This post is sponsored by Target. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Ahh. Back-to-school season. For moms like me, it’s a bit of a mixed blessing. When I have all of my kids at home all day, every day, it can be a little…how do I say it? It can be busy in our little town home. There are seven of us, after all. By the time we reach the end of August, I’m ready to have a few moments of peace and quiet to work or read or run errands alone or even clean. And the kids are eager to get back to their friends and their routine. We all thrive on routine.
But as much as we do love back-to-school season, it has its drawbacks, too. I miss the kids when they’re gone, not only at school all day, but then again in the afternoon for team practices, too. And the start of a new school year brings some added responsibilities, too – like waking up early, getting to bed early so we CAN wake up early, completing homework each night (or helping kids get through their homework in my case), etc. And then there’s the challenge of school lunches.
I’ve never been a bento-kind-of-mom. I’m all for simple sandwiches and boxes of snacks that make morning a little easier on all of us. Can you imagine making 5 bento-worthy lunches each morning? I’d rather not.
In the last 12 months, I’ve noticed something happening with my kids. As they’ve gotten older, they’ve automatically shifted toward wanting healthier options in their lunches, so I’ve tried to shift my habits on how I shop for their school lunches, too. As our needs and preferences have changed, I’ve noticed a few things that have helped us make better choices for lunches on the go.
Tips for Packing School Lunches that Kids and Moms Will Love
- Healthy lunches don’t have to be fancy. Choose whole, real foods like raw veggies and real fruits. Cut them up the night before or in the morning for a great lunch side.
- When you buy snack foods, check the labels. Look for products that don’t have high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors and flavors, or trans fats. Pick foods that are high in fiber and Omega-3s. (see my note below about Simply Balanced products!)
- Buy in bulk. Instead of buying everything pre-packaged in convenient serving sizes, buy large packages and proportion servings in baggies or reusable containers for lunches.
- Bring left-overs. This is my kids’ new favorite thing. For example, I’ve been making large batches of rice dishes for the kids to take to school instead of a sandwich.
- Make a well-rounded lunch. Some of my kids would choose to eat all fruits for lunch. Others might opt for all sweets. I try to monitor what they pack so that they’re getting a little bit of everything – a veggie, some grains, a fruit, etc.
What Is Simply Balanced?
Simply Balanced products are available at Target and are free of artificial colors, flavors and preservatives. They also don’t contain added trans fats or high fructose corn syrup.
What DO they contain? Many Simply Balanced products have the good stuff we’re looking for to provide our kids with the nutritional benefits they need, such as whole grains, fiber, Omega-3s or a serving of fruits and vegetables. See more details about what Simply Balanced products do and don’t contain here.
Simply put, Simply Balanced products are a perfect solution for better for you school lunches and after school snacks. They’ve got the flavors and the tastes that kids are craving, but the nutrition that moms are looking for.
We stocked up on Simply Balanced Chocolate Chip Granola Bar, SB Apple Berry Granola Bars, Blueberry Fruit Grain Bars, Organic Thompson Raisins 6pk, and organic fruit punch juice boxes. It was the perfect back to school week stock up trip to Target!
Note: Select Simply Balanced items will be 30% off using Target’s Cartwheel App during the week of Sept 13-19. You can learn more about Cartwheel here. Who doesn’t love getting a great deal on great food?
What’s your #TargetRun?
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