When free school meals run out – Lunchbox inspiration with Hartley’s Jelly

When free school meals run out – Lunchbox inspiration with Hartley’s Jelly

My eldest, William started year 3 this year and that meant the end of his free school meal entitlement. He’s ok with it, me – not so much. It means thinking about and making his lunches every day. I’m managing so far, but to be fair it’s only a few weeks in to the new term!

Gathering lunchbox inspiration

I’m a big Pinterest fan, and I’m always gathering ideas ‘for later,’ some which I will do, others not so much. Here’s my lunchbox inspiration board.

Take a look at this for example, do people really do this for everyday? Apparently they do, but Grace from Eats Amazing does it for a living and sells the accessories in her shop, so she has some motivation to do it. This is a picture from her alphabet bento lunchboxes, I picked J because it’s my initial but she did the whole alphabet! I doubt it’s something us normal mums do – If they do, they don’t work, probably only have one child and are seriously bored.. I’d love to give bento boxes a go one day. I’ll work up to it.

Lunchbox notes and free printables

I love the idea of lunchbox notes, it was something that just wasn’t around when we were kids, the concept just wasn’t there. There are loads of free printable notes and templates around that I’ve saved on Pinterest, one day I’ll print some out and surprise him – hopefully while he’ll still appreciate it and before he’s a teenager. You can even get lunchbox jokes!

Lunchbox inspiration for when the free school meals run out!

Image courtesy of Wellies and Lemonade


This is how my lunchboxes look now – sandwich not cut into pretty shape (I do hate waste but you could always use the cut offs for breadcrumbs), fruit, pudding like a yoghurt or cereal bar, miscellaneous snack like crisps, cheese string, raisins, carrot or cucumber.

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Pretty basic, but I’m inspired now to do better. Hartley’s sent me some of their strawberry Jelly pots which made a great easy addition to William’s lunchboxes and they were very popular all round. At less than 10 calories a pot they make a great low calorie snack for Mums too! They contain no added sugar, no artificial colours and flavours and are fat and glutefree, but they do have artificial sweeteners in them. They didn’t last long and were good as an after school snack too. They’re offering a promotion at the moment, where if you collect 12 of their green jelly pot lids, you can get a lunchbox and set of stickers to decorate it, like we’ve done here:

Lunchbox inspiration for when the free school meals run out!

Disclosure: I was gifted the lunch box, stickers and some jelly which inspired this post. All opinions are my own.

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  1. September 21, 2016 / 4:42 pm

    Thank you for sharing my lunch, I’m glad it’s provided a bit of inspiration! In answer to your comments about bento though, I AM a ‘normal’ mum (I even have more than one child!), I work full time from home whilst juggling dealing with a preschooler and all the school runs etc and I would truly love to have time to be even a tiny bit bored! Making bento lunches takes very little time (10 minutes in the morning whilst the kids are eating breakfast) and it’s a way for me to let off a little creative steam in an otherwise overly busy life. I was making them before I had a shop, I’ve no doubt I’ll still be making them if I ever chuck the shop in – I do it because my boys love them and getting them enthusiastic about veggies and other healthy food can only be a good thing. The only thing that takes any extra time is taking photos and writing about them on the blog and that’s what I choose to do instead of watching TV in the evenings, as a blogger I’m sure you get that! I completely understand that making fun bento boxes aren’t for everyone mind you, I’m sure you have hobbies and interests that wouldn’t work for me and I expect your house is probably tidier than mine too – I can make a mean lunch but I suck at housework! 🙂
    Grace @ Eats Amazing recently posted…How to Make a Bento – Which Lunch Box?My Profile

    • Midwife and Life
      September 21, 2016 / 4:56 pm

      You have not seen my house! I love that you make pretty looking food so I can look at it and be inspired x Thanks for taking the time to comment

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