Monday, January 14, 2013

MOMables Monday - From Leftovers to Lunch - BBQ Chicken Skewers

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The items I chose for this lunch don't really have a cohesive theme, unless you count "new stuff I hadn't put away yet" as a theme. The flower and leaf cutters had just arrived from Amazon and were calling to me, and my recent bout of pick organization unearthed the metallic fringe party skewers, which hadn't found a home yet.

Lunch idea from MOMables lunch menu subscription. Now offering an 8-week special allergy-friendly Gluten- and Nut-Free menu! (In addition to the regular weekly menu, recipe, and shopping planner - where you can always sub out items for food allergies or other dietary restrictions!) For a limited time, get 33% off the regular menu (that's only 14 cents per day!) or 25% off the new Gluten- and Nut-Free 8-week menu!

Cloth napkin from Red Poppy Cards and Crafts on Etsy. And as per usual, I used an EasyLunchbox. Plus fun Lunchbox Love note (use code BITINGMYHAND for 15% off your entire order!)
Leftover chicken nuggets and cheddar kebobs, Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce (with some ketchup underneath,)
 apples, carrot and kohlrabi flowers with broccoli and cucumber
Lunching Leftovers!: Unka Seesee comes by on Sundays and feeds us and we all watch TV or a movie together. He brought KFC chicken for him and Hubby (I hate fried chicken,) and chicken bites or nuggets or something for Little Z and Baby (who is becoming quite the little carnivore!)
I was stumped for lunch ideas, so I sifted through my MOMables menus until I found something I thought she might eat that I had all the ingredients for. I have a variety of fun wood-and-tinsel skewers, but I chose the patriotic ones because they were the first ones I found.
This was a real toughie. Took a lot of time and effort to put together... Not! I cut a thick slab of cheese off the end of a block and it cut into the perfect amount of "cubes." And I think there were two nuggets. Mama didn't have to eat any nasty chicken leftovers (although I think I got a cheddar cube! Yum!)

When I asked her if she liked the food on those picks, she said, "Oh, yes! They make my lunch more special!"

Using the Mini Dipper for the dipping sauce was a no-brainer. Leakproof and stays sealed despite backpack jostling, tossing, shifting, etc. And most importantly, like the EasyLunchbox, she can open it herself!* The Country Bob's sauce is all-natural, so I don't have to worry about artificial colors or flavors, but it's a tad too spicy for me and Z, straight up. So I squirted some ketchup on the bottom, for her to stir in if needed.

*While many people don't worry about it, there are several reasons to try and send things the kids can do themselves. First and most importantly, it's a huge self-confidence boost for them to be able to do things independently. There are still so many things they can't yet do, why add one more, when you can set them up for success instead?

Yes, a teacher can help. Sometimes. But if 20-30 kids are all needing help with a bag of chips, zip-top bag , juice box, or lunch box - or multiple items! - the shyer kids can get overlooked until last, and it takes time for that one person to open 20+ items!

Plus many schools have a short time for lunch. If a child is struggling to open a container or package, that's time not spent filling up on healthy foods. Because I guarantee you they'll manage to find the time to eat the dessert! And learning is much harder when they're hungry or not getting the nutrients they need!

Floral Arrangement: I was super excited to use my new flower and leaf cutters. I love the fun flower shapes, which are unlike the regular flower-shaped mini cutters. Until I opened them, that is. While they are gorgeous, they don't have the thicker dull edge on top - so both edges can cut. Gleep! I used the flat of my knife blade to punch them through the kohlrabi and carrot slices, since no way was I risking a flower-shaped scar on my palm! Then, to add insult to injury, it was hard to get them out. Those big bulby petals are artistic and fun, but like to snap off while you push at one of the other bits.
But I managed. I added in some cucumber leaves for fun, but they don't really stand out. I should have used cucumber peel instead. Oh well.

Note: I snipped the points off of the skewers since the one restriction the teacher stipulated when we started class was no toothpicks in snacks or lunches. I figured better be safe than sorry (as far as how "toothpicks" were being defined. Little Z can absolutely be trusted with skewers and picks of all kinds.) I don't need them cramping my style by restricting all picks because they thought I wasn't trying to follow the rules.

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Biting the Hand    


  1. Love this lunch kendra! Thank you for making the MOMables lunch beautiful!! xo Laura

  2. Your blog finally motivated me to start doing this for my step-daughter! The thought of how much more exciting lunch will be for her once I start doing this , and how easy you and Momables make it? No question.
    Of course, as soon as I decided this, she lost her lunch bag and everything in it, so I think I might wait another year to start doing anything TRULY fancy for her(like the special containers and picks). For now, it'll be me and her dad that benefit from my purchases. :)
    -Breana M.

    1. Haha Breana! That's one of the things I LOVE about EasyLunchboxes! 4/$14 makes them only $3.50 each! Not a deal-breaker if they get lost! Depending on how the school handles lunches (each kid gets and returns their own box from their packs/cubbies, all the lunches get dumped in a bin and wheeled to the lunchroom, etc.) you can try various things. Would a shoulder strap be easier? Use carabiners to clip it to her backpack? Freeze perishables like meats, cheese, and dairy overnight, and let them keep themselves cool and thaw by lunch - then you don't have to worry about a bag! Just use a large rubberband or loop of elastic to help the lid stay closed!

    2. That's one of the reasons I got the Easylunchboxes for her, the cheap factor, but it's that combined with the picks and cups and all that that can add up. Mostly I think we'll wait because no one needs the added stress of her losing something, and us getting upset with her. We'll shoot for summer lunches, where we have more control over where her stuff is, and then hopefully she'll be ready to take them to school for 3rd grade.
      And I get more practice making things look awesome!
      -Breana M.

    3. Sounds good! I have a "pack it in, pack it out" policy - I teach her to bring back EVERYTHING! Wrappers, scraps, leftovers, etc. That way I shouldn't lose picks or cups to the garbage by accident, and we can re-use leftovers (depending) as after-school snack, bedtime snack, or the next day.


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