I, for one, am so thankful that God wants us to be Creative (doing something in a new way). After all, we were created by a creative God: God saw all He had made, and behold, it was very good (Genesis 1:31).
There are so many ways we can encourage creativity in our children – helping them to “think outside the box,” encouraging imaginative play, reading to them, doing crafts, exploring outdoors – all activities that help grow creativity. My goal is to do something creative with my kids everyday!
But what is something that we do everyday – and can become a boring event (for mom) or even a contentious event (for the kids)? We eat. Sometimes it seems my days just revolve around meals – planning them, making them, trying to get the kids to eat them. If I don’t get a bit creative with planning my dinners, I get bored cooking the same thing over and over again. And if I get bored making things, wouldn’t others get bored eating the same thing over and over again, too?
We have not gotten too creative with food in the past, though, due to the food allergies in our house. We’ve stuck to the same ol’ stuff for a while; it was revolutionary to us when we discovered a soynut butter that Elias could eat (we are an official peanut-free zone around here!). The novelty of just being able to eat soynut butter and jelly sandwiches is wearing off, so to make them fun again, I made sandwich sushi rolls!
They looked a lot like these from Living Locurto, but with soynut butter and jelly instead of turkey, cheese, and cucumber (of course I didn’t get pictures of ours). But doesn’t that look like a good combo, too? And look at this beautiful bento box full of sandwich sushi…
Gorgeous, no? It’s almost too pretty to eat! To make a sandwich into sushi, roll your bread flat (with a rolling pin or even a drinking glass) before you put any of the fillings on it. Spread one piece of bread with your nut-butter-of-choice and jelly, then roll the one piece of bread up tightly and cut into small rolls as in the pictures above! Do the same for the rest of your bread and fillings… if you want to add things like sticks of cucumber, carrots, or cheese, lay the sticks at one end of your flattened bread and roll everything up around them.
I’m starting to do Fun Food Fridays with the boys – something they can look forward to, something I can get creative with, and something we all will enjoy. Friday we did Bugs on a Log – simple yet creative, healthy, and delicious! This was one of the things I lamented that Elias would never be able to eat when we discovered his peanut allergy… but thanks to our soynut butter find, he can now!
They were a hit! And very messy…
Here are some more Fun Food ideas:
- Our Amanda’s Fruity Shortcakes that she created on her very own! Way to get creative with the Rice Krispies!
- Look at FamilyFun’s Making Food Fun Gallery – how cool is that pizza caterpillar and the stripey stacked fruits?!?
- Foodie Jr’s Pasta Birds Nests – yum!
- FoodieMama has a healthy recipe for Mini Meatballs – what kid doesn’t like mini food?
- Kabobs and make-your-own pizzas are great for kids, too… and see what else we’ve posted in the past about fun food… Resurrection Rolls, Maple Syrup Snow Candy, Rainbow Toast, Monkey Treats, Banana Berry Smoothies, Dried Fruit, and Parenting Lessons in Cooking.
How are some ways you and your kids get creative with food? How do you encourage creativity in your kids’ lives in general?
For more of our Christian Character Trait series, take a look at these posts!