1.) Designate a drawer in the freezer for all the ice packs for lunches.
2.) Create a spot in the fridge for all lunch supplies ( ie: bread, turkey, cheese, yogurt, hummus, etc.).
3.) Concoct a cold pasta, chicken salad, tuna salad, etc. ahead for the week.
4.) If you use a lunch divider like my favorite, laptop lunchbox (www.laptoplunches.com) make sure you buy 2 so one is always clean.
5.) Have a clear bin in the pantry to house all the lunch snacks and treats for easy access.
6.) Talk to your kids about what is an appropriate snack to eat after school. Then have them at kid level in the pantry or fridge for easy access.
7.) MOST IMPORTANT TIP: get up at least 10 minutes earlier to allow time for your cup of coffee before starting the crazy job of making lunches and getting kids out the door!
Budget friendly changes:
Take a Costco or family size chip/cracker bag and portion out into snack size ziplocs for the month as opposed to pre-packaged chips.
Buy bags of carrots wash/slice yourself and separate into snack size ziplocs instead of pre-packaged carrots.
Instead of packaged drink boxes, use a reusable thermos with water, juice, crystal light, etc.
Happy Lunch Making!