Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Back to life

We had a wonderful trip to Disney World this past week. We all had a magical time and were sad to leave and come back to real life. Back to school for the monkeys, back to work for hubby, and back to wifery/mommery for me. All good things must end....but we had a bonus day off yesterday. So one last  outing we went with some friends to the Blue Bell Ice Cream factory for a tour and spent a gorgeous afternoon at a park afterwards.

Ice cream and Mickey Dreams

In this lunch :
  • Peanut butter and jelly with Nutella ice cream
  • Pirates booty
  • M carrots
  • Mickey watermelon

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Impossible Astronaut Day! - Blog hop

The Whovians at Edible Geekery are at it again. Today we pay homage to the anniversary of "The Impossible Astronaut"/"Day of the Moon" episode which was dedicated to Elisabeth Sladen AKA Sarah Jane Smith who passed from cancer in 2011. She was one of my favorite companions of all time. So please hop through these awesome Doctor Who inspired lunches, and don't blink until you've come back here.

The Impossible Astronaut
I wear Stetson's now. Stetson's are cool" ~ The Doctor

In this lunch :
  • The Doctor's Stetson - carrot slices
  • Amy's Apple - made from watermelon and a grape
  • The Impossible Astronaut River Song - Peanut butter and jelly with sprinkle details
    • Flag - Yes I know it takes place in Utah, not England, but Alex Kingston is English
  • Headless Doriam Maldovar - Blue peep in  graham cracker box. 
  • Sands of Lake Silencio - pirates booty
Dorium Maldovar: But you're a fool nonetheless. It's all still waiting for you: the fields of Trenzalore, the fall of the Eleventh, and the question!
The Doctor: [salutes] Goodbye, Dorium!
Dorium Maldovar: [as Doctor exits] The first question! The question that must never be answered, hidden in plain sight. The question you've been running from all your life. Doctor who? Doctor who? Doc-tor *who*?

The Silence will Fall...or Hatch?
We made this during the week leading up to Easter while we anxiously awaited the return of our beloved Doctor Who, you can read that post here. The Silence pic is from the banners we made for Green Monkey's 6th Birthday, you can read that post here.

 In this lunch :
  • Silence the Egg and encounter tally marks - Peanut butter and jelly
  • Peeps
  • Carrots
  • Cantaloup
Now before you look away, don't forget to continue on to see what Glory's Mischief has created.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Teacher Appreciation Week

It's that time of year. In classrooms all over America parents are hitting the stores and pinterest trying to find just the right way to say "Thanks!" to all the hard-working, under-paid, exhausted teachers that care for our babies day in and day out. I scrambled this year as I am battling a head cold while trying to pack for our impending vacation. The next thing on everyone's mind is budget, with multiple kids and classrooms and teachers it can all add up pretty quick. This is what sends all of us thrifty moms to pinterest to cutify our small gestures into reflecting our big hearts without breaking the bank.

Forget me not 

A beautiful bouquet full of teacher's favorite goodies for under $10

  • Decorated cups($0.65)
  • Starbucks Via ($0.95) or Arizona tea packets ($0.20), 2 each
  • Sharpie pens ($.42), 2 each
  • Candy ($0.68)
  • Mesh Sponge ($1.00)
  • Travel size Purell ($1.50)
  • Travel Size hand lotion ($0.97)
  • Forget me not seeds ($1.79)
  • Tissue paper - $0.09
  • Cello bags - $0.28
  • Green painter's tape - $0.04

Total per teacher = $9.74

Directions :
  1. For the stem - take 2 sharpies and tape them together with the painter's tape
  2. For the flower - tape a mesh sponge to the top of the pens
  3. Place a piece of tissue paper in the cup for leaves
  4. Add in the goodies - purell, lotion, candy, drink mixes, flower seeds, and the marker flower
  5. Wrap in large cello bags and add a card signed by your child. 
    • Ours said " I know that I can sometimes be a handful. Thanks for all you do to help me grow!"
We love our teachers. They are so kind and gentle and most of all patient with our mischievous monkeys.  They work hard entertaining and teaching our little ones. So give your teachers the pat on the back they deserve for giving their all every day.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

A few magical friends

Some mornings you just have to KISS ;) Yesterday, Green monkey wanted Yoshi so I grabbed my easy dinosaur cutter. He wanted Yoshi with powers so I colored them with food coloring. Easy peasy 5 min lunch.

In this lunch :
  • Blue and green Yoshi - Peanut butter and jelly and string cheese
  • Grapes
  • Carrots
Mickey Countdown 
Nearly time to hi the holiday road and go on a family trip to the happiest place on earth. If you guessed Disney World you're right! We are so excited here's their Mickey lunches for today.

In this lunch :
  • Mickey - Ham and cheese with sugar detail
  • Ham and cheese crackers
  • Mickey cucumbers
  • Mickey watermelon

In this lunch :
  • Mickey ham and crackers
  • Mickey cumcumbers with an umbrella for our rainy day
  • Mickey watermelon with sugar detail
This was the lunch that was not to be, we both took a sick day today, he has been having dairy issues and I have felt under the weather today. So while the rain and cold blew through town we stayed in and got a lot done around the house.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Monkeys and Me April 13th lunches

So tired today, and I thought yesterday was Monday, is there such a thing as a case of the Tuesday's? If so I have it. But alas we still have to eat.

Daleks on the run 
 This weekend marked Green monkey's 4th kids fun run. I am so proud of him for trying. He's not a bundle of energy like little blue so it really is an effort for him. He did fantastic. This time it was the Blue Bell Fun run and all participants got free ice cream at the end.

In this lunch :
  • Peanut butter and jelly Daleks with pretzel and sprinkle details
  • Grapes with a bugle as an ice cream cone
  • Bugles

To the moon 
Little blue has been exceedingly picky so I made 2 different sandwiches hoping he'd eat at least one of them...and they look cute together.

In this lunch :
  • Astronaut - peanut butter and jelly with tic tac button
  • NASA Space shuttle - Ham and cheese with fruit leather NASA
  • Smoke after the launch - pirates booty
  • Upper right - Carrots
  • Lower right - Grapes and strawberries
Boston we Remember 
As a member of the running community we joined forces and are showing our support in light of yesterday's tragedy in Boston. While it is not unusual for me to be seen wearing a race shirt, today I added a Bib for Boston to it. I ran 12.85 miles today, in Texas heat and full sun it was hard but I kept going, had to stop due to sick kiddo, but would like to get 26.2 miles in this week. I know it won't change what happened, but they are in my thoughts and in my heart and this is what I can do to show support. The race was being dedicated to the victims of the tragedy in Newton. So many acts of senseless violence. When will humans learn to stop hurting each other and coexist in peace.

In this lunch :
  • Runner's with wings - Babybel cheese
  • Carrot and celery sticks
  • Crab stick and string cheese
  • Rose - leftover bento scrap of ham, and sugar snap peas


Monday, April 15, 2013

It's just lunch

The Rings of Akhaten 
 (Happy 30th birthday Matt Smith!)

In this lunch :
  • Clara's Travel Journal - Peanut butter and jelly
  • The long song O's - Cheerios
  • Music note - Carrots
  • Maple leaf of infinite potential - watermelon
Pippi Longstocking 
We saw the play this weekend with the monkeys so I added a little Pippalotta to my lunch.

 In this lunch :
  • Spinach and kale salad
  • Pippilotta Delicatessa Windowshade Mackrelmint Ephraim's Daughter Longstocking - Crab stick, babybel cheese, monterrey and cheddar cheese cubes
  • Pirates treasure gold coins - cucumber
 Our heart and thoughts go out to all those in Boston or with friends and family in Boston after today's tragic bombings. There are no words to express how angry I am at the coward(s) responsible. I enjoy running, I will continue to enjoy running. I applaud the runners that dedicated months of training for today's marathon and the friends and family supporting them. Just as I would ignore a toddler making a fuss for attention I will choose to focus on the heros of the day and not the brat that maimed and killed innocent people because he couldn't learn to use his words.

Friday, April 12, 2013

No minute like the last minute

Usually I take Fridays off letting Green monkey buy lunch at school, usually we try to come visit and picnic with him. Today I got a sub gig again though so with a quick dash to the shower I transformed from gym-mom to substitute preschool teacher. This also meant we needed lunches for little blue and I. So what a perfect day to play with Bentos on the Bayou and her 15 minute Friday linky party, because that is literally all the time I had including figuring out what to make, packing, and clean-up.

Springtime for mommy & me 

We have to be out the door in 19 minutes, ready, set, go!

All done and cleaned up with 2 minutes to get in the car.
 In my lunch :
  • Spinach salad, cucumber flower, carrots, sugar snap peas, broccoli, and cheese cubes
  • Almonds
  • Crab stick and babybel cheese
In Blue's lunch :
  • Flower peanut butter and jelly, celery and peanut butter stem/leaves
  • Gold fish
  • Carrots and grapes
I always love days I get to go teach they are so much fun! Technically I used 17 minutes but considering it included prep, and clean-up for 2 lunches I think it's close enough. They were yummy that's what counts right? :) TGIF

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Rodeo Fun and April Worms

April showers bring May flowers and ...worms. I was going to do an ode to Eric Carle but the kids wouldn't leave the gummy worms alone, so use it or lose it, I tossed together a wormy lunch this morning.Winging it isn't as pretty as when I plan ahead but it gets the job done, happy kids with full bellies.

Worms, worms, worms

In this lunch :
  • Peanut butter and jelly apple with gummy worm and pretzel stem 
  • Veggie straw basket
  • Carrots with gummy worm
  • Apple with gummy worm
Meanwhile little Blue had a Rodeo and farm visit at school today. So I attempted a hobby horse like the ones they were making at school. Looking at it now I wish I had added more detail to the bridle but you can use your imagination. He loved it.

Rodeo Day 

In this lunch :
  • Peanut butter and jelly hobby horse
  • Franks and beans - Ham roll and raisinettes
  • Campfire - pretzels and veggie straws
  • Checkered fruit salad - grapes and apples
He was the cutest little cowpoke but I'm biased ;) He looooves animals. He was in heaven especially with a white baby bunny which he carried around most of the time, when he wasn't chasing the piglets. They had a blast with the petting zoo.

I love being able to sneak a peak at their special days. They all had so much fun. I wonder how many went home wanting baby bunnies and piglets?


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

April 10th

Sure he wanted Luigi's ghost vacuum, but this was so much easier at 6am ;) He is a fan of this movie too.

In this lunch :
  • Peanut butter and jelly sandwich with provolone ghost
  • Cheerios
  • Strawberries
  • Peep
On the way home today he told me he loved dunking his cheerios in his chocolate milk, perhaps I will send a bowl and spoon next time I use cheerios as a background. I have to love his creativity though.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Don't play with your food...ok maybe just for lunch

I was honored to be a guest speaker to the IB (International Baccalaureate) Kindergarten classes at a local elementary school today. My son doesn't go there, but one of our friends does. When the topic of "How do you express yourself" came up she thought of me and set it up. I wish I had pictures or video to share but my hands were full and time moved so fast. Each session had 2 classes so space was limited. I was also working off the video cart so everyone could see on the projection screen, so I had to work fast in a cramped space. We talked about expressing their creativity through food. I showed them 30 lunches from this blog and they had a blast shouting out the characters. We then handed out paper and cookie cutters and they traced them with markers inventing their own imaginary sandwich ideas. They were to create something more than just the shape they were given, give it a life of its own. Then we talked about all the different foods that keep us healthy and how changing the way we look at them helps us want to try them. They were excited about veggies, fruits, and yes even the same old sandwich. I took a request from each class and made a demo the first group picked Spongebob, the second group picked Patrick...naturally. Even though I didn't finish all the little details I put in our lunches they were in love with it. We covered food safety and only using edible markers and food coloring with clean brushes and parental supervision. Since lunch was right after the presentation they were dying to eat the demos but we didn't want to spoil their appetites for their lunches. My monkeys were delighted to eat them after school as snacks and gobbled them up before I could get to the camera. There's been a lot of drama in the mom competition game lately and when you strip that garbage away, and see shouting kids excited over a lunch, that's the reason for all of this. Making healthy choices, and expressing themselves and bonding with mommy over the creative process is priceless. No matter what special thing you do with your kids, you're a rockstar. We all are, every day, any activity we do together with them, it all counts.

Green Monkey is all about hangman lately so that's what he requested this morning instead of the leftover taco he had planned the night before. He picked the word and while I packed it solved you can bet those letters were scattered by lunch and he had to remember what word he picked and how to spell it. For the hangman he insisted it be a cowboy, because its always a cowboy.

In this lunch :
  • Peanutbutter and jelly game board
  • Provolone cheese cowboy hangman pieces
  • Alphabet pretzels, and yes I do know that's a sideways "N" but the bag was out of "Z's"
  • Watermelon butterflies
  • Green Peep
Up Up and Away 

 In this lunch
  • Peanutbutter and jelly airplanes
  • Pirates booty clouds
  • Butterfly watermelon
  • Graham crackers with fluff and nutella "Smores"
 What special things do you do with or for your kids that others think is a bit "over the top"? 

Monday, April 8, 2013

April 8th - just another Monday

Monday's are always so tough to get going. Even though we don't sleep in too much thanks to a wandering 3 year old, there is still something about Mondays and that alarm going off at 6am that hits me in the face like an Acme piano. To make it even more Monady-ish it's overcast today giving me a serious case of the Mondays.

Plankton and Squidward

In this lunch :
  • Peanut butter and jelly Plankton and Squidward with cheese art
  • Pirates booty
  • Green Peep
  • Strawberries
 Today's toddler lunch took no more than 5 minutes to make and he loved it. I washed the pumpkin face kit and stuck them in his sandwich, poof instant monster meal. I'm going to borrow Mr. Potato head pieces too for a fast fun addition to our standard lunch.
 In this lunch :
  • Peanutbutter and jelly sandwich with plastic features
  • Clementine orange
I saw this idea on Eats Amazing where she used playdough pieces to make this wacky monster lunch.

What do you do on the dreary days to perk each other up? We also love a good snuggly nap so in between school, groceries, and lunch we curled up on the couch together for a nap, so nice.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Field trip Mommy and Me lunch

Today was a field trip for Green monkey to the Children's museum with the Kindergarten class, and as room mom I got to go chaperone. To keep from losing lunch boxes and thermoses everything must be disposable. This means brown sack lunches, ziplock baggies, and a prayer that your lunch is not unfortunate enough to be on the bottom of the over-stuffed cooler getting squished. A good portion of the class brought lunchables. My kid even asked for one. However, he will not actually eat them, the meat and cheese are not like what he gets from the deli counter so he generally eats the candy and crackers and throws the rest out. I told him I could make one just like the ones from the store but with fresh food and it blew his mind. To keep it from getting squished when packed with 20 other lunches I recycled a plastic strawberry basket, washed and dried, and used cupcake liners as bento dividers to separate them just like a lunchable. I even recycled a potato bites container for my salad today. Though I didn't set the timer these were both done in less than 15 minutes. Since our picnic was at the park we were able to recycle the paper and plastic items used as well.

Homemade Lunchable

 In this lunch :
  • Recycled strawberry basket, washed and dried, with cupcake liners
  • Cheddar cheese rectangles
  • Ham circles
  • Ritz crackers
  • Strawberries
  • 2 Easter candies
  • Strawberry milk
 The strawberry label didn't come off clean so I used some school themed duck tape to decorate the top.

 We even decorated his bag with lego stickers before writing his name on it for fun this morning. I sealed it with more school themed duck tape so it wouldn't spill during loading and unloading of coolers.

 In this lunch :
  • Recycled, washed and dried, Baby potatoes basket with cupcake liners
  • Mixed greens salad, cucumbers, broccoli, carrots, and the leftover ham scraps from his lunch (No waste)
  • Cheese cubes
  • Trail mix
  • Water
 The napkin kept the cupcake liners from moving around and spilling everywhere (No mess)

We had a really great afternoon with a picnic at the park and then the Children's museum.

This was a brilliant idea that I first saw used by my fellow Bento Bloggers & friends. In fact they did a whole post hosted by Bent On Better Lunches on the various lunches they have made using this idea.

  1. Bent on Better Lunches 
  2. Bento for Kidlet
  3. Bento for Kidlet
  4. Bento Lunch.net 
  5. Keeley McGuire 
  6. Keeley McGuire 
  7. Mommy + Me Lunches
  8. Bento Lunch.net
  9. Biting the hand that feeds you

Thursday, April 4, 2013

April 4th

The monkeys have been obsessed with this game since Easter so since no one had any better ideas this mornings as we all struggled to get moving we threw this together.

In this lunch :
  • Mansion - peanut butter and jelly
  • Kirby ghost marshmallow
  • Pirates booty fog
  • Luigi ham and cheese
  • No ghost marshmallow and strawberries
  • Green peep for a treat
Rainy Days

We've had some really wet days so I figured it was a good time to pull out the umbrella lunch, after all it doesn't rain much here so I may not get another chance for awhile. Blue monkey really loved the bite sized sandwich made with the Fun bites Cube it.I loved having his lunch made in under 5 minutes since I was distracted and left it for the last minute. Ain't no minute like the last minute HA!

In this lunch :
  • Under the umbrellas peanut butter and jelly toast squares
  • Pirates Booty
  • Cutie orange
  • Strawberries

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Fish Fingers and Custard Day!

What? You have no idea what I'm talking about? Well April 3rd was the first airing of Fish Fingers and Custard episode on Doctor Who 2 years ago so each year Whovians celebrate by serving fish fingers and custard.

Now my son is not actually a fan of fish fingers, nor putting them in custard so we took some imagination liberties when we served it as a dessert for his 6th Birthday for that we made vanilla pudding and served it with lady fingers.

Today for lunch we got a little creative with our sandwich.

In this lunch :
  • Fish + Fingers (get it?) peanut butter and jelly
  • Vanilla pudding
  • Lady finger
  • Amy's Apple
Lightspeed Star Wars
 We have a packed morning so here's our runnig out the door fast bento for Blue monkey.

In this lunch
  • Tie fighter and 3 planets jelly toast
  • Fruity cheerios
  • Strawberries
 Now to have a little more fun. Let's see what all the other Whovians are up to and join up at the linky party. Add your Doctor Who themed lunches below.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Happy Easter !

I should have had this up Sunday but better late than never right? So we riled the kids up by watching The Guardians the week before. The went on multiple egg hunts and talked to EB at one of them so he'd know what they want in their baskets. Green monkey choked and forgot one of the things he wanted, and had "A Christmas Story" level meltdown as we left the park. So I had him write a note and leave it on the door. He was so excited to see it missing the next morning.

Easter Eve is finally here. They dyed their eggs first thing in the morning...8am...not kidding. We used the Dudley's specked egg kit and while initially they loved the sponges they eventually switched to brushes, and even dry they were sticky, I recommend this only for older kids or adults. Of course to us they are works of art :)

The monkeys put their empty baskets on the coffee table and go to bed to await a visit from their favorite hare. Come morning they follow the cotton trail from their bedrooms through the house to find a couple goodies in their baskets. He even left a note.

Cotton balls A.K.A bunny trail

 Each got a video game and a mini lego character, and a small toy Green got silly string, and Blue got Hero factory. But the trail continues...

EB ate some carrots, hiding is hard work and he gets hungry, but not enough to finish them all he left evidence. He also made a centerpiece of grass, and candy, so Blue decided to fuel up for the hunt.

This took a good hour. They took breaks to play legos, video games, and are just slow egg finders :) They even played games instead of opening the eggs, that took all day. Seriously some are still not open yet. Not at all how I remember Easter as a kid we tore through the house collecting eggs, then opened all of them and started making deals to trade the goods :)

Breakfast - After the hunt of course. I made Bunny cinnamon rolls and set out their dyed eggs. We don't hide those, because one lost egg and months later your house will reek. The plastic eggs are filled with candy or money ($0.25 per egg)

Dinner - We don't actually have a traditional meal yet, so this year I made crock pot roast with green beans, baby gold potatoes, and mushrooms. I only had a grainy cell phone pic so I'll skip that and move on to dessert.

Dessert was much more fun. Other than Cadbury eggs my favorite Easter candy is Peeps, proably guessed that by our lunches and peep experiments already. So I used Valentine's confetti cake mix and added sugar free banana pudding then followed the box directions. I used a loaf pan and made cupcakes out of the extra batter. Once cooled I froze them before carving. Once carved using a cupcake for the head and the main loaf as the body I attacked the head and tail with tooth picks and marshmallow fluff...which made me think huh that would make a great crumb coat and would help it taste like a Peep! So I covered it head to toe in fluff and froze it again. Once firm then I frosted it with just canned strawberry and cream frosting. Sprinkled pink sprinkles all over, and added 2 mini chocolate chips for eyes.  Circled him with some little Peep friends and Voila! This holiday all diets were off :)

I hope you and yours had a fantastic Easter weekend no matter what or how you celebrate.