Now that the school term is over, and the holidays are stretching ahead of us for the next 2 months, I’ve booked my boys in for a Summer sports camp. I’ve an ulterior motive for this, not only does a sports camp occupy the boys during the day, but also they will end up absolutely wrecked and less likely to wreak havoc in the house in the evenings.
Compared to a school day the rules around lunchboxes at the camp are a little more relaxed. We have no nut ban (although check with your own Summer camps in advance), and that means that the boys will have ‘monkey wraps’ in the morning before they go. Monkey wraps are a wheat/seed tortilla wrap €0.89, spread with peanut butter €1.09, and filled with slices of bananas. They’re a brilliant alternative to a bowl of cereal and kids love the sweet and savoury combination.
Fuelling active kids on the go is all about making sure that they have enough food to give them energy through the day. I like to fill the lunch boxes with plenty of in-the-hand food options that they can grab and stuff into their pockets. That’s where the assorted pots of dried fruit and seeds (0.99) come in extremely handy. Even the little multi-pack of raisins (nearly always on my shopping list) are ideal for pockets. Although make sure you check their pockets before you do the washing, I’ve been caught out a few times by empty packets!
Don’t be limited by the conventional ‘lunchbox’ items. Why not try adding some Kabanossi sausages (1.49) to their tucker? While not all kids will like the spicy chilli variety (there is a plain pork version), it’s a great snack on-the-go.
There are oodles of options for snack-packs of fresh fruit too, not just dried fruit. The smaller fella loves the strawberries and blueberries, and the older guy loves the chicken pasta salad €2.49. That is if I can hold off the teenager from snaffling them all for herself first.
This week I discovered the Low-GI brown rolls, just €0.39 in the bakery section. The boys have asked me to slice them and put them into the lunchbox with some sliced chicken, beef, baby cucumbers, and sliced peppers. They’ll make up their own combinations at lunchtime, and eat the rest of the fillings in their hands.
I’ve tried, believe me, to give the boys their own reusable flasks/bottles to recycle for water. Unfortunately, the smaller fella (5) has lost 3 in the past month, so I’m back to the sports cap mini water bottles (€2.95 for ten bottles) which fit into tracksuit pockets very conveniently. He’s under strict instructions to bring home the empty bottles because we upcycle them for watering plants at the allotment. Nothing goes to waste here.
Before I forget, the piccolo tomatoes €2.29 are incredible this year; they are like sweets. Buy them up when you see them. They are hands down our favourite cherry tomatoes.
I realise that it sounds like my kids love to eat fruit and vegetables and I must be some sort of a miracle worker. Trust me though, they are just as picky as the rest of them when they want to be, and love to eat junk food. I just try to keep the cupboards, fruit bowl, and the fridge filled with so much of the good stuff that they don’t see the chocolate!
Caitríona doing her weekly shop: