Some how I have cursed myself. I need to figure out how to get myself back to Kansas. The first year with the boys has been great. They were fantastic babies, slept great early on. Napped easily, were generally happy little men. Birthday hits and blam! Everything changes. They don’t sleep nicely, well at the same time they don’t at least. They can be really cranky and of course they are super busy little guys. Now I have a feeling that most of this has to do with teething. I wonder if Costco sells Tylenol in bulk? If not at least I have lots of $3.00 off coupons. Example, bed time is 7pm here, David woke up at 8:30 and did not want anything to do with his crib, (regular for him since he turned a year old now it seems) so he got up and then stayed up until midnight! (thank goodness Dave was on nights) He only slept until 1am came in bed with me, slept till 3am and then refused anything so he stayed up with Dave until 5am and then only slept until 8am!!! He often seems to wake up and want to stay up. Mark is similar only usually once you get him to sleep with you or he just wants some milk then he is fine and will sleep. Anyways it is like having newborns again without all the sleeping in the day. So slowly I have been wearing down over here, Dave as well. We just both keep trying to do what we can do and thankfully we have lots of easy food on hand to cook up, and Amy only usually wants sandwiches anyways. Now we get about 4-5 bad days in a row then we get a good night. Anyways I sure hope that this doesn’t go on forever, both boys have now broken through 2 of their 4 molars. I just hope when the bottom ones come in the good sleep comes back with it. Do you think I could blame my strange interest in the video for “Sexy and I know it” on lack of sleep? I think that is a whole other blog. Big thanks to my sister for showing it to me. There is just something train wreck like about flashy spandex, extreme wiggling and Afros I can’t turn away!
On to today’s post. Awhile back a friend of mine asked me to put something together with good snack ideas for school aged kids. So I’ve been racking my brains (which is really hard these days) and these are some ideas I’ve had. I find that snacks are a hard one because there are so many ready-made options available that are cheap and do have good sales.
- Muffins – Classic homemade mom snack. You can make endless batches and freeze them. I think I have about 3 kinds of muffins in my freezer right now.
- Cookies – The other classic.
- Leftover cereal snack mix. Take the last cup of each box of cereal in your cupboard and make a snack mix. Or use those cereals you aren’t keen on as a breakfast in snack mix, like chocolate Cheerios, Chocolate mini wheats, etc. Mix with things like Shreddies, mini marshmallows, pretzels, raisins or cranberries, etc.
- Cheese slices – rather than fancy cheese just cut your own up (I know, I’m such a visionary!)
- Make your own “Bear Paw” cookies – Use a brownie mix or banana bread mix and bake it on a cookie sheet instead. Use cookie cutters to make fun shapes and freeze separate in wax paper or baggies.
- Yogurt and Granola. Send the granola and a separate container, to be mixed at school.
- Cheez Whiz and Crackers – rather than buying the crackers and dip a DIY version. Then you can pick “healthier” crackers at least to go with the ever so healthy Cheez Whiz.
- Pickles. My kids love them, so why not send them!
- Veggies and Dip, or Fruit & Dip. With companies like Epicure you can make many different flavored dips for even the pickiest kids. humus is super healthy!
- Popcorn – Air popped of course for no fats (save those for mom, hey I like a buttery popcorn!) and add a light bit of seasoning on it and put in separate bags for the week.
- Hard boiled eggs.
- Tortilla chips and salsa
Hopefully this has provided some good ideas, or gotten the ball rolling. Basically just look at what your kids like and ask for and see if you can try to make your own healthy version from home. Sadly homemade may not always be frugal but if you watch for sales you can get your ingredients to make things a bit cheaper. Some things you can make ahead and freeze so when the weekly sales do not have anything you can make that week you can easily pull out something. Always stock up on a good sale of the healthy snacks your kids do enjoy.
The rule in our house for lunch snacks is usually Diana gets a cheese string, fruit or veggie option and then I let her pick one special treat out of the stash of puddings, wagon wheels and other goodies I’ve stocked up on with coupons and sales. I remember getting pudding my lunch and loved it, who doesn’t love a good snack pack? She also takes water and has a milk ticket for about once a week as a treat.
Tips for larger families who like with dinner don’t want to have to make lots of special snacks all week, create a snack board on the fridge and get each kid to pick a snack of the week to put on the board. Have either your 2 standard choices and then 1 snack from the snack board or rotate who puts what up on the snack board, such as protein snack, sweet snack, salty snack, etc. They can then pick any 3 of 4 to take or 2 of 3. Then you make sure to have those 4 snacks ready for the week to choose from for the kids.
Happy Snacking everyone and if you have ideas be sure to let me know so I can add them to my list.