What’s for Lunch?
What’s for Lunch?
Now that it is January, educators everywhere are packing lunches for themselves and, let’s face it; inspiration is needed; more on some days than others.
Have you ever experienced that moment when you sit down at work, open your lunch, and don’t like anything in there? You look around and think to yourself, “What was I thinking this morning?” because YOU are the one that packed your lunch. It is such a disappointing feeling because you have no-one to blame but yourself.
Here are some quick and easy ideas of great ways to fuel your body, which, in turn, fuels your brain and energizes you for the rest of your busy day. No matter your taste, there are some ideas here for you that will make those lunches more appealing and less appalling.
- Make a protein box: include a crunch veggie like carrots, some fruit (apple slices, grapes/blueberries), a hard-boiled egg, some cheese and a few crackers and – voila – a quick protein pick-me-up.
- Leftover pasta or spaghetti? Make a pasta salad and tuck in, and enjoy.
- Make Sundays a lunch-loading day and prep some lunch ingredients so that you can ‘grab and go’ every morning. Some ideas: cut-up carrots, chopped celery, prepped /bagged salads, and any other ingredients you may want to add.
- When cooking supper, make enough, so you have some leftovers for the next day.
- Buy some hummus and pair it with tortillas/naan or veggies (carrots, celery, cucumbers & peppers)
- Make a big fruit salad and then divide into Tupperware containers for grab ‘n go options
- Bagels and cream cheese
- Make a smoothie the night before; freeze it, and then add it to your lunch bag in the morning. It will be nicely thawed by lunchtime.
- Cook rice ahead of time to have it as a base to add all sorts of goodies.
- Cheese and crackers
- Rice cakes with apple slices drizzled with cinnamon or honey
- Cereal; buy the small travel packages – just add milk
Don’t forget to have a stash of utensils, napkins, plates/bowls and a can opener somewhere in your room as well.
Other ideas? Check out some of these websites, but remember to follow the food protocols in your early learning environments that are in place to keep our children safe.
Our days can be hectic. We can be gulping our lunch down in 10 minutes instead of the preferred 30 minutes. We can be eating bits and bites in between activities or planning. We can be eating on our way home!
We know that a meal is just not about the food itself. Yes, it is easier said than done, but make the most of the time you have to eat.
- If it is only 10 glorious minutes, be as mindful as you can and chew slowly and mindfully so you can taste your food.
- Pack your lunch in fun containers such as mason jars and colourful Tupperware.
- Go and buy yourself a lunch kit and fun napkins with an appropriate – but meaningful – message that makes you smile. Better yet, write yourself a love note the night before and stick it in your lunch.
- Add a special treat to your lunch that you can eat at the end of your busy day, which will tide you over until suppertime.
In other words, make your lunch a marker of all that you have accomplished that morning and all that you are going to accomplish that afternoon. After all, it is fuel for fabulousness.
Until next time