2016 has been a hard year for many people. From division in politics in the US to cities around the world being attacked and senseless violence happening, it’s been weighing a bit hard on me this holiday season. Peace. I just want peace. So I tried to send some peace and love in the form of a school lunch. A bit silly? Perhaps, but it doesn’t hurt to send those good vibes into the universe.
In this lunch:
Main Nutella sandwich in the shape of a dove because a little treat was needed for the holidays. Dove is holding a leaf bento pick and surrounded by roasted butter peanuts (in retrospect, I shouldn’t have put so many roasted nuts and will limit the treats later on — just thinking out loud!)
Sides Raspberries with green sprinkles and gala/granny smith apples cut into alternating slices. (I had the rest of the apples for breakfast that day 😉 )
Also included but not pictured Water and a granola bar.
Today, I used tools similar to these (please disable AdBlock to see what tools I used for this bento):
Every once in a while, I take a little bento hiatus. I take a break so that I can come up with new and fresh ideas. However, I still have to craft… one crafty thing! So this week, I checked out some wreaths on Pinterest and I made a new wreath for my door. Something simple, something that took less than a half hour and less that $12! Can you say instant (and cheap) gratification?
For this wreath, I used:
- A ready-made grapevine wreath. $4 at Trader Joe’s
- Basil-colored Spanish moss. $4.50 (40% off at my local craft store, or buy it online).
- 7 white “snow” flocked trees in a pack. $2.99 (40% off at my local craft store)
- (Optional) Green acrylic paint in case your moss isn’t as green as you would like. (99 cents)
15 minutes: I originally had the idea to hot glue the moss onto the wreath, but instead, I ended up tucking it into the branches. It held pretty well without the glue. I especially tried to tuck it under the largest branches.
Lots of mess, but easily swept away. It might not seem that way but this moss held pretty well like this.
10 minutes: I took my time hot gluing the trees into the wreath (partially because I was watching TV, but partially because I was trying to lay them out before I glued for sure). They each have a little wood base so I hot glued the base to where I wanted and then flexed the tree “trunks” (made of wire) to make them straight, even though gluing them on a curve meant that the bases didn’t go in straight. I tried to not line them up but instead have some in front, some in back so that I could create a bit of depth.
2 minutes: I had a bit of trouble figuring out how to hang this up but then thought of using a split key ring on the back and then hung it up.
And that was it 🙂 It took 3 extra minutes to clean up. It was fun and cute and looks good on my door. I didn’t end up using the paint as I liked the color of the moss, but using a sponge brush to lightly add green might give the moss more depth.
Today I used (Following cost may not reflect the discounts that I found for my materials):
I’ve been thinking about this bento for a while… I love How the Grinch Stole Christmas! It’s such a fun movie. My kiddos, however, are not so crazy about it. They watched the freaky live version (allowed by their dad NOT their mom) and now my middle kiddo calls it the “scary Christmas movie.” I can’t allow that! So today, to promote my love and convince the middley kiddo to watch the animated (TRUE!) version, I made her this bento yesterday for lunch.
Today we are also part of the Bento Bloggers and Friends’ Eat, Drink & Be Merry Holiday Hop! See the link below to check out the next lunch in the hop!
In this lunch:
Main PB sandwich of Cindy Lou Who with edible dough antennae 😉 You can’t really see it, but I supported them with some toothpicks for presentation. The kiddo was eating at home, not at school, otherwise, I would’ve supported them some other (less fragile) way. Little bow food picks.
Sides A little Grinch made out of a green grape, a slice of banana and a strawberry (with a little bread ball pom pom on top), all skewered with a toothpick. Also, a carved apple of Max, the Grinch’s dog. The dog was a pretty intricate carve and I wish I had had a knife that made more slender cuts, but oh well. One thing that I advise when making a more intricate design on an apple is to draw it out with edible marker and then cut along those lines. MUCH easier than eyeing it.
Also included but not pictured Graham cracker bunnies, peanuts
Hop on over to the next blog on our Holiday Hop!
Time for another installment of the Advent bentos! After yesterday’s debacle and not getting it together (lunch money was given), I had a little more time today to make an Advent lunch. It was simple, quick but I think the kiddo will like it, given that she’s been asking for a special treat in her lunch for a bit now.
And today’s advent surprise? Mini candy canes!
Main PB&Jam triple stacked tree with blue sixlets for ornaments and (a bit hard to see) snowflakes.
Sides A mandarin orange on the bottom and a carved apple on top with large non-pareils for snowflake-y accents and two mini candy canes.
Also included but not pictured Graham crackers and yogurt
Today I used:
This week we did some fun mom-kiddo bonding and I took the eldest kiddo to a truly beautiful production of the Nutcracker ballet. It was a Girl Scout event and it was really fun. She loved it, I loved that she loved it, and it spawned a really fun bento this week.
In this lunch:
Triple decker PB&J. For the red coat and a black hat and hair, a thin layer of edible molding dough, on top of the sandwich. A star sprinkle for a button and festive holly sprinkles adorn his hat. A graham cracker for the “fireplace” (with drawn-on flames) and a hanging cupcake topper stocking.
Green grapes and a strawberry Mouse King with candy eyes (lids drawn on with edible marker) and almond ears, along with a licorice whip tail and sprinkle nose.
Also included but not pictured
Yogurt, graham cracker bunnies
Time for another installment of the Advent bentos! I got a tell you the truth, Mondays are hard lunch days for us. I usually buy groceries during the week, so by Monday, I’m usually at the end of the loaf of bread, or using up fruit before it goes bad, or making it a snacky lunch. Today was a day for snacky lunch! A do-it-yourself Lunchable, as it were… but still healthy and fun 🙂
And today’s advent surprise? A dulce de leche owl that we got from our Girl Scout fall nut sales 🙂
Main Round butter crackers, cheddar cheese cut into stars, little rounds of turkey deli meat.
Sides A Clementine orange and a surprise dulce de leche owl (from the Girl Scouts!)
Also included but not pictured green grapes and yogurt
Today I used:
After doing bento for a few years, it’s hard to come up with new themes every year, especially for the holidays. There are some things that MUST be done for certain holidays: Santas, trees, reindeer, etc. are a must for Christmas (since we celebrate it), turkeys are for thanksgiving, clovers are for St.Patrick’s day… And in a way, it’s instant theme, but on the other hand a bit limiting. Well, every year I try to think of a new Advent activity for the kiddos, and I thought it would be a good idea to bring it into lunch 🙂 So this year I’m doing advents bentos! I’m not going to be doing special bento every day, but I had the idea to do one every Monday, and for the lunches in between, I would give the kiddo one snack that would equal the number of days until Christmas. So for example, tomorrow she might get 23 goldfish crackers… I’ll send her a little note to count them!
But anyhow, for today, there are 24 days until Christmas and I thought it would be fun to have a little area with a surprise. So I just cut out a little piece of paper and taped it on top of the small section of our Easy Lunchbox. I had some extra Santa hat stickers from a kid craft we did, so I just stuck it on top to be festive. Can you tell what the surprise was? A little hard to tell, but I found some small coal-shaped pieces of chocolate for fun. I was going to put in a different treat, but honestly, the kiddos were acting up this morning and being difficult (it’s hard for everybody to get back into the swing of things after a week-long vacation), so I thought this was appropriate 😉
Main PB&J sandwich stamped and numbered cutouts. The holly decoration are just sprinkles.
Sides A mandarin orange and a half arranged like a wreath and coal chocolate pieces.
Also included but not pictured I thought this lunch was kind of light, so I included some bunny cheddar crackers, a mango fruit pouch and yogurt.
Today I used:
Ahhh, teacher’s gifts. Every single year I’m stumped as to what to get our awesome teachers for Christmas. I used to bring in a bagel platter into our preschool until I found out the director was gluten-free, and I didn’t want to exclude her. With food allergies and different diets, etc. I decided it was best just to leave the whole food thing alone. So I decided to get our preschool teachers (the 8 of them and our 1st grade teacher) a little compilation of my favorite things 🙂 So I included a tiny frame, an iPad stand (that really could be used for standing anything up), a Starbucks card, and a fancy hand sanitizer (lavender). Those are just a few things that I like to use and I thought I’d share it with my favorite teachers. I actually really like this idea because it could change every year, it’s fun and (hopefully), it’s stuff they use/will like — like a swag bag. I’m posting this for other poor, forlorn parents out there that have no idea what to give the teachers in their lives.
In order to pull the theme together of a bunch of little random things that I like, I put them in brown paper packages tied up with string and called it a bag of my favorite things!
Here are a few variations of the tags I made:
And here is what was in the bag. Pretty simple, but cute and unusual, I think:
The tag says:
Brown paper packages tied up with string,
These are a few of my
iPad stand & Tiny frame
Hand Sanitizer & Starbucks
Silly me, the one thing I did forget was to put our names on it, so I just wrote it on the back. Hope they like it!
Today’s bento is Santa themed! I had to slip at least one Santa in there before the holidays, as I’ve not been up on my holiday themed lunches this year as I have in the past. It’s been a very busy holiday season! It has a little more sugar than I usually put in, but I guess it’s ok once in a while. Anyhow, I’m participating in another blog hop today so after you’re done perusing around here, check out Eats Amazing’s amazing Santa lunch!
In today’s lunch:
PB&J as usual! Beard is made of vanilla frosting, and the hat is a fruit roll up. I made little cuts in mini marshmallows for the pompon and the hat trim; also, holly sprinkles and charcoal round sprinkles for eyes.
Pomegranate seeds and edamame, reindeer cookies (can you spot Rudolph?), the North Pole sign is just a marshmallow on a paper straw with frosting for the snow/icicles. The writing is made with a food marker.
(but not pictured) yogurt
Today I used:
Now hop on over to Eat’s Amazing and check out another Santa Claus that’s coming to town!
Some friends and I got together for a fun gingerbread house party where everyone brings all kinds of candies and cookies and decorates a gingerbread house without the distraction of kids (although I had to take my youngest kiddo with me). All the different people meant an insane variety of different candies and sprinkles. My friends came up with some amazing creations and I spent most of my time just piping the roof– errr, I’m really slow! But I am happy with the results. My favorite thing, besides the roof, were the little mushrooms! So cute.
Some of the candies I used were Smartie gumballs, white sixlets, snowflake sprinkles for the house front, candy cane swirls, chocolate/cookie mushrooms, chocolate mint drops, reindeer cookies, tropical Mike & Ikes and Chiclets for the path, and coconut flakes for the snow!
Today I used: