back on my ish

by - 15:07

Let's try this one more time, ok? Now that summer is nearing its end and school is back in session, maybe I can be proactive and revive this thing yet again. The past few years have all felt like a blur and now that both kids are in school, it feels like there will be parts of my life (*cough*this blog*cough) that may return to what it used to be. Or maybe it'll be slightly different because things and people and life changes things. In any case, here I am trying to make sense of it all.

We just wrapped up the first week of the school year with lots of smiles. Akira turned 4 (!) on the first day of school this past Monday and that was both incredible and devastating all the same. When did my not-so-tiny baby get big enough to be in school with his now 2nd grade (!!) sister? It's hard to believe that on one hand, I've reached the finish line for staying at home with them. On the other, a new normal is just beginning--one that involves huge chunks of my day without either of them trying to vie for my attention, without having to go on grocery runs with at least one of them in tow, without having to play referee as soon as they see each other in the afternoon. I'm now learning to navigate the hours without them, both a thrilling and slightly melancholy feeling, if I'm being honest. Someone I know recently mentioned to me that I've gone full speed for the past seven years and that I ought to take some time for myself. Jesse even said that I shouldn't try to rush into anything if I didn't want and to simply enjoy the stillness in being alone without having to worry about the kids at every waking hour. While I reluctantly agree, it is definitely a readjustment period for me, too. There's the societal pressure and expectation that I would return to work since my "work" is no longer at home with me. I know that no one means harm by asking what my next move will be, but I'd be lying if I didn't say that it gives me anxiety. For now, I'd like to breathe and be the kind of mom who makes bento lunches for her kids and just enjoys it, mmmkay?

Speaking of bento lunches, I've been asked about them recently and am happy to share what I did and what kinds of bento boxes I use. I found the bento boxes at Super H-Mart in town and at Target. They're nothing fancy, and although I can't vouch for them, I've heard good things about brands like PlanetBox and Bentgo. As for the ones I use for my kids, they're pretty basic (read: inexpensive) but I haven't had any issues with spillage or leaks. They're narrower but stackable and if you don't have a Super H-Mart nearby, Amazon has really similar bentos available!

Now, for the food. For the first time, I actually set aside time on the Sunday before the first day of school to prep all the food for the week. I love Just One Cookbook and all of her recipes so I was delighted to find that she had a video in this blog post to guide me through 3-days' worth of bento lunches for the kids. On the non-bento days, she makes them sandwiches, but I just sent them to school with leftovers. Also, something to note about bento lunches is that the food is made to be able to be eaten at room temp, so no reheating involved! The meals included karaage (Japanese fried chicken), chicken soboro (ground chicken with rice), and onigirazu (Japanese rice 'sandwich'). Then there are the sides like a grated carrot salad and a Korean sesame spinach salad. All of these foods compliment each other nicely and are really palatable, especially for kids. Plus, it looks pretty and when food looks pretty, kids are more likely to try it, right? Right?!
I'm looking forward to coming up with my own lunch combinations for them and seeing what works and what doesn't. This could be a huge win or could be a glorious disaster. Either way, it's worth trying out, especially since I've got the time to do it. Would you try it? What kinds of bento lunches would you want your kids to have? Happy weekend! Maybe you'll try this over the weekend! ;-)

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1 comments

  1. Yay! I'm excited to see what the future holds! Can we have a please have a bento lesson at my house? :)

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