Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Planning for a Frugal Halloween

Here's a formula for a frugal Halloween that I've practiced for years. Only lately have I seen how it also dovetails with preparedness. Let me explain:  We are part-time residents of a subdivision with 1/8th acre lots less than 10 miles north of the US-Mex border. We're here for Halloween each year.  For us, it consists of between 60 and 80 children coming to the door, of which 20% are local kids and 80% who have come up from Mexico for the event. This creates two concerns for me: having enough and having the treats do no harm.

First step in my method is deciding how much I want to spend PER CHILD.  I aim for not more than 25 cents.  At 80 children, that would cost me $20.  I head to Big Lot and go first to the gum rack. I look for their 4 packs for $1 of sugarless gum. In a good year, that's most of what I give out, though I will usually get one package of other treats for children too small to chew gum.

This year, I was not so lucky.  I was only able to cover 20 kids with the 4/$1 gum.  So on to other treats.  I read labels and decided on some Nabisco multipacks. each contained 12 bags of low-fat crackers and cookies for a unit cost of around 22 cents each. 

How does this tie in with preparedness, other than the frugal part? Back to the variability in the number of children who come to the door.  If I plan for 80 and only 60 arrive, I will have left overs.  I plan to give out the cookie/cracker bags first. If I have chewing gum left over at the end, it goes in my preparedness stash.

Some day, if things are not great around us, what (other than a long, hot shower) could be more refreshing than a stick of nice, minty gum?


  1. Good idea.

    I wonder if the Swedish Bikini Team comes in a four pack :)

    1. You rascal!! If they did, our neighborhood (lots of prior and active service) would be crawling with them!