I have two boys who love their sports, and as they get older they spend more and more time on the playing fields. Practices run longer and later into the evening and occur more frequently each week. Many nights, one of my sons gets home after 8:30 p.m., without having eaten dinner. It seems like yesterday this was their bedtime! Needless to say, I find it trickier to feed them a sit-down, balanced meal every evening.
I know I am not alone in this scenario; there are scores of boys (and girls) on the sports fields with my sons. So what to do?
Kids usually come home from school hungry. No matter how good the school lunch is or how hearty the snacks, kids burn through a great number of calories and expend a great deal of energy during a school day. It can be more beneficial to hand them a plate of meatballs or a bowl of chili at 4 p.m., when their stomachs are rumbling, than at 8 p.m., when they are drained and would rather go to bed than eat anything substantial.