Pack a sandwich – and a smile

Lunchboxes can hold more than just a slightly smushed PB-&-J sandwich with the crusts cut off. We asked readers what they pack to bring a lunchtime smile to their kids’ faces, and here’s what they said.

Also check out:
5 ways to be a brown-bag queen

Draw a tic-tac-toe game on a napkin and include “tokens” like grapes, raisins, or pretzels to use as the game pieces.

Or better yet, for the kitchen novelty gadget lover in you, there’s Tic Tac Toast, which puts a game board stamp on an otherwise blah sandwich.

Get your game on


A simple “I love you” can reassure a homesick younger child, while a knock-knock joke can make an older child smile. Tuck the note discreetly under a sandwich to ensure it remains private unless your child chooses to share.

Says reader Jennifer Jankowski Nunez: “A post it note with a message of love and encouragement to get through the day”

Says reader Jennifer Jankowski Nunez: “A post it note with a message of love and encouragement to get through the day”

Write a note


Kids may groan at the word “leftovers” … so don’t use it! Instead, spruce up last night’s dinner in a fun, expected way. Make a grinder out of leftover meatballs, put chicken parm on a sandwich, and every kid loves taco salad.

Repackage last night’s dinner


This tip comes from reader Rosemarie Fishback Bray: “I usually make his sandwich into a shape using a cookie cutter. Lately its been a cheese sandwich in the shape of a pumpkin or ghost.” So dig out the holiday-themed cookie cutters a little early this year.

This tip comes from reader Rosemarie Fishback Bray: “I usually make his sandwich into a shape using a cookie cutter. Lately its been a cheese sandwich in the shape of a pumpkin or ghost.” So dig out the holiday-themed cookie cutters a little early this year.

Cut it out


Turn your loose change into a lunchtime smile. The next time you pass one of those 25-cent toy machines at the mall, load up on a few bouncy balls, mood rings, and other cheap-but-fun goodies and every now and then, toss one in with the juicebox.

Throw in a toy


Be a brown-bag queenSave that lunch money (latte, anyone?), grab your brown bags and get packing!


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