School lunches can be a bit intimidating. Especially, when you see pictures of ornately cut sandwiches daintily painted with food paint, everything following a special theme. The idea of making a lunch can seem downright overwhelming at times, especially with kids. They are picky eaters, they are starting to develop their own likes and dislikes. Sometimes, it's just easier to throw a couples of dollars at them on their way out the door for them to grab something at school.
We also focus a lot on variety. I don't spend a ton of money on lunch stuff because it's mostly things we have in our fridge or around. I posted pictures to instagram the first two week of school and each lunch was different (you can find me here and #klassenlunches).
Also, we use Bento styled containers so that when they are eating, everything is in front of them at once. It also limits plastic bags and trash, which is great, but what I found is that more gets eaten from these containers than when I just send bags of food. I can also easily see what got eaten at school that day and what didn't.
Here are some helpful hints to make lunches easier:
* Don't spend more than 5 minutes making lunches, you will end up dreading and hating it!
* Try to make it different every day.
* Make a list of their favorite foods and try to incorporate them in their lunch.
* Let your kids help pick out new lunch items and test drive them at home (this summer, we picked up a Weelicious cookbook at the library and tried some out. . . some were great and some were flops!).
* Our favorite lunch containers are these. This year we also added these and these and really like them. This one fits perfectly into our lunch pails because we use pottery barn kids lunch pails, too.
* We also use Wilton silicon muffin liners and dip containers to keep foods from leaking.
* cookie cutters are a fun way to make sandwiches a bit more fun
Here are some of our favorite lunch ideas:
Turkey, cheese, and crackers
Hummus and Pita chips
snap peas, grape tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers
nutella roll ups
bagel and cream cheese
pretzles and peanut butter
Wheat Thins and Laughing Cow or Boursin cheese
Turkey and Cheese on Hawaiian bread
Honey Peanut Butter and crackers
I hope that this helps get you started or get you our of a rut! It doesn't have to be difficult or crazy, as long as it's healthy and the kids eat it.