The Kid has just started middle school (gulp), and we've had all the bobbles and glitches you might expect when taking such a huge step. One thing that hasn't changed is that I'm still packing a daily lunchbox. Here's three lunches from the first couple weeks of school.
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For the first day I packed a burrito stuffed with homemade refried beans, rice, tomato, and corn. On the side are a few corn chips and mandarin oranges in a silicone cup with a food pick, because I wasn't ready with fresh fruit on the first day. (I did manage to track down the school's new nurse, who was assigned less than a week before the start of the year, and get my kiddo's food allergy accommodations sorted out, so I'm cutting myself some slack.)
Please let me know in the comments if you might be interested in my recipe for the refried beans!
Take a look at the EasyLunchbox with the orange lid in the photo. Now say goodbye to it, since my overwhelmed child left it at school in a brand new insulated lunch bag, and neither have been seen again.
The next lunchbox has 4 mini heart shaped sandwiches. I used a sandwich cutter on 2 slices of homemade Honey Oat Bread to make the hearts, then filled them with Sunbutter, banana, and honey. On the side are some nice fresh grapes and a pair of Surf Sweets Watermelon Rings.
This last lunchbox never even made it to school, since our family has been hit hard by a cold bug and I kept my little germ factory home for a few days. We're not even 3 weeks into the school year and have already exceeded last year's total mucous production.
It contains 2 triangles of leftover tomato and oregano pizza, apple slices soaked in orange juice to keep them from browning, and Jello Jigglers made in a LEGO ice cube mold. I used cooking spray on the mold, and the little LEGO bricks came out like a charm. One caution if you decide to try something similar: the packaging only rated the mold for up to 140°F. After I mixed 2/3 C boiling water and a 3 oz package of Jello, I used a thermometer to track the temperature while stirring until it had cooled enough to pour. The mold was fairly small, so I also had my Star Wars mold greased up and ready for the excess. The jiggly LEGOs were a huge hit with my son, and I will definitely be making them again.
Now for the unsolicited testimonial. There are some truly high quality lunch boxes on the market, but until my child becomes responsible enough to stop losing his things, I will continue to buy the equally well designed EasyLunchboxes at 4 for $14. I simply cannot afford to spend $30 a pop for a lunchbox that may or may not make it to the lost and found bin.
I wish all of you a safe and productive school year, and hope yours starts more smoothly than ours has!