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The only thing I enjoy more than organizing is saving money! Yet, with our busy schedules, it’s so easy for Joe & I to run out the door without packing our lunch. It always seems like so much work in the morning! This means that we’re having to buy lunch at work which is definitely NOT saving money.
Well, the truth is that packing lunches USE to be a lot of work. I never seemed to have the right groceries for our lunches, but in attempting to always pack our lunch, Joe would get odd left overs in his lunch each day. Let’s just say it was a surprise that he wasn’t excited about 🙂 .
After several complaints from Joe about the quality of his lunches, I finally admitted he was right. The lunches weren’t good and I needed a better system to ensure that we had the right food AND it was quick to pack up in the morning.
The first thing I needed to do was actually get our lunch food. In Washington, Oregon & Idaho, Walmart has these fun displays of NABISCO snacks. I find it helpful to have a lot of snacks on hand at home (whether for lunches or just snacks) so I stocked up. The NABISCO display station was right near the check out and had baggies available to use when stocking up!
There’s 10 different snacks to choose from, including my favorite, TEDDY GRAHAMS Graham Snacks.
Never lacking a reason to label, I found these cute bathroom bins to add pocket labels to for snack items and breakfast. On plain card stock paper I printed my ‘snacks’ & ‘breakfast’ labels, cut according to the size, and put them inside the pocket labels. You could use stronger adhesives, but I actually just used scotch tape to adhere the label to the bin! (They’ve stayed put for weeks!)
Right now I have TONS of custom oatmeal packs for breakfast! Joe & I RARELY eat breakfast at home (I value sleep too much to get up earlier 🙂 ), so breakfast in the office it is!
Next step was to clear out space in one cabinet specifically for our lunch prep station. This prevented me from opening EVERY cabinet in our kitchen looking for what I needed. I put small sandwich bags, plastic containers (reused lunch meat containers) and lunch bags on the top shelve and my ‘snack’ and ‘breakfast’ bins on the bottom.
Now on to the fridge. I keep all my produce for lunch in one drawer within my fridge. I know I know, apples don’t need to go in the fridge! It’s just so much easier to have everything in one spot! Dinner leftovers are kept kept in individual containers right above the drawer so we can quickly grab everything for lunch. It’s easy for Joe & I to always know where within our sometimes messy fridge that we can find food for lunch!
With all the pieces now in place, compiling all the items for our lunch in the morning has never been easier! It would be really easy to prep lunch for the whole week on Sunday night, but with this system it takes only MINUTES each night to prep tomorrows lunches!