Good morning, darling!!! Let’s talk lunchbox love today. Ideas for food, ideas for notes. This is one way we can connect with our kids on the most basic level: food! And the lunchbox also gives us a chance to remind them in the middle of their day of how special they are to us: the note!
I have a pattern for packing my kids’ lunches. I include a protein, a Fruit/Veggie, a Carb and usually a dairy. Sometimes a treat. On days they have sports after school I’ll throw in a chocolate milk box, Uncrustable or some other recovery food in addition to their lunch. When my boys hit their teen years, I would pack them a double lunch. I did this after my oldest told me he ate his lunch between classes and it was usually gone by 10:00 AM.
My typical lunchbox ingredients:
Protein: Deli meat cubes (ham, turkey, salami) or in sandwiches. Cheese cubes, peanuts, almonds, hummus, peanut butter in a little tub, KIND bar, Greek yogurt, square chunks of cut up leftover rotisserie chicken, hard-boiled eggs, meatballs.
Fruit/Veggie: Apple slices, clementine oranges, baby carrots, strawberries, cherries, kiwi cut in half with a spoon, celery sticks (great for scooping peanut butter), bell pepper strips, cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, tomato or mushroom soup in a thermos, red sauce on pasta.
Carb: Bread on the sandwich, crackers, pita chips, pretzels, Cracklin Oat Bran cereal, Cheerios, rice with a spoon, pasta, muffin, bagel, tortillas with melted cheese (quesadilla).
Dairy: Cheese cubes, cream cheese on the bagel, yogurt, cheese sticks.
Treats: A square of chocolate, a fun-size salted nut roll, a lemon bar (made with Grandma over the weekend), cookie.
Some lunches are all-in-one: Chicken fried rice with veggies and chicken and egg. Salad with cheese, chunks of chicken and homemade garlic croutons. Pasta with red sauce and meatballs. Lasagna. Cold pizza.
And I often include a note. When they were little I ALWAYS included a note. I can’t be there, but I want them to know I’m thinking of them and I want them to get a positive message from me in the middle of their day.
What do you pack, Mamma? What are your best lunchbox ideas? Lord knows we have loads of lunches to pack this year, girl. Let’s give each other a month’s worth of ideas!!