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Getting ready to carve pumpkins

An update from yesterday’s post because while it would be preferable, the reality is not having fondue isn’t an option. We know it will be provided, and we are forced to deal with it someway. Halloween is already tough for a diabetic kid, and we try to minimize the pain as much as possible. So if we tell her no fondue,the issue then becomes (and this is a big one for us as parents) that Stella now sits in her classroom of 34 kids, and feels like she is being punished for being diabetic as the other kids get their treats, and she doesn’t get to participate.

Then just 5 hours later, we will be trick or treating with our kids, and she already knows she won’t get to keep all of that candy. So we carefully pick and choose our battles. She will have the fondue, we will carefully choose how much she can have, we will measure it and bolus her for it, and she will understand that is all she will be able to have. Sometimes with Stella, as long as she knows she can do a little of something, or try a bite of something, and not be completely denied, we can make great strides in negotiating and minimize issues.

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The good dog 🙂

We spend so much of our time advocating that she can do anything, try anything, eat anything. So telling her no outright is tough for us to overcome. When at home by ourselves, we can manipulate the situation to our favor, or offer alternates, or not provide treats/deserts at all, and the rules apply to both our children, (type 1 or not to be fair) but in group/peer situations, it isn’t as easy. And on a day like Halloween, which is already rough for a type 1. We work hard to make her childhood as normal as possible.

The great news is that at one point, we were concerned that this fondue party was going to prevent my wife from being able to attend and help with Dash’s Kindergarten class party. As a matter of fact, that is how we started down this road, talking about siblings often times having to lose out or take a back seat while the other child is cared for. It turns out that the fondue party will be earlier then initially thought, (by an hour) and won’t conflict with Dash’s party. Since the kids go to the same school, my wife will be able to go to both, and no one has to miss out. My son’s teacher was very excited to know that Major would be in attendance for the Kinder party 🙂 I will let you know how this all works out.

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“Hey Stella, you missed a spot!”

Now lets talk about how our family handles Halloween. Our type 1 kids want to go out and participate, get dressed up, and get candy just as much as the next kids. But obviously we have some considerations and concessions that need to be made. Here is what we have done the last 3 years, and this works for us.

We take our kids trick or treating. They get dressed up, grab a treat bag, and try to amass as much gold (er, candy) as everyone else. When we get home, we let each of our kids save a few pieces of candy that we will use as deserts, as long as we can identify the carb counts. (things like the mini Snickers or Kit-Kats) If we know the carb counts, we can bolus for the candy. We may keep a few for “low” snacks too. Click the link below for the ADA Halloween candy carb counts PDF you can print out:

halloween-candy-carbohydrate

With all the running around from house to house, we will let them have a piece or 2 during the festivities, but after the sorting is done, we have a candy buy back program. We exchange all the candy for a trip to the Target toy aisle, or for the first time this year, a new app. And just like that, Halloween is awesome again. They still get a few candies, still get to dress up and have fun, and I get to bring candies in to the office.

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Her laugh was awesome and infectious

So what do the other type 1 families do for Halloween? Do you handle it differently? Would love to hear what you do, and I’d imagine we have a bunch of first time families that are stressing with this holiday that would love some ideas.

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Even Angus got into the carving, er, I mean licking

And 1 last treat for you before you go:

Have a safe and happy Halloween!

Team Blackdogsrule

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2 Comments

  1. I really don’t know if we handle it well or not (our third Halloween with diabetes), but just like the pre-diabetic years we get as much “gold” 🙂 as possible too and I let her have the one night a year to “go crazy” with it. She was never a huge candy lover – thankfully – but that one night a year I would let her just eat it at-will. generally even on her own it would be 5-7 pieces and the rest stayed in the cookie jar until I gave it away or threw it out. Since diabetes has come to live with us I just felt like she was dealing with enough so if it took a BG check every 30 min for a few hours we just did it. She still eats about the same amount, she now just tells me ahead of each piece and we bolus and check BG every 30 min (unless wearing the CGM – which we will be this year). Again, I don’t know how great a plan it is but she sure is happy and doesn’t feel deprived and it works for us so far. i do like your “buyback” idea too.

  2. Since I was diagnosed 57 years ago with type 1, my trick or treating years were at first spent by going only to our friend’s homes that would provide fruit & then I had to use that with my exchange list. In my teen age years, I went trick or treating with my friends & then had to give the goodies to my brother and my daddy. Thankful now for the type 1 kids that have better insulins and the pumps and the better exchange methods for food.

Speak!