The Packed Lunch Struggle

So, I’m almost quite embarrassed by even blogging about this, but I need some reassurance that we are not the only family that goes through these struggles of providing a packed lunch every single day!!

We managed to avoid this mission for three years, thanks to whoever was in charge of the country at the time decided that providing free hot school meals was a necessity for Key Stage One children. So we had the luxury of ordering meals from an app, free of charge, and were reassured that everyday Olivia was having a yummy (debatable) meal for lunch. We were also very lucky that Olivia loved most of the meals, except the chips- she’s a bit snobby and only likes fries (First world problems ey?). The only thing we had to remember was to provide a fruit snack everyday! And even for us this was a struggle! Such a small task, so easily forgotten…

So now she’s in the junior school, and in the six weeks holiday we had to make the decision to either continue with hot school meals, which would mean paying for them, or providing her with a packed lunch. After not even doing the research on pricing, I decided it would be cheaper to have packed lunches.  We went out and bought a new lunch box, and juice bottle- that only should have water in (with a few drops of lemon squash 😉). And we prepped well for our first week back at school.  All went well, things were under control, and I was in pocket! Woo!

Five weeks in and we just can’t get it together. We are not a family that buys snacks or goodies, so having all this extra food in the house has proved challenging. Every Sunday I have to remember to make sure that we have all the lunch stuff in, so usually involves me having to run to Lidl during the day, or tesco express if I’ve only just remembered before I go to bed.  Once the foods in, all my packed lunch worries should disappear and I should be set for the week… but here’s what happens.

By Wednesday we have no packed lunch food left.  This is because we are not used to all these chocolatey, crispy, snacky things lingering in our cupboards and fridge. So by midweek, I’m having to restock my stock from Sunday. I though if I bought multipacks of food, it would last longer, but it seems Ed, Olivia and I, are all sneaking these treats throughout the evenings.  The worse culprit is Ed, who insists on eating 3 Penguin Bars at a time! It actually got so bad, that I was hiding food from Ed and myself, to make sure we weren’t eating Olivia’s packed lunch food. That’s pathetic isn’t it?

I literally look at the food and before eating it, I decide in my head when I’m going to replace it. Sometimes I count the stock to see if we have enough to see us through… if not, I STILL eat it anyway!

So today I’ve gone out and purchased all the stuff for next week. And I’ve wrapped up all the snack food in piles, to stop Ed and I stealing the food from the cupboards! Is this normal?

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Probably would have been cheaper to stick to hot school meals…

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