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  1. #1
    Marie
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    Hi all.

    After just writing a check for $80.00 for my two kids' last few weeks

    of school lunches (possibly a few breakfasts too) (and we get them

    reduced due to my income)



    I've set out to find out once and for all which is cheaper.....



    Does anyone have any tried and true results, trials, errors regarding

    this topic?



    School lunches are more convenient to deal with, no doubt, HOWEVER I

    don't always agree with the offerings/choices....








  2. #2
    herberkids3
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    We get reduced lunches for the kids, too- $.40 for lunch, $.30 for

    breakfast. We allow them to pick a few meals each month that they want,

    and we send in money for that. Each kid gets a $20 balance at the start

    of the school year for buying school lunches.





    Past that, our oldest daughter's chores include making lunches in the

    evening for her and her brother for school the next day. I don't

    honestly know that it's cheaper, but we don't get fancy on the lunches.



    I don't buy pre-packaged snacks, but will do juice boxes (I stock up

    when they are on sale). For snacks, I get baggies, and small

    rubbermaid "take along" contianers (4/$1 at Walmart). I will fill those

    with make-it-yourself jello or pudding, applesauce, cottage cheese,

    yogurt, fruit, etc. Anything that the stores sell in "snack packs" can

    be made at home for half the cost or even less.



    I let them pick 1 healthy snack, and 1 not-so-healthy snack- like

    potato chips (again, non pre-packs), or even cereal to munch on. I've

    also sent cereal as the main meal before. I have bottles on hand that

    you can fill with the liquid. I simply add in a lot of milk, send the

    cereal in a rubbermaid container with a lid, and a spoon. They add the

    milk when they get to school, drink the extra milk in place of a juice

    box, and eat the cereal. Then, they slap the lid back on the bowl

    (after dumping left overs), and bring it home- mess free.



    I don't know that it is cheaper, though, because either way, I'm paying

    for the meal. If we pack it, it comes out of the groceries, which means

    I have to buy more groceries. A loaf of bread is $.97 at Walmart.

    Peanut Butter is like $2.00, jelly is about $1.50. With 2 loaves of

    bread, and a jar each of PB&J, I can make up 2 weeks worth of lunches

    for 2 kids. That alone is almost $5.50. Juice boxes not on sale cost

    $1.75 for a 10 pack, so 2 of those for 2 weeks puts my costs up to

    $8.94.



    Now, add in the price of the snacks- yogurt is $2.50 for a large tub,

    cottage cheese is $2, a bag of chips is $2, a jar of applesauce is $1,

    a box of pudding is $.50, a box of jello is $.29. Between all of that,

    it's enough for 2 weeks worth of lunches at a total cost of $17.23. Add

    in a box of lunch baggies at $1, and it's $18.23 to feed the kids lunch

    for two weeks.



    Divide that by 2 kids, then further divide that by 10 days, and it

    comes out to $.86 per day. So, ultimatly, for us, I guess it's double

    the price to feed them ourselves.



    Of course, I stock up on sale items, and get it lower than that when I

    can, so it's not always going to be that price. I can also lower my

    costs by eliminating the higher priced snacks, and going with more

    stuff like applesauce & jello, meaning I'd be buying 2-3 jars/packs of

    each for 2 weeks.



    YOu could also further lower it by utilizing left overs, if the kids

    will eat it, and if they can warm it up.



    Another thing to think about, though, is the conveinence. If you're

    flat broke, but have lunch makings in the house, then make the lunch

    instead of sending in money.



    Now, my system works in theory- the $20 ahead of time, and the choice

    to pick when they can have hot lunch. But I'll also point out this- my

    kids tend to "forget" their packed lunch quite often, and my son (who

    has adhd, and because of medication -has- to eat or he'll get sick)

    tends to run late in the morning, and need to eat breakfast at school.

    So, in the end, we almost always have a negative balance at the end of

    the school year.



    Maybe you could institute a day of the week rule- 2 days a week, they

    pack a lunch, 3 days they get hot lunch, or vice versa. Or, maybe they

    each get to have hot lunch 1 day a week, and pack it the rest of the

    week.



    Good luck!



    --- In Budget101_@yahoogroups.com, "Marie" <mariepollard@...> wrote:

    >

    > Hi all.

    > After just writing a check for $80.00 for my two kids' last few weeks

    > of school lunches (possibly a few breakfasts too) (and we get them

    > reduced due to my income)

    >

    > I've set out to find out once and for all which is cheaper.....

    >

    > Does anyone have any tried and true results, trials, errors regarding

    > this topic?

    >

    > School lunches are more convenient to deal with, no doubt, HOWEVER I

    > don't always agree with the offerings/choices....

    >










  3. #3
    Carol McNally
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches




    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">We don’t qualify for reduced lunch and
    at $1.50 a day for elementary school lunch I chose to have my <span class="SpellE">dd brown <span class="GramE">bag it. Besides, when I do let her eat at school
    what she chooses (as a 7 <span class="SpellE">yo) are not what I’d
    say “low fat or remotely healthy”. When she buys lunch, she picks pizza,
    chicken nuggets, <span class="GramE">cheeseburger and has found out that
    if you skip the sides you can get an ice-cream…nice huh? And she’s
    always STARVING when she gets home on the days I let her buy her lunch because “you
    have to eat the ice-cream first or it’ll melt so I hardly have time to
    eat my lunch”

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">My guess is that brown bag is cheaper but
    I can’t prove it. I will tell
    you what I pack in my <span class="GramE">daughters lunch and give you the
    prices that I know, maybe others can chime in and let us know what everything
    else costs.

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">1 PB&J sandwich (how many sandwiches
    does a loaf of bread make?) the bread is whole wheat and costs around $1.50-2.50
    a loaf. I have no idea how many
    sandwiches a jar of PB makes or how many sandwiches you get out of a jar of jelly
    but they are both relatively cheap.

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">1 fruit bowl. A 4 <span class="SpellE">pk costs $1.50
    or .38 cents each

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">1 juice box I get 8 of them for about $2.00
    so that’s .25cents each.

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">That’s it. She gets 20 minutes to eat and that’s
    all she can eat in 20 minutes.

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">You could go cheaper and make your own
    fruit cups and juice the <span class="SpellE">premade items are convenient.

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">HTH

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">Carol

    12.0pt;font-family:Arial;color:black;">

    <span id="_AthCaret">



  4. #4
    Don Calkins
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    { Exported from MasterCook Mac }



    Peanut Butter Banana Bread



    Recipe By:

    Serving Size: 24

    Preparation Time: 0:00

    Categories: Breads



    Amount Measure Ingredient Preparation Method

    3 eggs

    1 c peanut butter

    6 bananas

    1/2 c sugar

    2 1/2 c whole wheat flour

    1/2 c soy flour

    4 tsps baking powder

    1/2 tsp baking soda



    Preheat over to 350

    Grease 2 4 1/2 X 8 pans



    Warm peanut butter in microwave for about 20 seconds

    Put eggs, peanut butter, sugar and a couple bananas in blender and puree.

    Add more bananas until the total liquid ingredients equals 4 cups

    Pour into large mixing bowl.



    Sift together dry ingredients.

    Add to banana mixture and mix thoroughly.



    Pour into 2 greased 4 1/2 x 8 pans.



    Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.



    The blacker the bananas, the better. I prefer to wait until the peels are

    all black and beginning to get leathery.

    Instead of part soy flour, you can use all whole wheat or white flour,

    though the nutritional value will be slightly less.





    Quick breads are a great way to start kids and other novices baking.

    Measurements don't have to be exact and the results will be fine. This is a

    very nutricious bread and makes a great after school snack. Two pieces

    lightly toasted makes a better breakfast than a lot of people I know

    typically have.













    Per serving: 165 Calories; 7g Fat (34% calories from fat); 6g Protein; 23g

    Carbohydrate; 27mg Cholesterol; 147mg Sodium

    _____







    --

    He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not.








  5. #5
    Don Calkins
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    There are a number of factors to be considered, most important of which is

    what the attitude of other kids towards someone who brown bags. If they

    will be kidded and ostracized for using them, you're out of luck.



    If brown bagging is acceptable, and often a group evolves who do this, then

    the question is whether it is possible to really save money. The answer is

    a tentative "Yes", but it will take some planning.



    First off, remember that a single serving represents only about 1/2 cup of

    foot. Measure, don't guess. So there are 3-4 servings of fruit

    cocktail/mixed fruit in a standard can.



    Purchase appropriate containers for taking the food to school. As someone

    mentioned, the small plastic insulated containers usually work fine. I used

    them for years taking my lunch to work. To make them really hold things

    cold, let them set in the freezer over-night. In my experience, using the

    larger metal fiber-glass insulated containers really only work on stews and

    the like. This is because I never found any that held much less than a

    pint, which represents 4 servings.



    If you have to buy chips and other snacky type stuff, buy the largest

    package available and repackage it in baggies. For an idea of the

    appropriate amount, compare your baggy to a single serving size package of

    the chips.



    Make as much of their lunch as you can at home the weekend before. It is

    likely to be more nutritious as well as cheaper. E.g., a while back I

    posted a recipe for custard style pudding that is inexpensive, fairly easy,

    and quite nutritious.



    Salad type sandwiches fit the bill, but if the filling is not relatively

    dry, you end up with soggy bread. Egg salad is by far the cheapest. Pack

    the bread and filling separately. Deviled eggs are also cheap and

    nutritious. Contrary to popular myth, they do not increase blood

    cholesterol.



    Home-made banana bread also can fit the bill. I use whole wheat/soy flour

    mix at a ratio of 4 to one. And/or you can substitute peanut butter for the

    oil/shortening in the recipe. I'm sending my recipe separately. I buy bags

    of "over-ripe" bananas locally for 25 cents a pound.



    Don C



    --

    He who believes himself spiritual proves he is not.








  6. #6
    armstrca
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    <DIV dir="ltr" align="left"><SPAN class="753333114-18062007">If you have 1 or 2 kids, the cost is about the same (as buying the stuff to make lunches with). IF you have more, it is much cheaper to go the brown bag route.
    <DIV dir="ltr" align="left"><SPAN class="753333114-18062007">I don't have reduced cost, but have just 1 kid. It is much cheaper to pay for his lunch - for me.







    From: Budget101_@yahoogroups.com [mailto:Budget101_@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Marie
    Sent: Friday, June 15, 2007 10:24 AM
    To: Budget101_@yahoogroups.com
    Subject: Budget101.com : brown bag vs. school lunches<SPAN class="753333114-18062007">
    <SPAN class="753333114-18062007">
    After just writing a check for $80.00 for my two kids' last few weeks of school lunches
    I've set out to find out once and for all which is cheaper.....



  7. #7
    Liss
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    On the school lunches... here is an entire page devoted to delicious

    cheap lunch ideas:



    http://www.budget101.com/BagLunches.htm












  8. #8
    Lois
    Guest

    Default brown bag vs. school lunches

    One thing that happened to my son - he had some dental work done, needed soft food for lunch. He took a container of applesauce. Well - the lid came off in his backpack - and he had applesauce everywhere. So if you are using your own containers - make sure that the lids won't pop off - as the mess isn't worth the little bit saved by not using convenient sized items. Lois

    Don Calkins <montanadon@great-falls.net> wrote: There are a number of
    factors to be considered, most important of which is
    what the attitude of other kids towards someone who brown bags. If they
    will be kidded and ostracized for using them, you're out of luck.

    If brown bagging is acceptable, and often a group evolves who do this, then
    the question is whether it is possible to really save money. The answer is
    a tentative "Yes", but it will take some planning.

    First off, remember that a single serving represents only about 1/2 cup of
    foot. Measure, don't guess. So there are 3-4 servings of fruit
    cocktail/mixed fruit in a standard can.

    Purchase appropriate containers for taking the food to school. As someone
    mentioned, the small plastic insulated containers usually work fine. I used
    them for years taking my lunch to work. To make them really hold things
    cold, let them set in the freezer over-night. In my experience, using the
    larger metal fiber-glass insulated containers really only work on
    stews and
    the like. This is because I never found any that held much less than a
    pint, which represents 4 servings.

    If you have to buy chips and other snacky type stuff, buy the largest
    package available and repackage it in baggies. For an idea of the
    appropriate amount, compare your baggy to a single serving size package of
    the chips.

    Make as much of their lunch as you can at home the weekend before. It is
    likely to be more nutritious as well as cheaper. E.g., a while back I
    posted a recipe for custard style pudding that is inexpensive, fairly easy,
    and quite nutritious.

    Salad type sandwiches fit the bill, but if the filling is not relatively
    dry, you end up with soggy bread. Egg salad is by far the cheapest. Pack
    the bread and filling separately. Deviled eggs are also cheap and
    nutritious. Contrary to popular myth, they do not increase blood
    cholesterol.

    Home-made banana bread also can fit the bill. I use
    whole wheat/soy flour
    mix at a ratio of 4 to one. And/or you can substitute peanut butter for the
    oil/shortening in the recipe. I'm sending my recipe separately. I buy bags
    of "over-ripe" bananas locally for 25 cents a pound.

    Don C







    &#32;
    Boardwalk for $500? In 2007? Ha!
    Play Monopoly Here and Now (it's updated for today's economy) at Yahoo! Games.


 

 
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