For about 2.5 years, three nights a week I would think to myself, "time to make the lunches" with great dread. Making my own lunch was one thing, but figuring out what to pack for Lucas felt like such a grind. I tend to get into food jags anyway and I could never be 100% sure which foods Lucas would happily accept or reject at daycare so got into major ruts of packing him the same things every day. Then the containers would get lost (the permanent market inevitably would wash off) or I'd end up throwing in the prepackaged applesauce or mixed fruit and feel bad about the waste. I would intermittently worry that there was lead in his lunch bag or BPA in his plastic without really doing anything about it.
Really, it shouldn't be that difficult to pack a kid a lunch!
But, that all changed earlier this year after I discovered this bento box system from Laptop Lunches via Z Recommends. I splurged on the $37.99 price tag and purchased the laptop lunch system for Lucas.
Here's how they describe their products:
Laptop Lunches are American-style bento boxes designed to help families pack nutritious, environment-friendly lunches for school, work, and travel. Our sustainable lunch containers--which come with a book of healthy lunch ideas and lunchmaking recipes--are reusable, recyclable, and dishwasher safe. Our lunchboxes, recently featured in both Parents and O Magazine, do not contain phthalates, bisphenol A (BPA), or lead.
Now, I'm not going to try to tell you that I jump for joy when it's time to make lunch these days, but I will tell you that I enjoy it much more than I used to now that we have this great little bento system! Not only are the containers the perfect size for Lucas's portions, they serve as a great guide for me in determining what to pack.
I always make sure to include a fruit, a veggie, a protein and something whole grain. Yesterday Lucas got strawberries in one of the large containers (he's a strawberry fiend!), broccoli in a smaller container, Annie's cheddar bunnies in a smaller container and a peanut butter and jelly on whole wheat bread in the other large container.
There is also a very small container that we use for ketchup or other dipping sauce, as needed. He also loves the little water bottle. I've only ever filled it with water and I don't even think it has occurred to him that it could be filled with juice! Because each of the containers has its place, our day care provider or I immediately notice if something is missing so it can be found and put back into place.
I realize the school year is quickly coming to a close, but if you dread the lunch-making grind as much as I used to, I encourage you to check out Laptop Lunches!