Before I had children, I imagined it would be pretty easy to feed my kids healthy foods. I assumed that all I needed to do was introduce healthy foods early, avoid buying junk food, and my kids would acquire a taste for only healthy foods. Of course, once I had children, I realized that what sounded good in theory wasn’t always what would work best in reality. With a 6 year old son and an 8-year old daughter, I struggle with each and every mealtime, and am always looking for a better solution. When I see those lunches come back from school only partially eaten, I’m incredibly frustrated. So, I’ve been working hard to find a balance between giving my children a completely healthy lunch and giving them food they want to eat.
This school year, I’ve tried a few things that seem to be helping a bit. When I pack lunches, I ask my kids what they want, and try to include as much of their wants as possible. Of course, when my son says that he’d like to only have snacks, not a sandwich, that’s not something I can accommodate. But, what I can offer is a wide selection of options. On most days, I pack a sandwich, a fruit, a veggie, and another snack, like yogurt. At least this way, if there is something they don’t want to eat, there are lots of other choices for them. And while neither one of them particularly loves veggies, they do enjoy dipping, so I like having dip options for them to make the veggies more appealing. On occasion, I’ll also make the lunch a little more creative – by using cookie cutters on their sandwiches and sneaking in a special treat or note.
The Chef & Child Foundation (CCF) and the makers of Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® dressings & dips have partnered up to host the Lunch Break for Kids fundraiser. They are asking chefs to volunteer and help raise funds for children’s nutrition. This is an important topic to me – because providing children with healthy food choices isn’t always easy for families.
The Hidden Valley® Original Ranch®, dressings & dips has provided me with free product to help with my review, but anything I receive from Hidden Valley does not affect my thoughts on its company or their product.