What to Do If Not Home to Hand Our Halloween Candy?

Updated on October 31, 2008
C.S. asks from Channahon, IL
12 answers

We are going to be trick or treating with my best friends this year in their neighborhood. No one will be home to hand out candy here. I don't want to be the bad neighbor . . .Last year I left out a bowl of candy and came home to an empty bowl in the middle of my front yard. I hate to leave the light on and have kids come up to an empty bowl because someone took all of it. What do you suggest? Should I just put it out? If so, is there some cute message I could put with the bowl? (My husband is coming with us so he can't hand out candy either.) Thanks for your help!

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answers from Chicago on

Hi C.-
I know what you mean... feeling guilty since you are out with your own children getting candy from others, yet no one is home at your own house to pass out candy. Here's what I have done for the past few years......

My neighbors are always home on Halloween since their children are all grown up. I write a note on my door that says.... My neighbors have my bowl of candy to share with you. Happy Halloween! Have fun! (My neighbor passes out her candy first and then grabs my bowl and says here's some more candy from the family/house next to me.)

So.. that's an idea.... not sure if your next door neighbors are home and wouldn't mind doing this for you. I feel much better trick or treating knowing that at least my neighbor is passing out my candy for me. (I am only gone for an hour since that's a long enough time for young kids.)

Another thought.... you could always have someone you know well, hang out at your house to pass out candy.

But... don't worry really.... you would not be the only one who does not answer their door on Halloween. I just tell my kids we are not walking up to the houses if the lights are off.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I am sure your neighbors will understand if you are not there to give out candy. Before I had my son I worked full time, and so did my husband, and we were never home to give out candy. So far nobody has egged our house. Just leave your lights off, and they will know nobody is home.
Or you can devise a mechanism that dispenses candy as the door bell rings by tomorrow. :)
Just go and have fun, and don't worry, there are plenty of other people in the neighborhood to give out candy!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

We are always gone too. I have left bowls out with candy, and each time they have gotten either thrown or stolen. One time it was neighbors of ours who did it, and we live in a nice neighborhood. I would just make sure my porch light was off and go out and enjoy. That's what I do now.



answers from Chicago on

We have a couple people in our neighborhood who put a bowl on a stand with a note that says Happy Halloween please take one candy and enjoy!. I saw 5 or 6 of these last year and I never saw anyone take more. It is probably the older kids who take the most towards the end of the night anyway most of the younger kids go while it is still light out.

I say just leave it out, that is all you can do.



answers from Chicago on

We leave our house dark and do nothing. The way I figure it is: all parents have their "early years," in which they want to be out with their infants/toddlers/little ones on Halloween. As the kids get older, one parent may start to lose some interest and stays home, until the kids are old enough to go out by themselves. I don't feel bad -- these are my years to have the dark house. It will all even out in the end!

Wishing all Mamas a Safe and Happy Halloween!!!



answers from Chicago on

Hi Crissy - this is a good question.

I don't want to sound old-school about this but it is "Trick" or Treats time! If you leave your house dark with no treats to offer, you have to be willing to chance coming home to "Tricks" - toilet paper in your trees, soap on your windows, eggs, etc!

We have never had this happen to us - but I've seen it!

We put on every outside light we possibly can, leave a few lights on inside with the t.v. on and the dogs in the main part of the house so it sounds like we are home - and I place a small container of treats out front while we walk around together with our daughter. I return home to hand out candy after a short time and let my hubby take her around for the rest of the time. Sometimes all the candy is gone, sometimes not.

That's just how we handle it, I don't think there is a wrong way of doing it :-)

Happy Halloween mamas!, Hope everyone gets more treats than tricks!



answers from Chicago on

I know it is late but you do not have to hand out candy many Christian families just leave their light off. Children should not go to door with no lights on.




answers from Decatur on

No one in my neighborhood was home tonight. We all have small children so I am sure we were all out trick or treating. Just leave your light off. You will have plenty of time to give out candy when your children are older. Or, maybe compromise. If trick-or-treating is 3 hours (it is for us) go out for and hour and a half and then give out candy for an hour and a half. Let the boys help you give it out (in their costumes). I know a lot of parents did that tonight and the children were having such a good time giving out the candy. Regardless of what you decide - Have a good time and enjoy those boys. :)



answers from Chicago on

We usually have someone stay home and someone take the kids out.



answers from Chicago on

Okay, I don't mean to sound rude, but, you and your kids are going trick or treating, so, how would trick or treating work for the kids, if every parent (moms AND dads) went with their own kids? No one would be home, and trick or treating wouldn't be fun, if the kids were not able to ring door bells with their cute costumes, and saying "trick or treat"? I personally think that you OR your husband should take the kids, and one of you should stay home, to greet children. Perhaps, one of you, ( you or your husband)take the kids, for a certain amount of time, while the other stays to hand out candy, and then vice a versa. If you were both working, that would be different. Since you both are available, maybe you could work things out, for the sake of the children in the neighborhood.



answers from Chicago on

I second the advice of another poster who said to give candy to your neighbors to hand out. Since you are going to another neighborhood, it probably isn't viable for your husband and you to take turns. I know we don't want to miss out on taking the kids trick or treating when they are small. I would do two things. First give a close neighbor a couple bags of candy to add to theirs. They don't have to say its from you, you will know and thats all that counts. Second, I would put out a bowl at your house with a note. Make sure it is just a cheap thing you don't care about losing! I picked up a big Halloween bowl for $1 at Target.

A couple quotes to consider for the bowl (my bro and I came up with these):

"If you value your teeth, take only 1 piece!"
"1 piece of candy is more than just dandy"
"Please DON'T take just one. DON'T have a happy Halloween."
(maybe reverse psychology will work!)



answers from Chicago on

No one in my neighborhood is ever home or leaves candy bowls, and Im usually the only one sitting by the door waiting for someone to come, I maybe get two or three kids. Just leave your light off.