School started last week for my boys. I have to say, I’m not a fan of school. Don’t get me wrong, my kids go to a wonderful school with enthusiastic teachers and great friends, but life gets sooo busy once school starts: homework, sports, piano lessons, alarm clocks, projects, PTA meetings, carpool, field trips, etc. It makes my head spin.
Then there’s lunch. Packing lunches has got to be my LEAST favorite thing about school. They’re so mundane. My kids ask for the same thing over and over again until they get tired of it, and then we have to find something else that they’ll eat. Convenience foods make packing lunches easy, but they’re expensive and create so much waste.
This year, we decided to go the bento route. I’ve been looking at these cute little work of art lunches for a while and thought maybe I could give them a try. There are so many great sites with tons of ideas for fun, nutritious lunches. One of my favorites is What’s for Lunch at Our House – she packs some cute lunches and has a What’s for Lunch Wednesday feature where other bloggers post pictures of their latest bento creations — LOVE that!
For the first day of school I created this:
The red bird was made from a piece of Babybel cheese (those little round cheese wrapped in red wax). The beak – cheddar, eyes – provolone, black details-nori (I wanted to use olives, but we didn’t have any). The yellow bird is cheddar cheese on top of a piece of provolone. The beak was made using wax leftover from the red bird. The birds are sitting on a ham & turkey sandwich. Celery sticks, baby carrots, peanuts and a mint chocolate brownie make up the rest of the tray.
I love the way the pigs, made from kiwi, turned out. The eyes are mini marshmallows cut in half with a mini chocolate chip for the pupils and nostrils. They’re sitting on top of Asian pears, with bread sticks to protect them. I cubed watermelon and added raspberries to the other two sections. It was way too much food for my boys, but they were still impressed.
I can’t take credit for this idea. I copied it from popbento – but it was too awesome not to try. It did take a LONG time to create the birds and pigs, and my kids know that lunches like these will be few and far between. But it was a fun way to start the school year. Tomorrow is Mia’s first day back to school, and she’s already told me exactly what kind of lunch she wants. I’ll post pictures next week.