Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Day 1938 - Be a lunchbox legend #IGA and win! #DFFLegend

Back to school means back to packing the lunches.

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Much of Australia goes back to school today (although we here in the ACT still have another week left).  While that may be a relief for some parents, it's also a source of anxiety for others.

For us here in the land of Deep Fried Fruit, routine has gone by the way-side over the last two months as we've relaxed into a summer mindset.

With the return of school we've got to become conscious about bedtimes again, being up to date with the washing, ensuring the fridge and cupboards are fully stocked and putting plans in place for assignments, reading and homework.

Getting kids out of bed and enthusiastic about their day is going to be tough for the first few weeks.  Even though they're looking forward to seeing their friends, meeting their teachers and taking on the new and exciting challenges that years 10 and 6 have to offer, they're not looking forward to the constant constraints about to be placed on their time. Neither am I.

I'm looking forward to having the house to myself again for snippets of the day. But I'm not looking forward to getting back into that early morning routine of preparing the lunches.

Apparently I'm not the only one.

Research conducted by the Independent Grocers of Australia (IGA) has revealed that 8 out of 10 parents say they feel time pressured when making their children's lunch boxes and almost 9 in 10 struggle to keep their children excited by the contents in their lunchbox.

I hear that! I have one child who is happy with the same thing day in and day out (which makes my life easy) but the other is constantly wanting me to mix things up a bit.  The first child is also happy with very healthy food choices, while the second would prefer I wander off track and include a bunch of not-so-healthy mouth watering delights.  One child doesn't care what others are eating at lunch time, while the other is often comparing his food to that of his friends and feeling like his comes up short.

According to the IGA research two thirds of parents are feeling the pressure from other parents, teachers or friends and a quarter say there is competition among other parents when it comes to preparing school lunches.

For me, I just feel the pressure of making sure my kids are eating healthy and easily transportable food while at the same time making it appear appetizing and creative.

The good news is that IGA have stepped up to inspire us all! Last week they launched their new online hub offering exciting and cost-effective lunchbox ideas for kids. Wahoo!  Check it out for some easy and inspirational lunchbox ideas.  You can also head to their Facebook page.

Here are some quick tips for making healthy lunches the kids will enjoy:

  • Use colour: strawberries, blueberries, carrots and cherry tomatoes are colourful which creates a "wow" factor
  • Use cookie cutters to create shapes:  It may be the same cheese sandwich day in and day out, but when it comes in different shapes it sure does taste different! 
  • Put food on a stick:  whether it be sandwiches, fruit or cheese, food is always much more fun on a skewer
  • Bake on the weekend: put cookies or muffins in the freezer and take them out as you need them They will be fresh and ready to eat by recess.
  • Involve the kids:  When kids are involved in the process of making their lunch, they're often more enthusiastic about eating it.
The IGA Lunchbox Legends website is a great source of lunch box inspiration.  They've mapped out a weekly lunch box schedule with easy to follow shopping list and how-to steps.  

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Do your kids like the same thing day in and day out, or do they prefer lunchbox surprises?

Do you make your lunches of a morning or the night before?

Are you a lunch box legend?


Win, Win, Win, Win, Win

Deep Fried Fruit has partnered with IGA for a cool new give-away to help parents become lunchbox legends.

You could win one of THREE handy lunch packs with drink bottle to help you get your school year off to a good start.

You could win the purple lunch box, matching drink bottle and some cool plastic wear. 

All you've got to do is let me know, are you a lunch box legend?  

You can enter here on the blog, or head on over to Deep Fried Facebook, Deep Fried Twitter (#DFFlegend), Deep Fried Instagram (#DFFlegend #lunchboxlegend) or contact me via text or email.

Competition open to Australian residents only and closes next Tuesday 3 February at midnight.  Please leave enough details so I can track you down.


  1. Those lunchboxes look pretty darn fancy. We have another year until school starts, so fortunately I don't have to worry about this yet. I'm still watching everyone's tips closely though as they make handy snack ideas for the kids.

  2. I would SO be excited by your lunchbox lunches if I were a kid! They look scrumptious! I no longer have to pack school lunches. Yay! ;-)

  3. With six kids, it's insane trying to cater to them all. I do a sandwich with tailored fillings to their liking, plus fruit and some sort of savoury or cake / muffin treat. Probably not too legendary at all but it's the best I can manage!

  4. My girl loves to eat out of her lunchboxes too. Even at home sometimes, to spice things up a little, I'd just pack the food into our lunchboxes to eat :)

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

  5. Thanks for the tips, my little man starts school this week and I've already started to worry about what to put it the lunchbox - I don't want to be like the guy who gets a note sent home from the teacher!

  6. I will be practicing this year to be a legend with my Esther starting Kindy. The skewer idea is a great one!

  7. This is my first year as a school mum so I am yet to find out if I am a lunch box legend or not. I hope it all falls into place with little stress.

  8. I come and go with the legend status. Mostly I go well, every now and then I'm so over it all I could cry. That's when the vegemite sambo / apple / yoghurt combination wins every time. x

  9. My kids make their own lunches. I make sure there is stuff available and they have guidelines, but I don't do much but supervise. I am planning on doing some back to school baking over the next few days though. :)

  10. I wish I was a lunch box legend, but I'm a total failure.

    I begin with enthusiasm & then just fizzle off because no one cares.

    The old favourites just go round & round. At least I know they will be eaten.


  11. I'm storing all these tips away for next year! :) Definitely not a lunchbox legend yet. #TeamIBOT

  12. Totally not a legend although as I type it is after 10pm and I have banana muffins cooling in the kitchen. My goal this year is to bake on Sunday's and peep what I can for the week.

  13. I'm a lunchbox legend in my mind with all of these healthy baking options to add to their lunches at the beginning of the week. By Friday, I've ran out of ideas and its vegemites sandwiches and apples!!!

  14. we sorta do lunch boxes the same as weekly meal planning.
    Monday..Meatless (veg/fruit/dairy)
    Tuesday..Tasty ( chicken)
    Wednesday..Wicked (quick snacks)
    Thursday...Tuck day(pocket money canteen)
    Friday.. Fish
    Changes every week but we keep the above as a rough guide

  15. I'm a lunchbox legend! Mr 5 is pretty happy with the same thing everyday. I do try to mix it up a little but he's fussy. Do you know how hard it is to spread vegemite without butter!?

    Email is tegan.musings@gmail.com

  16. I'm a lunch box legend when I feel like it - sometimes it's boring Vegemite sandwiches and other times, I make awesome fancy baked goods or sushi!

  17. I think I tend to end up being a lunch box loser, at least, according to my daughter, she seems to have a complaint about something each week. A sandwich or salad, fruit and occasional snack I think is fine as lunch box filling.

  18. This idea from IGA is so useful, I checked it out too. It provides balance but most importantly harmony. Home-made muffins, slices and muesli bars are a sure fire way to make any Mum a lunch-box legend!

  19. I like to think I'm a lunch-box legend! I freeze a variety of sandwiches with different fillings (ham, cheese and relish, chicken, celery and cream cheese, turkey and cranberry, etc), fritters, muffins, slices and cakes for the month ahead, and mix it up with seasonal fresh fruit and veg, plus any dry snacks like popcorn or pretzels.

  20. I try to be a legend - hard making both the school and your kids happy though! A good mixture and plenty of variety is the key, and getting the kids to help pack is great!

  21. Every single day of school i try best to pack healthy lunchbox for my son which includes all the essential food groups which provide energy for fun & learning at school.

    I have shared a few pics of my healthy lunchboxes on instagram and have tagged you,#DFFlegend #lunchboxlegend.
    my instagram username is @dreamdream936.

  22. Love to pack a healthy lunchbox for myself. Got to keep a fresh yummy salad roll..cool and tempting by the time i eat it...frozen water works great! Trying to be a #lunchboxlegend most of the time.

  23. I make four school lunches every day, and they all want different things. Trying to keep four kiddies happy with healthy stuff is a trial, but I somehow manage it (most of the time!)

  24. I love the fun of being a legend, I peel the orange in one piece and wind it back on, I make fruit sticks on straws, a mini thermos for winter with homemade soup, or spaghetti Bol, biscuits made in their initials. Just love being creative with their food, even hubby gets some fun lunches.

  25. I think I've found a way to be a lunch box legend, in my own mind...
    Sneakily get the kids to pack their own!
    They only have one lunch box shift per week...
    Four kids, four days done!
    Deb K
    Tweeti at live dot com


I love hearing your thoughts! Keep them rolling in :)

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