Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Buggy Bentos for my Bookworms

Bella & Sprout love to read, so this lunch is more of a celebration of that than an encouragement. Bit of sproutlet trivia: Sprout learned to read when she was four, but not at preschool, and no thanks to me... it was Pickle who taught her, and it was a surprise to us!

Bee a Reader yubo bento school lunch
Sprout's yubo lunchbox contains:
  • sharp white & orange cheddar cheeses
  • little flower sandwiches
  • Granny Smith apple wedges
  • raspberries
  • berry yogurt with sprinkles  

Bella also has  bees & bugs in her lunchbox :)
Bug, Bees, & Blossoms bento school lunch in EasyLunchboxes Brights
Bella's EasyLunchboxes bento contains:
  • sharp white & orange cheddar cheese roll-ups
  • Galia melon flowers
  • cherry tomatoes
  • cucumber slices
  • & a few marshmallow treats

While I was packing for the girls I went ahead and packed a lunch for myself as well. I don't usually bother with decorations for my lunches, but I had the picks out, so, just for fun:

Blossoms & Berries LunchBot Duo Bento for Mum
My brand new orange LunchBots Duo contains:
  • a clementine mandarin orange
  • a hard cooked egg (blossom shape made by using large egg instead of jumbo in star shape egg mold)
  • some cracked black pepper Triscuit
  • cheese scarps from the girls' lunches
  • raspberries & blueberries

Thanks to Beth of A Boy & His Lunch for the "Buggy for Books" & "Bee a Reader" cupcake picks, they were a nice surprise in the mail :) And I just happen to be linking this post to her "Grown-ups Gotta Eat" Linky :

Grown-Ups Gotta Eat

Some stuff used for these lunches:

Monday, January 28, 2013

A Pirate Lunch for my Treasured Girl

I'm so proud of my Bella! She does her best to help me out around the house, and with her little sisters, and she tries her best at school too. She even won an award at school last week! So today she has a treat for lunch, one of our treasured Iced Gingerbread Clif bars :) I'm not kidding - they're a seasonal flavour, and a favourite of hers, and we don't have many left!

Pirate Treasure School Lunch

Bella's Pirate Treasure lunch is packed in one of our new purple-lidded EasyLunchboxes Brights.  She has English cucumber slices, baby carrots, cherry tomatoes,  a Fig Newton & Oreo, & the Gingerbread Clif bar treasure :) I also tucked in a pirate map cloth napkin, & a Lunchbox Love note to thank her for her help & let her know I treasure her! 

Today's lunch is linked up to Bento for Kidlet's Meatless Monday!


Stuff used for this lunch:

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Through the Looking Glass Linky Party

Happy 181st Birthday Lewis Carroll! I love nearly anything to do with Alice in Wonderland, so I'm very excited about today's linky party & can hardly wait to see what everyone links up! I made this muffin tin meal for my girls:

Alice in Wonderland Muffin Tin Meal
"Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"
"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," said the Cat.
"I don't much care where--" said Alice.
"Then it doesn't matter which way you go," said the Cat.
"--so long as I get SOMEWHERE," Alice added as an explanation.
"Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."
One of my favourite quotes from Alice in Wonderland, and fitting for this muffin tin meal, which came together cup by cup, with no forethought, and very little groceries to choose from. I'm quite pleased with how it came out, considering! I especially love the raspberry roses 

Alice in Wonderland Muffin Tin Meal Raspberry Red Roses

I had some picks with sayings on them, from a bachelorette party set, and a couple said "Eat Me"- perfect. I stuck one in some blueberries. It occured to me later that the flamingo berry pick should have been upside down as it's beak was the croquet mallet. It also occurred to me that the checker pattern I carved in the apple peel looked like a chessboard - a happy coincidence :)

Alice in Wonderland Muffin Tin Meal Eat Me Blueberries

The cheesy Chesire Cat grin was a last minute addition :)

♣ ♠ ♦ 

So in case you didn't catch it all, I'll recap (and link to everything I used).
Oooh perfect spot for another quote:
"Begin at the beginning," the King said gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop."
Very well :) Clockwise-ish, this heart-shaped muffin tin has blueberries with "Eat Me" & pink flamingo picks, chess-board apple hearts with a mushroom pick, a cheddar Cheshire Cat smile, baby carrots with a white rabbit pick, cheese sandwich heart embellished with fruit leather & another "Eat Me" pick, raspberry "roses" on flower stem picks, & another sandwich heart

Alice in Wonderland Muffin Tin Meal

And,  a Drink for Mum!

Alice in Wonderland Drink Me energy drink
Haha, no, I'm not really going to drink it... it's part of my collection!

If you've made an Alice in Wonderland lunch - bento or muffin tin meal or otherwise - today or any day - you're invited to add it to this collection!

Here's a button to link back with,  if you wish :)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Happy Peanut Butter Day!

Today is a special day in our family! I bet you're thinking it's because it's National Peanut Butter Day, aren't you? Well, we do love peanut butter, especially Pickle... but no, actually, it's Sailor Boy's birthday!

And since it is also National Peanut Butter Day, and he can't be here to eat it, I made him a birthday cake Pickle could eat for him... a peanut butter sandwich layer "cake" with chocolate peanut butter "frosting":

Peanut Butter Sandwich Birthday Cake

Happy Birthday Sweetie   
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This isn't the first peanut butter sandwich birthday cake I've made.
Last year I made this one for Pickle, decorated with alphabet picks:

And I've made a bunch with this Lunch Punch:

Every day is Peanut Butter Day at our house! In case you missed my 101 Peanut Butter Sandwiches challenge, you can see them all here :)
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Did you make something nutty for peanut butter day?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Laptop Lunch

Our home has been invaded by the flu virus :( Only my veggie-loving Bella continues to evade the vicious germs, and is she ever pleased with herself about it, never wasting an opportunity to tell her ailing siblings that they should have been eating their tomatoes. Off she skipped to school today while the rest of us languished at home, blah.

Her Laptop Lunches bento box is packed with:
  • Pepper Jack Cheez-its
  • Cracked Black Pepper Triscuits
  • Yogurt (in the lidded container)
  • Gala apple wedges & caramel dip
  • Baby carrots
  • Checkered cucumber slices
I included a Lunchbox Love note thanking her for being such a help to me while the rest of us are sick. 
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This is a laptop lunch in more ways than one :) The obvious - her lunch is packed in a Laptop Lunches bento box. But what I don't usually show is the lunch all packed in it's bag, ready to go. Today I will, because I've been told it's a great idea :) So ta-dah! Her lunch bag is a laptop sleeve!

It's actually a netbook sleeve, for mini laptops. It's the perfect fit for our Laptop Lunches & PlanetBoxes. I needed something to pack them in that would fit in her backpack with all her books, and was looking for a sleeve for my MacBook Air when I noticed many seemed to be the same dimensions as the PlanetBox! The Laptop Lunches box is smaller, but taller, so it works for them too :)

I like the ones made by BuiltNY; they are made of the same thick insulating neoprene as the Built Gourmet Getaway lunch totes we use, and even use the same patterns. This one matches Bella's bag. Sailor Boy has one by Case Logic, with a handle and an extra pocket on the outside. Neoprene is stretchy so there's even room for an ice pack and a drink.

Both the PlanetBox and the Laptop Lunches offer great carriers, but they don't fit in our backpacks with their books. Both can also be carried in the backpack on their own - Beanstalk takes his to school that way - but he keeps his in his locker, whereas the smaller kids put all their lunches in a bin with those of their classmates, so as well as insulating the contents temperature-wise, the laptop sleeve prevents spillage should the box accidentally open.

So there, that's my great idea :) It solved my crowded backpack issue, and maybe it could be the solution you've been looking for too!

Bento Lunch

Some of the neoprene sleeves we have, that accommodate both the PlanetBox & Laptop Lunches:


*Note: I originally linked to the wrong size Case Logic sleeve. It's been fixed, the 10-12" is the correct size.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

EasyLunchboxes Brights + Classics = A Rainbow of Lunch Possibilities!

You may already be aware that one of my favourite lunch containers, EasyLunchboxes, just came out with a new set called Brights... but if not... EasyLunchboxes just came out with a new set called Brights!

Now I have lids in red, pink, orange, yellow, green, teal, blue, & purple. Aren't they pretty all stacked in that order? Like a rainbow :)

A Rainbow of EasyLunchboxes - Classics & NEW Brights!

I usually take my pictures against colourful backgrounds but I wanted the bright colours of the lids to show true, so I took them against a piece of white posterboard, which did make them pop! Looking at all my EasyLunchboxes stacked together, something that struck me was how it is nearly impossible, without looking very closely, to tell which ELB containers are the new ones, and which ones I've been using for a year and half!

Really! I started using my EasyLunchboxes Classics, as the original colours are now known, at the end of Summer 2011. I even made a blog post about them. You'd think that after 18 months of regular use they'd be showing some wear, maybe sporting some stains, but nope! See for yourself:

Can you tell which container is new and which is old?
 If the lid colours weren't there to help, I doubt it!

I asked some fellow bloggers who use ELBs if they'd ever had any stains. The answer was a unanimous "No". Collectively we've packed & even reheated:
  • tomato soups 
  • chicken soup
  • homemade ketchup
  • spaghetti & marinara
  • bright oily dressings
  • sloppy joes
  • ketchup & mustard
And all agree their EasyLunchboxes came clean. Awesome!
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Right, enough gushing about lunchboxes. Here's today's lunch :)

Lunch for Mum in EasyLunchboxes Brights

A 3-cheese sandwich on toasted bread, grapes, carrot sticks,  grapefruit wedges sprinkled with sugar, & strawberry hearts. This lunch is actually for me! I've decided to try packing myself a lunch when I pack for the sproutlets. Not likely to get fancy with my own though :)

Lunch for Mum in EasyLunchboxes Brights

All right, so the strawberries are cut in heart shapes  I didn't do it on purpose though... I'm so used to cutting them like this I do it without even thinking when I trim the stems ;) Love my colourful lunch!
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Okay, I have to share just one more pretty picture. The rainbow assortment of colourful lids against the plain white background inspired me to arrange them like a rainbow, which then inspired the text.  I love it!

A Rainbow of EasyLunchboxes - Classics & NEW Brights!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Penguin Awareness Lunch

Today is Penguin Awareness Day!  Not to be confused with World Penguin Day which is April 25th :)  Lately my older sproutlets like to make their own lunches on the weekends (Bella made tomato soup today), and Sprout's ill and hasn't got any appetite but I made Birdie a penguin muffin tin lunch!

Birdie had a fish egg, penguin cheese crackers, a cheddar penguin with mozzarella features atop the rest of the string cheese, grapes, yogurt with fish sprinkles, & pink grapefruit. The grapefruit was a new food for her, and she didn't go for it - this time. She also seems to have gone off eggs, so I ate that :)

Here's a collage of some past penguin lunches...

... and the posts they're from (and more):
March of the Penguins (yes I used that title twice) & Déja Vu

Clearly we're well aware of penguins over here :)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Winnie the Pooh Bento

Today is author A.A. Milne's Birthday. I asked Bella if she would like a Winnie the Pooh lunch for the occasion. She said "Well, I'm not really into Winnie the Pooh, but it would be pretty funny to say my mum gave me Pooh for lunch!" 

I'm no artist, I couldn't draw Winnie the Pooh freehand, not very well anyways. But, I have a lot of Classic Pooh stuff,  I collected it a little obsessively at one time. I even decorated Beanstalk's nursery with a Classic Pooh theme, once upon a time. So I was pretty excited when I remembered I had a whole bunch of Pooh-ism stamps to choose from for Bella's lunch! Surely stamps would work on cheese and cookies, right?  Right!  

It was Bella's idea to have a balloon theme; balloons & birthdays go hand in hand :) She also suggested an oval slice of Honeycrisp apple to look like a balloon. She still has that loose tooth though, so underneath it the rest of the apple is cubed. Next to that she has watermelon cubed with my FunBites & embellished with "heffalump" picks.  Bees (not the wrong sort) decorate some grapes, & spiced almonds fill a honey coloured cup. 

Food Colouring Markers + Rubber Stamps = Fun Winnie the Pooh lunch with Food Stamps!
"Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon".  Her heart-shaped sandwich is turkey & cheddar, topped with white cheddar stamped with a Pooh-ism ♥  An EasyLunchboxes Mini Dipper holds a couple of Fig Newtons stamped with Piglet carrying a balloon & that silly old bear Pooh,  for snack.

Food Colouring Markers + Rubber Stamps = Food Stamp Fun!

The cookie and cheese stamping experiment was a success! I used my Americolor food decorating pens to colour on the raised part of the stamp then stamped the food just a little lighter than I would paper.  Oh, the possibilities... :)

Food Colouring Markers + Rubber Stamps = Food Stamp Fun!
Pickle got a honey bee & hive sandwich, banana honey Chobani Champions, & a cereal bar (not pictured). I stamped a blank Lunchbox Love note with a Pooh & Friends stamp and wrote "It's time for a little smackerel of something."

Some stuff used to make these lunches:
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Celebrating the Works of A.A. Milne Through Food
Update 1/18/14:
This year's Pooh party is being hosted by Mamabelly's Lunches With Love 
Disclosure: My posts contain affiliate links to products & services I've used & approve of  :)  If you make a purchase after clicking one of those links, I earn a small commission. Thank you!

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