From first to eighth grades, we always packed our lunches. I can't tell you how many ham (just ham and mayo) sandwiches and smushed Oatmeal Creme Pies I had during that time. I still am rather opposed to the Oatmeal Creme Pies. They were fairly healthy lunches - sandwich, fruit, Little Debbie dessert, and milk. My mom actually bought the little water bottles and for the first few weeks of school would estimate how much time between packing the lunch and when we ate lunch, how much milk she would freeze at the bottom. We'd report back - Too frozen, too warm - and she'd try again the next day. Soon, each kid had their milk bottle with our frozen milk level marked on with our initials. I hope that make sense, but either way the memory amuses me, and I guess it saved us money. Once a month, we were able to choose a day to get cafeteria lunches. We got monthly lunch schedules and would pick our days accordingly. When we had field trips we had to provide a sack lunch for, we did get to pick out something special, like Lunchables and Hi-C.
Once I got to ninth grade, Dad had a better job and we always got cafeteria lunches. We were given a certain amount each month. If we ran out before the end of the month, it was our own fault and we were left to our own devices.
In all this time, I had no idea what my parents did for lunch, nor did the thought ever cross my mind. I do have a vague memory, however, of thinking that lunch would be different when I was an adult. I'm not sure how I expected it to be different, but it was supposed to be better, more glamorous, or something.
In fact, lunch annoys me. I can't properly cook anything, and leftovers are rarely as good the second (or third or fourth) time(s) around. So, more often than not, I'm back to sandwiches, fruits, and water. (No, I don't freeze milk the night before.) Lunch is the meal I forget about the most, whether that's planning for it or simply eating it. Mom isn't there to stock up on lunch foods for me or to remind that I should pack it the night before, and I definitely don't know what I'm going to be hungry for when I'm trying to eat breakfast and pack lunch at the same time.
It's also no good when I'm running low on food, because I've forgotten to/hadn't had the time to grocery shopping in weeks, and I have to take whatever I can. Bagels from who knows when aren't the most appetizing of entrees.
As much as I love food, lunch is not my favorite meal of the day.
I do think that, providing I do finally go grocery shopping this weekend, I'll pick up a box of Little Debbie Star Crunches. Now those were good.