I saw a post on FB the other day from a friend who didn’t understand all of the buzz about bento boxes. I can appreciate the comment because there are some hurdles to reach before it gets easy. When I started, it did seem overwhelming. But once you get the hang of the format, it really is quite simple. And not just for me, as the lunch maker, but for my kids too. They open one box and their entire lunch is accessible. If they don’t finish it, they only have one lid to deal with. There aren’t 23 little zip lock bags to unzip and re-zip. There’s no mess in their lunch boxes because a bag didn’t get closed. And my kids very seldom have waste, so they don’t have to stand in the garbage line either, which means more time on the playground.
“But it takes so much longer” is another huge hurdle. And it does take longer. But not much. This lunch here – it probably took me between 7-10 minutes to put together three of these boxes. And part of that time was reconfiguring the contents because I didn’t have enough food so I opted to put their juice box into their container in order to give the whole box more stability. And I could have cut the time down even more if I hadn’t made their sandwich cute, or put their cheese sticks onto skewers…but you know what? I have learned that my middle son won’t open a cheese stick and eat it, but he will eat a cheese stick that’s been cut into smaller bites and re-skewered. Does it make sense? Not at all, but if it means he’s filling up on protein and calcium, its worth it to me.
I admit, some mornings I wake up and lay in bed thinking of some creative way to display their lunches. Go ahead and have a laugh on me. I’ve always believed that if I can put a smile on someone’s face, I’ve done a good deed for the day 🙂
The Contents – 1/3 banana, goldfish, half a turkey sandwich, baby orange, cheese stick, apple slices and a juice box.
The Details – Have your kids tried these juice boxes? Fruitables – a mix of fruit and vegetable juices. Pretty good stuff, even from the kids’ perspectives.
The Verdict – Three thumbs sideways…what can I say, regular old sandwiches just aren’t their favorites!