Tag Archives: lunch dates

A date and cheese boats

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For our lunch date today Emma requested pancakes and cheese, two of her favorites. And so they had mini pancakes; she and Jenna had sight words written on theirs, Jaylen had a pirate and “ARGH!” on his and Jaiden, who prefers me not to write on her food, had candy eyes plus lipstick and eyelashes.

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In addition to the pancakes, they had strawberries, raspberries, Horizon organic yogurt Tubers and adorable little Babybel cheese boats!

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And this is where the fun nearly stops. There’s an air show this weekend and when I got to work this morning I found out their media event was about an hour prior to Emma’s lunchtime. As those things sometimes do, it went later than planned and I was late for our lunch date.

And I had Emma’s lunch box with me. Ugh. By the time I got there she had already finished a school lunch and spilled chocolate pudding all over herself. But she ran to me when she saw me, so I’m assuming she forgives me.

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We sat outside in a courtyard area and she ate most of what was in her lunch box while she chatted with me. She was excited to read the sight words, too. When she was done we joined the rest of her class in the hallway and went to her classroom. Emma didn’t want me to leave and it made me feel guilty, but I had to get back to work. It was great to spend one-on-one time with her, which is rare for the two of us.

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Show & Share Friday

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We FINALLY made it to Friday! I thought it’d never come again.

I didn’t plan our meals this week and I’ve felt SO disorganized; for us, it definitely helps to have a plan. A little extra time on the front end saves A LOT of time on the backend.

In my flurry of morning activity today, I just pulled a bunch of things out of the fridge and made a few decisions. Today was a no frills lunch, really. They had a rolled up slice of ham, cubes of sharp cheddar, broccoli, Clementine oranges and either animal crackers or Cheez-its. On Fridays they get to choose between purchasing ice cream or something from the PTO concession stand so I intentionally do not pack treats.

I haven’t checked their containers yet but going off of what they said, broccoli came back from almost everyone and Jenna also didn’t eat her ham (“I don’t LIKE ham!” she says. “And not broccoli! Two things I DO NOT LIKE!” Whatever, she does too.) Jaiden didn’t eat all of her cheese today, she said, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Jaylen came home with cheese too as he’s not a huge sharp cheddar fan (they only had 3 cubes each today).

One of my big questions when I started making my first bentos was what happened to the leftovers. It’s nice to cut these things out so they’re adorable, but I’m totally not going to wasting a ton of food, there’s just no reason for it. I try to find uses for them or eat them (or have the kids snack on them); with cheese, if I cut it with cutters, I’ll save the excess to be used in another dish, like grilled cheese or tacos. This morning I had half of a Granny Smith apple and half of a Clementine orange leftover between making their breakfast and lunch, so I packed them in a container with chunky slices of cheese (I’ve been cutting them from a block of sharp cheddar) and cashews for breakfast; I usually eat at my desk in the mornings but when I got to work today our office manager had brought sausage biscuits for everyone, so I had that instead and ate my fruit, cheese and nuts for lunch.

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Yesterday was my lunch date with Jaylen. So far I think we’re all enjoying weekly lunch dates; last week I talked about other benefits and in addition to those, having lunch with them allows me to get a better feel for how lunchtime goes and why some food comes back (a combination of time and being self-conscious, for instance). Next week is my first-ever lunch with Emma and I’m excited about it. I’ll let you know how that goes, of course!

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This last share has nothing really to do with bento boxes, except for the fact that the photo looks like a bento, but I wanted to share anyway. On Monday we woke up to cooler temperatures and I was inspired to make a warm, autumn-style breakfast. I had a ton of apples (red and green) and decided to make cinnamon apples to go with our Cream of Wheat; I also remembered we had plums and cherries so I added those too. It was SO GOOD! It was all very simple to make: dice your apples and plums, halve your cherries and remove the pits, dump your fruit into the bowl with 2 tablespoons of butter or margarine and add sugar and cinnamon to taste (I used granulated sugar this time, but I always use brown sugar); microwave for 8-10 minutes, let cool a little and eat!

My kids, even the ones who are picky as all get out, LOVED it. They said it was better than Chili’s and IHOP (which is a HUGE compliment as they’re big fans of the cinnamon apples at those restaurants) because it was homemade by Mommy. Aww. I had mine with a little hot Tazo tea as we were headed down the road to our friend’s dad’s house to shoot guns. (Have I mentioned we live in Tennessee?) We ate the leftovers for dessert after dinner, with some Back to Nature Apple Blueberry granola sprinkled on top for a little crunch, and it was even better! This will definitely be added to our list of faves.