Does your elementary school aged kid bring a snack to school? Mine does. Since she started full-day school in first grade, Zuzu has brought a snack to school, in addition to her lunch, at the teacher’s request. Depending on when she wakes up, Zuzu can have four or five hours of hard-core learning between breakfast and lunch. The teachers at our elementary school have plainly learned from experience that hungry kids have trouble focusing on their schoolwork. Hence the morning snack. This year, in third grade, Zuzu’s teacher reads out loud to the kids while they eat their snacks, so it is not even wasted time.
I am all for the morning snack. I think four or five hours is too long for a young kid to go without eating, especially because it can be hard, in the morning rush, to make sure that Zuzu gets a filling breakfast. (That’s a post for another time.) If breakfast is just a quick bowl of cereal or a piece of toast, I feel better knowing that Zuzu will eat something before lunch. In keeping with our school’s wellness policy — which prohibits food treats for birthdays among other things — the teachers request that the students bring healthy snacks, such as fruit, yogurt or baked goods made with whole grains.
My only complaint about the morning snack is that, on a busy morning, it can seem like one more thing to do. You mean I have to get the kids dressed, brush their hair, cook breakfast, make the beds, pack the lunch and remember a snack? The temptation is to grab the first thing you see and throw it in the backpack. In short, I am always on the lookout for convenient, healthy snacks. And with Zuzu’s dairy allergy, I don’t have the option of grabbing a yogurt or a cheese stick.
So I was happy to learn about giddy dip’ems. Dip’ems are a new kind of pre-packaged snack. They consist of whole grain biscuits — kind of like a cross between a cookie and a cracker — packed with a real fruit dip. They come in three flavors: strawberry, grape and tropical. Zuzu’s favorite is the strawberry while I am partial to the tropical. (JR didn’t like any of the flavors, but then again, he only eats five foods and whole grain biscuits with real fruit dip are not among them.) Dip’ems do not contain any artificial ingredients and no high-fructose corn syrup. They are a snack that I would be proud to show any teacher or health-conscious mom. And because they are individually wrapped, dip’ems are perfect for packing in a backpack or diaper bag. (So maybe the “green” moms would get on your case for buying something that comes individually wrapped. But, hey, you can’t please everyone.)
I first heard about giddy snacks from a friend of a friend who knows the two women that started giddy. These two women, Jill and Sally, set out to create a fun snack that kids wanted to eat but that was healthier than a lot of the alternatives on the supermarket shelves. That’s why they created a snack with an interactive component. They found that kids like the act of dipping the biscuits into the fruit. Dip’ems have been a big hit in the Bay Area, where the company began, and now they are coming to Chicago. Target has introduced giddy dip’ems in selected stores in the Chicago area. This is a huge moment for Jill and Sally, but it is also a huge moment for parents who want better snack options for their kids. If giddy dip’ems and other healthy snacks sell well at big stores like Target, retailers will start to believe that all parents want healthy, convenient snacks for their kids. As consumers, our power is the power of the purse. We have to use that power and make smart choices about what we buy if we want to see changes in the grocery store aisles.
You can find giddy dip’ems at these Chicago-area Target stores:
2901 South Cicero Ave, Cicero, IL 60804
2333 63rd St, Woodridge, IL 60517
2241 Willow Rd, Glenview, IL 60025
1700 East Rand Rd, Arlington Heights, IL 60004
8560 S Cottage Grove Ave, Chicago, IL 60619
7000 Mannheim Rd, Rosemont, IL 60018
4433 S Pulaski Rd, Chicago, IL 60632
1111 Brook Forest Ave, Shorewood, IL 60431
1154 S Clark St, Chicago, IL 60605
Philadelphia and Minneapolis readers should also look for giddy dip’ems in Target stores in your cities. With any luck, dip’ems should be available in stores around the country soon. In the meantime, you can find them on Amazon.
Full disclosure time: I received samples of giddy dip’ems for review purposes. I am also helping to spread the word about giddy dip’ems in the Chicago area and I am being compensated for my time. I am doing so because I believe that dip’ems are a good product and I recommend them without reservation. All opinions expressed herein are entirely my own.