Tuesday March 27, 2012 | 01:53 PM

The girls pack lunches during the week for school and sometimes dinner for their various evening activities. So by the time Saturday comes around, there’s often not much in the way of lunch-making items. But they need a packed lunch because they have all-day Saturday art classes. Actually, I use the time they’re in their art class to do my weekly food shopping.

Recently I’ve fallen in to the trap so many parents do with picking up pre-made food on the go. There are some good healthy choices at grocery stores these days but it is still much cheaper to make your own lunch at home. But my kids really like the store options.

My 14-year-old's favorite go-to food at the grocery store is sushi and she begs for it regularly. For now, I’ve compromised with a once a week purchase due to the expense of the single item.

My 16-year-old has taken a liking to Trader Joe’s Santa Fe Style Chicken Flatbread Wrap. It has grilled chicken, cheese, corn, peppers and black beans. She’s not a big bean fan but mixed in with some meat and cheese, this flatbread wrap is a hit in her book. I like the small nutritional fiber boost the sandwich offers so I believe her choice is a good one.

The problem with these Saturday lunch requests is that I have to stop at two different grocery stores to buy each daughter’s preferred item. You see Trader Joe’s doesn’t have white rice California rolls. My 14-year-old doesn’t care for brown rice and her argument for the compromise is a valid one.

“If I can only get sushi sometimes, I want the kind I really like.”

And the truth is if I’m going to shell out $6.99 for a tray of sushi, I would prefer to not argue about it – or set myself up with my lawyer-like child to debate the merits of a second stop for white rice sushi.

I know how I ended up in this situation yet I started the ‘tradition’ of Saturday eating "out" and continue to indulge the kids with their request. I can’t find a lot of fault with the choices from a health standpoint. It’s not like they’re begging for an order of French fries with a double cheeseburger

So until these Saturday art classes are over (in May!), I’m going to start my Saturday morning lunch pick-up at two different grocery stores. 

 

About the Author

Wendy Almeida has been writing about enjoying the outdoors with kids in her monthly Kid Tracks Outdoors column for the Maine Sunday Telegram for 10 years. Her kids have grown up exploring the trails of Maine on foot, skis and bikes as well as through the geocache and EarthCache games. The family has found treasures of all sorts while out on the trail and the journey continues to be as much fun now that the kids are teenagers as it was when they were preschoolers.

On Twitter and Instagram at @wea1021.

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