A really ugly lunch (because 4 a.m. is no time to be thinking about lunch)

Easy lunch box ideas: whole-wheat tortilla smeared with cream cheese and wrapped around leftover grilled sausages and leftover candied bacon; a mini bell pepper; and a yogurt, berry and graham cracker parfait. http://www.LunchBoxBlues.com

Or, for that matter, doing just about anything.

Yet there I was at 4 a.m. this morning chasing a chain of thought I’d rather have ignored:

Why is Parker awake at 4 a.m.? Will he fall back to sleep? Please, fall back to sleep. He isn’t falling back to sleep. It’s now 5 a.m. and both of us are still awake. One of us is getting very cranky. OK, both of us are. No, I can’t think of anything for you to do since you can’t sleep. Would you please just go to the bathroom? Damn it, now I have to go to the bathroom. What do you mean it’s only 5:30 a.m.? Fine! Why the hell not? Get up! We’ll both get up!

And so began this lovely day. Last week he was sleeping until 11:15 a.m. This week it’s up at 4 a.m.

So come today’s lunch duty, I wasn’t feeling all that inspired.

It’s not pretty. It’s not particularly healthy. It isn’t even all that fresh.

Ask me if I care. Because I’ve been up since 4 a.m.

So today’s lunch… a whole-wheat tortilla smeared with cream cheese and wrapped around leftover grilled sausages (last night’s dinner) and leftover candied bacon (when you’re out of bed by 5:30 a.m. you suddenly find yourself with ample time to candy bacon).

For sides… A lone red mini bell pepper. And a leftover yogurt parfait that has congealed and solidified in an odd way.

I repeat… Ask me if I care.

And by leftover parfait, I mean this. On Monday, I had to go to the public radio studio to record the interview for Morning Edition. I was asked to bring a lunch for the host. This parfait (berries, now mushy graham crackers and yogurt) was in that lunch. The host didn’t eat it, so I brought it home and it has been in the refrigerator ever since. Today, Parker got it for lunch.

Say it with me… Ask me if I care.

Still have about a dozen free books for the Buy Lunch, Get Dinner Free! giveaway. So head over to Amazon and preorder “Beating the Lunch Box Blues,” then forward your order confirmation to freebook@lunchboxblues.com and I’ll send you a free copy of my last cookbook, “High Flavor, Low Labor.”

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21 Responses to “A really ugly lunch (because 4 a.m. is no time to be thinking about lunch)”

  1. SinoSoul says:

    What kind of radio show asks the host to bring lunch? Even if it’s a publicity stunt and tied to the book presser? I know you said Morning Edition, and I see the NPR link, but I just don’t want to believe it.

  2. I can empathize. Baguette has the occasional brutally early morning. Last Friday, she woke up at 3:30 and fell back asleep at 6:20.

  3. Tammy says:

    Maybe he is anxious about school starting? Hopefully there will be snoozes all around this afternoon!

    • J.M Hirsch says:

      Ha! Naps? What are they? He hasn’t napped since he was 2… The saddest day of my life was the day (and in his case it really did happen overnight) he stopped napping. I used to be so productive during those 2 to 3 hours.

      • Sara says:

        Wait until he’s a teenager he’ll sleep like a log. Then you’ll have the opposite issue. Enjoy your time while he’s awake most of the day!

  4. Lynn says:

    Yowzers, that’s a rough morning. And because misery loves company, I’ll share my morning from yesterday: 2yo up at 3:30am – walk him back to bed; 3.5yo coughing at 4:15am – give him some water; 9mos old up at 4:50am for feeding. Put baby back to sleep around 5:30am only to have both toddlers up and at my door at 6:20am. Suffice it to say, I feel your pain. Hope Tammy is right and there are naps in your future today.

    • J.M Hirsch says:

      Oh god… I hope you at least had a really good drink that evening! I remember once when Parker was about 1 or 2, he barely slept all night, and finally was up for the day by 4 a.m. I surrendered, came downstairs and baked a flourless chocolate cake. Misery loves company. And cake.

  5. Daniela says:

    All I am hearing is Samuel L Jackson reading “Go the f”$^ to sleep”. Have you seen that book?? Must search it if not and get ready to LOL.

  6. Jenni says:

    Ugh early mornings like yours SUCK! My 5 year old consistently likes to get up around 3:00 am in the morning to ask for food. It’s getting extremely annoying and is messing up my sleep patterns. Sigh….mine refuses to take naps. Hopefully Parker will take a nap later on!

    • J.M Hirsch says:

      Oh gosh… That would push me over the edge. And mine is like yours — refuses to nap. Hasn’t since he was 2. Sad day that was.

  7. i heart salt says:

    LMBO! I am the Food Service Director at a private school. I have had one day off in 23 days! I am singing it with you…”ASK ME IF I CARE!”
    Thanks for the laugh! Law Chile, did I ever need it!

    • J.M Hirsch says:

      Oh, wow. You don’t need a laugh. Or a day off. You need a nice long vacation! And have earned it!

  8. Margee says:

    Do you care? 😉

  9. Sara says:

    A post b-day & sugar rush withdrawal perhaps. Understandable since you gave him a party just over the past weekend.

  10. Jillian says:

    Thank you, now everyone in my office thinks i’ve lost it due to me just sitting there laughing at my computer screen.