I will be honest, as the school year draws to a close, one of the things I MOST look forward to are the days with little to no schedule…those that allow me the flexibility of a few extra minutes in the morning, that don’t find me harassing my small people to ‘hurry up’, to ‘find their shoes’, to ‘pack their backpacks’ and to rush out the door…and yes, I definitely don’t miss making and packing their lunches.
But as Summer drifts by and then eventually winds down, my entire mindset changes. I crave order. I begin to be excited about the new beginning. I cannot wait to buy school supplies, get down to business and yes, find a way to make lunch time healthy and creative again.
By that time, we have sunned and swam, stayed up late, slept in a little too often, played outside until the sun set and done every single thing a kid (and an adult) could possibly do during the lazy days of Summer. And we have loved every second.
The kiddos don’t want to admit it….and I remember the days of longing for Summer to continue forever, but all good things wind down – at least for a season. As I prepare, both mentally and in our home for the truth of that first day of school, I know I don’t want to fall in to a routine of doing the ‘same old thing’ for lunch every day AND I know a huge priority will be to keep those small people of mine as healthy and germ-free as possible all year long. Am I thinking ahead? You bet am I. Every once in a while I do that.
To get me in the spirit, I partnered with Pepperidge Farm® Goldfish Crackers and Wet Ones to plan healthy, germ-free, creative lunches. Here is what I do:
Ask for my kids’ input: the truth is….they are at school, out of my sight and if they hate what I pack for them, they would rather go hungry than eat it. That is a loss for everyone.
Make them Germ-Free: Have you thought about this? Include a Wet Ones Single pack in your kid’s lunch. Genius. Little hands. Lots of germs. It makes sense, right? You provide the Wet Ones for them to do a quick clean right before they dig in and you know that everything they have touched in the classroom and even in the lunchroom up to that point is wiped from their hands. This is good.
Include a variety: I always aim for protein…like turkey or chicken, their favorite fruits and something sweet – I want to feed their brains and offer them a treat to give them something to look forward to. My kiddos have always loved Goldfish crackers. I almost feel as though we have grown up with them. As there are so many options, we can mix the Pretzel and Cheddar crackers and pair them with hummus for dipping or combine the Vanilla Cupcake and Honey as a ‘dessert’ option.
Be an Enabler: This if for those of us with bigger kids. When your small people start to turn the corner in to ‘bigger people’ territory, invite your kids to start helping with the creative process. Instead of asking them what they want YOU to make them for lunch…begin to oversee THEM making their own. I think you will find not only that you are raising intelligent kids with a variety of tastes, but that they, too, can be quite creative.
How do YOU tackle back to school lunches creatively? I’d love to hear your suggestions!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Wet Ones®. The opinions and text are, as always, all mine.