Welcome! I am a mom to two wonderful kids, a lovely retired greyhound, and a wife to a great husband. Needless to say, there are a lot of daily messes to clean up around our house. Daily Messes is my blog to share ideas on things to do with your kids, snack and meal ideas, crafts, and holiday fun. I hope you find something to enjoy!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Snack Box

These days, I have two bottomless pits for children. They are hopefully just going through a growth spurt. They're going to be horrible when they're teenagers if they keep this up. Based on having ravenous beasts as children, I never leave home without snacks in the car or the diaper bag. Plus as the kids know, my husband "hates wasting". We already went to the grocery store, so why waste more money buying snacks out. (Not that we never do this, but having a snack box really does help.)

After trying many, many different ideas, I learned a few things:
  • Snack bags of pretzels thrown into a diaper bag will not survive.
  • While driving, the snacks need to be easily accessible. (I know my hands are supposed to be at 2 and 10, but come on! The two whiny kids in the back are way more of a distraction.) This also applies to snacks in diaper bags, especially if waiting in line somewhere or at a park/zoo/theme park.
  • Gooey or messy candy are a big NO! (Car seat and Booster seat covers can be washed, but it's a pain to put them back on and the gooeyness sometimes leaves a stain).
  • Expect a mess and pick snacks that are easily cleaned up. (This kind of goes with the third learning, but slightly different.) Goldfish, pretzels, and crackers can create huge crumbly messes. However, a vacuum generally cleans it up quickly and easily.
  • Always have a bottle of water (plastic bottles, reusable bottles, sippy cups--they all work). I keep a bottle in the diaper bag so we always have one while we are out, and I also grab some before I leave the house for the car. After eating pretzels (or other snacks), I know I'm going to hear "I'm thirsty. Can I have some water?". If it is early in the park playing season, the water fountains are not always turned on yet (or if it's fall/winter time, they may be turned off already). Plus my youngest is horrible at backwash and I will not (if I can in anyway help it) drink from his bottle of water, so I try to keep a bottle for everyone.
  • Pack 2 (3, 4, or 5...however many kids you have!) of everything. My kids love to fight with each other, especially if they are stuck in a car seat with nothing else to do. If they have their own bag, I don't have to keep saying "Share with your brother", "It's his turn now, give him the bag", "If you don't give him the bag right now, I will take it away from you and you won't get it back". You know, normal car ride stuff!
  • If it's a long car ride, I bring a small box of snacks. I try to pack special treats (i.e. fruit snacks--the kind that has no real fruit in them), especially if it is a vacation trip.
  • Keep a roll of paper towels, diaper wipes, or napkins in the car. For my small Car Box, I threw in some plastic silverware and napkins.
So what do I keep in my Snack Box?
  • Nuts (lots of protein, small containers, lay flat nicely)
  • Fruit Snacks (generally the real ones, also called fruit leathers, that are simply dried fruit puree in a strip format)
  • Granola or Breakfast Bars
  • Crackers: The pre-packaged peanut butter or cheese crackers.
  • Twizzlers (the individually wrapped ones; they got a ton of these for Halloween and I set them aside for the Snack Box)
  • M&M's (I know, they can get messy, but I try to keep a mix of snacks in the box. I use the individual packs, also taken out of Halloween and Easter candy bags. Don't leave these in a car during warm weather though!)
  • Smartie's. These are great if you are waiting in line somewhere for a long time. If you hold the roll, you can dish these out one at a time over several minutes. It takes up time and to get the next one, they have to behave!
  • Suckers/Lollipops
  • Boxes of Raisins
  • Snack size bags of pretzels or Goldfish
  • Individually packaged Pepperoni Sticks

Car Snack box
Diaper Bag Snack Box

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