Now that school has been in session for eight months, your inspiration for packing fun lunches may be on the wane. The challenge is to send a lunch that is not only nutritious, but appealing to the whimsical tastes of childhood. Here the parents of Parent Soup share their tips for packing a lunch with pizzazz. Get ready to say good-bye to that soggy PB & J!
"For all three of my kids, I wrap their sandwiches in a paper towel before putting them in a baggy to help them stay fresh. Then I use a marker to write a quick note on the top of the sandwich. For my oldest (a too-cool 11-year-old), I cut his favorite cartoon strip out of the paper and slip that in with his sandwich. He never knows when I am going to do this, so I always know if he really eats what I send!"
Making Healthy Food Fun
"I make fruit kabobs for my son's lunch. You can use blunt toothpicks if your child is old enough. Small thin straws that are used for mixing coffee work well too. Then cut up all different kinds of fruit and put it on the stick, such cantaloupe, oranges, watermelon, strawberries, pineapples, grapes, peaches, apricots, cherries, kiwi, apples or bananas. Anything you can cut into cubes. I've found that if it looks cool they will usually eat it and not even realize that it's good for them!"
Variety Is the Spice of Life
"I have this silly thing where I buy fun napkins, such as 'A Bug's Life,' 'Thomas the Train,' etc. I put those in my kids' lunchboxes so their lunch is always different."
Say It With a Kiss
"I put a Hershey's kiss in my kids' lunches every day so they have something to remind them of me for a moment in their busy day. It's kind of corny, but every little thing counts."