Day 159: chicken nuggets and the giveaway winners

Today’s menu: chicken nuggets, broccoli, fruit cup, bread and butter

I never thought I’d feel relieved to see chicken nuggets on the tray, but after yesterday’s lunch I felt almost happy.

They didn’t taste half-bad, but I did a double take. I couldn’t remember if before I’d had four and now it was three. Looking back I guess it was three chicken “fingers” before.

I chatted with some students about yesterday’s lunch. One boy told me that he loved the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and that he ate both of them. Another boy (not the same boy who told me he ate all those cookies) told me that some of his friends did not want to eat the sandwiches and so they gave the sandwiches to him. I asked him how many he ended up eating and he said, “Six.” If they are about 300 calories each, then he ate 1,800 calories. Wow.

It snowed!

I used to love bread and butter. I still think of it as a comfort food. It tastes pretty good. But I’m going to go on an elimination diet after the project is over. I want to eat a plain diet for a month and give my body a real break. My body is unhappy and it is making its opinion known to me. I just want to be normal again.


I’m almost done eating school lunch, but I’m going to continue blogging. Topics I’m working on:

1) Breakfast at school
2) Student’s behavior in the cafeteria
3) Product reviews for lunch-related products and educational materials (contact me if you sell a product you would like me to review)
4) Commentary on food products and food advertising (like this summer)
5) What I’m eating instead of school lunch (“soup up my lunch” like this summer)
6) Weird things I witness at school (I have a doozy to share with you…next week)
7) More guest bloggers (if you have been a guest blogger and want to submit a new idea or follow-up post, email me)
8) Blog and Twitter parties
9) And even the occasional school lunch; however, I won’t be eating it, just buying it. But it would have to be an exceptional offering or a new menu item because haven’t y’all seen everything?
10) What do you want me to blog about?

By the way, there is a plan for revealing myself, but I haven’t revealed it 🙂 You’re going to have to be even more patient than you have already been. All I can say is that it’s in the works.


And now for the WINNERS of last week’s Eat Along Challenge

1. Day one prize: The Built NY Lunch sack in red

WINNER: Bebe Meals (Commenter number 5)

WINNER: Organic Family on a Budget (Commenter number 3)

WINNER: Bento for me (Commenter number 3 — I feel like this is a bit of weak title so I’ll send you a surprise bonus!)

5. Day five prize: Chefs $25 giftcard
WINNER: Mindboggling things and musings thereabouts (commenter number 4)

Please email me if you are a winner!

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20 thoughts on “Day 159: chicken nuggets and the giveaway winners

  1. Wow. Only three measly pieces of "chicken", a sugary "fruit" cup, some yellow broccoli, and a slice of bread for lunch. Yup, that's definitely a nutritious meal! *sarcasm*

  2. I would love to read a post regarding a school that has made PE optional and the effects that it is having on the students as seen through a teacher and comments on how the students feel about this. Love hearing the students reactions to the various lunch offerings and I'm also curious how their comments relate to their weight, attention span and overall general health, ie are they sickly, lack focus/attention, are they sluggish, etc.

  3. Mrs. Q, I love it when you share feedback from your students regarding their lunch even when they seem to just be telling you what they think you want to hear.

  4. I am glad to hear that you'll continue blogging –I really enjoy the various conversations. I think you have a great list of topics.

    Amazing how healthy this lunch looks after that pb&j thing. It's all relative, huh?

  5. I love all your planned topics – especially what you'll be eating. I'd also like to continue seeing what your son is eating at daycare. So glad you plan to continue this.

  6. Hi Mrs Q- I work at a hunger-relief organization and found 'Fed Up with Lunch' through a Google Alert I had set (can't now think of what alert it was– hunger, obesity, school lunch– I have several daily alerts). Anyway, I've been reading your blog for the last several months and I have, for the most part, really enjoyed it. I am very passionate about hunger-relief and child nutrition. I know how important school lunches (and breakfasts) are to many children; in a lot of cases, the meal a child eats at school is the only food they might have access to daily. I also realize that most school lunches leave something to be desired from a nutritional standpoint. I will miss your updates on what I assume, not having kids, is an average school lunch.

    With all that being said, I was a bit taken aback by point 9) (above) where you noted that you would be purchasing the 'occasional school lunch; however, I won't be eating it, just buying it'. Frankly, this is a little bit of a let down. After all the time you spent eating school lunches, commenting on the quality of food and the nutritional value of the meals, the question I find myself asking is 'what's the point?'. Are you trying to effect positive change or just showcase school lunch as a sideshow oddity?

    Besides being pointlessly wasteful (buying food with the express purpose of ridiculing it and then throwing it away or feeding it to the dog, as with yesterday’s PB&J), your plan to buy school lunch and not eat it is also painfully childish and makes you come across as an over privileged snob, which I’m sure you’re not (Look at me! I can afford to buy food I will never eat! I will instead point out how disgusting it is and how it’s a shame that this is what some children are forced to depend on for their daily meal! *shrug* Oh well.). You obviously care about what children are eating, but I would ask that you examine your motivation behind buying school lunches without intending to eat them—does that in some way add value to what you’re trying to accomplish? What exactly are you trying to accomplish?

    S Laster
    Houston, Texas

  7. Mrs. Q, I am Gluten ( and Dairy Free) I loved reading on what you packed for your son, you should add that to your list of what to blog about. Also are you still packing those lunches or was that just for the challenge? Once you remove Gluten from your diet I think you will be so much happier? Do you live on Benedryl right now?

  8. I don't know if it would be possible, but I would love to know what kids were bringing in their lunches from home. We're not allowed pop in school, and parents aren't allowed to bring in fast food (even though we have Pizza Hut 2x a month@@), but there are ways around that. I know you obviously could not take pictures or get too specific. I did like when Jamie Oliver walked around the caf. The lunches were just as bad or worse than the school food!

  9. I'd like to know how many school days you have each year. You are almost finished with a year of lunches, but are at just under 160 days. Is that just how it fell due to the calendar year nature of your project or do you really have that few school days? I teach in VA, and we have 183 student days each year in my county.

  10. I would love to see what you eat instead for lunch and weird things you find in school!
    I have to say, super-congratulations on finishing eating that many school lunches! Your body needs and deserves a break or two (or three or four or…you get the point);) Please please share your new, tasty lunches on here!!

  11. I agree with the suggestion to share about what you see other kids in the cafeteria eating for lunch (those who bring from home, that is). I know you mentioned that you're going to start dining with the kids more often, so it would be interesting if you could just mention some of the notables (for better or for worse) that you see out on the tables while you're with the kids.

    I do wonder, if you sit at the table with them and make an example of eating your vegetables, if the kids who sit with you will begin to do the same? That would be another interesting thing to keep your eyes peeled for… sort of like the one teacher when Jamie was doing is food revolution, who asked her kids not to take the flavored milk, and the majority of her students took white milk that day.

    I think as adults, we might forget just how much we revered our teachers in elementary school. I know that if any of my teachers had ever asked me to eat my vegetables, or drink the white milk instead of the chocolate, I would have done it for them in a heartbeat. 🙂

  12. To S. Laster,

    I see your point about buying a lunch that won't be eaten being wasteful, and that is a very good point, especially since this blog has mentioned many times how much lunch gets thrown away daily. That being said, I think Mrs. Q is planning to do this simply to show us anything new on the menu (good or bad) since she can't exactly take out a camera and photgraph it in the lunch room and then walk away. I've been reading this blog from the beginning, and I've never gotten the impression that Mrs. Q is just making fun of the lunches and then shrugging at what kids have to eat at school. She's had many guest bloggers discuss hunger, obesity, health, etc. throughout the year. I would never use the words "overpriveleged" or "snob" to describe her in any way. I'd say her motivation is first and foremost education.

  13. I agree with Amy.
    S Lester makes some good points, however anyone who would call Mrs. Q an overprivileged snob most certainly has not been reading the blog since the beginning, or bothered to read backlogged posts in order to make sure they were current on the whole situation before slinging mud.

    Yeah. A teacher who chooses to forgo a cushy job at a more elite school in order to work in a district with far less privileged children and dedicates her time to (as hints would indicate) special needs children, who, despite having a young toddler of her own with unique dietary needs, has still found extra hours of her time every day and risked her job to photograph the food that her students are forced to eat in order to make the nation more aware of what we are putting into the futures of our world.
    What a snobby bitch. (<- sarcasm)

  14. A Framework for Understanding Poverty is a great book! Nice choice for a giveaway. It sits on my bookshelf as one of the most influential books in my teaching repertoire.

  15. In my school district where I grew up, we had a wrap/sandwich counter where we could design our own sandwich. The food was really good. The hot lunch was never great, but always edible. No matter what, though, it's the PARENTS' responsibility to feed their kids, not the school, not the government. Why should school lunch be their best meal of the day, as you said? You say these kids get lunch vouchers; they probably get food stamps, too. Let mommy and daddy go to the supermarket and get some food for these kids. Breakfast, sack lunch, and dinner.

  16. that is a painfully ignorant statement, Anon 4.26, and it makes me incredibly sad that there are still people who read this blog who feel that way. I love how, just because parents don't always feed their kids right, the kids should get punished, too.

    And not even getting into the serious, terrible issue of poverty, (which it seems only the seriously greedy jerks who will never know what it is to have to choose between food and utilities fail to understand), I must ask:

    What about kids who are abused and neglected? What about the ones who are still stuck in Child Protective Services limbo before they'll get taken out of that hellhole, who still have to live with monsters who blow all the money on drugs and leave their kids to fend for themselves and find food where they can? Because yeah. Crap like that happens all the time, in every kind of neighborhood, and can be happening to a kid on your block right now.

    So you're saying kids like that are just s– out of luck too, right? "Sucks for you, you have a real asshole for a parent. Now go eat your processed chicken cubes with a slice of cold bread and get on with your life."

    Nice. Real nice.

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