Halloween – 5 Candy Alternatives for Allergies (Including surprise toy bags!)

Halloween candy is as much a part of Halloween tradition as the costumes. For children with allergies though, trick-or-treating can be a little…trickier. So when the little ghosts and ghouls come knocking this year, it’s best to be prepared for a variety of allergies. With many nut-free, gluten-free, dairy-free alternatives available, Halloween should be inclusive for all children, regardless of their dietary restrictions. Keep reading below for some of our suggested must-haves to keep on-hand, in case your standard trick-or-treat candies can’t be enjoyed by all.

 1 – Halloween Surprise Toy Bags

This is an alternative to food, and pleases everyone. Each Halloween Surprise Toy Bag contains a surprise toy, including – mini playing cards, whistles, bubbles, games, figurines, stickers and more. A great item to have on hand if you’re giving out candy with peanuts or gluten and need something for the children who can’t have those treats. These come as a pack of 20.

2 – GoldFish Snack Packs

These crackers are baked with real cheese, and feature no artificial colours or flavours. A snack most children already love, you know they’ll be excited about getting them in their bag. (Bonus points: it’s low in sugar: a great alternative to sugary candy!)

3 – MadeGood Chocolate Chip Mini Bars

These little bite-sized versions of MadeGood’s granola bars are nut-free and gluten-free. In addition to their clean ingredients, 2% of sales from their Halloween products go to support Children’s Miracle Network.

 4 – Halloween Variety Fruit Pack

With Fruit by the Foot, Fruit Gushers and Fruit Rollups, this is pack offers 40 full-sized fruit candy favourites. They’re a great alternative for kids with nut and gluten allergies.

5 – Ganong Sunkist Fruit Snacks

These Ganong Sunkist Fruit Snacks are a fruit-based option, made with real oranges, and are peanut, gluten and fat-free. Pick up a 72-pack box to ensure you’re fully stocked with Halloween treats!

 

These are just a few of the alternative options for Halloween trick-or-treaters who can’t have nuts, gluten, dairy, etc. We’re sure you can find many more creative options in-store. Have fun and stay safe this Halloween!

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Kids (and Parents)

We’ve got just over a month until Christmas. Time to get your shopping sorted!

Starting with last week’s Holiday Gift Guide for the Home Cook, we’re posting gift guides every week until Christmas. Each will be aimed at different groups and include gift ideas from stocking stuffers to show stoppers.

 

This week, our guide has gift suggestions for all the kids in your life that parents won’t mind playing with either! Whether you’re a parent yourself, or you’re buying presents for other kids and parents in your life, London Drugs has plenty of ideas and options.

Board Games are Big Again

Board games have gotten incredibly popular over the last few years. Board game cafes and bars in Calgary and Vancouver can attest to their popularity! Board games are tried and true, and (actually) fun for the whole family. They make great gifts, but choosing between the hundreds of games available can be overwhelming. That’s why we’re here to help!

Modern board games range from serious strategy games like Ticket to Ride or Settlers of Catan to classics with a twist like NHL-OPOLY. Strategy games tend to be better for older kids, but Dixit is good for kids three and up while still being super fun. Pandemic is a cooperative game, teaching valuable lessons about collaboration while players work together to save the world. Kids and parents alike will appreciate learning new games.

Gift Guide for Kids - Monopoly Deal

Or, you can give the parents in your life some classics from their childhood to share with their own kids, like Twister or Battleship. Monopoly Deal is a great new version of an old classic that is quick to play and won’t cause any family feuds!

Tech Toys

While board games are great, video games are really the modern classic. This year’s ultimate gift is the Nintendo Switch, especially bundled with Super Mario Odyssey. The Switch can be a home gaming system, or a portable device kids can continue playing on for those long car rides.

Gift Guide for Kids - Super Mario Odyssey

Image via Nintendo.com

If the kid on your list is into computers, teach them the basics of programming with this cool programmable robot.

Gift Guide for Kids - WowWee programmable robot

Image via WowWee.com

iPads are incredibly versatile techie gifts, good for young and older kids alike. They’ve got YouTube and Netflix for watching kids shows, tons of easy-to-learn games, and they make it easier to connect with family through FaceTime. There’s nothing better for grandparents, aunts, and uncles than a video chat with excited kids on Christmas morning!

Kid Crafts

For families wanting less screen time, crafty gifts are endlessly fun. Scientifically minded kids will be into these Cool Science Experiments, ranging from invisible ink to lava lamps to hoverboards.

Those who love to draw will appreciate a fresh set of pencil crayons. Pair them with a sketchbook to make a complete drawing kit.

Colouring books are always fun and relaxing. Give them a colouring book with their favourite movie characters (be it Minions or Spider-Man) or opt for beautiful shapes or animals and let the recipient tell their own stories with colour.

Lego

As frustrating as stepping on those tiny pieces can be, Lego is a classic toy for a reason. Get fancy sets for older kids, like this Star Wars Resistance X-Wing, or go back to basics with a  classic creativity set. You can make anything with Lego.Gift Guide for Kids - Star Wars X-wing lego

Personalized Presents

Personalized presents are great for kids—they love seeing pictures of themselves and their family! The PhotoLab can put your family photos on just about anything, but some particularly good gifts are personalized mugs, ornaments, and puzzles.

 

For more gift-giving advice for the kids (and parents) on your list, speak to an LD Expert today. To make a purchase, visit London Drugs in-store and online.

We’ll be back soon with a top gift guide for techies. See you then!

See all of our 2017 Holiday Gift Guides here:

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Techies

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for the DIYer

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Music Lovers

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for the Home Cook 

Growing Demand for Multicultural Toys in Canada as Share of Immigrants Reaches Highest Level in Almost a Century

Canadian Retailer London Drugs Debuts Exclusive “Diversity Dolls” Collection

The share of immigrants in Canada has reached its highest level in almost a century, according to 2016 census figures released in October.1 This population diversity in Canada is driving demand for more variety and inclusion in everything customers purchase, including toys. This holiday season, Canadian retailer London Drugs is responding to the demand by expanding its toy category to include Diversity Dolls; a collection of six dolls from different cultural backgrounds. The hope is with more options on store shelves, parents can select toys that provide children with a more authentic representation of the ethnic diversity in Canada.

“The country’s makeup is more diverse now than in any other generation and we’re factoring this into many of the merchandising decisions we make; including the toy category,” explains Dan Moy, London Drugs’ long-time merchandise buyer, and father of three. Moy worked directly with the doll manufacturer to select and assemble the individual dolls as a set, which is available exclusively at London Drugs with anticipation the dolls will be a popular toy for gift-giving during the upcoming holiday season.

Moy says there is little doubt that the multicultural toy category will continue to grow particularly when you look at the immigration trends.

Today, 7.7 million Canadians belong to a visible minority. Additionally, four in ten Canadian children under the age of 14 have at least one parent born abroad. If recent immigration trends continue, nearly half of the population of Canada will likely be immigrants or children of immigrants by 2036.2

Products like London Drugs’ Diversity Dolls are a progression toward creating a toy aisle that reflects the diversity of Canada today and in the future.

Diversity Dolls are now available in stores and at LondonDrugs.com.

 

[1] Immigration and ethnocultural diversity: Key results from the 2016 Census

[2] Study: A look at immigration, ethnocultural diversity and languages in Canada up to 2036, 2011 to 2036