pending magical swap that will happen overnight.
A visit from the Switch Witch doesn’t have to be an expensive operation either.
In a child’s world, value doesn’t always equate to money – young kids might be just as thrilled by a playdate or special outing with a friend as material items. For older kids, inviting some friends for a sleepover might do the trick.
The Switch Witch can help you and your younger children enjoy Halloween and trick or treating without the sugar overload.
Enjoying a visit from the Switch Witch:
- Build up the idea of the Switch Witch before Halloween. Get the kids excited about the gifts she might leave in exchange for lollies. The more lollies you leave her, the happier she'll be.
- After their trick or treating adventure, let your kids choose an agreed amount of lollies from their haul.
- Make sure you do actually get rid of the lollies the Switch Witch removes – it’s no good if the Switch Witch’s haul ends up inside the Mum Tum!
What about kids who are too old for Santa, the Easter Bunny and the Switch Witch?
You could try a good old-fashioned buy-back. Agree to swap their collection for extra pocket money, a voucher, an outing together, or something else you know they'll appreciate.
For more tips on taking part in halloween minus the scary amounts of sugar, click here.