Now that we are at the tail end of the school holidays (possibly indicated by the amount of sibling fighting going on in your house), here are a couple of points for heading back to school which I find/have found helpful over the years:
Don’t buy the school uniform too early. When I helped at my kid’s primary school at Orientation day in October, I couldn’t believe how many parents bought every item available, even winter clothes. Kids can grow considerably in three months. Same goes for shoes.
Buy at least two school hats.
These are our favourite lunch boxes. They have a hinged lid so you’ll never lose it. I am very happy to report that they are now available from Woolworths, I used to import them from Switzerland – complicated and expensive. They come in different sizes, so you can avoid buying overpriced single wrapped snack/treat items. Just put two biscuits in one of these and you’ll help save the planet from too much packaging. And if you can pack the sandwiches separate from the fruit, you don’t have to use any cling wrap. And that means the cling wrap can’t be blown away in the playground, because as my kids tell me, that’s what seals get wrapped up in.
To keep all the boxes together use one big container. The best all-year-round ones are slightly isolated with a zipper. The zipper should open on the big side, so you can access all the boxes at once, rather than having to fish them out one by one from the top.
Stock up on lunch boxes (I never thought I would use the phrase ‘stock up’!). You won’t find the same variety throughout the year. And you might need them. Some kids lose them a lot. Others just give up in term three (the lunch boxes, not the kids!). For some reason boy lunch boxes sell out faster than girls’.
Water bottles. Well, this is a bit of an issue. Decor used to have these very flat ones made out of hard plastic, but they don’t make them any more, and I had been searching all of last year for them. There is plenty out there in that sort of size, but I am not too keen on the softeners in the plastic. So if anybody can point me in the right direction…? I also like them nice and flat, so they can act as a cooling pad in summer. Fill it with water up to 2/3, then top it up in the morning. Otherwise it might not have defrosted enough by the time the first break comes.
There are other specialised containers out there. I found these at Chalet. I am contemplating the green one, because bananas are really hard to transport, and once they ripen in our garden, I have to feed them to the crows.
Reading through this, I actually realised, that there are a couple of tips for us grown-ups, too. Maybe one of your New Year’s resolutions was to save money. So how about taking a sandwich from home instead of buying lunch in the city? You’ll save yourself a staggering $1500 a year!
Safe Lunchboxes for Kids