Do you bring your own food to DC? — The Bump
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Do you bring your own food to DC?

ss265ss265
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edited January 2014 in Working Moms
A previous post got me thinking about this. How many of you bring your own food for your LO to eat at DC? DS's DC isn't too bad with food but he does get typical toddler things like pizza, chicken nuggets, fish sticks etc. They always have fruit and veges on the side though. I'm wondering if I should bring food for him so that he has healthier options and doesn't get used to "toddler food" at DC and want toddler food at home too.

Do you bring your own food to DC 97 votes

Yes
44% 43 votes
No
47% 46 votes
SS
8% 8 votes

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Re: Do you bring your own food to DC?

  • DC only provides snacks. I wish ours had a lunch option b/c packing lunches every night gets old real fast.
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  • Same as @jf198400

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  • The center we used when DS was a baby/toddler provided nothing up to age 18mo and from 18mo up they fed him their food. It was a "pay by the hour" center, so any child there over lunch hour was required to buy their lunch, otherwise snacks were included in the hourly rate. i suppose if I wanted to send my own, they would have fed it to him, but I would have had to pay either way.

    His current school daycare program provides snacks and we either send lunch or buy theirs, as they use the same cafeteria as the regular school kids. (In fact, I think they eat right alongside the K's and 1sts) DS takes his, as he won't eat most of what they put on their menu and I can send a similar lunch for half the price.
  • My daughter goes to an in home and my babysitter provides all the meals including formula (my daughter is 11 months). The only time I bring something is if my daughter starts to get picky. I have only had to do that once.
  • My DC/pre-school provides morning/afternoon snacks and drinks for lunch and snacktime. They do not have a full kitchen to be able to provide lunch. I absolutely cannot stand making lunches every night. I look forward to any day when I don't have to pack a kid's lunch. I don't even like packing my lunch everyday.
  • I choose to send her meals.  I want her to be exposed to a larger variety and definitely not constant 'toddler' food.  I don't get a break in tuition for doing this, but I already pack meals daily for DH and I so it's just one more lunch to make.  It has never been an issue as far as her eating it or not.  I know the lunch programs are required to serve certain components which is great, but I find they are typically still processed carb heavy and that isn't something I want her to get use to.  I send two vegetables, one protein, and a whole grain carb for lunch every day.  Breakfast is fruit, protein/dairy, and a carb.  Snack is always fruit.  I use to do fruit and cheese, but she didn't have much appetite for dinner so I cut it back to just a fruit.
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  • Outside of the infant room, you can buy lunch through their program or bring your own.  I choose to buy it (we get to see the menu a month out and pick the days we're purchasing.  It's always better than what I would pull together).  Snacks are also provided.  I drop DS off before he eats breakfast, so I do send in breakfast every day.
  • Daycare provides breakfast, lunch and snack.  We decline the snack and bring our own.
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  • DS goes to an in-home DC, but she has several employees so there are about 20 kids. they don't provide anything except water.

    agreed that coming up with lunch and a snack every day is a pain in the neck. although if they did provide food, as PPs have said, i can't say i'd be on board with it if it was of the chicken nugget/boxed mac n cheese persuasion.
  • DD's daycare does not provide food.  They do keep a few things on hand, like milk and fresh fruit, but parents are expected to provide all food.

    This works fantastically for us, because DD has numerous food allergies, so we'd have to send her own food anyway.
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  • Our DC provides all food, drink, snacks etc once they start taking table food.  They actually also provide formula if you choose to use the kind they purchase.  I know a couple of parents that provide their own food but that is because of either allergies or the child is a vegan.  Our is a Y daycare so the food choices are actually pretty darn good - there is nice mix of healthy options and they typically try a new food each week.  I can barely pack my own lunch - I don't know what I would do if I had to pack my kids!

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  • No. Outside food is not allowed at DD's school.  I am very satisfied with what they provide the kids at her center.  Breakfast, lunch and snack are included in the price.  Good, balanced meals. 
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  • Thanks everyone for your responses! DS only started eating table food at DC a few weeks ago so I will probably take a closer look at their menu and decide if I want to bring my own food. I was surprised at the number of DC that don't provide food - didn't realize how lucky I was.

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  • No. Outside food is not allowed at DD's school.  I am very satisfied with what they provide the kids at her center.  Breakfast, lunch and snack are included in the price.  Good, balanced meals. 
    Our DC is the same. I'm content with their breakfast and lunch menus but not with their snacks. I just don't understand how cake for a snack on a weekly basis is acceptable for a 13 month old.
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  • I brought DD's food for a while because she had some food intolerances.  She outgrew those by 18 months, so now she is eating everything on the menu. 
    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
  • We bring lunch every day except Friday when they sell pizza for the upper school fundraiser. Those days we do bring fresh fruit as a side.

    They do have a hot lunch you can buy and I don't usually mind the entrée choices even though they aren't super healthy choices, but what really keeps me from buying their food is they almost always have canned fruit (I was told "usually" canned in light syrup) rather than fresh. And last month it was canned pineapple most of the time - like 3 out of 5 days per week! Talk about sugar.


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  • We are not allowed to bring in outside food. With that said, our center offers quite nutritious meals. I've never seen them serve pizza, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, etc.
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  • I did when she was eating baby food, but for solids the DC provides. To me, it's a big benefit to not have to worry about packing breakfast, lunch and snacks every day. For the most part, I'm satisfied with what they serve. It's a lot of home-cooked healthy stuff, with the occasional not-so-great thing mixed in.
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  • No. Outside food is not allowed at DD's school.  I am very satisfied with what they provide the kids at her center.  Breakfast, lunch and snack are included in the price.  Good, balanced meals. 
    Our DC is the same. I'm content with their breakfast and lunch menus but not with their snacks. I just don't understand how cake for a snack on a weekly basis is acceptable for a 13 month old.
    Our DC is the same. You have to have permission to bring outside food. In general, I'm satisfied with what the kids eat. Occasionally they'll have something that I don't think is the best for snack or lunch, but in general it's pretty good. 
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  • i send all my own food to DC and i prefer it.  I am not a big fan of their menu.
  • I did at first and now I'm just going with the flow. They do serve some things I'm not thrilled about but they do balance things out. For example one snack is always fresh fruit, the other might be grahamn crackers. If there is an item like chicken nuggets, its served with a veg. They serve all fresh fruit and veggies, nothing is canned or jarred. We pay for it, so i've loosened up a bit and am just glad they provide a large variety of things
    ss265
  • DD's daycare provides milk/water and snacks. We provide breakfast and lunch. Her old daycare provided lunches and the options were not things we eat at home. They never had any fresh fruit or veggies and all fruit was canned in syrup! Her new daycare works much better for us. It takes me less than 10 minutes before bed to pack her lunch and I know she's eating fresh healthy lunches. 
  • DD goes to DC 10 to 715 because we work 1030 to 7p. Any child that stays after 6pm parents must provide "Dinner" so we pack her a light meal every day because she eats her real dinner when we get home.
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  • I drop off with a piece of fruit as a snack at 6:30a before breakfast is served at 8:30a. DD1 says 'you get what you get and don't throw a fit'. I guess the teachers drill that into them.
    Mommy of two girls: DD1 4/14/9 DD2 4/15/11
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  • DS goes to a small in home, and she provides all food and snacks. Breakfast is either a waffle or pancake with fruit, lunch is pasta one day, soup and grilled cheese, roasted chicken, panko salmon, chicken cutlets, omettes, etc. always with fruit and veggies. I wish snack was healthier than pretzel rods and goldfish, but DS doesn't usually get carby snacks from me so I let it go- he'd be jealous if he didn't get to have what the others have,
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