I love a playdate. It’s the ultimate easy toddler-entertainment, don’t you think? You get a chance to chat with your mates and your kids get a chance to play and have fun. Whether it’s sharing the pain of soft-play in numbers, visiting a farm for a busy day out or just sitting on your own sofa at home – while toddlers run amok around you – there’s something wonderfully comforting about just hanging out with other like-minded parents while the children cement friendships of their own.
Ever since Effie was born we’ve done regular playdates with the group of mums who I met through my pregnancy yoga and aquanatal classes. All the babies were born within a month of each other, so they’ve shared every single birthday and milestone so far over the past three years. Playdates are hectic, loud, fun and full of chat. And you know what they’re also full of? FOOD.
Snacks are, for us, the key to a harmonious playdate. They avoid hangry dramas, give the children an opportunity to learn about sharing, and offer a welcome distraction when a potential playdate meltdown is on the horizon. But get the snack wrong and the whole playdate could go south very quickly. Sweets, chocolate, biscuits and cake may all sound like a good idea at the time, but have you ever seen five tired toddlers jacked up on sugar and E-numbers? Yeah, it’s not a pretty sight.
This is where the Goodies range from Organix saves me every time. The snacks are considered treats, but they’re not full of sugar and junk (hence – the “junk free” tag). They ward off a playdate drama and offer instant satisfaction without the side-effect of toddler sugar-crazy mayhem.
The gingerbread biscuits are a firm favourite in our house and they went down a storm at a third birthday party we went to at a local farm park at the weekend. One bag between all five of the children was enough to keep them going for an hour until our picnic lunch. And, because she’s never grown out of her love of Organix snacks (and she’s four years older than everyone else), Freya had her own bag all to herself…
If you’re after some more ideas for no junk playdate food then here are some brilliant tips from Organix. The pizza one is always a favourite in our house too. We’ve hosted pizza party playdates before where the kids decorate their own pizza bases (you can use tortilla wraps if you can’t be bothered to make your own dough) – a healthy snack or lunch idea PLUS a relatively easy form of entertainment for the kids too. Double win.
If I’m hosting a playdate at home then I tend to just lay out a selection of snacks on the table for the kids to help themselves to. This might be chopped up fruit, raisins, rice cakes or Organix biscuits. Whatever I offer them they’re always offered in little pots (what is it about toddlers and little pots? The food always seems to be more appealing to them!) and let the children grab a handful of whatever they want in between playing. I’ve learned from past mistakes that forcing children to sit still and eat a snack in the middle of a busy game often leads to an off-the-scale tantrum that’s no fun for anyone.
How do you negotiate snacks on a playdate? Have you got any tried and tested ideas for healthy and easy snacks to offer a troupe of hungry children? Share them below – I’m always after new inspiration!
Thanks to Organix for working with me on this post. I’m an ambassador for the brand as part of the #NoJunkJourney campaign. To find out more about ways I work with brands check out my Work With Me page here. To see other posts in the Organix No Junk series click on the titles below: