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Kids Only Just Went Back And A Parent Is Already Being Lunchbox Shamed

It seems now with school back, these simple devices used to contain children’s school lunches are back at the top of the agenda for discussion… and abuse.

Yep, from what is in them, whether their contents are ‘nude’ or in packaging (heaven forbid), how much is too much or not enough, whether it represents each appropriate food group and really anything and everything in between.

Only yesterday, one day into the 2020 school year, an Australian mother was trolled online for what she put into her four childrens' lunchboxes and their quantity after sharing a photo in a Facebook group.

The mother showed the contents of their daily lunchbox (which are spread over three containers), included: one sandwich, a handful of grapes and blueberries, 12 pretzels, a lamington finger, five crackers with five slices of cheese, a packet of chips and occasionally, a slice of watermelon.

Upon seeing this image, parents were quick to judge, one said:

"The lunchbox with the sandwiches is about as much as I have ever packed... a sandwich, a piece of fruit and two other small snack items (maybe a muffin or some cheese and crackers) is the max I've done."

Image: Facebook

"How do they have time to eat and play too?" another questioned.

"My kids wouldn't eat all that in a week."

The mother at the receiving end of these comments even noted that the school principal had previously remarked about her children’s lunchboxes as well.

“He asked me if the kids had any room in their bags after putting in their 'three lunchbox lunches.' Yeah, we managed to fit a drink bottle and a hat as well," she replied.

While it seems everyone has an opinion about school lunchboxes, even those belonging to other people’s children, I thought I might as well add another one into the mix.

So, here it goes.

Shona with her two daughters. Image: Supplied

As a mum of two school aged girls myself, I can say that if I had to appease all of these often tedious and unrealistic standards about what is an Instagram worthy (yes this is a thing), ‘healthy’, environmentally friendly and satisfying intake of food for my girls each day, I would be fast tracking myself to an early grave because it is impossible. IMPOSSIBLE.

And to be honest, even if it were possible, for me, or my two children eating it, it’s really not that important.

What they want is to have enough food to satisfy their hunger, to appease their unprecedented growth spurts that often occur without warning, “something yummy” and with enough energy to keep them going through their extremely active days at primary school. And what I want is essentially exactly the same, with the addition of convenience and nutrition.

So with no further ado and with as much openness as a bento box (which for reference my children don’t have) here is the lowdown on my children’s lunches, and I am sorry (not sorry) to say to all those quick to judge that mine isn't very different to the mum's that was shamed.

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My girls’ lunch is packed into a sparkly unicorn lunch bag with two compartments from Smiggle. Probably the size of two regular containers put together.

Its contents vary from day to day depending on the days I am working and thus what I have time to prepare but most importantly, it depends on what is actually available in the fridge, fruit bowl or pantry.

But on an average day, the lunchbox contents, for one child would consist of: two pieces of fruit -- let’s say an apple and a banana, a snack which can often be inside plastic packaging (yep, plastic) like popcorn, pretzels or a muesli bar and sometimes an extra little something like a cheese stick, or a treat like a Freddo, as well as their main lunch item: usually a sandwich, roll or a wrap; always accompanied by a bottle of water.

On Fridays they get a lunch order because by the end of the week, I have no bread, no wraps and no rolls or contents to go within them.

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I also find that more often than not, my children will come home with an empty lunch box, apart from the scraps of sandwich crusts or fruit peel that has found its way home to me. Then they are hungry for more food when they get home.

While I can only speak for my own kids, I do know that my children eat their lunch or snack within the set time. They play in the delegated ‘play’ time and at the end of the day they have eaten what they needed and wanted.

They were not left feeling hungry, had the energy to focus, learn and to play and if you ask me, that’s what is important.

Featured image: Facebook