Simple school lunch ideas for a stick-to-it plan to make packing school lunches quick and easy. In the first weeks of school, the cafeteria is filled with them—new lunch bags filled with carefully packed lunches. A few weeks in, the clatter of school lunch trays is a louder—when many of those children begin trading in their homemade lunches for school meals. What happened to the beginning of the year excitement and dedication to packing healthy school lunches every day? above, our handmade, lunch box printables will leave your child smiling at the lunch table
Bag lunch burnout.
The beginning of the school year often begins with well-meaning, but over-effort lunch making. Simply put—parents are trying too hard to make really special lunches. And, like when you run too hard at the beginning of the race, it is harder to make it all the way to the end. The key to lunch making is pace. Avoid the top overextentions at the beginning of the school year—trying to add to much variety to the lunch box, trying to be too clever with the meals (trying out those cookie cutter sandwiches or veggie sculptures you saw online or in a magazine), or baking too much from scratch. The key to sticking to a lunch making routine—and making it fun—is to simplify.
Remember, you don't need to pack the pantry. Children are usually given a short amount of time to enjoy their lunch. Select a drink and only a few healthy, nutrient-dense foods that a child can eat in 20 minutes over conversation with classmates. A good guideline is to stick to a drink + 3 (a main meal item—like a wrap or sandwich, plus two sides—like carrot sticks and dried apples.) When lunches are simple enough, children can help build them too.
| our simple lunch FREE printable |
We love peanut butter sandwiches here. And, they do pack a filling, healthful punch. But, if you find yourself in the peanut butter sandwich rut, here is a list of sandwich alternates to take along to the grocery store. Then, pin our free printable of simple lunch ideas on the fridge for ideas when packing kid's school lunches—or your own. click to print
| picky eater problems |
Do you harbor a picky eater? A packed lunch does not have to be the time to stick in that broccoli your child would not try the other 8 times. Encourage food variety at home. But, sending a lunch, even if it is the same as the day before (and even the day before) is fine for picky eaters, and can still fit in to a well-rounded diet, if a healthy lunch choice is made. Choose foods that will fill a child with mind-food, energy, and an empty lunch box to bring home. Your child may soon tire of the same lunch, and start requesting something new, like Francis in the classic children's story Bread and Jam for Frances—a good book to read to your picky eater.
| special packed lunches |
Want to make a special lunch for the first day of school or other special day? A few simple ideas for an occassional fun lunch surprise with lunch love notes—
Our tips for nourishing your children simply—
| How other mothers pack healthy school lunches! |
healthy school lunch ideas from The Little Red House • lunch box ideas for kids who don't like sandwiches from Childhood 101 • tips for a fun and healthy lunch from Whole Foods • bento box ideas from Small Potatoes • easy lunchbox timesavers and recipes from Life at the Zoo • healthy snackboxes for kids from Learn with Play at Home • pinboard of healthy lunch ideas from Little Stories • bento lunches from Meet the Dubiens • help for packing school lunches pinboard from the Educators' Spin On It • eco-friendly lunch box options from Imagination Soup
happy ☀ eating
above handmade, re-usable snack bags (you choose the fabric!) from Better Life Bags • stainless steel sandwich container • recipes to make healthy lunches • stainless steel drink bottle • lunch box recipes • stainless steel food containers • glassine-lined paper bags for sandwiches and snacks from Fort & Field • our handmade straw toppers for school lunches
What healthy fare do you pack your in your children's lunches?
©heather cahoon • wordplayhouse®
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