This whole “bring your lunch to school” thing has thrown me for a loop. For serious. I did not realize how organized I really had to be. Especially since I am hoping that the kids can have healthy home made lunches for as much of the year as my brain can handle. (With extra effort to make them gluten-free).
(We can chat again in May when they are getting store-bought ready-made lunches).
So last week we did a three-day trial week and I thought my brain would explode with all the preparation needed to have 2 bagged lunches ready by 8am each morning. Serious kuddos to all you moms who have been doing this for decades. You deserve a prize…in the form of never having to make anyone else lunch ever again!
I love to cook but this takes it to a new level. So I created a plan of attack! I have no idea how long my plan is going to last…but I’m giving it a go. I will keep you in the loop as to how my plan goes over the next couple of months.
Here is the plan: Each month I am going to create a weekly meal plan…and keep it in rotation for that month. No changes. Monday meal. Tuesday meal. Wednesday meal….etc. etc. The start of each month (or thereabouts), I will switch it up for that month. I think this will give me ease of knowing what is to be made for each day.
I thought I would share my weekly meal plan for this week – day by day – for these next 5 days.
Mondays are going to be:
Chopped Romaine, bacon, chicken and cucumber salad.
Turkey and Cheese Roll – Ups
Homemade Granola Bars (nut-free, of course)
This requires chopping and some cooking the night before. I did it after kids went to bed, as I watched some TV! No big deal, right? We will see on week 4!!!
I made the granola bars on Sunday afternoon — ideally should last me two weeks! They are wrapped in parchment paper for easy opening at school lunch time. (any extras are put in the freezer to pull out daily for lunches/snacks). I used the recipe from “oh she glows” (replaced nuts with seeds so they were school friendly) but in all honesty, they turned out only okay — am going to change them up so they are a tad more delicious for my kids’ little fingers. Will let you know recipe when I perfect!
I chopped the salad night before. Sorry pictures are so dark. Was a tad sleepy with bad light! I put everything together morning of. Took me about 15 minutes to do salad and turkey roll – ups! Turkey is literally some great nitrate-free sliced turkey with sliced cheese in the middle. (avoiding the bread). Completely easy to put together!
The lunch came back at the end of the day completely EMPTY!! Olivia ate it all and said she loved it. Music to my ears!
I make my younger son the same lunch and fed it to him at home. (in a lunch box as he wants to be like his sister!). While drinking leftover morning smoothie, he told me it was his favourite lunch. Lunch was eventually completely finished. Mission accomplished!
Lunchbox Day One was a success. On to Day 2. Quinoa Salad. A huge favourite of my kids. We made lemon muffins when Olivia got home from school today… so should help the lunch box have a little more excitement!
Good luck moms! Its a marathon not a sprint (quote from my hubby)!
PS: I think it is always best to have some “back-up lunches” in the freezer (in the form of grass-fed meatballs and organic chicken fingers) for the days that get away from you and you haven’t prepared a lunch ahead of time!!