I love a practical gift that can also add some fun to your day! Here are some of the tools that we have found to be useful and fun for my son's preschool lunch.
There are a lot of cute options for lunch bags, and we have tried a few different ones, learning what works for us. What I like about the 3 Sprouts Lunch bag is that it is large enough to fit all the items I want to pack for my son's lunch and snack, and it is easy for him to put everything back in himself without having to be a Tetris expert. The only thing that would make it better, is if it were machine-washable or dishwasher safe, but there are not many lunch bags that are. It is available with different animal options like a pink elephant, purple snail, blue whale, yellow rhino. My son chose the iguana.
We use the Thermos Foogo Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel 10oz Straw Cup, Steeltainer, and the medium Kid Konserve Stainless Steel Container daily. My son loves that he can push the button on the insulated cup and the lid pops open to reveal his straw. I love that it keeps his milk cold through lunch and that the main body is stainless steel. This is why I also use the Kid Konserve Stainless Steel Containers. I've been using these containers since my son was a toddler, and continue to send the medium-sized one filled with fruit each day. I also use the Steeltainer Leak-Proof Stainless Steel Container every day and am really happy with it. I often don't use the removable metal divider, and instead I pack a mini-bagel, sunflower butter & jelly sandwich, mac & cheese, quesadilla, cottage cheese, or whatever I give him for the day into the entire container. What is great about this container, besides being leak-proof and durable, is that my 3 year old can get the lid open by himself.
In today's lunch I packed him a dinosaur-shaped sunflower butter and jelly sandwich. He is really into dinosaurs now, so this sandwich cutter is used the most. We have this set of three sandwich cutters that includes dinosaurs, dolphins and a heart, and two hearts. This gives me options when I want to give him a little surprise in his lunchbox.
At home, my 3 year old's utensils of choice are these OXO Tot Training Fork & Spoon Set. For the past couple years they have been his preferred utensil as I think they fit his hands well and he likes that they are metal like mommy and daddy's. We also have a set of the OXO Tot Cutlery Set For Big Kids, which is his second choice when the others are dirty. He likes that he has his own knife with this set. If you are getting this gift for a child older than 3, then I would get the OXO Tot Cutlery Set For Big Kids.
I think the next addition to our lunch will be a set of these name labels from minted.com (in this link scroll down to where it says "Name Labels" on the left) for each of the boys. They are waterproof, non-toxic, and look much cuter than when I write with a marker on their gear. A set starts at $12, and depending upon the design you choose, this may be for 8, 12, 24, or 32 labels. The hard part is choosing which label to get!
I would love to hear from you...what works for your lunches?