Back-to-school lunch ideas

by melissa Posted in Homeowner resources /   August 19, 2014


Summer is winding down and school bells will soon be ringing. That means it's time, once again, to brainstorm delicious, nutritious lunch ideas for your star student. Check out these simple, satisfying suggestions to beat lunch box boredom and promote productivity throughout the afternoon.

Think beyond the sandwich. If your son or daughter loves PB&J or turkey on rye, more power to you! But if your kindergartner-turned-culinary critic shudders at the idea of yet another sandwich, check out these exciting alternatives, guaranteed to please even the pickiest of palates:

Brown bag

  • Easy chicken pot pie muffins from
  • Chef's salad with turkey, ham, cheese and hardboiled eggs
  • Pretzel kabobs from
  • Soup or chili in a thermos
  • Pasta and broccoli salad from
  • Grilled chicken tacos with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, sour cream and tortillas 
  • Pizza scrolls from 
  • Greek salad wrap with grilled chicken, veggies, feta cheese and tzatziki sauce 

Choose sides that shine. Some days, it takes a little extra fuel to make it to the dismissal bell. That’s where sides (a.k.a. snacks) come in. A granola bar will power up your kiddo in a pinch, but the following fun and filling foods are sure to liven up your child's mid-day meal:

End on a sweet note. For many kids (and grown-ups!), dessert is the most anticipated part of the meal. The following treats are sure to satisfy your child's sweet tooth:

Here are some additional ways to ensure your son or daughter won't be singing the lunch box blues this school year:

  • Encourage your child to help with meal planning, shopping, preparation and packing 
  • Use cookie cutters to cut bread, cheese and fruit into fun shapes 
  • Use edible ink markers like these to write a note on a piece of fruit 
  • Transform your child’s lunch into a work of art, like this one from
  • Pop in for a surprise lunch visit, if your child's school allows 

 Keep following our blog for more delicious recipes and homeowner resources.

Best places to live: Williamstown, New Jersey

by Matt Brady Posted in For buyers | Local homebuying /   August 12, 2014


Located in an area chock-full of fascinating American history and surrounded by natural beauty, New Jersey's Williamstown is the latest addition to our Best Places to Live series. Find out what should catch your eye about this increasingly popular hotspot.



In practically all directions, Williamstown boasts amazing options for enjoying the outdoors, including hiking, boating, camping and wildlife observation. For a start, check out these beautiful destinations:


Wharton State Forest
Get lost exploring the state park system's largest swath of land. In addition to an incredible range of recreational opportunities, you can also check out historic Batsto Village, a once-bustling iron and glassmaking hub.


Parvin State Park
Among this state park's many perks are the 18 fully furnished cabins that stretch along Thundergust Lake, allowing you to play hard during the day and rest comfortably at night.


Delaware River
Few places are more iconic to American history than the Delaware River, and Williamstown is just a short drive away. Enjoy exploring the scenery and incredible history along the Delaware's banks, including landmarks like Red Bank Battlefield Park.


The Atlantic Ocean
You could make several great daytrips from Williamstown taking a drive to the shore and touring New Jersey's great boardwalks and beaches.


Scotland Run Golf Club
This Williamstown golf course has consistently received top honors, including having been named a top-50 public course in Golf Digest. The cost of a round is worth it just to try out the 16th hole, which requires a booming drive off the tee to clear a formidable old sand quarry.


For the history buff, living in Gloucester County—established in 1686—provides the exciting opportunity to explore some of the country's earliest history, from when the area was inhabited by the Lenni-Lanape tribe to when it was a hotbed of Revolutionary War activity and beyond. 

Gloucester County's historical sites >>


Williamstown belongs to the Monroe Township Public Schools district, which ranks an exceptional 8 out of 10 on GreatSchools.


Work in Philly but want to live outside the big city? With less than an hour's commute to Philadelphia, Williamstown provides an attractive retreat that's still close enough to maintain a healthy work-life balance.


Alison study

Interested in living in Williamstown? Check out Willow Woods >> 

 For first-time homebuyer tips, download our FREE guide >>





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