Making lunches

This year Lucy will have lunch bunch at school somedays for her "Frog" preschool room. If she were to have cold lunch daily and join the ranks of the school age children we would have 40 cold lunches to prepare a week. This week we had our one week of the summer where each child had a camp, and needed a lunch packed. Often during the school year kids will choose hot lunch, but it is not a given and the stress of lunches can bring down an otherwise very sane parent.

Nathaniel is very often the master lunch maker

A trick we have figured out is much like pre-cutting vegetables on sunday afternoons, hard boiling 2 dozen eggs or making a big cold salad other weekly tricks I do. But this trick is pre packing the basics of all the lunches for the week. We use brown paper bags, write the child's name and date on the bag and put it in a box lined up. The perfect boxes are open, like a Costco box or any open topped box.

In that time of day when everyone seems to be mulling about not sure what to do after church, or before dinner time on Sundays, I have them pre pack bulk items into snack bags. Even the littlest loves to use a measuring cup to dump popcorn into ziplock bags. Then we pre pack all the bags with nonperishable items, juice box or mini water bottle, popcorn, pretzels, dried fruit, applesauce cup anything that would be fine for 5 days out of the fridge. We keep the big box out of the way on the laundry room counter and the morning of school each child can find their day and dump it into their own insulated lunch box. Then their only job in the morning is to make a sandwich or wrap, and if they wanted fresh fruit or yogurt,  they add that to the "starter" lunch.

This trick saves a lot of stress and has the kids involved in choosing what they have for lunch.

Any tricks your family does to make cold lunches fun, low stress & healthy?


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