Back to School Traditions
I want to begin a tradition with my son who is starting kindergarten this week and I saw on a blog that someone made a cake the eve before the first day of school to celebrate the exciting new grade the kids were to embark upon. Since my son is young, I was thinking a crayon cake would be fun but I am cake frosting challenged! I "think" I can make the cake in shape of a crayon but how to frost it?
Any other ideas for school-time traditions?
My back to school tradition with my mother always happened after the first day of school. She'd pick me up and take me to a little tea place that served afternoon tea with biscuits, lemon curd, finger sandwiches, the works. We did that every year until I went to college. Maybe more of a girl thing, but it was awesome.
A great tradition with many benefits is to start packing a healthful lunch with your son the night before every school day. This gives you some great parent/child time together, teaches some much-needed nutritional lessons, and gets your child off to a good start in the kitchen. My kids and I used to sit down on Saturday morning and plan some dishes for dinner the next week that would make great leftovers for lunch for all of us. Take him grocery shopping to pick out fruits and veggies that he likes. Above all, avoid the atrocious lunches on offer in most school cafeterias!
I like the idea of "student's choice," but also what about breakfast and lunch...
You could make a french toast overnight casserole together the night before and bake in the morning, or bring a batch of muffins the first day to school (make him the popular kid right off!) or make cupcakes that you bring to school at the end of the day (make him *really* popular ;)
For lunch, how about a nice warm thermos something or other, to make him feel home away from home. Love the idea of warm soup or lasagna.
For a tradition that echoes "school," make PB or sugar cookies in the shapes of letters and numbers.
Overall, I think the important thing is to make it a tradition that he'll look forward too, and be able to say "my mom always does..."
I went to a school with mandatory uniforms so our tradition the week before school was to go uniform shopping (downtown Los Angeles!) and then go to a diner near the uniform store and were were allowed to order whatever we wanted. We usually asked to sit at the counter so we could watch the cooks. Since we rarely ate out this was a big deal. You could do something similar after the school clothes shopping or school supply shopping. We never ate at that place any other time because it was so far from home.
I'm not much of a baker, so I did something easy. Starting in kindergarten, I always made a chalkboard cake for the first day of school. It was just a normal rectangular sheet cake with chocolate frosting and easy things such as 2+2=4 or ABC writen in white. I could have used black food coloring to make it more authentic but my son likes chocolate and I still remembered the time I gave all the preschoolers black mouths with my killer whale cake. He's starting highschool this year, so I guess that tradition a thing of the past. Enjoy. The first day of kindergarten is a big deal.
Edit: Hmmmm, I guess I should have posted this on the homecooking board. I didn't see the other thread until too late.
We had lots of food-related school traditions when my boys were young:
Back-to-School dinner was their choice - they got to choose the menu for that first night's dinner. Within reason, anything goes (normal taboos and Mom's nutrition requirements were exempt for this special night).
Haloween brought "hallow weenies" in their lunches.
St Patrick's Day meant everything was green - homemade green bread for sandwiches, green milk and green deviled eggs, etc.
The last day of school meant they each had their own cold watermelon AND spray cans of whipped cream for whipped cream tag. Of course, I squirted everyone with the hose before they ventured indoors.
Making school fun is a great tradition. Good Luck.
To be honest, if you google, you will find many ideas, methods and how to's on cake theme.
I think a nice "sorta adult" one on one dinner out, where talk can be how much he has grown over the year, the new grade, what he liked, looks forward to, perhaps some fears is a nice idea as well.