Sunday, October 28, 2012

All-Natural Preschool Snacks - October, Week 4

Monday, October 22 through Thursday, October 25

Strawberries, red grapes, SunButter, TJs graham crackers, True Lemon packet
I needed something large enough to fit everything I wanted in this snack, so I dusted off my Sistema Klip-It Lunch Cube (I've only seen colored ones at Old Navy and The Container Stores.) I don't like to use this box much because the left half flips upside-down to close (after securing the snappy lid.) After making an effort to make a cute lunch, the last thing I want is for it to tumble around helter-skelter before I've even put it in the lunch bag! And if I'm packing for myself, an EasyLunchbox does the trick without fiddling with floppy lids and folding compartments. So I kept the purple one I had bought just in case I ever needed it, and gave the rest away (except the pink one. It got busted somehow, so I recycled it.)

In the left/top half, I skewered a strawberry onto a fun plastic skeleton lollipop stick that I got in a pack last Halloween from Dollar Tree. After soaking off the candy skull, I washed and saved the stick to re-use! (I forget how many there were in a package. I saved two for me, and gave the rest away. I'm sure you'll see them crop up in other bloggers' lunches...)
Since we only had two strawberries left, I filled an orange silicone pumpkin cup with some red grapes. The the cup wasn't tall enough to keep the grapes in after flipping, so I used a cloth girly skull napkin (from Red Poppy Cards and Crafts on Etsy) folded up underneath to hold the cup flush against the lid.

In the right/bottom segmented half, I chose one of my childhood favorite snacks - graham crackers and peanut butter. But since her school is nut-free, I chose SunButter instead, and put it in an EasyLunchboxes Mini Dipper. The graham crackers came from Trader Joe's so contain no "artificial flavor" like all the grocery store ones. Not all artificial flavors are petrol-derived, but it's not like they tell you on the package which ones ARE, so we avoid them all, just to be safe. Vanillin, used instead of vanilla in most mass-market chocolates and baked goods (including graham crackers, most likely,) is not petroleum derived, and is often just listed as "artificial flavor" or "flavor added," but Z happens to react to it, so we avoid it too. In case you're wondering, they don't seem to have the little "break lines" like the commercial brands do, so my breaks are a little sloppy.

portable knife for spreading the SunButter and a True Lemon Raspberry Lemonade drink mix packet complete the snack.

The travel knife came from a Sistema Cutlery To Go kit found at Old Navy. The fork, spoon, and knife tops fit onto separate handles so they can be taken apart for more compact travel. It also comes with tapered chopstick tops that can be plugged in instead! All in a nifty little case. I think I paid around $5, less 20% for some promotion using my Old Navy card! I wish I had bought more!

She ate everything but the mini strawberry! Woop!

Apple slices, Apple Straws, True Lemon mix packet
 In one of our sandwich boxes I sliced up an apple and used a little U-shaped cutting tool to carve some grooves across the peel on some of the slices, and a "Z" in a larger slice. Just for fun. To keep with the apple theme, I chose a silicone apple cup for her Apple Straws chips. After school, she was very excited to tell me that she'd used the Apple Straws as drink straws.

I also included a True Lemon drink mix packet to add to her water. Last week I'd sent an opened drink packet dumped into a little container, along with a 1/4 tsp measuring spoon (and forgot to take a picture! Doh!) since I figured out the packet, which was meant for 16-ounces of water, contained a little less than 1 tsp powder. The school's drink cups are 5-oz cups, so I figured a 4-oz dose of powder should be fine. I even wrote instructions on some masking tape and taped it to the powder container, so the teachers would know how much to add.
But they trusted her with it or never even saw it, apparently, since she told me that "One scoop didn't taste delicious enough. Or two scoops or three scoops. I had to use all four scoops." Argh! Luckily, each packet contains so little sugar (so far I haven't been able to find an all-natural drink mix powder without Stevia,) so I figured until I can figure out a better solution, I'll just accept it and let her over-saturate her water.
If I could find an easy-open small box to just hold enough powder for one cuppy, or a leak-proof drink container that's easy to open and easy to pour, so I could just send 16-ounces pre-mixed... Or something.

She said the apples were too mushy, so she didn't eat them. Nor did she notice her initial carved into the middle one. *sadface*

Buttered Rosemary Bread, red grapes
I almost forgot to pack a snack that day, and threw this together as we were headed out the door. I grabbed the first small divided box I could find in my stash; a Tinkerbelle snack box from The Disney Store (now discontinued.) To make it festive, I stuck a flat pumpkin cupcake pick in the grapes. DONE!

Totally forgot to send a drink that day too. Doh! Luckily the snack mom had brought safe apple juice concentrate. I was in such a hurry I had to take the photo in the car, so I used her little lightly-insulated snack bag as the background. (Meant for carrying compact bento boxes. Works great for her small snacks! Daiso, $1.50.)

Small snack, so I wasn't surprised to find the box empty after school.

Whole Grain Ritz, spreadable cheese, red grapes, True Lemon packet
In a sandwich box I decided to try her out on another cracker-spread combo. I packed around 6 Whole Grain Ritz crackers (our favorites for spreadable herby cheeses!) and a mini muffin cup with some Rondele Garlic and Herbs cheese I managed to nab at 75% off from a grocery store location that was closing down. I included a mini bone spork cupcake topper for spreading, and a skeleton cupcake pick for the grapes chillin' in the silicone pumpkin cup.
True Lemon Lemonade drink mix packet for her drink (they were on sale if you bought two boxes, so I picked both lemonade flavors when I discovered them at the grocery store. Very exciting to find dye-free drink mix at a "regular" grocery!)

She left most, if not all, of the grapes, but ate all the crackers and cheese.

     Food Decorating Pick Cute Happy Pumpkin 8 pcs    


  1. what about checking out their tiny containers for dip, the little ones for soy sauce or salts and other condiments could probably hold just enough of the drink powder

  2. How about those teensy bottles you use for cinnamon and colored salt?

    1. Yeah. She was licking them, which means I have to wash them each day. Blarg.


Go ahead! Tell me how awesome I am. Or ask a question. Whatever.

(Please note that I had to disable Anonymous comments. Too many spam comments coming through the filters.)