The list of things that freak me out about M starting kindergarten next fall is a very very long one. Most of it revolves around the scheduling nightmare with our jobs we are about to undertake. The whole, is it really worth it to work if this is what it means thing. However, the things that has given me the most reason to obsess has got to be food. Packing lunches to be specific. I am both terrified about what exactly to do and excited at the prospect of getting to have a little fun with it. I owe this of course to Wendy. She is inspiring.
I know, I know, I could go for the bag of carrots, the PB&J, the snack cake or some such, and call it good. The thing is, I’m pretty passionate about kids and food. I’m not the extremist no sugar crazy that my parents were, all things in moderation, but I believe in vegetables. I think kids will eat vegetables if they are exposed to them, not always given a choice about them, and have good examples as parents. Picky adults breed picky kids. It isn’t that I want my kids to like every vegetable on the planet, not even I do that, but I want there to be a wide range of things that they eat. Bento style lunches offer a great excuse/platform for getting kids to eat fresh fruits & veggies.
So, for years, long before we had only months to go, I started researching and dreaming about her lunches. Now that it is a reality, we’ve got a plan. They only get around 15 minutes for lunch, so that figuring in to the planning as well. Fortunately daycare has been very accommodating of our idea to plan for it all.
We started by setting a timer for her at school so she knows how long 15 minutes is for lunch. She still gets half an hour, but she knows how long she will have in school. They’ve also been reporting on what she’s eating. If she really likes it, she eats faster.
Second, daycare has agreed to do practice lunches with her. I got a variety of boxes (this helps me see what works for that too), and today we packed her first lunch.
It was a hit. She picked out the color, she picked out the ice pack, and we used the lunch bag that I got at the school choice fair.
It is a Sistema lunch cube. (known as Klip-It on the Container Store site) I have some of their other items, and I like them a lot. Then my SIL mentioned they have some for her daughter and she can open and close them, no problem. That pretty much sealed it. One of the concerns I have seen is some of the eco friendly lunch containers for kids are too hard for littles to deal with. I know they sell them on Amazon, but Container Store is WAY cheaper. They even have them on Zulily sometimes.
Anyways, enough about the container for now. The good stuff is what I put inside.
- Salami (apparently her favorite lunch meat, we’re trying to avoid PB if she can’t have it next year)
- Baby Bell Light, quartered
- Holy Land Lebanese bread, with butter (mmm… bread)
- Baby carrots
- Grape tomatoes
- Yellow peppers
She apparently didn’t eat the carrots at lunch, saved them for snack, and came home with TWO carrots, and that’s it. She ate those while I was fixing dinner. Half veggies and fruits, quarter protein, quarter carbs. I think it may be the best lunch she’s ever eaten at daycare (their food sucks) I consider that a winning first attempt. It was easy to pack and fully eaten. Score.
So next is more variety of containers, because.. because. If I do a bulk order from Daiso Japan, do you think it would make sense to give some of it away here? I mean, I don’t need 10 lunch containers…