I pack lunch because it ensures my kids are getting the fuel they need for the day. It’s the worst when they come off that bus hungry, tired and crying…. not how I want to spend my afternoon. So I put together a few east tips to make packing lunches easier.
Tip #1 – Know How Much your Kids Need to Eat Everyday
My son is 65 lbs and nearly 4.5 feet tall, at our last doctor appointment I asked how much should I be feeding him. I feel like he is a bottomless pit, often he eats more a meal times than I do. The doctor laughed and said for his size and activity level about 2000 calories per day was good for him. 2000 Calories per day! That is more than I eat! Now to be clear I don’t count calories for him, that would drive me crazy. I do however portion out his food because I know he only has 30 minutes and his stomach isn’t even the size of a fist. If I over pack his lunch he will eat some of it and probably throw the rest away. Why waste the food?
There are several resources on the internet to find out just how much your child needs to eat daily or you can call your doctor for an appointment.
Tip #2 – Know your School Rules
So many school are nut free these days due to allergies, in fact my daughter school was shell fish free one year. And let’s not forget the year there was no red dye allowed because the lunch room had new carpet. (Who puts carpet in a preschool lunch room?) The truth is some kids have deadly allergies, so if your school had restrictions you need to respect them. I also know that any extra attention for a teacher or lunch monitor would make my shy oldest child wither up. School is hard enough as it is, make sure you know the rules and follow them from day 1.
Tip #3 – Back a Healthier Lunch
Make a few small changes to create a healthier lunch box. Remember that time you went cold turkey and cut all carbs? Did it suck? Now think about your kids, if you throw their normal lunch out the window and replace it with tofu skewers and star fruit they aren’t going to be happy. And you know what else? they aren’t going to eat it! My favorite example for a healthier option would be PB&J. You can switch to whole grain bread, use all natural peanut butter (just peanuts and salt) and use no sugar added jelly. Simple changes to make lunch a bit better for you child!
Later in the week I’ll share the second part on my Lunch Packing tips.