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Smarter Family: The Better Brown Bag Lunch

Posted by on May. 13, 2013 at 12:00 AM
  • 46 Replies

Let's take all that love and joy and happiness bestowed upon us over Mothers' Day weekend (hopefully we all felt it, ladies,) and let's try to refocus that somehow into creating cool new school lunches full of love and joy as well. And nutrition, of course. Here are some tips for getting started:

1)   Let your kid decorate their paper bag, or an extra paper napkin or plate, to add some cheer to their meal. Give them some stamps, stickers, markers, or even pompoms and glue. They can make a whole fun project out of it and they will look forward to lunch more that way.

2)   Have your kid pick out 2 to 3 things, and you pick out the same number of things for their lunch. That way there is a perfect balance of what's really exciting to them (their choices), and what's really good for them (your choices). Make sure the choices you give them are still healthy, but let it be whatever their favorite healthy foods are.

3)   Be sure to mix things up as much as you can to keep lunch interesting. I know moms who get really creative with wraps and sandwiches or pasta. They just toss in whatever they have that the kid likes: any veggies, cheeses, or cold cuts. My daughter only likes yogurt, but she also loves crackers with cheese or cold cuts on the side. So I find different crackers like fish or bunnies or squares, etc. and try different proteins to go with them.

4)   You can use cookie cutters to cut your sandwiches into interesting shapes, and add things like raisins to make a smiley face on there too. If I do this, I know my kid will at least nibble, even though she does not like sandwiches.

5)   Try totally new things every so often. No one goes through life without changing how they feel about different foods.

6)   Hide a little note, or tiny special treat in the lunch bag so that your kid thinks of you, and your love for them, while they eat. They will be excited to see the treat and might try harder to eat well. Or at least to eat something.

7)   Now that it's getting warm, make sure to include refreshing foods. We love cucumber slices, snap peas, grape tomatoes and extra servings of berries or apples or other sweet, juicy fruit.

8)   Make sure your kid's drink stays cool. They will enjoy it more, and stay better hydrated. I started adding an ice cub to my girl's water bottle and she is drinking much more now. Warm drinks in hot weather are just no fun, are they?

How do you make your kids' lunches special?


by on May. 13, 2013 at 12:00 AM
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Replies (1-10):
by on May. 13, 2013 at 5:51 AM

My kids prefer the variety that is in a school lunch.

by on May. 13, 2013 at 5:55 AM
1 mom liked this
On Friday dd had lasagna, asparagus sprinkled with lemon juice, rice balls wrapped in seaweed, and strawberries.

Today she will probably have cubed chicken, a bit of pasta, cherry tomatoes, grapes, and pineapple. Im getting up in a few minutes to get her lunch together and make her some oatmeal.
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by on May. 13, 2013 at 8:15 AM
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I made DD2 kebabs out of lunch nests and cheeses last week for lunch. He loved it! I put in post it notes in their lunches with little messages on them.
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by on May. 13, 2013 at 8:21 AM
Anything prepackaged. Homemade, unless dessert, was always frowned on. Either prepackaged or cafeteria hot meal.
by on May. 13, 2013 at 8:49 AM

I always put a note in DD's lunch. I also use a heart shaped cookie cutter for her sandwich. And I put in fortunes cookies: one for her and one for a close friend. 

by on May. 13, 2013 at 10:17 AM

My kids get the school lunches but these are good  ideas!

by on May. 13, 2013 at 10:28 AM
1 mom liked this
Good ideas
by on May. 13, 2013 at 11:03 AM
1 mom liked this

great ideas, will have to remember these! i let them pick out what they want or ask

by on May. 13, 2013 at 11:32 AM

mine isn't in school yet

by on May. 13, 2013 at 11:46 AM

My kids get school lunches

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