The Non-Consumer Soccer Mom

by Katy on September 22, 2008 · 9 comments



My sons play soccer. And with that commitment comes the responsibility of being the snack mom for each of the boys at least once per season.

This usually involves bringing individually packaged granola bars and individually packaged drinks for the kids. It’s kind of pricey and the garbage generated has always irked me. And there’s that big grocery bag full of non-recyclable packaging at the end.

Expensive and generating a bunch of garbage? That’s hardly the Non-Consumer way.

Just because snacks are always the same, doesn’t mean I have to follow the same routine.

I decided I would try something different. 

So I made granola bars from scratch and brought a big drink dispenser full of watery lemonade.

The granola bars were super easy. I went onto and chose a recipe I happened to have the ingredients for. Oatmeal, flour, butter, pecans, brown sugar, chocolate chips, etc. Healthy.

The drinks had me stumped at first. What would I use for cups? I couldn’t bring mugs from home, and bringing disposable cups would defeat the purpose of waste-free snacks. Then I realized that all the kids already have a water bottle. So I had the players dump out their water and simply fill them back up with the lemonade. Simple.

Everything was a hit, and the other parents loved that I brought something homemade.

I’m lucky that our soccer league allows us to bring a homemade snack. Not all do. So make sure to check out your league’s rules before you go to the trouble of making something. Also, I already knew we had no nut allergic players on my son’s team.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Jo September 22, 2008 at 4:41 am

Is this a mid-game snack, or are these kids travelling and so need snacks on the way home or something? In eight years my son’s soccer team has never consumed anything other than a cut up orange apiece at half time; someone generally takes the skins home to put in the compost.


Shymom September 22, 2008 at 5:31 am

We do snacks after softball, too. Honestly, I don’t understand it. At least not during regular season. They play a game, eat a snack and go home. Why not just skip the snack and feed them at home like I am going to do anyway?

I do understand a light snack during the summer though, since they can play between 2 to 4 games in a day and some of those are back to back with only 15 minutes in between.

When we have snack duty we take fruit, juice and stadium cups that my husband has collected from all of the professional ball games he goes to.


carocoknits September 22, 2008 at 8:24 am

I have to agree with the oranges comment, that is all we ever gave the kids. We cut each orange up into eight sections and the kids just loved them.


thenonconsumeradvocate September 22, 2008 at 9:35 am

I suppose the “culture” of snacks is different for each league.

When I ask my younger son how a game went, there’s usually a comment on the snack. To him it’s almost more important than the actual game!

I passed out the homemade granola bars at the end of the game.

I could have done cut-up oranges. But when that’s been done in the past, it’s in addition to granola bars. One parent did bring grocery store danishes a few weeks past. I admit that I accepted one after the kids all took their fill. (Those Danes sure know what they’re doing!)

Part of why I made what I did, was that I wanted to make something I already had the ingredients for.

Thank you everyone for your comments. Keep ’em coming.

The Non-Consumer Advocate


Julia September 22, 2008 at 3:22 pm

Congratulations on finding a solution that satisfied your values but didn’t seem too”different” so that you alienate your son from the non consumer value. I am still shocked that some leagues don’t allow “home made” What???? I would much rather eat home made than factory made..what is the world coming too, and what message is that giving our kids..sigh


Kristen September 22, 2008 at 5:32 pm

That’s great…homemade is almost always received well! Which recipe did you use from Allrecipes? I’m still trying to find one that we really love.


Jo September 23, 2008 at 5:00 am

Not criticizing by the way – I think you chose a great response within your sons’ team culture. And would I object to danishes on the soccer field – I would not. But I’m really pleased that all I have to do is provide oranges!


Linda September 23, 2008 at 4:13 pm

I don’t understand the snack thing at all, especially what most parents bring as snack…twinkies, candy, cupcakes, etc. I feel like this completely defeats the purpose of the exercise they are getting by playing the sport. Last year, the parents for the team agreed there would be no group snack & I loved it. This year though, the group wants group snack. I like the homemade idea & will inquire if that is allowed (at school it was not). Otherwise, I will bring a fruit, a nut – peanuts or sunflower seeds – , and a juice box. I don’t see any way to get around the packaging waste if we’re not allowed to bring homemade but at least I can bring something reasonably healthy.


Lalena August 20, 2009 at 8:25 am

I have been a team parent for years, from soccer to cheerleading to wrestling and I would like to show you something that might help your soccer team with organizing healthy snacks, volunteers, fundraising events and parties.

It’s a FREE program that can help organize snack lists, volunteers and events. I think it would be perfect for any volunteer coordinators, team moms, and teachers as well as class moms organize fundraising events.

I am the team mom for my daughter’s cheerleading team and I used it for our snack signups and it worked so well, getting more volunteers than we have ever had. It really makes it so much easier than calling and emailing parents individually. I’m going to start using it for all of our events like car washes and parties and stuff.

My kid’s school is going to start using it because it has been so difficult for the class moms to get volunteers. Its free so I don’t get anything out of it, just thought I’d pass the info along.
Please take a look and let me know what you think.


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