food · slice of life

O.O.O. for the Planetbox #SOL21

I have an order of operations (aka: O.O.O.) that I believe my kids should use when they eats their lunch at home:

  1. Eat sandwich. Drink juice.
  2. Eat vegetables. Drink juice.
  3. Eat fruit. Finish juice.
  4. Eat dessert (when applicable).

Here’s how Isabelle eats lunch at home:

  1. Gobble up the fruit.
  2. Devour the vegetables.
  3. Nibble at the sandwich s-l-o-w-l-y.
  4. Spend an eternity drinking juice.

Isabelle (and Ari!) has no interest in my order of operations. And that’s fine. Really it is. Though I find it excrutiating to watch her save all of her juice for the end of the meal.

This morning, Isabelle had a medical appointment. Knowing it would end around the time of her class’s lunch, I packed her Planetbox (Yes, the thing I haven’t packed in months due to her doing school remotely!) with a lunch she could eat in the car. Sometime between the doctor’s office and the entrance to the highway, I hit a red light. That’s when I noticed she was eating blueberries and raspberries first. Typical.

At one point, I was checking the right lane before moving into the next lane on the highway. I noticed something strange in her Planetbox. Though I only saw the box for a split second, I noticed her sandwich was still there and she had eaten nearly everything including half of the M&M’s, which were her dessert.

“What’s going on back there?” I asked.

“What do you mean?” she said innocently.

“How come you’re eating your M&M’s before your sandwich? Dessert is supposed to be eaten last.”

I could feel Isabelle roll her eyes at me. “Because I want to,” she replied. Then I heard the suble crunch of an M&M’s shell beneath her teeth.

“Just be sure to eat your sandwich, okay? We’re going to be home soon.”

“I know,” she replied.

We came to a stop about ten minutes later. That’s when I turned around and found this:

In the end, she ate and drank everything.

I laughed.

“What’s so funny?” she demanded.

“You. You make me smile. I know you’re going to eat your lunch, but I’m perplexed that you have a piece of sandwich and an entire juice box left to drink.”

Isabelle shrugged her shoulders and took another bite of sandwich. That’s when I remembered Isabelle’s at-home order for eating lunch. It seems she has a preferred way of eating lunch outside of the house and there’s nothing I can do to change it so I might as well stop trying!

Head over to Two Writing Teachers for more slice of life stories.

20 thoughts on “O.O.O. for the Planetbox #SOL21

  1. I love how you captured such a seemingly ordinary routine in such precious detail that showcases your daughter’s personality! I appreciate how you acknowledge her approach as not something worse than how you would do it, but just different. Beautiful!

  2. Hahaha, I was already chuckling (and commiserating with) this great typical-kid story and then your annotated image just kicked it up a notch and made me laugh out loud! (This is why I only give M her main dish first at lunch – she has to eat it before she gets any fruit, veggies, etc! I’m sure she would do the exact same thing if given a full lunch out of my sight… kinda worried about her eating lunch at school next year, lol!)

  3. I’m not sure what amused me more- hat you have an order of operation or that she has her own thoughts about order. I was always just glad if they ate at all. Keep writing about lunch!

  4. Oh my – I was already giggling at your order of operations for eating lunches, but I nearly laughed out loud when you got to the diagram. *Of course* Isabella has her own order of operations: she is 100% your child. 🙂

  5. Oh my GAWD. . . .I hate to be the forecaster of doom but those teenage years will shred every ounce of control you thought you possessed. The beauty of letting go is letting go. That was deep! And standing back in awe. The rearview mirror is golden, too

  6. This brings back memories of my own childhood eating habits and is making me focus on my current ones, such as eating the salad last and drinking my water once I finish the meal. I guess I get Isabelle’s nonconformity. She might start eating ice cream for breakfast when you’re not looking. Love that graphic, too.

  7. Growing up it was always “savoury before dessert”, it was always “eat your plate empty”. I think it is kind of you allowing Isabelle to be flexible with the order she eats things. She builds her own healthy relationship with food.

  8. Haha- I never thought of an order. I did not grow up with dessert, nor did my kids, as a usual part of a meal- it was (when it happened a separate thing). I definitely alternate eating and drinking (but never insisted on this with my kids) and our usual drink was water, not juice. I loved your order and your annotated drawing- she is your child and has her own style:)

  9. Isabelle is very sure of herself – she has a preferred way to eat and drink when it comes to meals. I get it. Sometimes, I want a pear or an apple before soup or a sandwich for lunch. The drawing with a caption was a cool thing to add to your piece. Again, you amaze me that you thought to pack the lunch so Isabelle could eat it on the way home. You are super-organized, Stacey! I love the way you include fruits and veggies with meals. I love raspberries – my favorite! The car story was great – love the way you notice things as you stop for a light or check a lane. It was seamless and smooth!

  10. So funny, I can’t see OOO and not think “Out of office”. I feel like this post has a lot of deeper meaning behind it – I often try to control things that are really not necessary to control (for example, I am a firm believer that the dishwasher should be run at night and unloaded in the morning and just cannot see another side to the situation despite what my boyfriend tries to tell me). Sometimes we’ve just gotta let it go… especially when the thing at hand is still going to get done.

  11. I definitely have an order. If my meal has fries or onion rings I’ll start with those and then begin the main course. Dessert is always last. When I’m on lunch duty I tend to watch my kids and see what their order is. 99% of the time they will start with their milk/juice and then begin chowing down on the main part of their meal. Very few ever begin with the sides.

  12. This is such a fun every part of every day life. I definitely have an order and it is not at all the same order my husband has. I notice it every time and it drives me a little nuts. I giggled at how this moment seemed to do the same to you.

  13. At least she is eating her lunch and not fussing and I think you are very fortunate in that respect! I have a grandson who only eats ‘beige’ food and another who won’t touch fruit, so you are very blessed! I has obviously found the order that suits her preferences and definitely sticks to it!

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