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Mom shares smart trick to keep kids from constantly asking for snacks

The hack helps children decide if they're hungry or just bored.
/ Source: TODAY

Being cooped up with kids is hard enough without feeling like a human vending machine.

“It’s frustrating when you know they aren’t hungry and they’re just eating out of boredom,” Jen Hallstrom, a mother of three in Indiana, told TODAY Parents.

Luckily, Hallstrom, 31, has a solution.

“Each child has their own colored basket. In the morning I put their snacks in it for the day, when those snacks are gone they don’t get any more,” she wrote in a Facebook post that has gone viral with more than 400,000 shares. “It makes them stop and think, 'Do I really need a snack?' I also put their cup for the day in there because I’m not washing 50 cups a day!”

Hallstrom, who is mom of Karley, 11, Wyatt, 7, and Millie, 2, admitted that she still occasionally catches her youngest rummaging through the cupboards.

“My older two have done extremely well with it though,” she revealed. “For the most part they don’t even finish what’s in their baskets.”

Hallstrom also noted that adults are filling baskets for themselves to control boredom eating during the coronavirus lockdown.

Erin Merryn, who lives in Illinois with her three daughters, can attest that Hallstrom’s snack hack works. She shared Hallstrom’s idea on her Instagram, where it racked up nearly 23,000 likes.

“It solved one of my biggest frustrations,” Merryn, 35,told TODAY Parents. “I’m not exaggerating when I say it’s been a life-changer.”

This story was originally published in April 2020.