This post was created in partnership with Stonyfield. All opinions are my own.
We’re back to school, which means that the wee ones are once again packing their own lunches. We never buy school lunches, so every day we make something to bring instead. Although our school has a healthy snack policy – only fresh fruit, veggies, or cheese – there is no restriction on what can come in for lunch. The wee ones know what my rule is for lunch, but I thought it would be interesting to have Little Miss draw out what her ideal lunch would look like to see how it compared to what we generally packs every day.
Apparently we’ve been doing a little too much homework lately because she insisted she had to label everything. And provide an explanation – in cursive because 4th grade requires cursive – of what she drew and why. The girl is absolutely adorable. Not that I’m biased at all.
I was intrigued to see that what she drew is actually really close to what she packs on a regular basis. (And yes, the wee ones pack their own lunches and snacks and have for over a year – they’re capable of it!) The rule is that you need a protein, a fruit and a veggie.
Not surprisingly, she chose tomatoes as her fruit. And not only because she’s so thrilled that biologically they’re a fruit and not a veggie. I have weird kids, what can I say. Tomatoes in season right now, and our school has a garden that has grown a plethora of grape tomatoes. She has a friend who buys lunch every day so is able to take as many tomatoes as she wants. Little Miss told me tonight that her friend took so many tomatoes today that it was half her lunch tray. And then she promptly gave them all to Little Miss to eat. It sounds like it was over a pint of tomatoes “way more than what you buy, Mommy” that she ate at lunch – which explains why she wasn’t dying for a snack when she got home tonight.
Broccoli also wasn’t a huge surprise either. It’s her favorite veggie hands down, although I haven’t made it lately. She loves my roasted broccoli, which reminds me that I need to make it again soon. Had I thought about whether or not she’d draw a veggie, I would have expected sugar snap peas, since we have a ton of them right now, and she’s been eating them like they’re going out of style.
And yes, you can tell this is my child when her protein isn’t a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or a ham sandwich or anything quite so mundane. No, she has steak for her lunch. And yes, that happens in our house. When I cook dinner, I typically make enough so that they can bring leftovers for lunch the next day instead of relying on sandwich meats and the like. Remember that Asian marinated steak I was talking about earlier this week? It really made an impression on her.
The biggest change in her lunch from what we usually pack is that she had a cookie in there. I don’t send them with a “treat” in their lunch because I firmly believe that they get enough sugar already, and we don’t need it at lunchtime, too. I’m not anti treats, but between birthdays and the request almost every night at dinner for dessert (frequently denied or redirected with a piece of fruit) means that I don’t encourage taking more sugar for snack. But it’s her ideal lunch, so I suppose that isn’t too far off.
What really made me giggle is that she drew her lunchbox. It’s a bento box from Laptop Lunchboxes that we bought back when she was in kindergarten (yes, this is year five of the same lunchbox – year six for Mister Man – and still going strong). She drew the containers and the fork that goes with it. And yep, that’s the right color, too, since she has the aliens version.
The one thing that makes me sad is that she didn’t draw a drink of any sort. She lost her Laptop Lunchbox water bottle last year, and she’s been reluctant to bring another water bottle to school. I’m concerned that she doesn’t hydrate well enough during the day, and I know that this is something I need to work on more with her.
Needless to say, after seeing this picture and talking to her about what she has in it and what she doesn’t – and why – we made up a new lunch for her today. I didn’t send a cookie in her lunch, but in an effort to give her something that’s just a little bit of a treat and also help encourage her to drink a little more, I added an Honest Kids juice to her lunchbox. The rest of her ideal lunch is already fairly healthy (although interestingly she is my no bread girl, so her tacos are sans tortilla!). I need to go out and buy some more broccoli and make it for her, but otherwise, I think we’re doing pretty well.
I love the materials I was sent to rock the lunchbox. My husband is thrilled that he can skip washing a lunchbox if he’s busy since we now have an extra Laptop Lunchbox that fits into her existing case. I love the Blue Avocado reusable sandwich bags that fit into their snack bags so much better than my larger glass containers that I’m always afraid will break and a U-Konserve metal container to try out, since I’ve been looking at moving to metal storage for awhile. And we are so looking forward to trying some of the coupons for new foods that we haven’t bought before – the Annie’s snacks will be fun, as will the Applegate Half Time lunch kit, Stonyfield YoKids (that Mister Man adores), Organic Valley, and Rudi’s products I need the wee ones to pick out to try.
More fun? I have a pack to give away to one lucky reader just like the one I received. Entry is easy via Rafflecopter, and the mandatory entry of leaving a blog comment just needs to tell me your favorite items to send in a lunchbox. Good luck – and don’t forget to follow the rule to be eligible to win!