Bento Catch-up: March 10-11 & 19-20, 2009

by Wendy Copley on March 24, 2009

Wow! I’m so late with this post. Our trip to Austin was fun, but it’s amazing how a change in routine can upset the balance of  our household. Sheesh! Anyway, let’s do some catch-up:

Preschooler Bento #154:  March 10, 2009

The Tuesday before we left I made this wonderfully beige lunch. This is a good example of how not to make a lunch colorful and exciting. I did the best I could with the shades of brown at my disposal though. This lunch had pita crackers from Trader Joe’s (my new favorite cracker), baked tofu and a half banana.

Preschooler Bento #155:  March 11, 2009

OK, Wednesday’s lunch was a little better: Deli ham roll-ups, canned peaches with sprinkles, and garlic toast bunnies.

Preschooler Bento #156:  March 19, 2009

We made a quick run to the grocery store the night we got back from our trip, so I had some fresh foods to offer Wyatt in his lunch that Thursday. Here we have baked tofu cut up and arranged in a checkerboard pattern, strawberries, and frozen peas.

Preschooler Bento #157: March 20, 2009

Friday’s lunch had a hot dog, canned peaches, catsup and a mini blueberry muffin I pulled out of the freezer. I also added a little fruit leather star for decoration.

I’ve had a few requests in the past couple of months to see how the bento boxes I make are assembled, what they look like when they’re closed up and about how big they are, so I took a few pictures to demonstrate those things. I will have a few more photos to share at the end of the week using a different style of box.

How a bento box is put together

This box is one of the stacking style boxes I use regularly. It comes with enough pieces to make a double layer, but I’ve found that’s way to much food for Wyatt, so I just use the biggest, bottom layer. Here you see the lid, the silverware tray and the food container.

How a bento box is put together

The silverware tray goes on top of the food container.

How a bento box is put together

It provides a snug fit but it doesn’t seal.

How a bento box is put together

Here it is next to my hand for size reference. The boxes are pretty small, but that allows the food to be packed tightly together which allows it to arrive at school without being jumbled together.

How a bento box is put together

The lid goes on top of the silverware tray.

How a bento box is put together

Next, the bento “belt” goes on. The belt is a strip of elastic. Sometimes it’s decorated like this one is, but sometimes it’s plain. I use both kinds regularly. Remember, the boxes aren’t self-sealing like a Rubbermaid or Tupperware box is so you need a belt to keep the box closed.

How a bento box is put together

Here is the bento box next to Wyatt’s lunch “box”. It’s really a thermal bag meant for a six-pack. Wyatt doesn’t like this because it’s boring and doesn’t have any pictures of trucks or superheroes on it, but I won’t buy him a new one because this is perfectly functional. Mean mom!

How a bento box is put together

Here’s the bento inside the lunch box.

How a bento box is put together

And here’s the lunchbox after I’ve crammed in a freezer pack and a water bottle. This isn’t how I typically pack his lunch, so this isn’t the best photo to show. This was the first time I’ve ever put that particular water bottle in there. Usually I send Wyatt’s drink (almost always juice cut with water) in a Rubbermaid Litterless Juice Box, but he just got this new water bottle and was dying to take it to school because, you know — robots. I won’t be sending this again though. Wyatt couldn’t open and close it by himself and the teacher didn’t seal it back up tightly so it leaked all over his lunch box and soaked through to his back pack. (It was dumb of me not to check to see if he could do it himself without asking for help.) Needless to say, we are back to our old stand-by plastic boxes.

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