This week our columnist Lydia Harvey has some helpful tips on tackling that daily task parents wish they could avoid - packing the school lunch box.
I don't know about you, but one of my biggest headaches every week is trying to organise what my kids will be eating for lunch at school.
Like every parent I go through the whole process of thinking is this healthy? Will it sustain them throughout the day? Will they even eat this?
While I'm no lunch box "expert" I have come up with a few tricks for making the process of getting lunch ready for my kids a bit easier and faster without breaking the budget each week.
Use the leftovers
Generally anything left over from dinner or snacks the previous day are the start of our lunch box for the following day. This can be anything from rice (add some frozen peas and corn and rice vinegar or even mayonnaise and curry powder with chopped capsicum) to cold meat or salads.
Go to the garden
If you have a garden grab produce from it for your children's lunch box. Raw vegetables from carrots to peas are an easy and great snack for the kids' lunch boxes.
Play around with ideas and food groups for your children's lunch boxes. Add dips, or a fruit kebab or stuff avocados or capsicums. Sushi wins in our house they get to lunch time they can wrap, stack and eat it all on their own.
Good food is simple food
Sometimes we over complicate the need for elaborate lunch boxes but no matter where you stand on the lunch box ladder keep it simple and don't stress about having to have "the latest" food trends in your children's lunch box. Simple healthy foods like vegetables and fruit will get your child through their school day.
From Lydia's Garden: Bacon and cheese scones.
200 grams roughly chopped bacon
7 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
Handful of grated cheese
Roll pastry and cut into sizes big enough to fill in a muffin tray.
Mix bacon, eggs, milk, spring onions and cheese together then scoop into muffin tins.
Bake for half an hour or until cooked and wait until cool to remove.
Tip: Line trays with baking paper to make it easier to remove scones from the trays.