Local Parents Leave Handwritten Notes on Kids' Lunch Bags

A lunch bag illustration modeled after "Where the Sidewalk Ends"
Kristin Cook and Ross Teichner have turned handwritten notes that they send along with their kids’ lunches into an art form.

In the age of screen time and texting, the power of a handwritten note is greater than it’s ever been. Kristin Cook and Ross Teichner have turned handwritten notes that they send along with their kids’ lunches into an art form.

They met in St. Louis Park’s Early Childhood and Family Education program. Cook’s son Elliot and Teichner’s son Max have been friends since they were 3 months old, says Cook.

Cook began the lunch note tradition when her son was in pre-kindergarten. She included notes with drawings of characters her son enjoyed telling him to eat his lunch. Teichner joined in the tradition about a year ago, including a note with his son Max’s lunch.


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There was an educational purpose to the project, too. Teichner did a series of lunch notes for “No-gender November,” an initiative aimed at exploring representation of non-conforming genders in popular media.

“We both have a competitive streak,” says Cook. “We let the kids come up with the prompts for the notes, and we made our notes based on the prompts.”

Ultimately, Cook and Teichner decided that the competition wasn’t consistent with the purpose of lunch notes—“to let the kids know we love them and we’re thinking about them,” says Cook. “It’s really about them, not about us.”

Cook and Teichner both post their lunch notes on a joint Instagram account, and love seeing the lunch notes that other parents give their kids.

Instagram: @lunch.noted