Here's a few tips that have made it manageable for my kids to pack their own lunches:
1. Pack lunches right when you get home. Don't wait until 10 minutes before bedtime or in the morning before school when time is short and patience is shorter.
2. Put all the refrigerated snacks and drinks in a container in the fridge. The container keeps it all together so no hunting through all the shelves. It's easy to pull out the container and see everything that's there.
3. Divide all the fruit into baggies and put the whole fruits in a large container in the drawer. Again, it's all in one spot and ready to grab.
4. Divide all the chips into baggies and put them into a large basket in the pantry. This is a time saver and a money saver. I bought 3 bag of chips for $5 and made 20 baggies of chips. It costs $6.49 for 24 bags of prepackaged chips. And I guarantee my baggies of chips had twice as many chips in them.
5. Take all the snacks and crackers out of the boxes and stack them neatly in a basket. It provides easy access and makes for an organized pantry.
Our new lunch packing system has been working like a charm for about a month now. The kids have not complained once about packing their own lunches (go, figure!). I've also noticed that I'm saving money, because all the snacks are eaten before I replenish them. I'm able to look in those 4 key spots and see right away what I have and what I need.
I spend about 30 minutes a week putting everything in baggies and taking them out of the boxes. The kids spend about 5 minutes making a sandwich and throwing snacks into their lunch boxes. Holly is my soup eater, so if she wants soup, I heat it up in the morning for her and put it in the thermos. That's my only lunch responsibility left and I'm lovin' it!
Blessings to you,