After days like today, I become eager for school to start back up. Most days I dread the day-to-day rigmarole of the school year, and having my kiddos gone. However, when I am working from home and I feel I can’t accomplish anything without someone in my face interrupting me every 2 minutes, I long for a school day. I sometimes wish I could turn school on and off as I feel like it. As I prepare my kids (and myself) for the new school year, I am setting some goals in place. I desire to send my kids back to school with healthy lunchbox choices in their backpacks, and helping them to stay active and healthy when our schedules get busy. If I want to eat healthier and achieve my own personal goals, then why not get my kids on a healthy path now? It’s good for all of us. Accountability is key!
With the start of school is also the beginning of extra curricular activities. We are constantly on the go, which means we sometimes have to eat on the go, or make last minute decisions regarding school lunches. My plan is to be better organized so the kids can help pack their own lunches with better options.
Here are my tips for putting healthy choices in backpacks:
1. Have a weekly backpack routine of giving backpacks a good cleaning out. Dispose of (or store) papers and any messes that may be crowding the backpack.
2. Help the kids to be responsible for filling their backpack with necessary items for school, starting with healthy choice options.
3. Break down school lunches into 4 groups, allowing the kids to choose one item from each group. This teaches them to be responsible for helping to pack their own lunches, as well as making sure they eat a balanced diet.
Create a plastic tub in the pantry and/or fridge for each group. Divide them up by beverage (such as Horizon Organic Milk Boxes), fruit/veggie, snack (Horizon organic cheese, crackers, granola bars, etc.) and a main course item such as sandwiches. Having these items separate from other groceries will also help mom (or dad) gauge when you’re running low and need to go shopping.
4. Make sure kids take their lunchboxes out of their backpack as soon as they get home from school. Get it cleaned out and ready for the next day.
5. Don’t be afraid to be creative with food options, to make mealtime more fun. Try using cookie cutters for sandwiches, to create fun shapes. Add dipping sauces if necessary to get the fruits and veggies in your little one’s body. You can even try having a different themed lunch each day or week.
The key to successful school lunches is planning and having healthy choices on hand. Start the kids young and get them used to having a balanced meal. My kids aren’t big milk drinkers so I sometimes worry about their Calcium intake, but they have a difficult time turning down the Horizon Organic Chocolate Milk! Half of my kids prefer chocolate while they other half prefer strawberry. We parents sometimes need to be creative in trying to figure out how to get the good stuff in those little bodies!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Horizon Organic. The opinions and text are all mine.