I I enjoy the back-to-school season even though it is such a hectic one because after a really long summer it gives me a chance to start catching up with work and my household. And even though I do miss my kid for the six hours that she is in class, it's nice to have her back in school where she can learn and grow. For us the back-to-school season really is incredibly hectic and it's also a really expensive time. The cost of buying her new school uniforms each year, tons of school supplies, and the weekly shopping trip for her snack and lunch can get very expensive.
That's why right now I am making the Sunday grocery run to Food 4 Less, a Kroger banner store. Food 4 Less seriously gives you a lot of bang for your buck. Sometimes I only pack a lunch for Sammy, on other days I have my two grandkids to pack a lunch for. Their mom just went back to school, so three days a week I pack a lunch for three different children. With that many kids needing a lunch and snack, you bet that I need my dollar to stretch as far as possible.
At Food 4 Less I can find all of their favorites at the best price. Which is great because that means that I really can get all of the stuff they like, so I can keep the lunches fun and enjoyable for them.
The school week is long and I try to make lunch time good for them, which means having a large variety of snacks to pick from. Having all of these items at-the-ready in my pantry means I can also get in and out of the kitchen quickly in the mornings.
We don't have a lot of time each day to get ready and out the door, that's why my pantry is always filled and ready to go. On Thursday Sammy only has snack because it's her minimum day and on those days I pack her one of the larger snacks and a fruit or other side.
On those days I send her off with a larger bag of Chips Ahoy which I buy in the multipack box. These pre-packed baggiess are more convenient than buying the regular cookie pack and having to pack them in baggies and keep the rest fresh. Another favorite of hers is are the RITZ Bits Cracker Sandwiches. I always have a few boxes of these at home for sticking in my purse anytime we are going out. They are perfect for giving the kids a quick snack while you are out.
The rest of the week and when I have the other kids to pack for, I change things up so that they won't get bored as easily with their lunches.
A few tips I have for keeping back-to-school lunch fun and easy are:
- Buy a lunch container that fits all of their foods in one place so they can grab it easily from their lunchbox at school.
- Keep a varied selection of fruits and veggies pre-washed in the fridge so you can easily fill up their container each morning.
- Buy prepackaged snacks: they are more convenient and make packing lunches easier and faster.
- Buy a selection of lunch meats, peanut butter and jelly so that their sandwiches are also different each day.
- Keep it simple. Kids like their food to be simple and easy to eat. Try not to add foods that need heating or utensils as kids will waste more time waiting for their food to be heated and might not have enough time to eat.
Below are a few examples of three different lunches that I will pack in a day.
Having these bite-sized snacks already prepackaged just makes packing each lunch easy and convenient. With all of their favorites: Ritz, Teddy Grahams, OREO, Chips Ahoy, Nutter Butter, Barnum's Animal Crackers, and Honey Maid crackers, they always eat up and bring back an empty container. Packing them kid-friendly snacks they love is easy and more affordable with so many great options from Mondelez.