Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Making Lunch Time Fun

Last week, while I was grocery shopping, I got distracted by the summer "clearance" table... Look what I picked up for less than $1.00 each.

Lunch Trays!

I pulled them out today, and I must say, lunch time has never been so much FUN! My kids absolutely LOVED them!

I have a feeling that these are going to be a great asset this year. They will make it much easier to use up our dinner left overs as well as simplify portion size, resulting in healthier lunches, less waste, and hopefully less strain on our ever increasing food budget!

Todays lunch was rather basic, consisting of PB&J's, applesauce, baby carrots, goldfish and juice, but you never would have known it by the smiles on my kiddos faces.

Isn't that great?!? I love how all the compartments hold the food in place. I buy most of our food in large containers (Applesauce, Yogurt, etc...), and the compartments allow me to pour out each serving onto the tray without needing cups or bowls!! Less dishes is always a plus!

Today I was trying to brainstorm ideas for lunches and the possibilities are endless. Here is the basic list I came up with:
  • PB&J, Tuna, Egg Salad, Meat or Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
  • Cheese Quesadillas
  • Mac n' Cheese
  • Any dinner leftovers: Spaghetti, Pizza, Hot Dogs, Chili, Chinese Food, Mexican Food, Salad, etc...
  • Fruit (Canned or Fresh)
  • Applesauce
  • Veggies: Baby Carrots, Broccoli, Celery Sticks, Cherry Tomatoes, etc.
  • Popcorn, Chips, or Nachos
  • Animal Crackers, Graham Crackers, Gold Fish or Pretzels
  • Nuts
  • Yogurt, Pudding, Cottage Cheese
  • Cheese Sticks
  • Cookies, Cupcakes
  • Any more suggestions??
It's funny... I am already looking forward to making lunch tomorrow! :)

Oh, and by the way, today went SO MUCH BETTER than yesterday! Ahhh, I really do LOVE homeschooling. I'm just bummed I didn't have a chance to try and make that cake... Hopefully soon!


  1. I LOVE those trays ... I would love to have some for my kids! What store did you purchase them?

    As for ideas ... good question. I'll have to check back and see if anyone else leaves ideas. Otherwise, I may google it and see what comes up. :)

    Take care!
    Angie K.

  2. Love the trays! Brilliant!

    BTW - I finally saw my sister Nancy and she said that you were right - you guys stayed at my folks while visiting Magdalen. Small, small world! :)

  3. This is so fun! You have the best ideas. I love that these would save room in the dishwasher. Can they go in the bottom rack?

    The parenting magazines this month have TONS of lunch ideas.

  4. Thank you all for the kind comments!

    Angie ~ I purchased the trays at a store called Fred Meyers.

    Maryan ~ I am so glad I still have somewhat of a memory! lol!! I had been wondering since I emailed you if it really was your parents home or not! :) It really is a small world!

    Tracy ~ Good question! I don't have a dishwasher, so I wasn't sure, but I just looked at the bottom of one and it says they need to be on the top rack. Also, I should pick up a couple magazines... I hardly ever buy or look at them, other than my subscription to Faith & Family.

  5. Jessica,
    I love the cute trays! And you have great lunch ideas. My girls actually love soup, so we have that quite often, especailly right now as the older two are on an "I don't like sandwiches" kick right now. I actually have a menu plan for breakfast and lunch, just like I do for dinner, because it simplifies things for me. I hate walking into the kitchen and having to think about what I am going to make, and the kids always take that as an invitation to tell me what they want for lunch, which is generally something different for all three. Then two are inevitably upset that I didn't make what THEY wanted... So, Monday breakfast is cereal, Tuesday is eggs, Wednesday is bagels, Thursday is pancakes, Friday is oatmeal. Saturday we always have a big breakfast because Daddy is home, and Sunday is another bagel day because there's not much time in the morning! Anyway, same idea for lunch... PBJ/PBHoney, Tomato soup, Black bean soup, Devilled eggs, tuna sandwiches, deli meat sandwiches, and leftovers.
    You have such great ideas! So glad your second day went better!

  6. Fun fun fun. I love the colors. I am also glad to hear home-schooling is going better. Isn't wonderful that God always gives us a new day and a new chance to start over. I love that.

    Food.....I am very much a once ingred. person. Sometimes peanut butter on a spoon has to do. What a lazy mom I am. Lots of breakfast foods work also.

    Happy Eating!

  7. Sounds like you've got a good menu going that's very similar to ours. I make cheesy burritos for the kids, too. It's cheese in a tortilla melted in the microwave. You can add refried beans or go without. Taco salad makes a good lunch, too. Creamed chipped beef over toast is another easy possibility. If made with those fifty cent packs of lunchmeat, it's pretty economical.

  8. Thanks for the additional great ideas, Sandra & Aubrey!!

    I also LOVE the idea of a schedule for breakfast. I keep planning on doing this, but never do. Lately it has pretty much been just cold cereal each morning. :) Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. how come chiquita didnt get a banana? get it chiquita- banana...oh nevermind

  10. I want to come over and eat at your house!!!!!!


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