Today was our elementary school’s 100th day of classes. The kids had a great day celebrating the number 100, but all I could think is, “Man! I’ve packed 100 lunches!” Well, maybe not 100 (half days and such) but pretty darn close! I’m exhausted just thinking about it. Ha! :)
I snapped a few pics of some of the lunches I’ve put together so far this year. This is a good thing on a personal level because while I might feel like I pack pb&j every.single.day, these photos are a great reminder that, in fact, I don’t! Phew!
And speaking of pb&j, let’s start things off with the the sandwich category. Honestly, there were a lot of them!
Pb&J on whole grain, cottage cheese, nectarines, a banana, and a small piece of a Wonka Bar as a special surprise.
Some kind of sandwich on whole grain (don’t recall), string cheese, broccoli, nectarines, and a mini energy bite as a special treat
Pb&J on whole grain, pomegranate seeds, berry mix, broccoli, and an applesauce packet
Some kind of sandwich on whole grain, string cheese, blueberries, tomatoes & carrots with hummus for dipping
Pb&j, applesauce packet, string cheese, carrots & hummus, and white peach (I think) Some kind of sandwich on whole grain, green beans, string cheese, and strawberries
Pb&J, banana, chunk of mozzarella cheese, a mixture of shredded carrots & hummus, and a small leftover bite of pumpkin bread as a special treat (The interesting thing about this particular lunch is that my son, who loves to dip carrots into hummus, was horrified at this little shredded carrot/hummus mixture I made for him. He told me he was embarrassed because it looked weird to his friends. I’m not sure if someone said something to him about it, maybe even innocently like, “Hey. What is that? It looks weird!” kind of a thing or what, but needless to say I haven’t chosen to repeat that side. I’m trying to keep things healthy, but certainly don’t want to make him feel embarrassed about his lunch. We’re learning that the lunch room is an interesting place.)
Turkey roll ups, applesauce packet, string cheese, nectarines, carrots & hummus dip
“Pizza dunkers” (mozzarella & sometimes pepperoni rolled into a tortilla – cooked but served cold), pizza sauce for dipping, pineapple, and pears
“Pizza dunkers” (different shape this time, think cheese quesadilla served cold), pizza sauce for dipping, berry mix, and a hard-boiled egg
Pizza dunkers, pizza sauce for dipping, berry mix, and carrots
On this day I had no fresh bread products in the house so I put together some ham rollups, a rice cake, a hard-boiled egg, some kind of white peach/nectarine, carrots, and a hunk of mozzarella cheese
This was another day I didn’t have any decent bread so I went with some Ak-mak crackers (whole grain!), with hummus to spread on top, strawberries, a hunk of cheese, and some carrots
My son’s favorite homemade muffins (whole grain, pumpkin-banana, no sugars – recipe coming soon), an apple, cottage cheese, and a berry/pomegranate mix
This was another day of me trying to get creative without having any fresh bread products around. I ended up with a berry mix, some cucumbers/carrots & hummus dip, a hard-boiled egg, and some leftover turkey.
About a month into the school year I got comfortable using my son’s thermos and I have used it almost weekly ever since. It works well for things like this: leftover homemade meatballs with whole grain pasta & sauce, a string cheese, and some clementine wedges.
Leftover homemade chicken noodle soup, a banana, some pears, and a little slice of leftover banana bread as a special treat (thanks to my aunt who gave us some!)
Leftover roasted red peppers soup with mascarpone and some Ak-Mak crackers for dipping, blueberries, and clementines
Leftover homemade meatballs with whole grain noodles & sauce, pomegranate seeds, cottage cheese, and either an apple or a nectarine or whatever that is! ;)
Leftover homemade chicken noodle soup, an apple, a chunk of cheese, and some raspberries
That is a pretty good representation of what my son has been eating so far this year! On the one hand, packing his lunch is boring and I feel like I pack the same thing all the time. But on the other hand, looking back at these snapshots it helps me to realize that I do give a decent variety so I shouldn’t worry about it so much.
As much as a buzz kill as it is to pack a lunch every day, I will say that it truly makes me feel great knowing he’s eating nutritious lunch and his little brain and body are being refueled healthfully! I guess it’s one of the many things we moms do for the benefit of our kiddos no matter how tedious and dreadful the chore is!
That said… how many more days left until summer?!?! ;) HA!
Now it’s your turn: What is something you use for school lunches that I can incorporate?