“Mom, I’m hungry!!!”
That’s what I hear constantly over the summer. I don’t know what it is about the summertime heat, but my kids' heads are always stuck inside the pantry door looking for snacks! Did I tell you I had to actually child proof the pantry door to keep them at bay? Even my 7 year old can't open it - seriously, the child proof door knob is the best invention ever. It's not that I don't want them snacking, but I want to make sure they are snacking in a healthy and nutritious way.
I’ve decided that it’s best to have an easy snack station so they can grab their own parent-approved snacks whenever they are hungry. My kids can easily grab out pre-portioned snacks perfectly sized for them without having to nag me to grab a treat out of the pantry. Sometimes, I forget how often they ask for snacks so having a kid snack station helps regulate how much they are consuming! The goal is to prep the snacks once in the morning and you are ready for the day!
Having a snack station also helps during impromptu get together with other littles. All I do is roll out the snack cart, and their friends can join in on the fun. Jif® recently reached out to me to try out their delicious Jif® Power Ups™ to add to our new snack station that is something outside of the old-bag-of-chips realm! They are snack bars and clusters that come in a variety of different flavors, great for a pick-me-up during the day when you or the kids are low on fun! Peanuts are the #1 ingredient that provides a wholesome, well-balanced snack that keeps the kids energized all day for summer time thrills.
How I Setup Our Family Snack Station
1) I set up two snack stations. The first one is in the childproof pantry and the second one is our daily kid-serviced pantry. The pantry one makes it easy when I have to grab a few snacks for their summer camp lunches. The second one is stocked up daily so they get the snacks that I've approved for that day.
2) Rolling carts are the absolute best for snack stations! I can easily wheel them from the pantry to wherever the snack station is for that day! This is the one I have [HERE].
3) I stock up on the essential snacks during my bi-weekly trip to the grocery store so I make sure I always have some on hand. Being stocked up also helps when we decide to do a spontaneous zoo or swim park visit as we head out the door.
4) Keep a variety of snacks! Kids love options, so have plenty of them. I also store a quasi-snack station in our refrigerator for cool snacks as well.
So far, this DIY grab and go summertime snack station has been a hit with our kids. Also just as appealing as a delicious snack is the independence of being able to decide when they are ready to eat and what they get to eat! Who doesn't love that?