Monday, June 6, 2011

Tr@$hless Tue$d@y

Trashless Tuesday is something devised by the environmental group at my sons' school. The idea is for all students to bring a completely trashless lunch every Tuesday. I'm all for doing what I can to help the planet but Trashless Tuesday makes for Manic Mental Meltdown Monday Night.

I make school lunches the night before to save myself the time and stress of packing them in the midst of our fairly smooth morning routine. I can not imagine packing a Trashless Tuesday lunch Tuesday morning while trying to get Little Bear up and ready for school and keeping him from hearing some of the choice words that come out of my mouth while trying to get the trashless lunch to fit in the lunch bag.

The typical children's lunch bag is not designed to hold dozens of tupperware containers. It is meant to hold prepackaged apple sauces, granola bars and yogurt containers. The producers of these products have likely done research on how their product should fit in a lunch bag. I don't think Tupperware does the same amount of research.

I do consider the environment when packing my kids' lunches. We use tupperware reusable drink containers in place of milk cartons or juice boxes, sandwich containers in place of sandwich baggies and containers for many fresh fruits, veggies and dips. There is a point however where no more containers will fit in the lunch bag and baggies are necessary in order to get everything in there. There are also those occasions where there just aren't enough clean small containers to complete the lunch packing process.

If the Trashless Tuesday mission is not completed then a very disappointed child has a big "X" placed beside his name on the Trashless Tuesday tracking sheet and I am bound to hear about how Little Johnny doesn't have an Xs on the sheet because his mom is a super duper tupperware packer...or Johnny starves. To avoid these situations I try my darnest to accomplish the task. Sometimes it is necessary to go to great lengths to evade that dread X even if that means emptying a yogurt cup into a container or peeling open a cheese stick just to stick it in its own bulky container which totally voids the purpose of Trashless Tuesday.

This year I only have 1 lunch to make on Tuesdays. Next year I will have 2. If the environmental group decides Trashless Tuesday will be a good way to torture parents...I mean help the planet I think I will have to invest in tackle boxes in place of lunch pails so I don't have to stress about how I'm going to fit all that Tupperware. I guess the silver lining is there are only 4 more Trashless Tuesdays left this school year.