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Twist on tradition 

It’s already been established that Thanksgiving is not my favorite because of the anxiety a food holiday brings to a food allergy mom.  Consequently, I’ve become that person that everyone hates, you know, the one that has their Christmas tree up before Thanksgiving.  Spoiler alert: I LOVE CHRISTMAS! but back to Thanksgiving…

Thanks to Charlie Brown’s Thanksgiving, I’ve started some new traditions with Squid (and now Tank).  On Thanksgiving morning, I make us a meal of toast, pretzels, (kettle) popcorn, and skittles (instead of jelly beans).  We sit and watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade while eating our “Thanksgiving Feast.”

Thanksgiving may not be my favorite, but enjoying a nontraditional tradition with my boys is the best!  The meal was a hit!  Of course, he ate the Skittles first but that’s to be expected.  ONWARD TO CHRISTMAS!!!

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Way too long!

I can’t believe it’s been over a year since my last post!  That is WAY TOO LONG!  Time to play a little catch up….

October 2015
We had an awesome dairy-free, egg-free, gluten-free Halloween party for Squid and some of his allergy  and non-allergy friends.  They had an amazing time (even though Squid REFUSED to wear his Olaf costume).

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Teal Pumpkin Project

 

December 2015
My husband had a surprise back surgery because he woke up one morning and couldn’t feel his foot.  He had drop-foot for weeks and after several doctor visits, we discovered that his L4, L5 vertebrae were practically rubbing each other because of the lack of a disc. He ended up having a L4-S1 spinal fusion while I was 30 weeks pregnant.  Needless to say, if something hit the floor in our house, it stayed there until Squid picked it up for us. Last week my husband was finally able to walk on his heals again.  I know it sounds small but it’s a pretty big deal.

January 2016
We welcomed “Tank” to the world at the end of January.  The ultrasound tech told me that if I made it to my due date, he would be over 9lbs.  Yeah… he was 6lbs, 15oz.  He may have started off tiny, but at 9 months old and 20 lbs, he’s a man baby now.  Big ol’ Tank.

May 2016
Squid celebrated his 3rd birthday with a bike, a bounce house, and a wacky cake.  Delicious!!!

Summer 2016
We felt the call to move from the city to a small town about 2 hours south.  Everything about the experience was God sent.  He made it so easy!  My husband had a job offer before we made it home after the interview.  Our city house sold before it went on the market. Our rent house was the first one we saw.  We attended one church that immediately felt like home.   Bonus: We’re closer to grandparents.  Amazing! Simply amazing how it all came together… but more on that later.

September 2016
Squid started a new “school” at our church.  It’s actually a Mother’s Day Out program but he doesn’t have to know that.  He LOVES school!  He loves learning.  He’s such a people person and he’s fitting in so well.

ALLERGY UPDATE
Squid is down to only dairy and egg allergies with no sensitivities.  He’s been cleared to try shellfish but with everything going on (and his constantly runny nose of allergy season), we’ve decided to wait.  He sees the allergist again in a couple weeks.

We’ve been in some impossible situations where there is no way we should have survived with out a reaction.  Maybe he’s grown out of the contact allergy?  We shall see!

As for Tank, he’s showing no signs of food allergies so far.

If you only knew (a glimpse at traveling with food allergies)

Lately I’ve been getting a lot of “you never come see us anymore.”  Not that visits were frequent before children but our closest relatives live at least an hour away.

I never knew how much stuff a baby needed when traveling. It’s quite a chore, especially if you’re staying the night!  Now let’s add food allergies into that mix. YOWZAS!

Here are some of the extra steps I have to take when traveling.

1. I start by thinking (and obsessing) over every little detail. Who will be there? Will they respect my rules regarding Squid’s allergies? Will there be food? If there is food, will it be safe? If it’s not safe, will people wash their hands before touching Squid? What will we eat? How long are we staying? How much food will we need? Should I take extra cleaning wipes for other people’s hands/our eating area?  HOW AM I GOING TO KEEP MY CHILD SAFE??? The list goes on and on and on!

2. Take all those questions from #1 and begin packing. It takes me AT LEAST two days to pack and make sure everything is perfect because we do not have the “stop at the nearest fast food option.”  It’s what I bring or nothing because after several reactions and way too many close calls, I really have a hard time trusting food that wasn’t cooked by me or with me present.

3. The day has come. We’ve made the trip and arrived safely. The hard part is over right? HA! Not a chance. Remember all of those questions from #1? They’re still buzzing in my head but this time they’re being played out in real life. I can’t relax at all during my visit due to worry about what Squid may accidentally be exposed to and how many hives he will get THIS time.

Vacation is not a vacation for me! My idea of a vacation these days is leaving Squid with Daddy and having some Mommy time of some sort. Family events where I can relax are very rare, especially if they involve food.  Needless to say, Thanksgiving is my new version of a complete nervous wreck nightmare!

4. Making it back home without hives or a hospital visit is nothing short of a miracle! Praise God!

Please be understanding. Please be patient. Food allergies are rough.

BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse vs Food Allergies

So amazed by the service we recieved at BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse last night. I gave the waitress our chefs card when she was taking our drink orders. After she gave it to the chef, she walked us through our order on what we could/couldn’t order/alter and how everything was cooked. Then the manager came over to check who ordered what and their proximity to the person (my son) with allergies. When our food was brought out they told is what was on each item on his plate and exactly how and where it was cooked. Amazing service! Above and beyond!

Squid’s Life Changing Pancakes!

When I got pregnant, breakfast meats and eggs started making me nauseous (even pancakes).  The thought of eggs still makes me squeamish and the big pile of greasy sausage and bacon make me feel gross all day after I eat it.  How convenient that my child has an egg allergy and I never have to look at another plate of eggs at breakfast again!  However, the dairy and egg allergy did cut out my husbands favorite pancake batter.

One day my husband was craving some pancakes so he searched the magical term we’ve come to love, Vegan!  Squid’s Pancake recipe entered our home and they’re the best pancakes I’ve ever tasted!  Nice and fluffy.  I love that we’re completely vegan at breakfast now!

Ingredients: (Makes approx. 12)

2 cups flour (whichever kind you prefer)
2 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons baking powder  (Read the ingredients!  Some brands are processed in the same factory as dairy products.)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups soymilk
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
Blueberries (optional)

See full recipe and directions here.  This website is interactive so you can tell it how many you want to make and it will calculate the amount of ingredients you need.

Enjoy!