Wednesday, March 26, 2014

On Recreational Sports and Snacks

We're right in the midst of baseball season and I'm loving it.  Lydia's going one way with her softball team; Noah's going another direction with his baseball team.  It's utter chaos in our house and I'm in the midst of it all with the biggest smile on my face.  I love this time of year.

Our first foray into organized sports occurred about 3 years ago.  Noah was finally old enough to play baseball and we were so excited.  So we signed him up for summer league to see if he enjoyed it.  And we were off and running.  He loved it from the start: hitting the ball, running the bases, fielding.  And I had a great time watching him.

Then came time to sign up for the team snack.  I was shocked at some of the snacks that showed up at our games: both good and bad.  I try not to be too crazy about what my kids have for a team snack.  I figure it's a rare treat, not something they're going to be eating in my house every day.  And yet, a large gatorade and HFCS fake "fruit snacks" just make my skin crawl.  On the other hand, there were some great snacks that reminded me that I could do better as well.  Hum...

You see, I came to realize team snacks really don't have to be some crazy feast.  Most games are on a Saturday morning, wedged right between breakfast and lunch.  My kids usually just want a quick pick me up to tide them over till lunch.

But team snacks are here to stay and that being so, they don't need to be laden with preservatives, fake sweeteners, or dyes.  I can't dictate how others want to spend their money.  But if it's within my budget, I don't need to buy those items in order to supply a team snack.  Simple, fresh, seasonal (if possible)... it's do-able.

As time has gone on, I've watched and taken note of healthier options.  And I find that other parents are doing the same.  So while we're all working together, here are just a favorite of our favorite ideas for team snacks:

Baby carrots
Apples, bananas, fresh fruit
Mini pretzels
Granola bars (without HCS)
Applesauce cups
Dried fruit
Almonds/cashews (mix with cranberries)
Cheese and crackers
Cheese sticks
Trail mix

Please share your thoughts.
How do you tackle the team snack?

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