Although I admit I can handle a lot of responsibilities at a time (full-time professor, full-time Mom, blogger, friend, volunteer, etc.), sometimes I feel as though I am always expected to be doing “more.” More vacuuming, more food preparation, more stylish clothing options… I look at certain parents in my friend/acquaintance circle and marvel at how in the world they manage to get it all done – and still have time for a massage, cut-and-color, or shopping trip.
I am noticing a disturbing trend among today’s parents (particularly moms). We compete with each other to appear the most put together, the most inventive, the most effective parent – while having a full-time job and household to upkeep. Why compete? Why not help each other?
I can be crafty, spend quality time with my kids, do the laundry, and conduct research studies – but I am putting my foot down regarding one trend that has overrun my parenting magazines and Pinterest feed…
I refuse to EVER make my sons a (fancy) bento box lunch.
What a waste of my time. Seriously – if being a good mom means that I spend countless hours molding rice into the shape of a penguin…
Or creating a winter scene out of vegetables with carefully-wrapped sandwiches, tied in seaweed…
…then I guess I am not going to be a great mom.
Historically, it seems as though bento box lunches contained healthy lunch options for adults and kids alike. Fancy bento box lunches, like the ones I highlighted above, were reserved for special occasions and entertaining. Leave it to the American Super Mom to make the special occasion bento box an everyday meal.
I REFUSE to spend hours molding my children’s food into ridiculously intricate shapes so that some person somewhere thinks I love my kid enough to spend the time to lovingly create adorable school lunches. I’d rather spend the time actually playing with my kids, not hunched over the kitchen counter, worrying about whether my cucumber slices resemble a pirate ship. The bento box phenomenon is NOT happening in my house. If you want to think I am a mediocre parent because I won’t create edible works of art that my child will poop out a few hours later, that’s on you. I won’t judge you if you do like to create beautiful lunches for your child – I admire that … But right now, I’m too busy, and I am sick of freaking out as to whether the lunches I make for the kids are worthy of a blog post.
Look for my kids in the lunchroom. They’ll be the ones with square cheese sandwiches and apple slices…with a loving note from Mom.