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Packing Fun into School Lunches

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Posted: Thursday, August 15, 2013 10:00 pm | Updated: 1:32 am, Fri Aug 16, 2013.

(StatePoint) Parents would love to believe that their children relish every lunch they pack for them, but the reality is many items you send in their lunch boxes will be traded or thrown away. How do you prevent your kids from tossing aside your loving creations?

Here are some ways to make lunches more enjoyable for you to pack and more fun for kids to eat:

• Sandwich shape-up: Even your child's favorite sandwich can get boring after she has had it for a few days in a row. Break out the cookie cutters and cut the sandwich into shapes, such as animals, hearts or numbers.

• Been there? Bun that: You can add some fun into your child's lunch by changing something as simple as the bread. The next time you make a sandwich, try substituting a bagel, hot dog or hamburger bun, an English muffin, or even a tortilla instead of sliced bread.

• Kebab-ing it: A terrific way to ensure your child eats more fruits and vegetables is to present them skewered or paired with a dip. Bite-sized pieces of fruit can be partnered with a yogurt dip or peanut butter. Vegetable spears go great with ranch dressing or hummus.

• Leftovers for lunch: If your child loved dinner last night, let him enjoy it again. Invest in a small thermos and some reusable food trays with lids. Then mix up the lunchtime routine using kid-sized portions of last night’s dinner for a meal he is sure to enjoy.

• Be nutritious, sweetly: Even if you’re trying to keep things healthful, never forget dessert! Just be sure you offer something with nutritional value. For instance, pudding cups can be both fun and wholesome. With more than 20 flavors, as much calcium as an 8-ounce glass of milk, and between 60-120 calories per serving, Snack Pack pudding cups are something both parents and kids can agree on for school lunches.

• Sneak in some fun: Take a couple of minutes to write a quick note or add a little prize, such as stickers or a small, school-safe toy. Even a knock-knock joke, a game or maze or a hint about an upcoming surprise could brighten your child’s day and make unpacking the lunch bag more fun.

More tips on packing fun into school lunches can be found at www.SnackPack.com

With some creative twists on standard lunches, you can make your children’s lunch box the envy of the cafeteria.

*****

Photo Credit: (c) Pressmaster - Fotolia.com

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Lodi Unified leaders are moving Lodi and Tokay high school graduations from the Grape Bowl to the Spanos Center at UOP in Stockton. They cite limited seating, costs and unpredictable weather at the Grape Bowl. But others say graduations at the Grape Bowl are an important Lodi tradition, and one reason many supported renovating the stadium. What do you think?

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