This week I've been filling the bottom bowl with surprisingly scrumptious "Tarragon Bean Salad" (Better Homes and Garden Vegetarian Cooking, Meredith Books: 2002), while the top bowl has held a mix of fruit and cheese cubes. The tote is just big enough to accommodate the bento, a Snapple White bottle, and a half-size yogurt carton. I tuck a Kashi bar or banana in the front pocket and I am good to go. It sounds like a lot of food, but that's lunch (or supper) plus break(s) and a snack for the drive home.
(Yes, I need a snack for the drive home. Really. I drive much better when I'm not fixated on what deliciousness might be waiting in our fridge).
The problem with owning a super cool and super handy Ms. Bento is that now I want all the super cool and super nifty lunch jar accessories. Like the little fish shaped sauce bottles (I could fill them with vinaigrette and squirt them all over chopped salads) or the boiled egg mold. Yes, I could mold a boiled egg into the shape of a star or a ... cube. Yum.
The only thing that restrains me from going crazy with bentoliciousness, is the fear of censure from my co-workers. It's one thing to have a practical looking Ms Bento. It's another thing altogether to start bringing in little saucy fishes or cube eggs or star-shaped cheese and vegetables. They already find me amusing for reading teh graphic novels and teh manga, for having met my (foreign) husband on the (suspicious) Internet, and for driving the car with the fsck! bumper sticker. I am only just this side of being weird. Saucy fish could push me right across.
Speaking of Thermos ... when I was but a wee kidlet my mother would take me to the shop at the Thermos plant and we would very carefully select my lunchbox for the new school year. Perhaps this was because my mother talked it up for days in advance, but it was all very exciting and most definitely my favorite back-to-school activity. There were lunchboxes of every kind and the Thermoses were sold separately so it was possible to get combinations like a Strawberry Shortcake lunchbox and a Batman Thermos.
Now, of course, the old Thermos factory has been turned into condos and I am surely too old to be getting so excited over a lunch jar ...