Day Camp Here We Come!

It’s the beginning of summer day camp season.   After a brief hiatus, we’re back to packing lunches, snacks, and bags of extra clothes, and dealing with the papers and projects that come home. 

What’s a busy parents to do?! 

For me,I started with the food situation.  I took one cabinet in my kitchen and zoned it, “Kid Lunch Packing Station.”  Removing everthing from the cabinet, I started from scratch in creating a functional and systematic snack shelf.  I chose this particular cabinet because it was close to the kiddie utnesils, cups and fridge…all of the things I need to pack a lunch.  The pantry was just too far away.  I attached a couple of kids’ nutrition and snack idea handouts I had collected from various sources to the interior of the cabinet door to give me ideas when I got stuck. 

I did a tiny bit of shopping, but most of the items I wanted to stock my lunch packing cabinet were already household items. 

What’s in it:

  • Snack and sandwich sized zip-locs
  • Individually-wrapped hand wipes
  • Straws
  • Plastic spoons (for pudding and apple sauce packs)
  • Thermos, food containers
  • Graham crackers (for making jelly and cream cheese “sandwiches”)
  • “Desserts” (fun-sized candy from party favor bags I horde)
  • Pudding/applesauce
  • Peanut Butter
  • Nutrigrain/granola bars
  • Crackers and cheese spread
  • Dried fruit: apricots, raisins, Craisins, Rainsnettes, and yogurt-covered raisins
  • is great online food company (based in Chicago).  Their nutrition-packed (read “healthy” meals) are fabulous for parents and kids alike.  I always have a few on hand for the quick picnic in the park or a poolside lunch. 

As for the stuff that comes home….

  • Papers that have the daily or monthly calendar of events gets posted in the laundry room on a clothespin “hook” that has been attached to the wall with those handy 3M Command Adhesive stickers.  That way, we can review what’s going to happen as we’re scooting out the door.
  • Art and projects are placed at the girls’ spot at the kitchen table.  When we all have dinner, they take turns talking about and sharing their day with the family.  We call this “Table Talk and Toss.”  Apraxic kiddos get some experience using their words, as they need to say at least one thing about their art.  If we’re really crazy about what came home from camp, we’ll keep it on the fridge or another place of honor.  Otherwise, as the title goes, we toss it (recycle). 

Here’s hoping you have a great–and organized– summer day camp experience! 

Lunch/Snack Packing Station

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