Friday, January 25, 2013

Lunch for my Girl

The new Easylunchboxes BRIGHTs are here and I could not resist to get a set since my daughter loves purple!

It also matches our new purple ELB cooler and apparently her new chapstick ;)

When you are three it is incredibly exciting when your lunch box matches your chapstick, right?

I even found a purple Lunchbox Love card and packed her a lunch in her new purple ELB and our new purple cooler! We packed some snack mix, strawberries and blueberries and a chocolate spread heart shaped sandwich. She also packed a thermos with milk and a yogurt since there was enough room in the new cooler for a thermos and cup of yogurt as well :)

One more word to the cooler. I was pleasantly surprised by the size of the cooler. It looks very large on Amazon but in reality is not much bigger then a regular lunch bag! 

It fits up to three Easylunchboxes (great for sporting events or car rides) or one Easylunchbox, a thermos, yogurt, ice pack and snack for every day packing.

I also love the short handle! Long enough to attach it to the backpack or carry it but not too long to be in the way!!

I will be getting more for us since they are so convenient and fold flat for storage when not in use!! Perfect if you have several lunch coolers and little cabinet space - like me :)

And here is where you can find both the BRIGHTs and the Easylunchboxes Coolers:

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Happy National PB Day!

Today is National Peanut Butter Day and for us a snow delay day, woohoo!
Of course the kids wanted to help celebrate with Peanut Butter Sandwiches:

My fifth grader packed a peanuts, pretzel, sesame stick and chocolate snack mix, half an apple and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich decorated with pieces of the snack mix and a winter hat cupcake topper in his Easylunchbox lunch box. I even found the perfect Lunchbox Love Note for today! I am nuts about you!!

My second grader also packed a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in his yubo lunch box , a peanut butter cereal bar, vanilla yogurt, some mini dark chocolate chips and Naturebox Orange Crush granola to sprinkle on the yogurt, yum! Of course, he has a Lunchbox Love Note as well!

My youngest son packed a Lunch Punch peanut butter sandwich, apples and strawberries and the same snack mix as his brother. Because it is a snow delay day all boys got to bring an organic chocolate milk to school as well.

I linked my lunch to the linky over at BentOnBetterLunches:

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Thermos Review

Thermos generously sent me two FUNtainer food containers and two FUNtainer drink containers to review and I am so excited to share my review with you!

First, we tried out the food containers. I have several food containers that keep food warm for lunch already but so far my kids have always been disappointed when the food was not warm anymore once they opened the containers at lunch. I wanted to try how long the food stayed warm in the FUNtainers as well as if food would stay cold as well.

I was pleasantly surprised! When I tried to keep hot water warm as a test at home the FUNtainers kept the water warm well beyond the advertised 5 hours and some of the ice water I tried at home stayed cold up to 10 hours. 

So, next we of course packed some yummy food to take to school to test if this would be true for food packed. The first day I wanted to send in yogurt and placed the FUNtainers in the freezer for 30 min in the morning before filling it. 

I packed yogurt topped with Swiss Muesli, blueberries and raspberries!

The food was nice and cold once lunch time came around 11 am and my kids were very happy with the result! I am excited as well because this is a great power food and I love packing food like this for lunch for myself as well. The kids also loved how easy the containers opened since we also had issues with hard to open insulated containers before. So thumbs up so far!

I added 6 oz of vanilla yogurt topped with 3 Tablespoons of Swiss Muesli and a few raspberries and blueberries. For myself I like adding almond slices and hazelnuts as well and I bet dried fruit would be delicious as well!

I can highly recommend the Thermos FUNtainers if you are looking to send in cold fruit, yogurt or any other cold food! Some of the yogurt I sent was still very chilled by the time the food came home at the end of the day!

Of course after such wonderful results we wanted to test out as well if the food would stay warm long enough until lunch!

Looking for some fun and nutritious food to pack I decided to pack Oatmeal and again with blueberries and raspberries - my kids favorites!

Before filling the FUNtainers I added some hot water to the container 10 minutes prior to adding Oatmeal.

My son did not finish the whole container of food at school and it was still warm when he got home at 2:30pm and he was able to finish it for snack! This is the only container that has food kept warm for this long and we are definitely going to get more containers for soup, chili, oatmeal and more! My kids loved both the yogurt and cereal and the hot oatmeal and since I can be sure that their food stays warm or cold I feel like I have many more options to send in food now!

Thermos also provided us with two 12 oz FUNtainers bottles. And my kids absolutely fell in love with them! The bottles state that drinks would stay cold for up to 12 hours and that is absolutely true! I placed the bottles briefly in the freezer before filling them and my kids have been taking cold milk, smoothies and fruit water to school and if I add ice cubes they are barely melted by lunch time. I feel much more comfortable now sending in milk products or smoothies and my kids love how easy to use the bottles they are! 

To sum up: 
  • We were pleasantly surprised that the Thermos FUNtainer hold what they promise! 
  • They keep your food chilled or hot until lunch time and beyond. 
  • They are easy to use for kids and easy to clean for Mom since all the parts come apart. 
Overall, a great product!

If you are interested in some of the {Recipes} I used to fill our Thermos FUNtainers, here they are:


What you need:

1/2 cup of rolled oats
1 cup of milk or water

Bring milk (or water) to just before boiling. Add oats. Reduce heat and cook at a gentle boil for about 5 minutes while stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add your favorite topping!


What you need:

1/2 banana
1 cup of frozen sliced strawberries
milk/coconut milk or any other liquid

Add all the above to blender. Blend and fill in your favorite FUNtainer! This is enough to fill two 12 oz FUNtainers!

Fruit Water:

8 oz of cold water
fruit of your choice ( we prefer frozen)
(we added strawberries. About 6 sliced frozen strawberries per FUNtainer)

Add frozen fruit to your FUNtainer and let soak over night in the fridge! You will have a lightly flavored fruit water in the morning!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Breakfast for Lunch and a Winner!

Good Morning! We are all back to school today :)

I am so happy it is Friday and packed the kids a fun Breakfast for Lunch Box! We packed oranges, a cereal bar, pancakes, syrup and some vanilla yogurt with a few mini dark chocolate sprinkles! As always the kids also brought ice water.

I hope you all had a chance to enter my yubo giveaway! 

I will be announcing the winner below but for all of you who did not win, here is a 25% off coupon
to redeem at www.getyubo.com25LWL valid until January, 28th

But without further ado now here is the winner of the yubo giveaway: 

--> Eileen S. 
CONGRATULATIONS! I have emailed you!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Stay at Home Lunch

My son was sick this week but after our new Monster Munch Lunch faceplates from yubo arrived he declared that he wanted to have lunch in his "new" lunchbox even if he was still home sick.
He was still ill yesterday so I made him a Stay-at-Home Lunch :)

We packed a very silly monster apple, a cereal bar (decorated with two chocolate chips and a half a mini peanut butter cup), rotten monster fish with worms and a creepy yogurt.

I loved that he was so excited to pack the "monster" yubo and he loved eating lunch at home. Hoping he feels better today and the expected snow holds off. Otherwise tomorrow's lunch may have to contain a snow monster ;)

Monday, January 14, 2013

yubo review and giveaway

We have had our yubo since the fall and I love packing lunch in it so I wanted to share with you why I like it and give you a chance to win one for yourself!

Today's lunch includes strawberries, blueberries, vanilla yogurt and a snowman sandwich decorated with mini chocolate chips, a tiny carrot and a winter hat cupcake topper. I added popcorn snow and cheese snowflakes for a snowy lunch!

But back to the yubo! I bought our yubo last fall on a whim after seeing it online and liking the "old school" lunch box style. I had originally bought the yubo for my first grader because I did not think the older kids would like it. Was I wrong! We currently have a calendar on the fridge showing the days when everyone gets a yubo turn! Even though the yubo was recommended online for kids 3-6 I have to say that my kids are between 3-10 and they all LOVE this yubo. I will have to get more!

I love the lunch box look, the fact that you can change out the face plates (which comes in handy when several kids share the yubo or you want to make sure you can change the look once your child gets older) and the durability of the yubo. My kids are rough on everything and the yubo still looks like new!

It is a little bigger then a regular lunchbox but my kids either carry it or it fits comfortably in their backpacks and lockers!

I love that it comes with these unique containers: two rounds and one sandwich box and that they are easy to open and close (even my 3 year old can handle it). Also since the whole lunch box comes apart and is plastic even if a container was not tightly closed clean up would be easy.

The deluxe yubo lunch box also comes with an ice pack and there are several things I like about it: 1) Most lunch boxes don't come with a fitting ice pack which makes it often difficult to find ice packs that fit. 
2) The yubo ice pack fits snuggly into the box and I love that it covers the entire box so I can feel comfortable that all the food in the lunch box stays cold. 
3) I even love this ice pack so much I often use it when we are on the go in my cooler or in different lunch boxes if needed. A really good feature of this lunch box!

And now my absolutely favorite part:

At the end of the day the yubo comes completely apart and you can simply put it in the dishwasher! I wipe the faceplates down with a wet cloth and remove them before I put the rest of the pieces in the dishwasher. I really love this about the yubo! No more dirty lunch bags, scrubbing yogurt, applesauce or ranch dip out of all the lunch bag folds. Put it in the dishwasher and let it do the job!

So to sum up:

What I love about the yubo:
  • dishwasher safe
  • interchangeable face plates
  • a variety of leak proof containers 
  • fabulous ice pack
  • durable and eco-friendly
Some things to consider:
  • There is no room for a drink in the yubo so you either need to buy their drink holder which attaches to the yubo or send in a drink separately - not a big deal in my book since the drink holder is only $5.95 and enables you to send in a reusable water bottle instead or disposable juice containers which I prefer.
  • It is slightly bigger them a regular lunch box especially with the drink holder attached but my kids love carrying it to school and we never had any issues fitting it into their backpacks and lockers.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Open to U.S. Residents only. Please do not enter if you have received free products from yubo in the last 3 month. Make sure to leave your email address! I will email the winner on Friday. You have 48 hours to respond or I will have to re-draw a winner. No exceptions!

Also, make sure to check back! I will post a coupon code so all of you who did not win can still get a yubo with a discount!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Lunch for a Friday

It is finally Friday and after taking turns being sick everybody is back to school today!
I packed a quick and easy lunch in our yubo today :)

We packed Pirate Booty, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a dye-free yogurt and some strawberries.Thankfully I had some baran and picks I haven't used that often to decorate this very plain lunch :)

Do you like the yubo lunch box? Stay tuned for a review and giveaway on Monday! Also, stay tuned for a great coupon code for the yubo coming next week!

Things I used to make lunch today:

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Pandas and Onigiris

My kids love rice and what they consider Onigiri: plain sushi rice wrapped in seaweed. We finally found some Furikake seasoning this week and everybody liked it so now I need to get some Furikake containers for their lunch boxes :)

Our lunch consists of three Onigiri, apples and orange slices, energy bites and seaweed Arare which are Japanese crackers wrapped in seaweed.

For the younger kids I made smaller Onigiri and they packed apples, oranges, energy bites and Arare as well.

The kids loved decorating with our new panda picks and I think they came out very cute :)

My sister asked me the other day for a quick picture tutorial on how to make these very plain Onigiri because she wanted to make some to dip in different sauces and I made this tutorial on my phone - so pardon the light and quality - but I though some of you might like to see it.

Typically, I steam the rice and let it cool until it is only slightly warm. I put about one Tablespoon of rice on a small piece of plastic wrap and either form a ball by kneading the rice or twist the top of the foil until a ball forms. In this tutorial I used some seaweed and a seaweed stamp and made first a round rice ball with face. You can also cut a long strip of seaweed and wrap the rice ball in it to look more like an Onigiri. Beware that the seaweed will "shrink" once it absorbs some of the moisture from the rice so cut the strip a little longer then necessary!

Hope this helps if you are looking to make some very simple rice lunches!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Hello Kitty Bento with {tutorial}

My husband gave me a new bento box for Christmas and I have been waiting for a chance to be able to pack lunch in it. My daughter loves Hello Kitty and asked for a Hello Kitty "Sushi" Lunch which was the perfect opportunity :)

This is a fast and easy way to make a Hello Kitty themed rice bento:

All you need is some steamed rice, Seaweed, two pieces of frozen corn, a slice of ham and a flower shaped cookie cutter:

I cut some thin strips of nori with kitchen scissors for the whiskers and two oval shaped pieces of nori for the eyes. Then I used the flower shaped cookie cutter to cut the ham and layed out two pieces of corn. 

Now you just have to add the pieces to your steamed rice, add Furikake or soy sauce in a small container for seasoning and you are done!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Whole Grain Pizza Pockets

We are back to school since yesterday!
And to ring in the year with a healthy lunch we packed Whole Grain Pizza Pockets!

In our Easylunchboxes, we packed cucumber slices, an all natural apple sauce and Whole Grain Pizza Pockets! I also packed a Mini Dipper with some extra pizza sauce for dipping!

The last time I made pizza pockets, it was a huge success with my kids since you can really fill these pockets with anything your kids like! However, the dough I used had food dye and I was quite disappointed when I discovered this since we love these pockets. I have looked since into a couple of other options and found that Pillsbury does make a food dye free pizza dough. I was very happy to find that the Pillsbury Artisan Pizza Dough with Whole Grain is food dye free! For the tutorial for the pizza pockets please check my previous post HERE.
I made two different kinds of pizza pockets. Some with pizza sauce, mini turkey pepperoni and mozzarella cheese and some with just sauce and pepperoni and no cheese. In order to keep track I added a different number of pepperoni to the top of the pockets. Great tip when you are making several different kinds so you don't end up packing the no cheese pockets for the wrong child :)
I also added a Lunchbox Love Note for their first day back!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Best of 2012

It was a lot of fun looking back at the lunches of 2012! Especially since my 1 year blog-anniversary is yet to come. I started blogging in 2011 but only ever blogged 7 lunches until I made the blog public and started blogging more officially in January of 2012. Here are the lunches with the overall most views:

3. Lunches with Chobani Review

3. Starwars Lunches

5. Bento Lunch

6. German Brunch

8. Talk like a Pirate

Which lunch was your favorite?


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