Tag Archives: recycle

Tips for Packing an Eco-Friendly Lunch


With school starting back up, what better a time than now to talk about tips for packing an eco-friendly lunch? Packing an eco-friendly lunch reduces massive amounts of waste, and saves you money at the same time! There are so many great products out there that will keep you from heading to the store to buy more plastic baggies…

By the way, have you ever thought about how many plastic baggies you use in a week? What about a year? How much money are you spending on them? If you do the calculations you will be absolutely shocked at the money you are wasting on those things. Plus, it takes them hundreds of years to decompose. It’s a really sad, sad thing! The chart below is calculated for a one adult, and two child household. It’s really unbelievable the amount of waste we are creating, and most people don’t really think about it most of the time.

Pack an Eco-Friendly Lunch

Because of this, I’ve compiled a list of eco-friendly packed lunch products that will help your family reduce the large amount of waste that generally results from packing lunches on a regular basis. Some of them are affiliate links, so I will receive a small percentage with no additional cost to you, but all of these products are great and very earth friendly!

Tips for Packing an Eco-Friendly Lunch

  • Ditch the baggies and plastic wrap! Purchase reusable containers and baggies.
  • Find a great safe lunch box similar to some of the ones listed below. Reusing a lunch box is much more eco-friendly than using paper bags.
  • Don’t purchase individually packaged food and snacks. That will save you a ton of money and reduce waste, plus in general foods that are not packaged individually have less added ingredients (example: pre-cut and pre-packaged apples).
  • Try using cloth napkins rather than paper napkins or wipes.
  • Avoid buying plastic silverware. Just pack normal stainless steel silverware and wash it when it’s brought home.

 Great Eco-Friendly Lunch Products

Although it’s not completely necessary to purchase any of the products below, I really enjoy the many compartments that they have. It’s particularly great for packing a variety of different foods in one simple container for kids, since normally they love variety and finger foods!

Eco Lunchbox

Eco-Friendly lunch box choices


Planetbox

Pack an Eco-Friendly Lunch

Yumbox

Eco-Friendly Lunch box choices

Dabbawalla Lunchbags

Pack an Eco-Friendly Lunch Tips

Make Your Own Sandwich Bags

Reusable Sandwich Bags- Eco-Friendly Lunch Packing Tips

Reusable Food Wraps

Waste-Free Eco-Friendly Lunch

BleuRoo Sandwich Bags

Eco-Friendly Packed Lunch No Wast Lunch Bleuroo

I hope that this post has motivated you to think about how much waste is being created by packing lunch every day with disposable items. By tweaking your normal lunch-packing routine, you can reduce your yearly waste by hundreds of pounds!

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Ways To Reuse Your Melissa And Doug Trays

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Our kids got a lot of Melissa and Doug gifts this year for Christmas. I have always loved the company, and I also really like the way they package their products. Many of the smaller toys (magnets, play food, etc.) come in these cute little shallow wooden boxes or trays.

I have always kept them, thinking I could find uses for them in some way or another. Well, yesterday I was cleaning the sea of toys we call the playroom, and realized I have a ton of those little boxes and we’re doing nothing with them. So, instead of tossing them in the trash, I brainstormed and compiled a short list of ideas!

To be honest, I feel silly because the list of things I can make the trays into are things I have wanted to do with my kids for a while! Yay!

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 1. “Tinker Trays”– You can set up all sorts of small pieces and items that kids can work with. They love sorting, organizing, and even creating patterns and art work. Meri Cherry has a lovely post about her “Tinker Trays” if you are interested in exploring this idea.

My oldest also loves to sort and collect pieces of “nature,” as he calls them. He collects lots of stones, acorns, leaves, etc. This is a great way to help them explore nature and understand what parts of nature are alike and different. You can encourage children to separate things by color, texture, shape, or just stand back and watch their little minds work.

This type of tray really gives the children to be creative and do what they want with it. It is definitely my favorite way to use old Melissa and Doug trays!

2. Sand Tray– This is something that works really well when teaching younger children to recognize and write the alphabet or sight words. You don’t have to use sand though, sugar or salt work just as well! I usually stick with salt, because I’m pretty sure my kids would figure out it was sugar and they would be licking it off the table in no time 😉

3. Drawer Organizer– Give one of the trays a little makeover and stick it in your junk drawer! You could also add some soft decorative fabric to create a nice spot to keep your jewelry.

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Save Money: Make Reusable Snack Bags!

I had a little fun this week after discovering this great reusable snack bag tutorial from Cotton Bottom Mama! This lovely woman has based her website around motherhood and finding ways to become more green and holistic. When I found her page, I knew it was just up my alley!

The tutorial was so simple, that I decided to give it a try (even though sewing is NOT a talent of mine). I was able to make reusable snack bags quickly, and easily….

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I followed the tutorial on Cotton Bottom Mama’s website, but I did choose to use a waterproof fabric for the inside rather than cotton. I also used the serger sewing machine that I use to make my reusable cloth baby wipes and paper towels. A serger is not something that is necessary to make these bags though, so check out the tutorial and give it a try!

**UPDATE**

I have washed and used these snack bags many times and they have held up GREAT! Even without a zip or velcro closure, they keep food fresh and it doesn’t spill out. I’ve made several more since this tutorial and my kids love all of the different patterns and prints.

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DIY Recycled Window Picture Frame

I just wanted to share this great picture frame idea with everyone! My fiancé used to be a firefighter, and he found a bunch of old windows in a barn that they were preparing to burn down. They just sat in our shed for a year until we made an awesome picture frame out of one. I am so happy with how it turned out, and it was completely free! Although we did not have to purchase ours, they are pretty easy to find in local antique stores, garage sales, and scrap yards.  Just keep looking and something will turn up!

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Ours had all of the glass still intact, but if you find one that doesn’t have glass, you can always add chicken wire behind it or some sort of decorative paper with smaller pictures.

I love this one from Hollie Day:

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The possibilities are truly endless, and I just love thinking about how that window was in someone’s home for so many years. Think about all of the moments it witnessed… all of the Holidays, laughs, and special times in a home that was probably someone’s pride and joy so long ago. Window panes are definitely much more special than a store-bought frame.

I hope you enjoyed the post and you are now inspired to make a one-of-a-kind frame and conversation piece to put in your home!