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Back to school means a lot of things- new back packs, shoes, school clothes and water bottles. But it also means something else, lunch making! Now, hold on a second, I have some of my favorite ideas to share with you that may actually make it to the last day of school. I love to add a little extra flair to my daughter’s lunches but I do not have any more time than the rest of you so I have developed some methods and tips that work well for me and I hope they work well for you too!
It is not uncommon for us moms to go into a new year with the best of intentions and the highest of goals. We start out the year molding pandas out of rice and by the end of the year, we feel like we have won if there are more than three food groups represented. I do not go all out, but I do quite enjoy packing lunches for my daughter each morning and while some of it is aesthetic, I am also trying to make my as easy as possible for her at lunch time as well. She just does not have a lot of time to eat so I want everything to be ready to go and don’t want her to have to fight with packaging or containers more than necessary. After I have gone shopping and gather all our favorite lunch making supplies, I can make her lunch in under five minutes flat even with my extra bells and whistles. Avery’s lunch always has six main items; sandwich (or other main), fruit, veggie, cracker, treat and a drink. Some of our favorites include DASANI, POWERADE, Honest Kids Juice and Lance Crackers (we go with the variety because Avery and Scott have different preferences).
I like to keep fun beverage sized napkins, cupcake liners, cookie and sandwich cutters and food picks on hand and pick these up whenever I am out and stumble upon something that is too cute to pass up. I made a quick video sharing how I organize everything for my YouTube channel.
When it comes to actually packing lunch, it is much simpler than it looks, I always start with her lunch cube and put a beverage napkin in the sandwich side and four cupcake liners in the sectioned side. If you were using separate containers, you could still add cupcake liners and napkins for a fun pop of color.
Sometimes, fruits and veggies are the things that can come home at the end of the day so I like to invest a bit of time in then by using fun mini cookie cutters to cut them into shapes. My tiny flower cutter even work on this mini cucumber! The cupcake picks I shared in my YouTube video are also a fun way to make mini fruit or veggie kabobs in just a few seconds.
Crackers and treats just get popped in liners, Avery loves the Peanut Butter and Honey Lance crackers. I also love these adorable little eyeball embellishments made for lunches that I stuck in the orange, just make sure your child understands that they aren’t food or trash. Avery is pretty good about making sure they come home so we can wash them and use them again.
Last up, the sandwich. Now, cutting your sandwich into fun shapes is not a new practice, but it is certainly a necessary one. When I do this, there is a much higher likelihood that my daughter will eat her whole sandwich partially because it is fun and partially because that dreaded crust that she has convinced herself she is “allergic” to is missing. I have a variety of sandwich cutters as well as cookie cutters that I like to keep on hand in the kitchen specifically for making lunches.
There you go, that is about it when it comes to lunch making and it all gets closed up and popped in the lunch box with a drink and she is good to go!
Another mommy tip, pack an extra beverage and snack in their backpack for after school because they are always hungry, and the line between hungry and hangry is a thin one. All my favorite drinks and snacks including DASANI, POWERADE, Honest Kids Juice and Lance 8-count Crackers are easy to find in the aisle of your neighborhood Vons and right now, you can use this coupon to get an even better deal!
Save $1.50 on any (1) Lance 8 count and larger sandwich packs when you buy any (2) participating DASANI, POWERADE or Honest Kids multipacks with tear-pad coupon found in-store.
You have to admit, that is certainly helpful at this time of year and all the things we are looking for seasonally can usually be found conveniently on the end caps of each aisle.
Let me know how you like to add some flair to your child’s lunch in the comments below!