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School Lunches Are Serious Business – A Roundup

On Monday, my oldest son started kindergarten.

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Like any self-respecting foodie, I spent way too much time in the weeks before the first day of school scouring the tubes for what the cool moms were packing for their kids’ lunches these days. I mean, I survived on good old sandwiches in plastic baggies with sides of chips, but there are people out there nowadays doing crazy bento box lunches with food shaped like animals and exotic farmer’s market fruit and organic whatever else, so I thought I could at least do a LITTLE more than the basic brown bag lunch. Because, if nothing else, the internet is a place where moms can all gather and compete with each other over stupid stuff like the level of creativity involved in packing a five-year-old’s lunch. Amirite?

My goal was to land somewhere between shoving my kid out the door with a handful of lunch money and a prayer, and this lady. I already had an awesome Avengers lunch kit for Ryan, a birthday gift from my parents. I heard about these divided Ziplock containers and loved the idea – they are leakproof, so I can put a sandwich or something in the big container, then do something like carrots and ranch in the other containers, and the ranch wouldn’t get all over everything else. I have some tiny Rubbermaid containers that could contain dips, but Ryan can’t get them open. I got a pack of the Ziplock containers and made him try to open one, which he did with no problem. Done and done.

The school requires that kindergarteners have a pop-top water bottle (they specifically said no screw-tops), so I got this Spiderman Thermos bottle. It’s great – doesn’t sweat and, I mean, it has Spiderman on it. I got the matching Thermos for days I want to send a warm lunch. A few reusable baggies later and I was set. Or at least, I was set until I realized the night before school started that the Ziplock containers wouldn’t fit in the Avengers lunch kit. Big fat sigh. Ryan loves dips, and he’s a picky eater so when I find something he likes I stick with it. I really, really wanted to use those containers but didn’t want to send him to school with his lunch in an HEB bag. It may sound like a stupid thing to get hung up on, but I don’t ever want him to be made fun of and kids have been picked on for a lot less than bringing their lunch to school in a plastic bag.

So, after more internet scouring, I learned that this Lands End lunch kit is the perfect size for the Ziplocks and whatever else I want to cram in there. Mine should be arriving this week.

Anyway, enough about all that. This post isn’t going to contain a bunch of pictures of what I’m packing for lunch because ain’t nobody with a job got time for that, and there are PLENTY of sites out there that do that better than I could anyway. Plus, I’ve been at this less than a week, so what do I know? Below are some of my favorite links with info about packing healthy school lunches. I also have a Pinterest board where I collect these, so follow if you want. Leave a comment if you have another great one you want to share!

I hope everyone with school-aged kids made it through the first week!

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