Soccer season is in full swing and this year, I've got three players at my house. Yikes!
Michele Ashamalla: Besides three games and four practices each week, that means I've got to take my turn providing snacks. We have a fair number of siblings attending the games, and teams around here generally provide a snack for them as well. Basically, between my three kids, I'm looking at 60 snacks. I've come up with some healthy, low-cost favorites:
The ecologically friendly, homemade way: watermelon wedges on a tray and a basket of homemade muffins. Have lots of both available for seconds. I also like a homemade trail mix with yogurt raisins, goldfish, dried cranberries, and banana chips. A little goes a long way, but for this, I have to use some Ziploc bags.
The make-ahead way: Small brown paper bags with a few of the following: applesauce with no added sugar, some type of all-fruit bar, tangerine, low-fat, low-sugar granola bar, raisins, cheese stick. If you like, you can add a couple of homemade cookies (no peanuts for the possible allergies) or small bag of animal crackers or other not super-sweet cookie. Optional, but nice -- the bags can be decorated with a printout of a soccer ball and their team name.
I did the bags this year -- and in some bags put in raisins (6 packs for 99 cents), applesauce (4 for 99 cents), and cookies (10 packages of 6 cookies for 99 cents). Total bag cost: 52 cents. In other bags, I mixed and matched and put in granola bars (16 for $3 at Big Lots), cheese sticks (12 for $3 at the grocery store), and small packages of Teddy Grahams (12 for $3 at Big Lots), which changed the price a little, but not much. My husband thought I was crazy when he saw the 60 bags lined up on the counter, but now I'm done and can start thinking about snacks for the next sport!
A former state deputy attorney general and current stay-at-home mom, Recession Mama Michele Ashamalla has three kids and ten years of experience stretching one salary to cover the necessities and more. She's all about saving money whenever you can, so you have it to spend on whatever you want!