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The Trouble With Treat Bags Is That They Are The Worst

The treat bag seems innocuous, but you will learn that each bag is filled with Tiny Parent Torture Devices (TPTD).

There is a disturbing trend brewing in your child’s world: treat bags.

Kids receive them when they attend a birthday party, and from school on Halloween and Valentine’s Day. My issue is not with purchasing items for treat bags, it is with receiving them. Times three.

Here’s why: The bag comes home with the kid. Initially, they are excited and tear them apart, leaving the contents all over the dining room table, where they are soon forgotten.

That is, they are forgotten by the kid. You, on the other hand, will put the items back in the treat bag and then you have two options: orchestrate covert mission to get the treat bag in the garbage or face certain turmoil for weeks on end as you move the bag from table to counter to junk drawer.

You will decide against the disposal mission. Too dangerous. You will sigh with resignation as you move the bag from table to counter for the first time. Over the next month, each time the child sees the treat bag, they will dump it out. The treat bag seems innocuous, but you will learn that each bag is filled with Tiny Parent Torture Devices (TPTD).

Plastic rings:

Have you ever actually seen a child wearing a plastic ring? You wonder. No. Because nobody wears them. They hurt. The plastic digs into chubby little fingers. You know because you have tried them on. And then the children will leave the spider ring on the floor, and you will run screaming from the room at least three times before you finally spike it into the garbage with excessive force. Sometimes, aggression against tiny, plastic spider rings feels good.

Glow sticks:

You and your child will discover the glow stick was accidentally cracked and has been burned out for days. Hysterical crying will ensue. At some point, it will be you who is crying. You will promise to buy hundreds of glow sticks on your next Target run.

Tiny bottles of bubbles:

They seem ideal. What child does not love bubbles? They ALL love bubbles. You know who does not like bubbles? You do not. At least not when you are sitting outside with the child with the tiny bottle of bubbles and you have to go in the house 5,134 times to refill the tiny bottle with dish soap and water. And you get the ratio of soap to water wrong. Every. Single. Time.


These are not bad if you can find a place to keep them. Whenever the kid whines that they cannot find a pencil for homework, you can open up the kitchen drawer to reveal dozens, no HUNDREDS, of Halloween and Valentine’s pencils. You will never buy pencils for home again.

Tiny pads of paper:

What exactly would one use these for, you wonder. You will want to put them in the garbage, but you will not. You will put them in the recycling bin. You are an environmentalist, after all.


You will soon realize that unless the child is hiking in the woods where bears might be present, no child should be given a whistle. Ever.

Tiny little mazes:

The kids will not play with them. But you will. You will torture yourself for hours trying to get that tiny metallic ball to its home. Perhaps you and your spouse will make a drinking game out of it some Friday night. Aaaaah, marital bonding over spirits and tiny mazes. Good times.


The only place you will ever find stickers is stuck to hardwood floors and windows. You will appreciate the quiet while the child is carefully placing said stickers all over said floor; however, the hour of hard labor to scrape them off will make it seem not worth it. Or maybe it WAS worth it. Depends on the day.

Either way, it will not take long before you will determine that for the love of parents and their sanity, a silent agreement must be made: no more treat bags!