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Jazzed Up Bag Lunches - 13 Ways to Turn HUM-DRUM into YUM!

By Maxine Sprague
If the thought of making packed lunches has you dreading the Back to School season, try using some of these quick and inexpensive ideas to perk them up.

1. Pop in a funky new pencil, cool gel pen, eraser or shaped notepad.

2. Include a tricky food riddle. "What did the tomato say to his friend? You go ahead. I'll ketchup."

3. Write a special note. "Thank you for cleaning your locker and returning all the containers and spoons from last month's lunches."

4. Round up some unusual eating utensils such as measuring spoons, baby spoons or chopsticks.

5. Slip in a colorful paper or cloth napkin to celebrate a special day such as Valentine's Day.

6. Personalize a paper lunch sack with colorful stickers and markers centered around a theme of interest to your child such as animals, sports or hobbies.

7. Make a fabric lunch bag using colorful cloth cut in a holiday shape such as an Easter Egg or heart.

8. Bake pizza in a square shape. Add sauce, cheese, green pepper strips for X's, and Pepperoni for O's.

9. Make millennium bugs using celery spread with cheese. Stick in shaped pretzels for butterfly wings, raisins for eyes and dry chow mein noodles for antennae.

10. Mix cinnamon and sugar in a salt shaker and shake onto buttered toast. Cut the toast into wedges, long thin pieces or use a cookie cutter to cut out a holiday shape from the center.

11. Celebrate 100 days of school by stringing 100 doughnut shaped dry cereal pieces onto a licorice lace and tie in a knot to make a yummy necklace.

12. Bag up a bunch of grated carrot, slices of celery, cucumber, green pepper and a handful of raisins. For a dressing, mix a small amount of cream, a dash of vinegar, salt, pepper and sugar to pour into the bag and toss before eating.

13. Ask your child to suggest something they would love to find when they open their lunch bag and add it to your grocery list right now before you forget.

Maxine Sprague, BEd (tlcpress@telusplanet.net) is a parent, author, and educator and lives in Edmonton, Alberta. She is the author of 3 books including her latest, Super Easy Bag Lunches. (The Learning Center Press, Box 82016-GMO#2, Edmonton, Alberta, T6J 7Eb $12.95US, $16.95CDN.) Web site: www.telusplanet.net/public/cscltd/


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