(This does not include cooking and baking supplies)
So, admittedly, I am a bit crazy. In my defense, most of these boxes were less than $2 each from Ichibankan before they closed their online store. Now, you could probably find similar ones, at slightly higher prices, by searching for Bento on ebay.
Because isn't that the way it always goes.
So, I began searching for additional containers. That's when the madness set in....
First, I found these at the grocery store. Simple, sweet... but kind of small and boring. And you can't fit two in a standard lunchbox (we have one from Land's End). So, they were great for snacks, but not so great for lunch.
I got these square containers (great for snacks! They fit into the top pouch of the lunch box, and since my daughter is young, she gets a morning snack). They are about 4"x4". Perfect.
I am so in love with this size that I am always on the lookout for more, even though I obviously don't need more. I mean, I have one kid in school. My other kid is 3, and he doesn't go to pre-school. (By the way, it's REALLY hard to find non-Pokemon etc boyish boxes... always on the lookout for those, for when he goes to school... but I digress).
Another thing that's really handy are little tiny sauce containers. They are perfect for ranch dressing or ketchup or nutella or hummus or all sorts of little dips. I found these at Ichibankan, but I've seen them on ebay. I love them, and I really think they are necessary. Maybe not as many as I have, but a couple at least... They are really small, about an inch and a half across at the most. And yes, there is a little penguin in back there. Don't buy it. It's cute, but the latch broke after the first use and I can only use in for very secure things now. I would toss it, but I'm afraid my daughter would stage a revolt.
I have an unabashed love affair with cookie cutters of all sizes, and these little mini sets are just lovely. I can use them to make shapes in the wax around a Babybell cheese, or to cut out pieces of ham or thinly sliced carrot. The possibilities are endless. (And I have a whole lot more where these came from). Those little mini cookie cutters you see at the store might not be great for making actual cookies, but for decoration, they are fantastic.
Now, here's where I get a little fancy (and even more crazy). Hard boiled egg molds. So super cute. My daughter loves hard boiled eggs. With these little babies, you hard boil an egg, peel it while still hot, slap it into the mold, close it, and put it in the fridge or in ice water. I put them in the fridge overnight. Before you put them in the lunch, just pop them out and voila - shaped egg. They really work. I was skeptical at first. I usually use an egg slicer to cut them in slices, but not always. The heart and star don't work as well as the others. I think you need a bigger egg. They're a different brand or something. You could go super crazy and color the eggs with food coloring or even draw on them with those food markers. I don't usually go that far. I have my limits.
And how do I store it all? Tetris-like in a big giant bin. I can't get any more, you see. Nothing else would fit.