Friday, August 05, 2011

What I'm Lovin' Friday

So last week, we left off with the Edible Paint for Sandwich Painting. I got quite a few emails on that one and I wanted to be sure to pass along a text I received from our favorite PreK-4 teacher! Mrs. L said that you can also use food coloring and that toasting the bread really makes the colors *pop*! Alise and I haven't tried the sandwich painting yet. I'm thinking that maybe a Sunday afternoon when school starts would be the perfect time to "paint" her sandwich.

So all this food talk is leading up to today's WILF post, which is ideas for school lunches. And I'm not necessarily talking about all that cutsey stuff you MAKE with food, but rather just some alternatives to the same. ol'. thing.

Alise carries her lunch to school most of the time. I would prefer her to eat in the cafeteria a few days a week, but towards the end of the school year last year, she wanted to take her lunch just about every day. And she would be more than happy to carry a stupid lunchable every day if I let her. Lunchables are easy for us on mornings when I'm running late or Alise and I have just had it out about what she is going to wear to school. So I really, really try to avoid them, but sometimes, it's just necessary.

So on the mornings when you DON'T send a lunchable, how about trying some of these choices?

1. Alise's favorite sandwich is PB&J. Oh, how glad I am that my daughter took after her moma in the peanut butter department! And sometimes I wonder if it's because when I was pregnant with her, and I would wake up in the middle of the night craving a snack, I would always fix a half PB&J sandwich and a glass of milk. Who knows, but here is a neat idea for that same old sandwich. These would be cute for a Spring time tea party, too. Sometimes going the extra step of just using a cookie cutter can bring a smile.

2. I bought Alise a cupcake keeper on the $1 aisle at Target a few weeks ago. And whether it's homemade or store-bought, I know she will get a kick out of enjoying a cupcake for lunch. A girl has got to have her cupcakes! I plan to use it on special occassions like when I know she has a hard test that day or she looses a tooth {Heaven forbid!} or just to celebrate!

3. Chicken and Cheese Quesadillas are eaten quite frequently at our house. Just use some leftover boiled chicken and Mexican cheese blend and spread the mixture over a flour tortilla. Flip the tortilla as the cheese melts. I like to spread a little butter on the tortillas before cooking them. Alise loves to carry leftover quesadillas because she gets to dip them in a small bowl of salsa that I include in her lunch. Which brings me to this point: Dipping is the thing, moms! Salsa, Ranch dressing, honey mustard...all those things are fun to kids! Another favorite is meatballs. We have a set of kids' chop sticks that we brought home from PF Changs and she loves to use those sometimes to eat fruit or meatballs. Don't be afraid to send leftovers! I do!! Be sure to ask your child's teacher if there is a microwave available at lunch time.

4. Have you heard of Popchips? Did you know that by dipping fruit such as apples and bananas in lemon juice or Sprite, that it delays the "browning" process? Fruit kabobs are a fun way to change up the same old fruit thing. And cereals such as Chex Mix make a good crunchy snack instead of potato chips. Even popcorn can be an alternative.

5. An article I read mentioned letting your child help with getting their lunch together. Uh...we're not there yet. I mean, I give Alise a choice and ask her what she wants to include in her lunch the night before {big point there}, but she is not yet responsible for packing the things for her lunch. If that were the case, she would spend 30 minutes in front of the pantry and refrigerator every morning and I just don't have that kind of time!

6. Love, love, love lunch box notes! You can find some really cute ones on Etsy that can be customed to a boy or a girl. Or you can go the cheaper route and make your own. They are sure to bring a smile!

We are gearing up for another school year. You can feel the hustle and bustle - along with the HOT temperatures we're having - in the air. I've already bought Alise a new back pack with her name monogrammed on it {like she really needed another one!} and we're going back-to-school shopping this weekend {early} to take advantage of the no state sales tax weekend! Don't forget about that!

Oh! And Leigh told me that our local theater is adding a performance of "The Wizard of Oz" on Saturday afternoon! Hurry and get your tickets! You don't want to miss it!

Happy Weekend, Everybody!


  1. I pack Mike's lunch. Lately it's been grilled chicken & brown rice on Mondays and Tuesdays. He eats it cold. He's a freak. I sent him off with a peanut butter sandwich today. I'm such a good wife. :)

  2. Chicken and Cheese Quesadillas are a staple dish in this house as well. Great ideas for school lunches.