Last August, I was in a scramble, trying to gather all materials necessary to send my first sweet babe off to school. I was also uber pregnant, with the idea of getting to an actual store feeling pretty far fetched, so I resorted to my go-to fave, Amazon, to stock our cupboards with lunch-ready gear in particular.
Of course, you know what happens sometimes when you can’t actually see the products you are buying, right? They don’t turn out quite as expected (please tell me this happens to other people, too!)??
Such was the case in my choice of food containers – perfect size and with compartments for proper food separation, but are you kidding me? The lids don’t actually attach to the containers! You can push down one side and then the other but nothing ever latches, much less seals. So, yeah, kind of pointless for putting in a lunch box.
After a reorder on Zulily (which thankfully worked), the old/new boxes became snack trays. And at some point, on a drive somewhere, I put masking tape on them, a little piece on each side to hold the useless lids in place, and labeled each side with the kids’ initials so we could keep everything straight. And with that simple bit of problem solving, I stumbled upon pure awesomeness. I love it when that happens!
You see, my other grand plan for the start of the year was to include notes in HD’s lunch box on the 3 out of 5 days each week that he does not each school lunch. You know – PostIts with cute sayings and whatnot – all Pinterest-y and enduring. But then I made the mistake of asking him that first week of school if I could write him a note for his lunch and he totally turned me down. SAY WHAT?! Six and already too cool for school, I mean Mom?! 😦
So I listened and included no notes, until the day I was in a dirty dish bind and had to use one of the crap lid trays for his lunch and sealed it shut with tape. Out of habit, I wrote and H on one side and a D on the other. When it came home that afternoon, I noticed that Harrison had taken both pieces off and stuck them back together to make HD across the top of his lid. That right there was the light bulb moment.
My little book and puzzle loving kid liked putting the broken phrase/tape back together! That was my ticket in to leaving him little notes!
Since this discovery, any time I have to use the tape-on-lid method (and I totally use them all the time now because I love leaving him a note to read in the middle of his day), I write a two-parter on both halves of the tape and they always come back to me stuck back together – my sign that Harrison noticed and read them. Somehow this makes the struggle of preparing home lunches (for real: why is this so hard? and I only have one kid to make one lunch for currently!!) so much more worth it, to know that we will have a connecting point at some point during his busy day away from me. And bless his sweet heart, he even got it the day I wrote “I lava you” on one piece and drew a really crappy volcano on the other!
Today was the second-to-last lunch I will have to pack (pardon me while I go do cartwheels about that!) and here is the note I wrote prior to taping. I don’t know if the lunch itself is all that super, but the kid sure is and so is the love I have for him, especially since the moment he swung his backpack onto his shoulders this morning, he said, “My lunch isn’t in here.” and he was totally right! How’s that for a wee bit of irony, eh? The one lunch I snap a pic of is also the same lunch that I tried to forget on top of the stove instead of sending it with the kid to school! Good thing, for the sake of my brain cells, summer is almost here!