... but I have no where else to ask and I am sure you ladies will have some fab ideas. My daughter starts reception in Sept and I have four questions
1 - Can I get recommendations for a nice thermos please? I need one for keeping her food really hot. It will be packed ay 8:30 and she wont eat it till 12. She needs food to be warmish. I can totally see post lunch session filled with behaviours if she doesnt eat well at lunch. She doesnt handle hunger too well.
2 - Also, need a seperate pack for fruit and yogurt which remains cool. Any ideas?
3 - Her school is a no-juice school. Which is fine. BUT, they want water to be in a clear bottle. She uses a steel bottle so far and I would rather not have her drink out of a plastic bottle. I am told glass is a no-no? what can I use. You can see we will be sending a small picnic with her every day
4 - Its her birthday a few weeks after school opens. What exactly do people do? I can send a small activity pack for all the kids in her school perhaps and a biscuit tin for the staff room?
Is she able to access school meals? I thought they were being rolled out free for all KS1 children as of this September. That would solve the hot food issue ;)
Systema bottles are see-through, although coloured. They just want them to be clear so no one sneaks juice into them.
Birthdays - well I've seen wooden cakes with real candles provided by school for the birthday child, some parents send in sweets to share with the whole class, some people do nothing. I would go with the bare minimum really, it's not expected at all, and can get out of hand with competition between parents spoiling what some would think generous etc.
Can't help with the hot stuff but for cool.. Anywhere that does back to school stuff -supermarkets, Lakeland, Smiths - will have insulated bags and boxes in various sizes at this time of year. Choose something the right size that she will find easy to open. Then you need an ice pack of some description. The floppy ones are flexible but I find that they don't stay cold long and can leak. I found some slim solid ones in Sainsbury's last week which I hope will be better. It also had a tip on the back saying cold goes down so put it on top of the food. Thirteen years of doing packed lunches and I didn't know that! (Apologies if you do.)
Could you ask the school for an exemption re steel bottle? Simple thing to do if they are already aware of her needs.
The Sistema stuff really is good. I really like these Aladdin water bottles which are BPA free, both ds and I use them. There are several designs. Neoprene lunch bags (this is just one example) are much better than anything else I've used, they wash better and dry quicker than ordinary lunch bags.
Check school are ok with her having a flask, for the food to be hot enough to be safe might make it present a risk of burning.
You can freeze yoghurt tubes and pouches which will keep them fresh until lunchtime without needing a cool pack
The favourite birthday treat here is a bag of mini Haribo packets, it's quite a nice thing for children to hand them out and good social skills practice
We have a food flask made by berghaus, I take allsorts to work for lunch and it stays hot until I eat it. Will your Dd eat out of a flask do you think or will she need someone to put the food into a bowl?
Just a thought
Agree about freezing yoghurts and also about Sistema.
Dd3 used to have Asda Grape and Peach squash in hers as it goes clear when it is made up but she will drink water now so its not an issue.
Will your Dd need reminding to drink too? Mine does and gets really low/ill/bad tempered when she is dehydrated. Getting someone to remind her to drink has been a nightmare all through primary