Thursday, 21 June 2012


I had my stookie off today and tonight I have been in a concert so I have not had time to blog. Sorry! I hope we can celebrate raising £100,000 soon for Mary's Meals. We are so close. I don't know what I'll do!



  1. You deserve a night off after all your hard work over the last few days. Fingers crossed for that £100k.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Congratulations on getting your stookie off! And for raising such an amazing amount of money for Mary's Meals. I love your blog. I know you will reach £100,000 soon. :)

  4. Don't worry Martha. I hope you have had a lot of fun in you concert today.

    Only 5K more and you will raised 100K, you are doing a very nice job. Keep up it!

  5. Err how longs ur 'stookie' supposed 2b on 4? Thot it was broken :L

  6. Hi Veg - i hope you and all the other musicians really enjoyed the concert. I guess you are really happy to have had your stookie taken off in time to be able to play tonight. Fingers crossed you reach your 100k target soon - that really would be worth an encore or two!!

  7. Cheers for an enlightening blog (apart from today :o) I do hope someone from France and Italy sends you pictures of their school lunches. I don't know whether it would confirm or smash our stereotypes of their food. Congratulations on the fund raising.

  8. I am glad the arm is free again! And I'm sure you are too!

    Maybe you can blog about your concert, if you want to tell us about it l
    I wonder what Friday's lunch will be, it was often fish and chips in my school

    Be happy !

  9. Well I know you are delighted to have that thing off! I'm sad you didn't post though. I discovered you recently and really look forward to your posts. I wish I could send you my dinner pics but alas..I don't go to school..well, not in many years. ;) It's a great thing you do! So happy about Mary's Meals too. I'm about to launch a blog of my own, I'll be fundraising for them as well.

  10. Hi from Adelaide, South Australia! I saw your blog on Twitter, and I have really enjoyed catching up on all your pics and posts. I posted the link on my Facebook page and now lots of my friends are reading your blog too!

    I sent you a photo of my boys' school lunches: the black lunchbox is for my almost-6-year old, and the orange one for my 11 year old. My younger boy broke his arm at Easter, and had a cast on for 5 weeks -- he learned to write and colour in with his left hand!

    Australian kids take their lunch to school like this, mostly, or can buy a choice of sandwiches, fruit, crisps, pies etc from the canteen /tuckshop. Usually that is a treat. They take drink bottles of water to school with them: most schools don't let you put anything else in your bottle, just water.

    Anyway, today my boys have homemade sultana biscuits, a mandarin (you might call that a satsuma), the 11yo gets an apple too as he has a bigger tummy, and he asks for two sandwiches too. The sandwiches today are a tuna-cheese-carrot mix. I grate the cheese and carrot in, and mix in a bit of nice mayonnaise to hold it all together.

    In South Australia there is a small country town called Bute: named by homesick Scottish settlers I bet! Can you find it?

    When I was at school in England for two years my school lunches would sometimes be scrambled eggs with peas and chips. The eggs were always a bit green and watery :( Your tuna potato looked much better.

    Happy Blogging!! I hope you are having fun with it. You're doing great, kiddo.

  11. Hello: Is that legal about your Principal stopping you from taking photos of your meal when you have paid for it? Once you have paid for your meal it is legally your property.
    If you take your meal outside of the school property the Principal would not legally be able to stop you from taking photos as you are in the public domain. I think she is ashamed at her school's food being so bad.
    I tried to look quickly for legal issues on the internet but only found this other blog:

    Good on you anyway! You are very original.

    1. In the UK any company or organisation can forbit photography on provate property - most shopping malls have a ban. But if the photograph has already been taken then they have no right to delete it or remove the memory card (even the police cannot do that without a court order).

      I would think the plate and cutlery are owned by the school so they are within their rights to say they cannot be removed from the dining area.

      From my understanding of the situation the school just relayed a message from the council that she was not allowed to take photographs but you should be able to check that by reading earlier reports.

  12. Veg,
    I only a few days ago saw your site for the first time. Just wanted to congratulate you on a remarkable accomplishment. You saw something that needed doing and swung right in to get it done. And you have touched so many lives -- not just the children in Malawi, but all the people who have contributed because of you. It's truly amazing. I am so grateful to be in a world that you are sharing with us, Martha. Oh, congratulations on getting the arm out of your stookie--it must be great to have the skin open to the air again!
    Keep up the good work...I bet you go way past a mere 100,000 pounds!
    All the best from your friend in Pacific Grove, California (that's on the southern end of Monterey Bay about 120 miles south of San Francisco as the seagulls fly).

  13. Yay for the stookie being off, and yay for being in a concert! Hope you have a great time!

  14. I hope you enjoyed your concert. What was it?

    Good luck on meeting the target of £100,000. It will be excellent news if you do.

  15. Hi Martha,

    I've been reading your blog every day since it had its little 'hiccup' last week and got itself on the news (with your Dads help of course - please say thank you to him for all his help). I think it's fantastic. The very fact that you have such a nice and simple format of your blog is what makes it appealing to people and helps them relate back to your lunch stories.

    When I was your age (33 years ago! I am old!) some of us had free school meals and were given tickets to exchange for food. Back then it always seemed to be chips and horrible fatty burgers or sausages every day but baked beans in sauce were always available. It was very tasty but was just unhealthy 'stodge' and I remember it used to make me feel sleepy all afternoon. I wonder if many schools in the UK still serve this to their pupils? I know your school doesn't from seeing your wonderful photographs every day and I certainly think that you have helped your school (and others) improve the lunches they serve. Well done!

    I really like the way you have managed to get school lunches into the public eye and are showing all your viewers around the world what different and interesting food they could try. Do you know how many schools in different continents have set up blogs like yours? You seem to get a lot of pics every day of other peoples lunches and I'm sure everyone would be interested to know.

    Now. Mary's Meals. What a wonderful thing you have done for such a worthwhile charity. Your (and your Dads) efforts have been superb. You have given many children the energy to carry on with their studies at school and that is something you'll remember for the rest of your life; and so will all the thousands of children who you're going to help. You must be smiling every day!

    Keep on blogging and I'll look forward to reading your comments tomorrow. Hope the concert went well :)

  16. When donations hit 100,000, we shall all squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee..... All together now!

  17. I don't eat school lunches anymore, but I still love reading your blog! Congratulations on raising so much money! I am sure that you'll reach your goal :D

  18. I love your story Martha. It is inspiring to all children who have a passion, mission and love for something. I am talking at a school today on social media and your story will be top of my agenda - hairs in the food or not. Keep up the brilliant work. I wish I could get my kids to blog - one day perhaps. Well done on such a fantastic achievement.

  19. You started out to raise£7000 to date you have raised 1372% of that over£ 96000 well done.i think there might be an age limit on giving out mbe's and the like but for you Martha they should make a very big exception.xx d.

  20. Just heard about you on NPR today, Martha. My daughter spent two years in Malawi in the Peace Corps. I am so proud of what you are doing. Keep up the good work.

  21. Hi Veg, congratulations on getting your cast off today, and in time for the concert! I love reading your blog every day! You are an amazing little girl who has done an amazing thing, not only in the money you've raised (nearly at the magical £100k!!!) but the awareness, insight and inspiration you've given to everyone, people much older than you but not as smart to have achieved this. Well done you AMAZING little girl!!! Big hugs from Warfield (near Ascot) - how many seconds?? xxx

  22. THIS is completely right, Martha!
    Your Blog and your Charity are wonderful, but YOU also have a life offline.
    You cannot take a PC on the playground if you want to have fun (some Nerds will say "oh yey, yes, you can!" ^^)!
    Greetings from Thorsten/Germany!

  23. FELICIDADES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! UN BUEN TRABAJO!

    Un gran abrazo desde Spain!!


  24. Greetings from Finland! At least one Finnish newspaper wrote about you this week and told how you've got a lot of people on your side, for example, Jamie Oliver :) (in finnish)

  25. Glad the stookie's off. Hope you are not in any discomfort. Well done for all your work

  26. Hi Veg,
    My name is Zoe-- I'm a PhD student in anthropology at Harvard University in the United States. I'm also a food studies scholar: I research the socio-cultural dynamics of food in human life. I just wanted to let you know, from one food studies scholar to another, that your blog is amazing. My colleagues and I all read it, and are continually impressed by your insight, humor, and maturity.
    Best Wishes,
    Harvard University, Dept. of Anthropology

  27. Hi Veg,

    Well done for your great achievement.

    You have been a bright star for many around the world, and no words can repay what you have done for so many.

    The 14th June will be remembered as 'Neverseconds Day' and it is already programmed into my Outlook.

    Be extremely proud of yourself, and always remember this time for strength and wisdom.

    Well done from the South West UK, keep blogging, smiling and eating those School lunches.

    The world has gained a brilliant young lady!!

  28. Dear Martha,

    We would like to nominate you for a KITE Award. Kind Intent Towards Everyone.

    We know you are one year younger than our scheme but would like to make an exception.

    The awards are for young people who are doing something remarkable for others.

    You can read about them at:

    Please email us, with your parent's permission, at:

    Best wishes,

    Archbishop Jonathan Blake
    Bishops Haven
    105 Danson Crescent
    DA16 2AS

    0208 304 7605

    07767 687711

  29. I just want to say that you are an absolute inspiration and should be extremely proud of yourself. I've not been online for a few days and it's wonderful to hear what you have been doing.

    I've been sharing your blog with other people and keeping my own daughter (13 yo, moderate learning difficulties) informed of what you're doing. Your blog is a great educational tool and a wonderful way to create and improve awareness.

    Good luck reaching the 100K and I'll see if I can make a contribution soon.

  30. you are amazing! i teach nutrition to school children in missouri, usa. i usually do some sort of cooking lesson and we focus on healthy foods, letting children prepare and taste new foods. i love my job. i have 3 daughters, ages 14, 12, and 9. i do not let them buy school lunch very often because it is expensive and not very healthy. most schools in the usa also serve breakfast, which is usually sugary and full of preservatives. I just discovered your blog and read all of your posts in the same sitting. I cant wait to show it to my girls this evening. keep up the good work. we are on summer break, but i will send you some photos of our school lunches when we return in august.

  31. VEG

    I've been here since about day 4, hungrily devouring stories, photos, comments and also news about this elsewhere. I may be confused about one detail because I've not heard about it lately...

    At your school can you not have fresh fruit unless you finish your meal? Is this true? Fruit is an important part of any diet.

    Do you rarely choose fruit? Or perhaps there's simply not enough fresh fruits for every student and so it is presented (or withheld) as a treat for those still hungry? Even after sweets? If that is the national tradition, so be it?

    Please clarify. I apologize for any confusion.

    Michelle Obama shares your passion. Here in the USA she is our First Lady, wife of our President. I've not heard her comment on you specifically. Like you, she promotes children's good nutrition in her own way.

    I would send you a picture of what I ate today but it was too embarrassing (not fruit). Thank you, good luck, and take as many days offline as you like. Live your life. I'm very proud of you as well,

    - Carmichael
    Denver, Colorado USA

  32. Dear Martha,

    You are marvellous and it's so good you're back.
    I thought I'd explain why the Austrian school lunch is so expensive. Austrian students only have school in the mornings (yet I never had fewer than 30 hours of lessons per week in my 12 years of school) and it's expected that they will get lunch at home. There is only one 20-minute break during the morning and a lot of five-minute ones between individual lessons. Students usually bring snacks from home and the quantity and quality of that depends on the parents. Healthy food is encouraged and adequate drinks are too. We usually traded parts of our lunches with other students (I love green peppers and a friend would trade them for my cheese sandwich) and sometimes expended some pocket money on sweets as well. Food in Austria is usually very cheap and of good quality, but having an actual meal at school isn't the norm (somewhat more so in Vienna, I grant you) and is certainly not considered essential for getting through the day. That's why the lunch is so expensive, it's an optional extra.
    By the way, my mother always gave us: at least one sandwich (more often two), sometimes peppers or carrots, seasonal fruit (mandarins all through winter, which became a bit boring) and a small chocolate and cereal bar or another sweet. Other students had similar snacks and if your mum had made a tray-bake or something, you'd usually get some to share with your friends. I also had a schoolmate whose parents had a strawberry farm and she was really popular when they were in season.
    I think it's weird you have to finish your meal before you get fruit, fruit's important and surely it would make more sense in terms of obesity prevention to scrap that rule. Maybe somebody should bring that up.
    Keep up the good work.
    -Ricarda from Austria

  33. How about featuring work dinners as well as school dinners. I am sure that there must be people out there with work canteens. It would be interesting to see whether work dinners were any better/worse than school dinners.

    I remember school dinners from 30 years ago. I always really liked my school dinners and seconds were always available.