We’ve had school picture day, back-to-school night, and the beginnings of after school classes, programs, lessons, and practices. I’m learning some interesting things along the way – with one kid in third grade, and one kid as a kindergartener!
1 – Having two different library days and remembering to remind both kids to return their books isn’t easy!
2 – If you have two kids in the same school, or even two kids not in the same school, you will accidentally switch their water bottles. Scarlet will walk around with a racecar water bottle, and Des will have the giant pink bottle with the “S” on it.
3 – You might get annoyed that they still want you to walk them to the schoolyard and wait until the bell rings..but..
4 – You’ll cry in your car the first day that she walks into school without a backwards glance at you.
5 – You can’t actually pack them the same exact lunch every day. You can’t. Now my father? He was a teacher and he ate the same PB&J every day of his life. Every. Day. I always wanted to find out more about this. Did he pack it himself, or did my mom do it? Had his own mom packed him one for years and he couldn’t break the habit? Did he ever want anything else?
I admit that I Google school lunch ideas probably at least once a week! And while most of the ideas are fun, and I’m all about people using their spare time how they want – especially when the kids are in bed and the night is spread out before them – the ideas aren’t for me. I like things that are easy – like a party in a school lunch! My ideas are Tamara-tested and super fun. Here are my five ways to jazz up your school lunch game. I hope you’ll find them as fun as my kids do!
1 – Dress up your food and make it come alive. For us, we love to use cookie cutters in fun shapes for sandwiches, cheese slices, and fruit. Another fun thing requires just a marker, some round cheese, and maybe scissors if you have time:
2 – Plastic Jar Parfaits! These are so easy and delicious. I did a fall themed one with layers of plain yogurt, honey, apple slices, and some cinnamon sprinkled on top. The kids loved them and I didn’t have to pack any glass jars in their lunches.
3 – Rainbow fruit and cheese kebobs or skewers! There’s no end to the fun, and they’re easy to make too.
4 – Lunch fondue! You can make dips with peanut butter and jelly, as well as hummus or yogurt. Then pack fun things to dip them in! Generally I cut bananas for the kids, but I also like to write secret messages on their bananas too.
5 – A party in their lunch boxes with Mardi Gras Napkins!
Time to wipe away that school lunch and weeknight dinner boredom and bring mealtime fun back to the table with these fun paper napkins! I love that they ignite spontaneous and unexpected family conversation into our lives with their super-cool illustrated prints. The napkins feature conversation starters. They’re available in 200, 250, 500, and 700 count packs with a variety of conversation starter prints in each pack – and they’re affordable at about a penny per napkin.
It can be tough to get my kids to talk about their days after several hours at school. Not only do I jazz up their lunches with Mardi Gras Napkins, but I also jazz up dinnertime with them. I love putting out a different napkin for all four of us. Before we start eating, we go around the table and answer the prompt on the napkin. It sounds cheesy but we also hold hands during this pre-dinner game. Scarlet came up with that idea and I would never change it! That’s how we connect.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.