Sunday, April 17, 2011

Good Tip for Candy Treats

My youngest son is in preschool with a little girl that has a peanut allergy.  This last Friday, their class had an Easter Egg hunt.  Parents were asked to bring in a dozen plastic eggs filled with treats.  The note home to the parents reminded us that there was a child in the class with a peanut allergy and asked that we be mindful of the type of treats that we put in the eggs.

On the way home, I let my son open the plastic eggs that he had found during the hunt to see what treats they held.  Guess what was in one of the eggs?  A miniature Reese's Peanut Butter Cup.  Seriously?? There were several hard candies in some of the eggs, some questionable, but there is no question about the safety of a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup.  Was that a busy mom that just didn't think or an irritated mom that was making a statement.  Given that I know all the parents, I'm going to choose to believe it was a busy mom.  Regardless, I made a call to the mom of the little girl giving her a head's up of what he found in one of his plastic eggs.  I told her I felt her pain.  Abigail is all the time bringing home unsafe treats from school and birthday parties.  As a second grader, she knows that she's not allowed to eat anything until we look at the treats together.

I was reading through a copy of Family Fun yesterday and came across a really good tip that had been submitted by a reader whose son had several severe food allergies.  She found a really large jar and put lines around it at several places.  Each line had a dollar value associated with it.  When her son received treats that he couldn't eat, he'd drop it in the jar.  When the candy reached one of the lines, he could choose to keep saving or turn it into cash to then spend on something he wanted.

I have 2 one gallon bags full of candy that my kids have received from various parties and holiday events.  It's not all unsafe, I just limit the amount of candy my kids can eat.  Not only the amount though, but the type.  I'd rather they have something that I've provided that is either organic or that does not contain artificial sweeteners and dyes.  I might try this tip and make a treat trade-in jar for our house as well.  In the meantime, does anybody know what to do with all that candy?


Anonymous said...

What an interesting post. It was a miniature Reese's peanut butter cup that almost took my (now) 6 year old's life three years ago. A little boy at her preschool gave it to her and she ate it right before I picked her up. Thankfully, everything worked out (after 2 epipens and much time with doctors) and she now knows not to eat anything without checking with us first.

My daughter is in the peanut flour study at Duke, too. She entered in April, 2009, and withdrew in June, 2010, only to re-enter again last August. We are keeping our fingers crossed that she will tolerate the doses better this time.

Best of luck to you and your family.

Mom with a Mission said...

Anonymous, thanks for leaving a comment. I believe we've chatted before via e-mail.

What a difficult lesson for your daughter and her preschool. It's such a blessing that her story had a good ending. Thanks for sharing it with the other readers. Whether the candy be hidden inside an Easter egg or simply offered outside at preschool pick-up, our younger kids have to know the risk of eating anything that hasn't first been checked by a parent. I'd like to add adult or teacher to that, but I've found that they are most often the guilty parties for providing unsafe treats.

Good luck with the Duke trial. When you get a chance, send me an e-mail and update me on your daughter's progress.

Laura said...

First of all, how frustrating. We experienced the exact same thing at our Halloween Trunk or Treat. No nut products and people brought Reeses and snickers. Great idea bout the treat jar. I know we have some unsure ones coming home today that I need to pull out. Getting coins in place of them will surely made my 5 year old a happy camper! I think I'm going to count each treat - love it, thanks!