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What was in your school lunch?


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We all remember, back in the day, when we took our lunches to school. What kind of lunchbox did you carry (I carried "Batman" because it was my favorite show). What did your folks pack in your lunch? I usually got a sandwich (bologna) on whole wheat bread, with some cookies and a dime to buy milk. The only time I didn't like my lunch is when Mom would pack what she called a "chicken salad" sandwich. It was a baked chicken drumstick between two slices of whole wheat bread. Where was the salad? I always wanted to die and just left the sandwich untouched. Because my Mom grew up during the Depression, some sorts of sandwiches were "either/or" and not "AND...example...PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY in our house was PEANUT BUTTER OR JELLY.

Anyhoo, here is an article about some kids and their school lunch experiences due to cultural differences and such. I wonder how many of us here can relate to it and would say so.

(Evidently, TJ is down for the night and I have some energy left to read and post articles....lucky me)


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My mom often made a peanut butter and dill pickle sandwich (try it you'll like it I bet) for my school lunch and an apple. No dessert. Milk in a glass lined thermos that would break easily so I would shake it before I opened it to listen for broken glass.

My best friend's mother made sandwiches from home made whole wheat bread before it was the popular thing to do and I loved it. We would trade sandwiches sometimes. She thought store bought white bread was a real treat.

They didn't always spray the apples in those days I guess because it wasn't unusual to find a worm or part of a worm (extra protein) half way through eating it.


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My mom packed my lunch too... I had baseball...I had a Lone Ranger... and I think a Space Ghost (or maybe I just wanted one...) lunchbox through the years, usually got a new one every two or three years...

Mom would pack stuff that would 'kill you' today... because of it not being refrigerated for five or six hours... ham and cheese with mayo... liverwurst... bologna... and of course peanut butter and jelly... depnding on the day... if we had meatloaf, we'd have left over meatloaf sandwiches... same for thanksgiiving turkey of course...

We'd also have a piece of fruit, apple or bananna usually... and a couple of cookies...

But... on the days that the kids would get those wonderful soft rolls... I'd trade my whole lunch for one when I could!!! laugh

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My Mom never packed my lunch but I must say that the school lunches I had were great. Even in high school. I can still remember the homemade pizza they offered. I used to love lunch at school at any age...I've always been easy to please. Just loved the food and company! Some of the best times in my lunch life!

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I had completely forgotten the unbridled joy of buying school lunch!! I didn't get to do it often in elementary school and in parochial school, it was unheard of.

Anyhoo, I do remember those warm soft rolls......yummy!! And I liked the mashed tatoes and gravy (this girl is all about carbs) and salisbury steak. When I lived in Hawaii and attended Iilima Junior High, lunch was always something served over a scoop of rice and everyone in the school took their turn scooping the rice for the trays. It was fun and tasty!!

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a dime for milk? you make me feel very old miriam..i can remember when i first started school , milk was 2 1/2 cents..figure that one out...lol...so ya got two for a nickel..one sweet milk to please your mama and your teacher and one chocolate to please yourself. wink

only lunchbox that really stands out in my memory was lavendar in color and had twiggy on it...oxymoron?

as for what was in it? EVERYTHING but the kitchen sink..guess

mama was afraid i would starve death before 3 pm...there were times i would throw some of it away , because there was no way

i could eat it all, but didnt want her to know that i wasted food, because after all, there were starving children in china...oh the burden of carrying all that guilt around..LOL

now if you bought your lunch ready made from the cafeteria, it was a whoppin 20 cents until you got to high school..then it went up to 50 cents, but only nerds ate in the cafeteria..us way cool kids, hung out at the smoke barrel and smoked cigs instead...oh how times changed..lol

btw: i have the recipe for the school cafeteria rolls.. ill share if you would like to have it...a lot of work , but so worth it.

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Man I remember warm slimy bologny in those days yuck! At least now with my son's lunch I pack a little ice pack in a baggie and that keeps his food and mini water bottle cold. Even though he eats a peanut butter sandwich everyday. He takes the same lunch everyday , along with his sandwich , carrots , apple or grapes and a granola bar, he rarely deviates from that. He has a thermos that keeps his milk cold for 12 hrs love it. Nothing compared to warm icky milk I had to drink nasty stuff!


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3 cups warm water

1 tablespoon white sugar

2/3 cup white sugar

3 (.25 ounce) envelopes active dry yeast

1/4 cup milk

2 eggs

1 tablespoon salt

10 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup shortening

1/4 cup butter, melted

In a large bowl, mix together the warm water and 1 tablespoon sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over the top, and let it stand for about 10 minutes, until the yeast is foamy.

Mix the milk, eggs and salt into the yeast.

Measure the flour into a separate bowl, add 2/3 cup sugar, and crumble the shortening into it using your fingers until it is barely noticeable.

Gradually stir the flour into the wet ingredients. Mix using a wooden spoon until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and starts to form a ball around the spoon.

Cover with a hot wet towel that has been wrung out, and set in a warm place to rise until double in bulk. This should take about 45 minutes.

When the dough has risen, pour the melted butter over it, and knead for about 2 minutes. Let the dough rest for a few minutes, then roll out on a lightly floured surface to 1 inch thick. Use a knife to cut into 2 inch squares. Roll squares into balls, and place into greased round pans, spacing about 1 inch apart. Let rise again until doubled in size. You could also refrigerate the dough, and let it rise overnight for baking the next day

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bake the rolls for about 12 minutes, until golden brown.

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Thank you so much for posting the recipe, SOL!! It sounds like the one taught to my sister by her late Mother-in-Law and we all enjoyed it for many years.....until my sister's kids started being born.

I am going to give it a whirl! Something tells me that I am not the only one here who will!!

PS - Don't feel old because when I bought milk at school it was a dime. You just have more "life experience" than me....that's all. Also, in Junior High School lunch was a quarter....and that is about all it was worth...LOL

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My first five years of school were at an old school with no cafeteria so we all brought our lunch to school. Usually a balogna sandwich or peanut butter (I didn't like it together with jelly but I love it now!), a cookie and chocolate milk in a peanut butter jar. I hated white milk. I remember one day a boy who I later found out liked me started chasing me and took my chocolate milk out of the bag and smashed the jar on the sidewalk. I just stood there crying. I was terrified of him. So I had no milk to drink that day. However, my mother called his mother and made short work of that behavior.

My other elementary schools had cafeterias and I remember buying hot lunch every day. I loved tomato soup and grilled cheese. Later, in high school, we enjoyed ladies from the community who did all the cooking themselves--Mrs. Hofaker's mashed potatoes and gravy and Mrs. Krug's lemon meringue pie. I could eat so much in those days and still be a stick.

Now it's sad because everything is government controlled--USDA this and that and half the food is disgusting. We really did live in the good old days, even if there wasn't enough money in the family a lot of the time. The home-grown love and hard work way more than made up for it!


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