Ideas for School Lunches

PicMonkey Collage-1We’ve had a great start to the new school year around here! I hope everyone else has too!

Waking at 6:45, feeding breakfast to a small army, making sure everyone is dressed, hair and teeth brushed, has their back packs, homework signed, lunches, and is headed in the right vehicle to the right school at all the right times is becoming a tad bit less crazy! {Or I would like to think so!}

The week before school started I knew I needed to get ideas for school lunches. Last year I lost vision somewhere around half way through the year and never really caught up enough to get another plan! I decided not this year.

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I’m into healthy lunches. Not exactly healthy as in gluten free, all completely-organic-ingredients-healthy, but healthy that’s do-able for our family. Sometimes that’s organic, sometimes it’s not. Mostly, I’m kinda a middle of the road mama. I’m sure each of us do our home and food life differently. That’s cool.

So, here’s my oldest daughter. She lost a tooth last week – during school lunch. She’s the type who lets her tooth hang there until it just falls out.

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She’s such a dear girl. Quiet. Deep. Athletic, artsy, a great student and a big fan of course of Hannah Kate. Last year we went shopping for lunch sacks. She said, “Mom, why can’t I use that vintage lunch box you have back home you use for decoration on the hutch shelf? I don’t really like things that are like everyone else’s.”

Her teachers have raved about her vintage lunch box and passed it around to show one another; kids have asked to look at it and ask, “How does it work?” It was a win-win for us both. It really is so fun, durable and easy to clean. I like her ideas.

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This year we have what we call “The Lunch Station” in our kitchen. It consists of non-refrigerated items.

Each week on Sunday evening I fill “The Lunch Station” with all sorts of lunch items. The children know they can’t just pick four bags of crackers for lunch. They must choose a fruit, a vege, a drink, a bread/sandwich, and then they may add to that the snack-y foods.

Some successful lunch items we have tried for “The Lunch Station” are:

apples

oranges

bananas

cherries

washed/cut strawberries

apple sauce cups

fruit cups

energy bars

carrots

dried fruit

nuts

crackers

granola bars

cookies

pretzels

chips

water bottles

juice boxes

popcorn

bagels

scones

muffins

pita pockets

pb&j sandwiches

beef jerky

trail mix

granola

Each week “The Lunch Station” varies. Depending on what they choose, each day can be different then the day before.

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After they pick their lunch items they also pick up a note from me out of the basket. These are just short notes I type/or write over the weekend that they can read at lunch. The note may just be a quote, a verse of encouragement, some words of wisdom about being a friend, or maybe something about working hard or the good of learning.

Sometimes I just copy and paste words of wisdom I find on the internet that I think will encourage them and print it out and add, “I love you. Mom.” It doesn’t always have to be fancy and wordy. Just something that might let them know I care about their heart and who they become.

And that I miss them.

“The Lunch Station” has made school lunch making easy on everyone! Hopefully this idea will last us the whole school year!

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The favorite lunch item right now is the cranberry scone. Our grocery store sells them in the bakery, but I’ve found they are also easy to make. The scones work just as well for a before school breakfast as they are running out the door on the mornings the alarm doesn’t go off when it should have! {Tell me we’re not the only family that happens to!}

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The days may seem long, but I know if we blink, these precious children will all be grown! Here’s a high-five to all you moms out there! Be looking on our Facebook page for news of upcoming Facebook Sales. We’ve got some beautiful clothing coming your way!

 

Alyssa

{For Hannah Kate}