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Holiday Candy

Sugar Free Peeps: A New Halloween Candy Must-Have!

It’s no secret that candy can be a sweet part of a balanced diet, whether you are on the path toward losing a few pounds, working to maintain your current weight, or are simply mindful of everything you eat on the journey to be as healthy as possible. What most of us have learned, whether we like it or not, is moderation is key! It turns out there is a difference between one serving of Peanut M&M’s and one bag of Peanut M&M’s. Oops. And as we all know too well, M&M’s are far from the only candy that makes a limit a tricky task. One other such treat is marshmallow Peeps.

Sure, we open the package knowing we should just have one or two. We open the package with the best of intentions. We open the package thinking, “These Peeps will last me a week! I will have no more than 2 per day, because I have self control!” But…that doesn’t always happen. And it’s not our fault! Once that ooey-gooey goodness touches the tongue, stepping on the brakes is so hard. Once that plump, pillow of sweet marshmallow finds its way to your mouth you are no longer responsible for what becomes of the package of Peeps. You are only human! Since the dawn of time, humans have been no match for marshmallows. It’s just science!

Shed no tears, marshmallow-lover. In this great battle between a balanced diet and that undefeated enemy – Peeps – there is someone in your corner. Someone you may have least expected. Yes, coming into the ring with an orange satin robe trailing behind is none other than Sugar Free Peeps! *The crowd goes wild!*

Who is this Sugar Free Peeps? What is the relation to regular Peeps? Don’t worry, there isn’t a soap opera-worthy family rivalry that you’ll find yourself smack dab in the middle of. Sugar Free Peeps and regular Peeps are practically besties! They’re both cute and colorful, and they both taste delicious. It’s just that the Sugar Free variety aren’t as likely to leave you bouncing off the walls at midnight because you accidentally ate six servings while you were watching Law & Order. They’re also a great choice for people who must closely watch their sugar intake, and those who simply prefer the taste of Splenda. As for me? I think I’ll keep both in the cupboard. I can “mmmm” my way through a pack of Sugar Free Peeps any day, but sometimes I like to bounce off the walls at midnight. When else is the bathroom going to get cleaned?! :)

Help Get Your Home Ready for Fall with Halloween Candy

It might just be our imagination, but the consensus at Blair Candy Headquarters is that September was the fastest month this year! It seems we just turned the calendar page, and tomorrow we will be turning it again. While we hate to see time move so quickly, when each passing day gets us closer to Halloween, we can hardly complain! Not only is it a fun-packed holiday full of sweets, but decorating for Halloween is a treat unto itself.

As much as I love my pretty Christmas décor, the creepy, cute, and creatively-designed decorations for Halloween are my favorite. And this year, I’ll be adding plenty of edible awesomeness to my decorations by incorporating Halloween candy into the design!

Decorating with Halloween candy can be as simple or as complex as you like. We’ve put together a little list of ideas for how you can add something sweet to your decorations this year, but don’t be limited by our ideas! Use as many or as few as you like, and always feel free to exercise your creativity and see what you can dream up. Just don’t forget to share it with us in the comments so we can try it, too!

Break out the Halloween candy bowls. Whether they are shaped like pumpkins and ghosts, or are simply ceramic bowls in the shades of the season, scattering candy bowls throughout your house not only adds a homey touch, but makes it easy to grab a caramel apple pop or two no matter which room you’re in!

Show the sweeter side of potted plants. If your thumb is lacking a green hue as much as mine, chances are good that you’ve lost more than one potted plant in your day. So what’s a guy or girl to do with all those pretty, empty pots? Fill them with marbles or decorative rocks of course! Once your pot is filled to within an inch or so of the top, plant some Halloween lollipops inside. Our witch finger lollipops won’t wilt like a daisy or sunflower, and they taste a lot better, too. So don’t be surprised if some of your ‘flowers’ go missing as time goes on!

Let guests know they’re being watched! We don’t recommend actually spying on your friends and family members, but you can add to the creepy feeling of being watched by adding gumball eyes throughout your home. Peeking out from behind pictures, sitting next to the hand soap in the bathroom, hanging from strings inside the refrigerator door – anywhere spotting a set of eyes peeking back will freak someone out is the perfect location!

And don’t forget one of the biggest advantages of all to decorating with candy – there’s no storage required. Simply snack your way to a post-Halloween house come November 1st. You don’t have to pack it away when you ‘pack it away’! ;)

Sugar Free and Gluten Free Halloween Candy at Blair!

Whether you are shopping for candy that works with your own dietary needs, or want to ensure that every Trick-or-Treater that stops by will find something that suits their needs in your bowl, our Sugar Free Halloween Candy and Gluten Free Halloween Candy sections are for you!

Following a gluten free or sugar-conscious diet can be tricky at times, and the holidays are perhaps the hardest times of all. But for as difficult as it can be to turn down a treat that it seems everyone but you can eat, you know you’re doing what’s best for you! And luckily, while you, your children, or a few Trick-or-Treaters may have restrictions on what they can consume, candy is not an all-or-nothing indulgence. In fact, offers a delicious assortment of sugar free candy and gluten free candy that would tempt any tastebud!

Gluten Free Halloween Candy

Many people are surprised by some of the candy they find in our gluten free selection. These aren’t specialty candies that you’ve never heard of – they’re favorites that we’ve all been happily enjoying for many years. They just happen to be gluten free as well as scrumdiddlyumptious! Some All-Stars you might recognize best include Butterfinger candy bars, M&M’s, and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
Gummy candy is also often gluten free, and your many mouthwatering options include Gummy Peaches, Trolli Strawberry Puffs, and a favorite of so many kids – Sour Gummy Worms!

Sugar Free Halloween Candy

What’s soft, orange, oh-so-yummy, and melts in your mouth? We’ll give you a hint…It’s not carrots, and it rhymes with ‘beeps’. Ohhh, it must be Peeps! But these aren’t just any Peeps; these are Sugar Free Peeps shaped like pumpkins! Each pack contains three petite Peep pumpkins sweetened with Splenda, ready to brighten your day the sugar free way.

Prefer something that lasts a little longer? Because let’s face it…if there are Peeps in the house, they don’t exactly get a lot of time in the pantry before they’re in someone’s belly. And for those times that you need a sugar free candy fix and the Peeps have gone missing, or you are filling a few sugar free Halloween treat bags to have at the ready, our selection of Brach’s sugar free hard candy makes a sweet choice. Choose from sugar free versions of candy classics we all love, including butterscotch hard candy and cinnamon hard candy.

To make it easy for kids and parents alike to know you have sugar free and gluten free candy available for Trick-or-Treaters, consider setting up 3 baskets or boxes to hold your Halloween treat bags. Simply attach a ‘Sugar Free Halloween Candy’ index card to one, and a ‘Gluten Free Halloween Candy’ index card to another to separate the sweets. Affixing the identifying cards with a clothespin should do the trick for your treats!

Cool, Colorful Halloween Lollipops Are Frighteningly Fun and Flavorful!

Just like a book, a person, and countless other things in life, you can’t always judge a candy by its cover. There are plenty of sweets out there that might not win a beauty contest, but are a beautiful treat to the tongue where it counts! But just as we can’t assume less-than-pretty candies won’t be delicious, we also can’t assume that candy with a cute, clever and colorful style is getting by on looks alone. Yes, some candies really do have it all – the eye-catching appeal, the delicious flavor, and in some cases, their own handle! OK, to be fair it’s not really a handle, it’s a stick. But it sure does make eating lollipops easier, and lollipops are what we’re looking at today. Halloween Lollipops, to be exact, since Halloween is fast on its way! :D

Coffin Creepers Halloween Lollipops – As if the clever coffin packaging wasn’t enough to make these a must-have, the adorable little creatures peeking out from the windows captured every heart at Blair the moment these arrived. One of my favorite things about Halloween is all things ‘scary cute’, and these are topping my list this year. As for the flavors, my personal fave is Bone Rattlin’ Blue Raspberry (plus, I can’t resist his oversize innocent smile!), but Vampire Very Cherry and Mummy Wrap Green Apple are scary good as well.

Crazy Bones Lollipops – These tiny little lollis feature a fruity, round lollipop top attached to…a plastic arm or leg! Yes, where you might expect the elbow or knee to be you’ll find candy instead, which means that while eating a Crazy Bones lollipops everyone sees a little hand or little foot peeking out of your mouth! As for the flavors, these come in an assortment of classics: orange, grape and green apple. And while we don’t know for sure, we think they taste better than a real arm or leg by a landslide!

Twister Terror Halloween Lollipops – These cherry-flavored lollipops have a funky, modern feel to them, but also have an element of classic candy charm with their twist design. This update on an old-fashioned candy store staple is re-imagined in the shades of Halloween – orange, black and white – and decked out with 4 awesome Halloween rings per pop before being wrapped and cinched with a black ribbon! These make a memorable treat for friends, family and trick-or-treaters, who always remember the houses that give out the best stuff!

Halloween Candy and Corduroys: Welcome, Fall. We Missed You More Than We Knew!

I’ve had a touch of Fall Fever for weeks now. As usual, it started slow, eyeing up all the decorations in stores, dreaming of changing leaves and the many pumpkin-flavor-infused treats that have just begun popping up at coffee shops. But it progressed beyond casual, fleeting fall thoughts. I have found myself absent-mindedly searching for fall recipes online, with visions of corduroys swishing in my head. I’ve retired all but one pair of flip-flops to the closet, and dusted off boxes with beautiful boots inside! But it wasn’t until this past weekend that Fall Fever got a solid hold over me, and I don’t think it will be letting go.

A cousin celebrated her upcoming marriage with a bridal shower this weekend, and decked the halls in fall-tastic-ness. The venue itself had a warm, autumnal ambiance, with rich woods, exposed beams, and wrought-iron touches here, there and everywhere. And in this naturally ‘fall’ location she draped tables and chairs with burgundies, deep oranges, chocolate browns and mossy greens. Decorations and favors were rustic and fall-themed as well, relying heavily on a pumpkin motif, but not the brightly-colored pumpkins specific to Halloween – fall-y pumpkins! The setting was at once opulent and cozy, luxurious and laid-back…kind of like fall itself. And in the midst of all this marvelousness was something supremely sweet that gave an air of sugary magic to it all – a candy bar.

The candy bar was full of giant glass jars with scoops, much like the counters of the candy stores of yesteryear. There were paper candy bags for storing your chosen treats, and enough fall-friendly and Halloween candy to keep you wired well beyond the holiday weekend! I filled my bag to the brim with Brach’s candy corn, caramel apple pops, Reese’s Pieces and Reese’s Miniatures. A decorative dish of shoestring licorice was left on the table to tie off the bags with a flavorful flourish, but my bag was too full for tying so I simply ate my lace. :D

And when the festivities were over, and all the hugs had been had and well wishes wished, I walked slowly back to my car through the gorgeous grounds with my candy in hand. I took the long way – through the garden, past the pool, down a tree-lined path. I appreciated my surroundings…appreciated the fall in the air…enjoyed my lollipop without rushing a bite. I let summer slip away a little more with each step, and fell gently into fall.

Candy that ‘Works’ for Your Labor Day Party!

It’s hard to believe that summer is almost behind us for 2011, but alas fall is waiting just beyond the trees with a breeze in her palm and crinkling leaves in her wake. And for as hard as it can be to bid adieu to long, hot days of sunshine and swimming, fall always seems to arrive right when we’re ready for a change.

Maybe we’re trained to desire the pumpkin patches and sweet cider when their time comes, or perhaps we would welcome it with corduroy jacket covered arms regardless of a calendar letting us know it’s here. Whatever the answer may be, as summer winds down and fall gets her footing, plans for the last big blowout barbecue begin, and I for one find it to be one of my favorite parties of all! Of what do I speak? Labor Day, of course!

What makes a Labor Day party earn high ranking on my Party-o-Meter? For one, there’s no work that day. Now, spending many of my working hours surrounded by candy is quite literally a pretty sweet gig, but I know enough to enjoy a day off! For another, the weather is usually perfect for spending hours outdoors without breaking a sweat or battling buggies. You can lounge about, play a little badminton, throw some horseshoes, and fire up the grill – all the makings of an awesome day, and all sans scorching sun! Plus, we can wear all the white our heart desires (not that I follow that rule, but still!), and get our DVRs ready to catch all the upcoming football games so we can rewind and replay to our hearts content.

But for as fabulous as we’re sure your Labor Day party will be regardless, we have some candy in mind that you might want to add to the table for even more fun…

Jumbo Money Lollipops – This is Labor Day after all, and money typically serves as the fruit of our labor! It isn’t the money itself that enhances our lives, rather the things we can enjoy with the help of the money, such as heat, water, shelter, and lollipops! There are a few others in that list as well, but we only have so much room on the blog so I’m hitting the basics. ;)

Saf T Pops – Labor Day finds its roots in people working together to improve their working conditions, which included seeking out greater safety for themselves and others. For as long as many of us feel our days are now, in most cases we are blessed with much better conditions overall than our ancestors. We are also blessed with more candy, which is not to go unappreciated! Not only are Saf T Pops a sweet classic that many of us remember from our own childhood, but they take their name very seriously. The looped string is easier for kids to hold, and doesn’t present a poking hazard that a hard stick lolli might for little ones.

Boston Baked Beans – A favorite for all ages, Boston Baked Beans pay homage to the first Labor Day of all, observed on September 5, 1882 in Boston. The celebratory side of Labor Day has been in place from the very beginning, and if something is designed with a party in mind, we certainly aren’t about to complain! Plus, Boston Baked Beans are delicious, and there’s no other candy quite like them. Just like there’s no holiday quite like Labor Day!

Celebrate National Smile Week with Humor, Compliments, Candy and More!

While it may not be recognized on most calendars, the 2nd week of the awesome month of August is indeed National Smile Week. And while we certainly don’t think you should ever wait for a specific week to roll around to smile, we do think this week calls for celebration! Because in the words of Buddy from Elf, “I just like to smile; smiling’s my favorite.”

So how does one celebrate National Smiling Week exactly? We think a nice way is to help others smile, which will in turn make you feel good, and likely result in a little smile of your own! But how can you help others turn a frown upside-down, or go from so-so to smiling? We have a few ideas in mind that should do the smiley trick! :)

Do something for them. Yup, it’s that simple, and it can be almost anything! Whether you have a half hour at the end of the day to help a coworker wrap up a project, or you take the time to make that sun tea your kids or parents love so much, doing something for someone ‘just because’ is one of the greatest gifts you can give. It’s always nice to be reminded that a helping hand or sweet gesture can pop up when we least expect it.

Tell them a funny story. While a joke is always good, a really great story delivered well is infinitely better. Whether you have naturally great storytelling skills, or you can use a little practice, sharing your story with someone and adding just the right emphasis to all the best parts is a fun break in the day for both of you. Plus, the person may choose to ‘pay it forward’ and share your story with someone else, continuing the smile chain and giving everyone a good laugh.

Compliment someone. We often travel through our days a bit oblivious to our surroundings and fellow humans, rushing here, rushing there, rushing everywhere. Slow down and look for positive changes or simply things you like. Perhaps a cousin is sporting a new haircut, or your husband finally bought a new baseball cap. Even the shyest among us can’t help but feel good that someone took notice of us, and a little affirmation can go a long way toward making other changes down the line without apprehension.

Give them candy. Oh, you had to know this one was coming! But honestly, one of the best 3-word combinations ever conceived has to be, “Want a piece?” Don’t worry “I Love You” fans – that one is pretty great, too! But we think there’s enough room in everyone’s life for love and candy. While almost any sweet treat should do the trick, you can initiate an unexpected candy surprise, leaving Cupcake Lollipops on coworkers desks, tossing some Gummy Burgers in your wife’s purse, or leaving your children wide-eyed by presenting them with an after-dinner Giant Gummy Bear.

          We’ll look forward to smiling along with you – next week and whenever we can!

          Blair Candy Has the Sweetest Picks for Shark Week!

          Yes, dear reader. It is finally here. That glorious week awaited by millions – nay, billions! – across the universe. The one…the only…SHARK WEEK. Discovery Channel’s Shark Week is anticipated by some the way an anxious child awaits Christmas morning. Typical plans for the week are cancelled or never made. Perhaps a few sick days have even been saved up for some Shark Week sniffles – dangerous business; definitely should stay home! But while your remote may get a vacation during Shark Week as you watch show after show without fail, your belly is gonna start to grumble. Man and woman cannot live by Shark Week alone. You need to keep up your strength so you don’t miss anything!

          So what to put on the Shark Week menu? Seafood is always a good choice. Watching sharks, eating like sharks, makes sense to us! And when the time comes for dessert or a late night snack, you can keep the ocean theme wave rolling in. Don’t worry – we don’t have any recipes for crab flavored ice cream up our sleeves. Just some sweet, summery treats that are shark-tastic!

          Gummi X-Ray Fish – These fruity gummies are fun to look at and neat to eat – gummy bones and all! Each box contains 36 see-through fishies, individually-wrapped and ready to enjoy.

          Swedish Fish Aqua Life – Offering all the fabulous favors the Swedish Fish family of gummies has to offer, Aqua Life brings quite a bounty of oceany options, including gummy starfish, gummy blowfish, and gummy dolphins and seahorses.

          Salt Water Taffy – A boardwalk favorite that will shore-ly make Shark Week all the better! It will feel like a true vacation when you add Salt Water Taffy to your SW menu, though an actual trip to the beach will likely be the furthest thing from your mind. The Midwest, anyone? I hear it’s gorgeous this time of year!

          Gardners Candies – Chocolate Easter Eggs for Every Taste!

          Looking for that super special Easter treat for yourself or a loved one? That chocolate wonder that will have them staring wide-eyed with anticipation for the bounty their taste buds and belly are about to receive? When only the best will do, consider Gardners candies!

 is proud to offer a delicious selection of Gardners candy, with a flavorful focus on a customer favorite – Gardners Easter Eggs. These aren’t your average chocolate eggs. Each Gardners egg weighs in at an impressive full pound, and comes packed with fillings as delectable as the creamy chocolate shell. These make a wonderful Easter gift for Moms, Dads, Grandparents and older children – anyone who can appreciate every nibble, and savor every sweet bite! Let’s take a closer look at a few of our most popular Gardner’s eggs…

          Gardners Peanut Butter Meltaway Egg – That’s right…a full pound of nothing but chocolate, peanut butter meltaway, and a perfectly-sweet candy flower on top. The peanut butter meltaway egg is a great choice for just about everyone of all ages – who doesn’t love peanut butter?!

          Gardners Butter Cream Egg – Oh yeah, you read it right – butter cream! This egg is so amazingly rich and full of flavor that you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it. We recommend tiny bites so as not to overwhelm your senses. Plus, you’ll want this to last as long as possible. Maybe just order 2 to be safe. Err, 3. Yeah, 3. (4) ;)

          Gardners Chocolate Fudge Nut Egg – Do you think the only way to improve upon chocolate is to add more chocolate? Well, how about adding more chocolate and nuts? Thought that might get your attention! This fudge-filled chocolate egg is sizable enough to share, but we certainly aren’t going to tell anyone if you decide to hide it in back of the pantry or refrigerator instead. Because one of us might be doing the same thing. And one of us might be me. And one of us might be hoping no one with a key to my house is reading this.

          Want even more Gardners candies to choose from? You’re in luck! In addition to the varieties outlined above, we also offer: Cashew Meltaway Eggs, Coconut Eggs, Fruit and Nut Eggs, Maple Cream and Nuts Eggs, and All Nut Eggs, with roasted cashews, almonds, Brazil nuts, pecans and walnuts. We’re sure to have the most egg-celent option for everyone’s Easter basket!

          Creativity Inspired By Easter Candy

          If you’re lucky enough to have little ones in your life, you know how wonderfully imaginative their minds tend to be. They can entertain themselves for hours by creating fun stories around whatever they have to work with, be it a few dolls or building blocks, or a few crayons and sheets of paper. Sure, most of them love video games and other electronics as well. In fact, most kids I know had an iPod before me! But they can still be quite captivated and creative with some of the simpler things, even if you have to give them a little push.

          I came across a video recently on YouTube that I had to watch a few times to truly appreciate. One of YouTube’s top viral videos, kittens inspired by kittens features a vibrant little girl flipping through a picture book of kittens and offering her take on what each is thinking. At first, I thought she was just being goofy, saying the first thing that came to mind. But after watching it a few times, I could see what she saw! The kittens really did look like they might be thinking those things. Some were a little more obvious, while others showed that the girl really took a picture in for a moment before deciding what to say. She looked at it the way a child looks at things, where anything is possible and one must rely on clues instead of life experience. Then, we all get to look at it through her eyes too, and it’s suddenly a lot more magical!

          While we think any time that you encourage your child’s creativity is the right time, we couldn’t help but wonder what amazing tales kids would tell involving the ‘characters’ in their Easter baskets. This Easter, we hope you’ll consider asking your kids to create a story for the contents of their basket before they dig into the deliciousness. If they don’t know where to begin, simply ask them how the Gardners Chocolate Bunny and the Marshmallow Peeps met, or how the Easter Bunny makes breakfast in the morning – with regular eggs, or Bubble Gum Eggs? You’ve seen your children dream up imaginary worlds of wonder with little more than a rainy day inside fueling their creativity. Imagine what they can originate with a basket full of Easter Candy! If you’ll be giving an Easter basket anyway, why not let it fill their minds and their bellies with fun? Even if their story is shorter than it might otherwise be as they can’t wait to indulge in a Jelly Bean breakfast, it’s sure to be one of the best stories you’ve ever heard.

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