Default Style Register
Daycare.com Forum
Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Would You Say Something About The Lunch They Pack?
Unregistered 01:32 PM 08-08-2017
Parents need to provide lunches, as I do not provide lunches in my daycare. I have a family that has been packing either a sugary muffin or pb&j on white bread as their main entree for their 24 month old twins since they started with me 7 months ago. For example, their lunch today was a large store-bought muffin, a cereal bar with frosting (16g of sugar), canned pears and chocolate milk. This is a very typical lunch for them.. lots of sugar, no veggies and hardly any protein.

I can also say that they have NEVER had normal poop!! They are always constipated and only poop pellets. I feel so bad for them! They have also been very moody for the last month, which I'm wondering if it has something to do with their diet.

They are a super nice family so I hate to ruffle any feathers by finally saying something. But it just pains me to feed them that! Wwyd?
Reply
happymom 01:42 PM 08-08-2017
I don't think you should say anything.

Perhaps post something on your bulletin board about toddler nutrition and the food groups. If you want to choose what the kids are eating in your care, I suggest you change your rates so that food is included in tuition prices.
Reply
hwichlaz 01:43 PM 08-08-2017
Yep, either provide the food or MYOB.
Reply
finsup 01:49 PM 08-08-2017
I would start a "healthy food" unit and get families invovled. It's late in the season here to do a garden, but maybe in the spring time? Just something that gives them some "suggestions" on good food choices. But other then that, nope. I would hope they would make good food choices but they can really feed them what they want. This is however the reason I switched to providing food. I wanted to know kids were at least eating healthy when they were here.
Reply
KiwiKids 04:25 PM 08-08-2017
I feel that if I ask for packed lunches ( which I switched to recently ) then I can't really comment on what is in them but I have called parents on not sending enough food.
Reply
MarinaVanessa 06:03 PM 08-08-2017
That's one of the reasons why I provide meals myself and don't allow outside food at all (other than if maybe a child has complicated severe allergies or something). This way I control what they eat and can make sure that they have balanced meals.
Reply
Ariana 06:48 PM 08-08-2017
A daycare family was called in for a conference with the school about their lunches. I had seen the lunches as I provided before and after school care for the little girl. Nonfat, aspertame yogurt, chocolate cookies, juice etc. The kids was coming off the bus exhausted every day. Meanwhile mom was a power lifter and training for a bodybuilding competition

I wish I knew what they said at the conference but mom stepped up her game and started giving much healthier lunches. I think it is a GREAT idea to send home something about healthy lunches or post something online about it for all the parents. Talk especially about sugar. I would also seriously consider providing lunches for the kids. This is a main reason I provide lunches. I would also take any opportunity to bring it up. "Johnny is constipated"..."well perhaps more fruit for his lunch might help" that sort of thing.
Reply
catinthebox 11:47 PM 08-08-2017
to piggy off happymom i think you can have a bulletin board including nutrition, if you want change the tuition fee to include food or maybe encourage the kids BY having them eat fruits and them telling the parents that their kids enjoy the fruits.
Reply
LovetheSun 12:52 AM 08-09-2017
Is it affecting their mood? If yes, I would say that we don't allow high sugared treat in the lunch box.

Maybe send a two weeks notice to all the families, but is kind of risky because if you didn't mention anything during enrollment they might feel judged.
Reply
LovetheSun 01:01 AM 08-09-2017
And I wanted to add that is difficult when it comes to food because so many families do not realize you shouldn't feed your children what you would eat yourself! Most grow ups would not have a muffin/frosted cereal bar/chocolate milk and can fruits for lunch

If you do decide to say something, i would send it to all families and say is a change of policy (maybe be specific and mention what is not allowed).
Reply
rosieteddy 07:27 AM 08-09-2017
when I was caring for children and this came up I printed the llist from the food program.You could get the government guidelines of the internet.I sent a notice to all parents reminding them of healthy guidelines.I blamed my licensing .I often gave ideas for healthy choices and a checklist of what was not allowed.You can not control everything but some ideas might be helpful.Just don't signal out anyone .I always felt it was part of my job to teach nutrition .
Reply
Cat Herder 08:05 AM 08-09-2017
I would if I had a concern for the child, but my clients would expect that. I don't cater to parental political defiance on my time. I am a caretaker of small children who trust me.

I am the same caretaker that serves cupcakes and cheetos at parties. I have served fried chicken and waffles with maple syrup, too. All things in moderation. Balanced diets and treats with common sense. Life is short, this is not the hill to die on.

Interesting read:https://schoolnutrition.org/uploaded...erceptions.pdf
Reply
Snowmom 08:26 AM 08-09-2017
Disclaimer: this is not something I do (I provide food), so my opinion is coming from a different experience than those that do require home lunches.

If it is an everyday occurrence and affects the children, then yes, I would address it.

I would come up with a flyer and require all families to initial and return it.
It would have the required food program components, because this is a reasonable requirement to follow.
The flyer would say something like...
Going forward, all children's lunches are required to include:
1. One protein (give examples like meats, hard boiled egg, cheese, etc).
2. One grain, which should be wheat or whole grain (don't make it as complicated as the food program is).
3. One fruit PLUS one vegetable OR two vegetables.
4. unflavored milk

I would include examples or pictures to give ideas, maybe even a handout with recipes or links to follow "100 days of real food" school lunches (since she's so great at putting together ideas).
Reply
Snowmom 08:29 AM 08-09-2017
I wanted to add, I don't think I'd get too picky after that if I saw at least an attempt to add in healthy options.
Reply
ColorfulSunburst 01:38 PM 08-09-2017
you chose not to provide food as a service, so keep your thoughts private in this matter. As mentioned earlier, you can post nutrition informational material on your boards or if you regularly communicate with all parents via email it can be added as an attachment covering the value of food, exercise, and other general information tips and resources for parents. Keep it very general and do not target the offending parent.
Reply
renodeb 05:02 PM 08-09-2017
When I first opened my home daycare I had considered making the parents provide lunches but after hearing stories of kids getting junk food I decided to provide breakfast, lunch, and afternoon snack. For some its the best they eat all day.
I wouldn't say anything, they are providing it so its not under your control really. You could try posting something aimed at the whole group. Truthfully I like providing the foods for this reason.
Reply
Josiegirl 03:18 AM 08-10-2017
I would try to go the education route but I believe most parents have the common sense that carrots and apples are better for their children than potato chips and granola bars. It comes down to convenience and what their child will actually eat. Another thought is you could supply veggie trays with cool dips as an addition to what they bring from home. All of it being a tax write-off if you don't do the food program.
Other than that, I don't know if you can really say much about what parents send in their child's lunches. Sad, I know. I've seen what some parents pack their kids for school. Their feeling is if their child eats *something* it's better than nothing.
Reply
LysesKids 10:33 AM 08-11-2017
Originally Posted by Cat Herder:
I would if I had a concern for the child, but my clients would expect that. I don't cater to parental political defiance on my time. I am a caretaker of small children who trust me.

I am the same caretaker that serves cupcakes and cheetos at parties. I have served fried chicken and waffles with maple syrup, too. All things in moderation. Balanced diets and treats with common sense. Life is short, this is not the hill to die on.

Interesting read:https://schoolnutrition.org/uploaded...erceptions.pdf
I have one set of parents that love the fact I serve chicken & waffles once in a great blue moon... don't forget the side of greens. at My holiday open house i did one bite appetizers last December... I came up with a one biter chicken & waffle that was the bomb (very little syrup with just a touch of heat) lol. Those & the spicy meatballs in a crockpot went fast. I plan on doing the 2 oz soup shooters again too... it was healthy food done a fun way
Reply
Josiegirl 11:06 AM 08-11-2017
Originally Posted by LysesKids:
I have one set of parents that love the fact I serve chicken & waffles once in a great blue moon... don't forget the side of greens. at My holiday open house i did one bite appetizers last December... I came up with a one biter chicken & waffle that was the bomb (very little syrup with just a touch of heat) lol. Those & the spicy meatballs in a crockpot went fast. I plan on doing the 2 oz soup shooters again too... it was healthy food done a fun way
Not to hi-jack this thread but I would love recipes for stuff like this! Sounds like a great way to feed the group at a Halloween or Christmas Party. Would you care to share or add links?
Thanks!
Reply
LysesKids 12:04 PM 08-11-2017
Originally Posted by Josiegirl:
Not to hi-jack this thread but I would love recipes for stuff like this! Sounds like a great way to feed the group at a Halloween or Christmas Party. Would you care to share or add links?
Thanks!
Here's the meatball recipe; One 2 lb bag frozen cocktail meatballs (not the large ones), 12 oz Frank's redhot sweet chili sauce and 1 can ocean spray cranberry sauce (with whole cranberries)... put into a crockpot & cook on high until bubbly then turn down to keep warm after checking meatballs to make sure they thawed & are warmed thru (frozen meatballs are precooked). I'll put the rest of some of what I did in the menus/recipe sections
Reply
Cat Herder 12:18 PM 08-11-2017
Originally Posted by Josiegirl:
Not to hi-jack this thread but I would love recipes for stuff like this! Sounds like a great way to feed the group at a Halloween or Christmas Party. Would you care to share or add links?
Thanks!
I am covered up and only have a couple minutes. Simplify these recipes and you have it. The last one is today's lunch.

https://www.yummly.com/recipe/Southe...-542003?prm-v1

https://www.yummly.com/recipe/Collar...s-42771?prm-v1

https://www.yummly.com/recipe/Shrimp...-512325?prm-v1
Reply
Pestle 01:48 PM 08-11-2017
If I were not currently providing lunch, and didn't want to provide lunch, and wanted the kids to have a healthy lunch, but the kids were already enrolled--

--I'd probably tell the parents that I'm changing my program to include lunch for the next X number of weeks and that, afterward, there will be nutritional guidelines for packed lunches. Sort of a hard reset, where I'm taking over lunch for a season, instead of fighting the parents daily to change their habit.

My daughter was at a Montessori school for three years. You had the option of buying lunch or sending in lunch. If you sent lunch in, you weren't given a list of what was required to be in it--you were given a list of what was not permitted. No-go foods like fruit punch and yogurt with aspartame would be thrown away by the teacher. Nutritionally iffy foods, like fruit juice and cookies, would stay in the lunchbox and would be accessible to the child during the final recess of the day.

Some parents see this kind of thing as policing their freedoms. You know how I see it?

-The school is raising your child for you. It's doing a better job of feeding your child than you are. If you have a problem with that, figure out how to quit working and educate your child yourself.

-Your child is not your property; your child is a human being with dignity and a need to be free from the bad decisions of the people around him/her. The school is part of the local community, a community that should operate like an extended family and act with responsibility toward all of its members.
Reply
Josiegirl 04:05 AM 08-12-2017
Lyseskids and CatHerder, thanks so much!! Saving these ideas for our seasonal dcf get-togethers! It's something different and most of them sound so easy. Win-win!
Reply
Cat Herder 08:16 AM 08-12-2017
Originally Posted by Josiegirl:
Lyseskids and CatHerder, thanks so much!! Saving these ideas for our seasonal dcf get-togethers! It's something different and most of them sound so easy. Win-win!
One more hijack.

The best thing I know for the big seasonal (fall) get togethers is a low country boil. Think stone soup with red potatos, crab, shrimp, sausage and *crawfish (optional).

The kids usually love the shrimp, corn on the cob and andouille sausages (this recipe substitutes kielbasa since it is easier sourced). The adults go for it all. Crowd pleaser and it is cooked and served outdoors. Solo cups, paper plates and paper towels mandatory. Easy clean-up, just roll everything up in the plastic table covers and toss.

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/44033/d...-country-boil/
Attached: 23.jpg (139.9 KB) 
Reply
LysesKids 10:08 AM 08-12-2017
Originally Posted by Cat Herder:
One more hijack.

The best thing I know for the big seasonal (fall) get togethers is a low country boil. Think stone soup with red potatos, crab, shrimp, sausage and *crawfish (optional).

The kids usually love the shrimp, corn on the cob and andouille sausages (this recipe substitutes kielbasa since it is easier sourced). The adults go for it all. Crowd pleaser and it is cooked and served outdoors. Solo cups, paper plates and paper towels mandatory. Easy clean-up, just roll everything up in the plastic table covers and toss.

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/44033/d...-country-boil/
I was thinking the same thing lol. You beat me to it... in fact it's what I am making for tomorrow nights dinner (a few neighbors are coming over). Some people have slightly different names for it, but it is TASTY no matter what
Reply
e.j. 01:03 PM 08-12-2017
Are you licensed or unlicensed? Here, we have to be licensed so we have to go by the state's regulations. If I remember correctly, one of those regs states that even if parents pack snacks and meals for the day, the meals still have to meet FDA requirements. If a parent fails to pack all of the required meal components, the provider has to provide that component. (So let's say at lunch, if a child is given a fruit, veggie and slice of cake, I would have to provide a protein and milk.) It's one of the reasons I belong to a food program and choose to provide all of the kids' meals. If I have to have the food on hand "just in case" anyway, I might as well just provide it. Do you know if you have a similar regulation to follow? If so, you could always let parents know that they need to follow FDA guidelines. I have one family who does provide food for their child because of food allergies. I gave them a food program menu sheet to follow and they've been great about following the guidelines. I've actually added new menu ideas for the other kids in my program based on the snacks and lunches they've sent!
Reply
CityGarden 11:56 AM 08-14-2017
I do not provide lunches, upon enrollment I do have a list of foods we do not allow. I also open all lunches (checking for choking hazards, peanuts, etc.) before giving them to the children. If I see something the child should not have at my program then I don't give it to them (my parents all over pack lunches so I don't feel bad not offering everything).

I love having parents provide lunches and have had very little issues / challenges with it. I also feel it is one of the best business decisions I have made in terms of policies because food tends to be one of if not the largest day-to-day expenses a provider has and snacks only (which I provide) are far less expensive. I also like that I don't have to divide my time being in the kitchen I am able to be 100% present with the dcks.

I have had two incidents with the same mom and they went this way.

DCM: I see dcb has not been eating his hard boiled eggs
ME: We often picnic in the park and all foods need to be ready to serve. I do not have the ability shell the eggs while also watching and assisting all the children at lunch. I ensured he ate his other food while there then offered his egg when we return but dcb did not want it then.
DCM: Oh okay (I know she was not happy and she keeps sending the eggs unpeeled, I just return them at the end of the day..... )

another one.....

DCM: Does DCB not like his graham crackers?
Me: We have lunch right before nap so we do not serve treats at that time. I would be happy to give him the treat just before pick up if you would like.
DCM: No that is okay.
Me: If you change your mind just let me know.

I do not tell them what to send but I do tell them what not to send. I do like them providing lunches and the good far outweigh the bad with this.
Reply
Tags:food from home, lunch issues, packed lunch ideas
Reply Up