With the return of school also comes the return of lunch making. This year I’m limited with what I can do since I’m in a wheelchair. I mean I can stand up and hop around but it’s so tiring and it’s a lot for me. Often times I’m frustrated and it is just more trouble than what it’s worth because I have found my kids like simple just as much as complicated.
Aiden is my oldest and often called Mikey because, well, he will eat anything. Remember those old commercials where the kids give the weird food to Mikey to test out because he will eat anything? Yeah that’s my Aiden! I can be fun and daring with him. But Caleb, my middle little, well if he eats half his lunch I’m stoked.
We are halfway through week two and so far Caleb has been eating his entire lunch box almost everyday. I cannot tell you how excited the hubs and I are about this. He must be playing and working hard because he is eating more and more everyday at all meals. He is a tiny little thing. I have always been worried about his weight since he outgrew his chubby baby phase. And no matter how many times the doctor to me he was just fine I would still want to plump him up.
So this years revelations: mini bagels. Caleb will eat anything served on a mini bagel. I will put strawberry cream cheese, salami, turkey, ham, peanut butter and bananas. The boy eats it up and usually everything else. I have also asked the boys what they want and let them help me. I need their help and having caleb decide what goes into his lunchbox is ensuring he will eat it. He may not put all the veggies I would like in there but he is eating his carrots and apples daily and I will take it!
Speaking of apples, getting them to not turn brown has been challenging. For years I’ve googled and read every blog about packing lunches and still couldn’t find one that didn’t include some kind of citrus acid. So I would use the citric acid and water trick but sometimes the apples were too sour, especially Granny Smith, and the boys wouldn’t eat them all up. So I just want to share this gem thanks to google and America’s Test Kitchen YouTube page. Soak apple slices in a mixture of water and honey. So weird but it work! Better than the citric acid and water trick. And since it has honey the sweetness compliments the apples natural flavor instead of overwhelming it. It’s just a mixture of 1 tsp of honey for every 1 cup of water. I have been doing 2 cups of water with 2 tsp of honey and slicing a whole apple. I let mine soak a little longer than they recommend to ensure they stay fresh. I usually do this first and let them soak while I prep the rest of the lunch. The last thing I do is grab a few slices and toss them in their planetbox lunch system. I always have a few leftover that I out in a Baggie and the fridge. We usually give them to the baby the next day for lunch or a snack.
Since I’ve been doing this, the boys have been eating their apples every day.