A Clean Eating Dream
Long before the term Clean Eating became a huge health industry, I was converted to healthy eating.
For almost 30 years I've eaten a diet consisting mostly of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and all things high in nutrition, low on junk. (Too much of it, admittedly, but healthy nonetheless!)
Eating this way, however, isn't easy if you're often on the go. As a homeschooling mom, I don't deal with a daily choice between lousy school lunch fare (pizza, hamburgers, chicken nuggets — rinse and repeat) and trying to reconfigure a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for the lunch bag. But, as any homeschooler knows, homeschooling happens away from home more often than you probably think. And as an active stay-at-home mom, I don't stay at home all that often.
Over the years I've tried various solutions to taking good food on the road. Last summer (as is my tradition) I spent a week living in a college dorm, attending adult education classes. Determined to eat clean all week long, I lugged a plug-in cooler to campus, filled with nutritious food. Each day I juggled to pack the food and cram it into already overloaded backpack. And each day I crossed my fingers that the layers of plastic bags wrapped over the storage containers wouldn't leak all over my books.
A couple of weeks ago, I met Kelly Lester, creator of Easy Lunchboxes. No sales pitch needed. When you've been looking for something for a long time — and finally find it — it's easy to recognize the solution to your problem. When I saw Easy Lunchboxes, I knew my food transportation problem was solved.
Our Easy Lunchboxes
Last week I got my giant box of Easy Lunchbox containers with enough coolers for all eight members of my family. OK, so maybe we're too easily amused, but it was like Christmas for my kids. Everyone chose a cooler color and container and immediately the three youngest were ready to take them on a picnic. The snow that day was a bit of a deterrent, so I convinced them to wait until Monday, when the weather would be better.
The Easy Lunchbox includes a divided plastic container — like a modern bento box — that segments food into tidy areas. Each has a lid that keeps the food in it's place. The container is then placed in a perfectly sized cooler, along with anything else you need for the meal.
The containers hold a lot of food and the coolers are roomy enough for a container, a piece of fruit, a drink, and a couple of small children. Alternately, you can pack two containers in a single cooler and still have room for a few more additions.
Late Monday morning, in spite of a chilly wind blowing through the 65 degree day, we prepared for our much anticipated picnic. We packed leftover Hawaiian Haystacks from Sunday dinner — storing the toppings separately to keep them cold and crisp — into our coolers along with an apple, a fork, and a napkin, and we were ready to go.
We took them to Thanksgiving Point and had a great — if chilly — lunch. Saved a bundle over eating at one of the restaurants there. And the only things that ended up in the trash were our napkins and apple cores.
Versatile, Portable Meals
There are so many uses for this convenient, new product. Of course, it's a simple way to pack your child's lunch, but it is equally useful for college students or adults in the workforce. (The packaging isn't silly and childlike.) They are great for picnics, field trips, and family outings.
Going on a long car trip? Pack each child with their own, personalized snack bag. It's easy to make it tasty—and healthy—with Easy Lunchboxes. Now that airlines charge you for food, why not pack up some yummy travel meals? That will save you enough for a great dinner out at your destination. (Just remember you can only have three ounces of liquid per container.)
Easy Lunchbox Wish List
There are two things I would change about my Easy Lunchboxes set:
More Matching Colors — The compartmentalized food containers come in four colors and the coolers come in five (three colors are shared between the two). I realize that most of you don't have eight people in your families, but given that we do, I would love to have eight different cooler colors with eight different lid colors to match. That would make it easy to tell them apart—and to know who left theirs out on the counter!
Longer Shoulder Strap — The short cooler strap was perfect for my kids, but I wish it was longer and adjustable to use on a shoulder. With all the stuff I carry, it's easier to be able to free up my hands. That would also help my college kids hang the cooler from their rolling backpacks.
Easy Lunchbox Add-Ons
When you get your Easy Lunchbox, packing up your meals will be made simpler with some additional items:
- Small ice blocks
- Plastic drink containers
- Compact utensil set
- ID tags (attach to the grommet on the strap)
I'd love to hear your experience with Easy Lunchboxes!