Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Lunch box Dilemmas Part 2

So, yesterday I talked about my solutions for my older son and husband when it comes to lunches, but that didn't solve my younger son's problem.

My younger son was in full day kindergarten last year and so, had lunch at school. There really is no way for him to eat school lunch as he is an extremely picky eater and I wanted to be sure of what he ate which I could only keep track of with a packed lunch.

So, I bought him this box with a matching back pack last year:

It only sort of worked. I had to keep his water bottle inside and while that bottle is spill proof, it's only spill proof if he closed it properly. Well, he was 5. How often would that happen? Many times after school I would find a wet bag and loose foods in the container that he didn't put in the ziplocs carefully.

If I tried to put things in other containers, they wouldn't fit well in the box and because of his autism, he has reallllllly weak hands. On tests, he shows hand/finger strength in the bottom 1%. Opening things with his fingers is really difficult for him. So, a typical lunch for him would look like this:

It just wasn't working. So, I went searching. I thought of this system called laptop lunches, but I didn't like all the plastic containers that I would have to wash by hand. And, I worried about it's ability to fit a sandwich and the ease of opening and closing the lids:
It's a good system, but not one that would be best for us. So I found this: planetbox
And it's been great!

First thing I like is that the water bottle (not included) fits on the outside - no more spills on the inside of the lunch bag:

The pouch on the outside can be for notes, napkins or a small stainless container that opens with a twist:

This is the same lunch that is packed above. See how it's so much more accessible to a little kid? He can see all his food at once and eat a bit of this and a bit of that:

I like that it can hold a complete peanut butter sandwich which is a staple for our son. But, it has roomy compartments for other snacks too. I put in one of my son's new foods every day and he sees it and eats it, reinforcing the introduction of the new foods. In the above it was the cherries (I did take the stems and seeds out for the actual lunch). Below it's the blueberries:

You can buy magnets to decorate the outside for an extra $3, so we bought them. Makes him happy to see his trains. What's even better is that I can change them if I want to another design:

The kit comes with two small stainless containers that are liquid proof. One is for dipping (not shown). They other would be for things like fruit salad and the like:

The stainless steel lunch box comes out of the bag and is dishwasher safe - love that. Just remove the magnets (the lid has a bit of other material to make it magnetic).

And it's so easy to open and close. There is just a simple hinge thingee that fits over the lid, so it's easy access for the little guy.

Now one thing I didn't like was that my son was eating commercial snacks and bread. We've been slowly introducing homemade stuff in it's place. That will be for tomorrow's blog! Back to baking!

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