A simple answer to this would of course be to put the apples out of his reach. But we're trying to keep fruits and vegetables available to him at any time of day for him to snack on. That way, he feels like he has some choice about what he eats, and as he grows his snacking habits will trend toward healthier foods. We rarely buy chips, crackers, cookies or other typical snack foods, and his idea of a treat is a cup of flavored yogurt!
Since I don't want to take the apples away, I have to make peace with the fact that he may only eat half the apple. Thankfully, I have discovered a few things I can do with his half-eaten apples so that they at least don't go to waste.
This week I remembered a pine-cone bird feeder I had made as a young girl with my mom's help. I decided to apply the same technique to the apple. To make this project, you'll need a screwdriver, an apple (half-eaten works best since it holds the peanut butter & seeds in place), a washer or nut, a piece of yarn, peanut butter, and birdseed.
First, take the apple and use the screwdriver to drive a hole through the center from top to bottom.
Next, thread the yarn through the apple.
Take the yarn that comes out of the bottom of the apple and tie it around the nut or washer. Make sure it's knotted well.
If you've tied it properly, the apple should hang nicely, and the washer/nut will keep the yarn from pulling back through the apple.
Dry the apple well and then use peanut butter to coat the apple. It doesn't have to be perfect, you won't see the peanut butter when you're done and you just need enough to make the seeds stick.
Plunge the peanut-butter coated apple into the bird seed, making sure to cover all the sides. I like to have my son help me with this part. He loves to feed the birds, and this is a nice activity for children to help out with. It helps them to become environmentally-conscious and is a great way to get them out of the house or away from the TV.
When you're finished, the apple-bird-feeder should look something like this: