The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Yuni at Love Your Abode.
Can you believe students are already going back to school? My older two started last Thursday. Back to school means lots of paperwork, lunch packing, and laundry. This also means that I really need to be organized so that things run more smoothly during the week, especially in the mornings.
Since daily lunch prep for my husband and kids can be fairly time consuming, we developed ways to increase efficiency. Here are some tips that have helped us with snack and lunch prep for the school and work week.
Air tight plastic containers can keep crackers and cookies fresh longer and make for more uniform storage than bulky boxes. They also show what I have in stock and what I’m running low on.
I use basic Ikea containers to hold a variety of snacks. I also make a simple trail mix of peanuts and raisins that my husband takes to work every day and that we enjoy at home. He calls it his “bread-less PB&J.”
These wire baskets from the Container Store fit perfectly side by side in my cabinet pantry. I can easily slide the basket out instead of searching around for a particular container in my deep cabinet. This especially comes in handy on the lower levels of the cabinet.
Similar types of items can be grouped in each basket to cut down on the time it takes to find what I’m looking for. Filling these containers every 2 weeks helps ensure I don’t over buy a specific item. Since my kids bring snacks and lunch to school everyday, eliminating waste, minimizing prep time and providing tasty and health options are my goal!
On Sunday afternoons, I fill these snack bags up for the week and place them in baskets for easy access. They are perfect for the lunch box, on the go for after school activities or as a quick snack on Sundays after church.
I bought a bunch of these dollar store baskets and they have been great for my pantry. This one is for salty!
Granola bars and Choco Pies go in this basket. Have you ever had a Choco Pie? They are Korean snacks and consist of two soft round layers of cake covered in chocolate with a marshmallow filling. Umm.. YUM! Okay, I digress… back to organizing…
These baskets are great for fruit snacks, juice boxes, apple sauce pouches, etc.
When I’m done, they go right back into my pantry. I love how these wire baskets have handles on both sides. I just slide out the basket and take out the container that I need.
Have you ever spent 5 minutes looking for the mayo or mustard?
Another great tip is to put all your sandwich making ingredients into one basket in the fridge. Everything is in one place and it makes clean up so much faster. I also like to fill everyone’s water bottles every night and put them in the fridge so they’re ready to go the next day. Baskets in the fridge can be like extra drawers that hold fruit, yogurt, and cheese sticks so they are all organized in one container.
Get your kids to help out! Let them make their own lunches. I let them choose their meal and snacks and we make it a joint effort to pack them together every evening. Make it a part of your family time! We like to make sandwiches, paninis, quesadillas, or pack leftovers from dinner.
Hope these back to school organizing ideas help make your lunch prep time run more smoothly. You don’t have to use my exact ideas but I hope they inspired you to get more organized for the school year. I wish your kids all the best for an awesome, successful school year!
Yuni is married to her high school sweetheart and is a stay at home mom to three precious miracles. She is passionate about Jesus and loves creating a home with purpose. You can find her at Love Your Abode where she shares her love for DIY, organizing, cooking, and interior design. She loves gathering, feeding, and celebrating people.