If your child has been back to school for, say, a week..chances are you've heard the lunchbox woes. The longing for sugary treats, for that extra something special to make the day go faster. It's especially trying for little ones whose parents are health-conscious. Just because you don't give into every snack food fad doesn't mean that you can't make your child's lunchbox sparkle. Here are a few ideas that don't involve a lot of sugar!
This might seem cliche', but kids absolutely adore finding notes of encouragement in their lunches! I've written notes with prayers for their day, wishing them lunch on a test, or a note acknowledging something good they've done recently. Other great ideas include jokes or a word puzzle.
This is an extra fun surprise and it's a great way to really show your child that you're paying attention to their individual taste. Pencils, stickers, temporary tattoos, erasers, lip balms and lotion don't cost a lot. My tip: Stock up when you see these items on sale!
Healthy TreatsIf your children absolutely MUST HAVE a sweet treat, there are healthier ways you can go about it. Here're a few suggestions:
- Apples with yogurt "dip"
- Homemade granola bars
- A protein bar
- Veggies cut into fun shapes with ranch to dip
- Protein Balls made with peanut butter, honey, oatmeal and a few chocolate chips
- Sugar-free cookies or candy
- A special smoothie packed in a thermos
The Bento Factor
If you can't join them, beat them! The Bento box fad is at it's prime right now, with so many cute ideas. A Bento box is a plastic lunch container that you can find either online or in general stores like Wal-Mart. It has a lot of compartments which means that you can fit a lot of different things in there! Think of it as a more sophisticated version of a Lunchable. If you want to get extra fancy you can get ideas from Pinterest to make themed lunches.
Lunchtime doesn't have to be a source of conflict in your home! With these simple tips, your child can be the envy of the cafeteria while still getting the nutrients they need. What was your favorite lunchtime treat? What ideas are you going to use for this year's lunchbox goodies?