This post is sponsored by Pepperidge Farm, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
I can’t believe in just a few weeks the kids will be heading back to school so no more lazy mornings or afternoons spent hanging out at the pool; boo hoo! As sad as I am that summer is over, my kids and I are actually a bit excited about heading back to school and the back to school shopping, meet the teacher nights and first day of school! Going back to school means several things in our household like earlier bedtimes, routines being re-established and making time each night to pack up their lunches for the next day! Since you might be out of your “routine” like we are, make sure you check out our 5 simple tips for packing the perfect lunch so you will be ready to go back to school, at least in the food department!
Have a weekly plan
This is a must if you don’t want to go crazy looking for things to put in the kids lunch boxes for the week. Get a meal chart or even a calendar you can write on and fill it out each Sunday night for the next week. This will also help with your grocery list because if you don’t buy it, you can’t use it. It will also help you remember what lunches you have already made for the week because if you are like me, come the end of the week, I could not tell you what I put in their lunch box on Monday or Tuesday. A plan helps me to stay organized and helps speed up the time it takes to make lunches each night because I don’t have to think about it. I put everything in a basket and get to work!
Prep what you can
I have 2 kids to pack school lunch for and it is a chore for sure to make sure they like what I pack and to make sure it’s half-way healthy, doesn’t get soggy, spoiled, leaky etc. Plus if you throw in the fact that I have a very picky eater and we are very busy during the week, it’s enough to make you want to pull your hair. Easy solution, on Saturday or Sunday nights I like to prep what I can so I don’t have to worry about it during the week. I make sure all the fruit and veggies are washed, cut and put into Ziploc baggies or Tupperware so I can just grab them each day. Believe me it is so much easier than trying to do it each night. Some people go as far as packing the 5 lunches ahead of time which is great if you have the space in your fridge but I don’t so I just get ready what I can. Part of prepping is making sure that you have what you need for the whole week so having a written plan will help here so you don’t find yourself hitting the store at 10pm at night because you didn’t have any bread.
Pack what they like
Yes I know all the teachers are judging the moms who send sugar and carbs in the lunch box to school, but not us, we say pack what your kids like and will eat. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying send cookies to school every day, but there is nothing wrong with a little sweetness or salt in their box. If they don’t really like yogurt, don’t send it. You will be able to tell when things come home unopened what they are in the mood for. I always let my kids help me make our weekly list, prep our food and actually pack their lunch so we are not being wasteful. I want them to fuel their body with food mid-day so I need to make sure I am putting in smart choices that they like.
One of my kids favs is when I send Pepperidge Farm® Bakery Classics Slider Buns! They are perfectly sized for their cute little hands and totally versatile for any recipe! I like to make Ham & Cheese sliders for them using the Sweet & Soft Pepperidge Farm bun flavor! It’s super easy and you can make several at a time, saving you time during the week. They are quality buns made with premium ingredients and don’t tear when you put your spread on them and that’s a bonus!
WORLDS BEST (AND EASIEST) HAM & CHEESE SANDWICH
- Prep Time- 5 min
- Total Time-10 min
Servings for 1
- 1-2 Slices of Deli Ham
- 1- Pepperidge Farm® Bakery Classics Slider Buns (We like Sweet & Soft but there are several flavors)
- 1-2 slices of cheddar or their favorite cheese
- 1 Tablespoon Mustard/Mayo/Avocado- A spread that they like
Dab your spread on one side of each of the buns.
Top bun with a layer each of ham, cheese, and lettuce; cover with remaining bun.
Cut sandwiches in half or keep whole. Put in Ziploc baggie.
Refrigerate until ready to serve. Easy, done!
How many times have you found yourself not being able to find their lunch box or back pack for that matter? It happened to me all the time, just saying, until I got organized. I got a used cubicle locker (the kind they have at schools and daycare centers) and this is where everything now goes when it is not in use. The kids lunch boxes, backpacks, things going to school, thermos, containers, etc. Everything that is needed for the school lunch that is not a food product is kept here, I know where it is, and I can grab things fast. You don’t need a cubicle, just use what you have, like an extra shelf in the pantry or your mudroom if it’s handy.
Send Some Love
Who doesn’t love a sweet note, I know I do, especially when unexpected! Why not make it a habit, at least a couple times a week, to include a sweet note in your kids lunch box! Let them know how much you love them or how much they rock! Their friends won’t know why they are grinning ear to ear unless they tell them and they are sure to appreciate you putting in a sweet little extra touch for them. I know my girls sure do especially when I put in a themed character note or scented stickers!
You can do it Mom! Don’t worry, you will be back in the routine soon enough and all the “back to school” hype will be a thing of the past. Make sure to try our WORLDS BEST (AND EASIEST) HAM & CHEESE SANDWICH and check out the Pepperidge Farm’s website here where you will find even more delicious recipes to get inspired for Back to School and lunch time!