Jun 11, 2007

message in a bag.

I have rarely written notes to my kids in their lunch bags. But I love the idea, and the opportunity to send a midday message to your child.

The message I send is a different kind of message, one that is not hand-written on a little piece of paper, but is loving and deliberate nonetheless.

It is the message I send my children via the contents of their brown bag.

My children carry crumpled brown bags---with names handwritten on the side---in their packs with them every single day. To me, that represents a daily care package from home. And just as each individual brown bag is important in and of itself, so to is the cumulative effect of 'brown bags sent from home.'

What message am I sending, day in and day out, via each humble little brown bag? Is food interesting, boring, prescribed, varied, healthy or not? What food choices are they given? What are they learning about food? Do they enjoy their brown bag lunches? Look forward to them? Do they find the brown bag experience one for exploration, opinion and interest?

If everything is the same every day: I deliver them boredom. If they know fruits and vegetables are important to health: then they have learned something. If I put in a new fruit or granola bar: they learn to try new things. If I try to keep things changing, different, varied and novel: hopefully, they learn that change is okay. If I make them eat everything: food may seem like a power play. If I let them just try things, and choose not to like or eat some: then they are empowered to explore their palates. I could go on... but that is enough for today!

Here is a message I aim to deliver to my brown bag eaters: food is interesting, it can be fun to try new flavors---you won't like them all, but you will love some. The food you eat should be varied and balanced, it may be colorful, you can develop your palate by forming opinions about different foods, the more you learn about nutrition, the better equipped you are to make choices. Food is an adventure and brown bags are just the beginning. Food doesn't have to be boring, or bad. It can be exciting and good!

2 comments:

Kristen said...

Food is love...and what love goes into their daily lunches! You are a great mom.

janelle said...

you are too kind. being a mom is so humbling!

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