[Note: This post and all advocacy posts are unsponsored and unaffiliated. I bought any and all items discussed with my own pennies and no one is editing the content of this or any post except myself. Ever.]
So, lunch. MmmmHmmm. Let’s talk about this real quick, shall we? Ry has to take a snack every day to school. Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays she takes a lunch and 2 snacks since it’s a full day. Plus, she’s got at least an hour on the bus, and this little girl… her body eats up energy just walking, so we need some good food. Everyday. Lots of it.
We use this Happy Tiffin lunch box. Um, love it. It can go in the dishwasher. It has 2 compartments and the lid doubles as a plate. Plastic baggies are unnecessary with the food-grade stainless steel. The side latches are secure and simple enough for Ry’s little fingers. It’s $16. She thinks it’s cute and is so excited to open it every day. Win.
Confession: when this first arrived, I kind of freaked out thinking it was too small. For the first time EVER [lie], I was completely wrong. Smaller portions and a variety of options each day ensure that lunch box comes home completely empty. I just had to re-work my old-fashioned brain a little bit. Does she need a whole apple? No. Would she eat 4 apple slices and some granola in a cute cup? Yes. It’s PLENTY of room for her 2 snacks, lunch, and a couple extra snacks just in case of a bus snack attack. She carries a water bottle separately.
I bought a $4 cookie cutter for sandwiches that fits perfectly in the tin. It cuts out, like 87% [questionable math alert] of a regular slice of bread, so there’s very little waste (zero waste if you have a 2 year old scavenger around) and she’s super excited to eat it. You can find bajillions [yes] of cookie cutter options in the baking aisle at the grocery store. We also use these silicone baking cups when they don’t have rocks and lego people in them GIDEON JAMES.
It’s a peanut-free school. Tree nuts are ok. No problem. I stocked up on peanut-free SCHOOL ONLY snacks to make things easier. I had to hide them because my children are crazy. We go big on crunchy snacks because they are so tactile for Ry. Her mouth and speech need lots of activity to make things work better. Did you know your snacks can help develop good speech patterns? They can. I do not lie. Carrot sticks and pretzels and almonds and crackers… all these things help wake her muscles up.
She loves to dip, so hummus goes in quite a bit using one of these little guys from LunchBots. I’m saving up to get this triple set from them as well. There will only be more lunches to pack in the future and it would be nice to have backups in different sizes while something else is in the dishwasher or if [like this would happen] someone left their lunch box at school GIDEON JAMES IN 3 YEARS.
Confession: I don’t insulate anything. Everything that goes in the lunch or snack bag is frozen or able to survive the day without an ice pack. I can never remember to take the little gel pack out and re-freeze it. Honestly, it’s like I missed a class or something. So, it’s out. FORGET YOU, ICE PACKS! You are not the boss of me! [runs to her room, slams door]
Some of our staples: pretzels, goldfish crackers, triscuits, kiwi, apple slices, grapes, bananas, cucumber slices, hummus, cherry tomatoes, raisins, Monkey Bars, Stretch Island Fruit Co. fruit strips, popcorn, string cheese, carrot sticks
Alright, what are your school lunch favorites?
In my day, I took a bagel sandwich with cream cheese and ham. And a whole dill pickle wrapped in foil. Every. Single. Day. I did.