Ride the Wave – the School Lunch Ripple Effect

surfing the netI’ve often thought that the term ‘surfing the internet’ isn’t  totally appropriate –  I live in Los Angeles where the beach is never far away, and often see surfers in the ocean floating and waiting… and waiting… and waiting  for the next wave.  But those who ‘surf’ websites and comment on blogs actually make  their own waves and sometimes cause quite the ripple effect.

Case in point:  a collective dialogue about school lunch is going on right now as a direct result of blogs and websites such as Simple, Good and Tasty, created by Lee Zukor and his partners.

Lee ‘s site is helping parents become aware of ways to get their kids to eat healthier and the importance of families eating together.  In short, the creation of ‘happy meals’ you can’t get at fast food restaurants.  This ‘wave’ may have been popularized by Jamie Oliver and his high-profile TV show, but it’s growing bigger every day thanks to the blogosphere and people like Lee.

A lot of the intelligent discussion on his website comes from guest posts by people like Gabriela Lambert,  a  former lawyer who, after 10 years of practice, decided to stay home with her three kids.  Three kids eat A LOT of lunches in one year – trust me, I know, because I’m also a mother of three.  And all three of Gabriela’s kids (like mine) have different likes and dislikes when it comes to what they find in their lunch box.

As Gabriela points out, packing lunches is more like a “dance” to “balance nutrition and sanity” and “gone is the possibility of an efficient assembly-line sandwich factory like Alice used to do on the Brady Bunch”.  (I secretly wanted to be a member of the Brady Bunch, but I don’t want to digress.)

photo by Mary Quinn McCallum – St. Paul, MN. Her 2nd grader’s lunch

Parents are finding that a great place to start the “dance” is to see first-hand what kinds of lunches are being served at their children’s schools.  Simple, Good and Tasty just completed a contest where parents were challenged to eat a school lunch with their children and take a photo of the event.  (The results of the contest were just announced and we were pleased to donate Easylunchbox Systems as prizes to the top winners.)

Whether you’re curious or skeptical, I invite you to take your own school lunch challenge.  Find out what school lunch time is like at your kids’ school and see what your reaction is.  If you want to make changes but aren’t sure where to start, visit Simple, Good and Tasty – it’s a great place to begin gathering information about how easy it is to change things.   And I don’t mean changing the world – that’ll take a little longer – but changing things one meal at a time. Hope you can ride the wave with us – “Surf’s Up!”