The fact that uber-frugal J didn't bat an eyelash when I told him about it, and that I'd like to send H asap means that everyone had begun to notice my mounting frustration with my lack of ability to sufficiently entertain/busy the kiddos; even though I felt like I was running myself ragged from Farmland to Seashore and back again to do so.
After visiting the school and paying the insanely low registration fee of $25, my next stop was at the pediatrician's office to sweet talk the receptionist into giving me written proof, on the spot, that H doesn't have rabies, and won't give them to any of the other kids.
As I went through the packet from the school, I realized that some of H's staples were nixed from the list of foods that could be sent with his lunches, foremost being peanut butter and peanut products. Some of the others surprised me...no raw carrots, even if they're cut up. No grapes that haven't been quartered. Really? He's been eating whole grapes for over two years now.
No popcorn...there goes the snack bag of Smartfood that would be a treat for him. Hmmm...the list was getting shorter. I know! Pretzels! Whenever he sees other kids that have pretzels, he always mooches some...nope, guess that one's a no-no as well according to new federal regulations regarding choking hazard food items in schools.
About to face defeat, I remembered that my friend who has a child with multiple allergies talked about sunbutter (made from sunflower seeds and actually quite tasty), so I put it on my list. Did you know that most grocery stores charge around ten dollars for a jar of sun or almond butter? Thank God for Trader Joe's, where it can be yours for the low, low price of $3.99 (which I snapped up before picking him up today, because why would I plan ahead and buy it before school started?)
So, after I felt like I had all the rules, regulations and expectations down pat, I packed H's lunch last night. As J was drifting off last night, I casually mentioned that I was buying sun butter and he was not to eat it, because it was just for school lunches. "What's sun butter?" was the response. I explained the peanut-free facility concept and his eyes snapped open. I could feel the snide remarks coming...welcome to parenting in the Third Millennium, J.*
*I know, I know...we'd feel a whole lot differently about this if our children weren't hearty German/Swedish kids who don't seem to be negatively affected by any food groups other than too many blueberries (a whole other post).