Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Thanksgiving was going good, we went to my parents house and while we were eating I noticed Nathan was scratching and coughing. After we were done eating (and he ate a lot) I noticed one hive on his wrist. I got him some Benadryl and then questioned my parents on the food. They know and have taken care of him before so I trust they know what they are doing when preparing food. They told me everything they used and it was all fine. Then I remembered that Steve and Nathan were wrestling around on my parents living room floor earlier and these allergy symptoms started after. My theory is that my parents watch a dog at their house and when Steve and Nathan were wrestling it kicked up a bunch of dander and pet hair. Nathan is allergic to dogs. Once we got home, Nathan was fine again.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Trick or Treat, Birthday Parties and Moving

Today was a very busy day and very stressful. At 11am I need to take Nathan to a birthday party for a boy in his class. They live in our subdivision and I have talked to the mom on the phone about what she is serving and there will be food he can eat. The mom was so nice and really wanted to accommodate Nathan. She told me earlier in the week that she was having hot dogs, fruit and chips. I told her I would bring Nathan's cupcake. Nathan had fun at the party, he ate good - his entire hot dog. He couldn't have the chips since they has cheese on them but he ate his fruit and cupcake. They played games and opened gifts.

Just before the party ended, my husband called and said the movers were at our house and I needed to get home so I could let them know where to put the furniture. I ran home and unpacked and directed the movers.

6pm the door bell starts ringing and we had trick or treaters, I took Nathan out to meet neighbors and trick or treat. He got lots of candy some he could eat and some he couldn't. The (bad) candy we put into a dish and the great pumpkin came (while he was asleep) and took the candy he couldn't have and replaced it with good candy and Halloween toys.

What a day!!

Friday, October 15, 2010

This Site

My website has been down for almost a month. I still am working on it but in the mean time I am at I am having domain problems.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

2010 Flu Shot

Today we were at our new pediatrician and I asked about Nathan getting the flu shot. I told her that Nathan has received the shot every year but it was usually done by the allergist because of he severe egg allergy but I also told her he has never had a reaction to the shot. She said let's just go ahead and do it!! So the nurse came in and gave Nathan the shot and we up and left right away. No giving it to him in small doses or waiting to see if he has a reaction. Just up and left right after. I forgot about it and suddenly hours later I was like "he is ok". He has been fine.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

A New Allergist - Again

I admit it, I am an allergist shopper. I can't seem to find one that I can really connect with or maybe I haven't found the one that will tell me what I want to hear. But it isn't just me, my husband agrees too, he hasn't loved any of them.

Today I took Nathan to a new allergist. He seemed alright, he is the partner of one we had seen already. He looked over Nathan, asked me questions, asked Nathan about fire trucks (he is obsessed with them), wrote us an RX for eczema and sent us for blood work. He told me that the other allergist was going to conduct a food challenge for wheat a while back (according to the chart) so he would probably do it - once we got the blood test back and if wheat is lower.

I think it is too early to judge I will wait and see but so far he seems pretty good.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Fun Fire Truck Day

A few years ago we went to this Firehouse Open house and today we went again. Nathan had so much fun meeting firemen, spraying a real firehouse, going down the firetruck slide, ringing the bell on the firetruck, climbing a small ladder and more.

He also couldn't stop talking about the Flight For Life helicopter, we got to see it land and take off. It was really windy.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mabels Labels

When school shopping starts so does the putting your child's name on everything!! I needed to label Nathan's new backpack, lunch box, water bottle, shoes, gym clothes, etc. I have a label maker but it just didn't work as well as these Mabel's Labels that I ordered online. They are super sticky cute little labels with Nathan's name and a little fire truck to personalize them.

My favorite Mabel's Labels are:
Sticky Labels and Skinny-Minis™ are dishwasher/microwave safe, peel and stick labels. These bestselling products are extremely versatile and long-lasting. 
Colourful Label Out Loud™ Tag Mates™ are laundry safe, peel and stick clothing labels that require no ironing or sewing. Apply to clothing care tags.
Allergy Alerts are durable, waterproof labels that specify allergies on items such as food containers and travel gear. As with all our labels, they are produced in a nut-free facility.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Field Trip

Nathan's first 4k field trip was today. It was just in the morning at a park and play museum. No food was was being served but a snack was. Earlier this week his teacher told me that she would bring one of Nathan's safe snacks and asked me if Nathan could have Juicy Juice that was being served. I said "ok, then I won't worry about sending a snack and yes he can have the juice."
After the field trip I asked him what his snack was and he said he didn't eat one. I guess no snack is better then a  "bad snack."
Parent chaperone's were invited on the field trip so there were a lot of parents that might not be aware of the Nathan's food allergies. I was at work sitting at my desk feeling very nervous. The next field trip date I am off and I will be going.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Before School Care

Nathan started before school care today and will be going 2 days a week for now and eventually will go 4 days. When my husband dropped him off the teacher (an older lady) seemed flustered when we gave her all of Nathan's medications. I called later in the day to see how Nathan was doing and she said he had a few tears, which was expected in a new place. Then I make sure she was aware that Nathan had food allergies and she said "yes" then finally admitted to me that she didn't know much about food allergies. What??? When we talked to the director she assured us that they were used to kids with food allergies and he would be fine. This really makes me uneasy. I don't drop him off or even pick up so I don't see this teacher or even met her. I pack all of Nathan's food and I instructed her not to feed him anything else unless it is fruit.

Now, I really need to go in there and show her how to use the Epi-Pen and talk to her about food allergies.

When Nathan came home I asked him about the before school care and he said it was good, then I asked why he cried then he continued to tell me that he had to "throw up". He did this at the other daycare too at meal time. He doesn't do this at home so I think he is having food issues. He did have a bad allergic reaction at a daycare over a year ago where he did vomit and maybe he still is reminded of this. It was very traumatic for him.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Nathan's Lunch today

His favorite lunch is Soynut Butter with Jelly (today is grape jelly) on a dairy-free, wheat-free bread we buy at a local bakery. Oh and plain Lays chips with apples (not shown).

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

42 Gluten/Wheat Free Recipes

I came across this E-book (thanks to Frugal Girls) that has 42 Gluten-Free recipes. Since we avoid wheat, this is a great resource.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Kettle Corn from the festival

We went to a local festival flea market for Labor day, Nathan ate lunch at home, but at the fair we did get him corn on the cob- plain with no butter and Kettle Corn. I felt safe getting the kettle corn for him because they only make plain kettle corn with no nuts and there is nothing in the ingredients that he is allergic too. He loved his kettle corn so much he ate half of the bag in the car ride home.

It just brings me so joy to watch Nathan eat something that he enjoys and I know it's safe for him.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

First Day of 4k

Today was Nathan's first day of 4k. He goes half days to an elementary school - it is a big school for a 4 year old.  They don't get lunch, just snacks. I brought his snacks and treats for when they celebrate birthdays (there was one today). I stuck a sticker on his back that read: Allergy Child. Since it was the first day, I didn't want the teachers to forget about his allergies. The drop off was good, no tears - from either one of us.

When I picked him up, he was happy and said he had a good day. He told me all about their day and he got to eat one of his cupcakes at snack time.

In his folder there was a note to all the parents about a child in his class with a peanut allergy (Nathan) and that the class was going to be peanut free. The school asked for parents to bring treats without peanuts or nuts, to make sure they wash their child's hands after handling a peanut product and how to select peanut free snacks. I know the note was sent out because of my child -  the teacher told me Nathan was the only one in her class this year. I eat peanut butter around him, he doesn't have a reaction unless he eats it. He also has so many other allergies and egg is most serious.

I am happy the school is aware, but I don't want to inconvenience others.

Monday, August 30, 2010

4K Open House

Tonight we went to 4k Open House at Nathan's new school. We met his teacher and saw the classroom, Nathan loved all the toys and played with the other children. He didn't want to leave.

His teacher told us that she didn't have any allergy children this year but had quite a few last year - Milk and Gluten. It made me feel  a little more relieved that she has dealt with food allergies before. She asked me about snacks and birthday treats and I told her I had them all ready to bring in and that I had some candy and frozen cupcakes for Nathan - to use for birthday treats. She said she had a freezer in the classroom. She also told me that they offer juice at snack time since he can't have milk. He is only going half days so no lunch at the school, just a snack time.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

4k Registration

Today we registered Nathan for 4k at an elementary school in our new neighborhood. We were planning on starting him in school in October when our house was built, but since we don't have a daycare right now we talked to the school about starting him on September 1st and commuting. We have some paperwork to fill out and he could be starting with the rest of the kids.
Registration went good, we got to see part of the school, Nathan had his school pictures taken, we found out about bus information and even how to raise money for the school. We met with a nurse and gave her our health papers (required by school) the extra food allergy instructions and allergy plan that I made. I gave her all Nathan's medications, EpiPens, Benadryl, and an in-haler. She gave me another form to have filled out by our doctor for the in-haler.
When we got to the school lunch table, they give you a choice of buying milk for your 4k child for snack time since it is half day and they don't have lunch. I asked about soy milk and they told me I needed to email or call  someone else or we could choose juice which is around $8.50 for the year. Juice just seems easier and may have a less chance of Nathan's soy milk getting mixed up with the other children's milk.
Of course new school (big boy school) and more anxiety, but I am hoping that everything will be fine.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

He's Allergic

I signed Nathan up for Nature Sprouts at a local nature center. It was about squirrels and the guide (an older woman) reads a story, they play a few games and then snack time. Ack!!!! She hands out Honey Bunches of Oats with Nuts, cereal in cups. I stopped her before she got to Nathan and said "I am sorry, he is allergic." Then she looks at me really puzzled and says "he's alllllergic?" "Yes" I said.  Then she tells me that she thinks they might have some graham crackers and starts to walk towards the door. I say, "No thanks, he's allergic, he is ok,. I have a snack in the car." Then she gives me a strange look and says "well I know he isn't allergic to water, he can have some water?" I said "yes, water is fine, thanks."

Sunday, August 15, 2010

BBQ with friends

Today we went to a BBQ at a friends house we met through the allergy group, I started. They have a boy that is a week apart in age and has the same exact allergies as Nathan. I am so thankful that they are our friends and the mom and I can compare notes and talk about food allergies. We have play dates and talk on the phone when we need someone who understands to listen.
It was so refreshing to be at a party and not have to worry about what Nathan is going to eat. They had allergy friendly food for Nathan and he and his friend ate the same foods. All the kids played in the pool and the yard and had a great time.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Please don't feed my child peas

I don't pack fruit or veggies in Nathan's lunch, the daycare supplies them (hope my money goes towards something since he doesn't eat their meals).This morning when packing Nathan's lunch for daycare I noticed on the menu that they were having peas. The least few times Nathan has had issues at lunch at daycare was when he ate peas. He usually gags and throws up, coughs and tells me his tummy hurts.  We discussed this issue with Nathan's pediatrician last week and she agreed he shouldn't eat them. We don't know for sure if it is an allergy, he just doesn't like them, or the texture, so I sent a note in his lunch box to "please do NOT give Nathan peas today."

Around 4pm, I get a call ( I have told them not to call me at work unless it was an emergency - they call me all the time) at work from the owner of the daycare to tell me that "Nathan ate peas and he loved them." I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I sent a note telling her that I didn't want Nathan to eat peas and she stills gives them to him against my wishes. How dare her. This is a child that has severe food allergies!!! Then she gets mad at me and tells me that I need to send a note from his pediatrician saying he can't eat peas and by the state she needs to fed the kids a veggie - and if he couldn't eat them I should have sent something else. I didn't know this. She gets angry with me and tells me that I don't respect her (no I don't respect people that don't follow my directions) and I should give her my 2 weeks. I was speechless!!! I couldn't believe I trusted this woman with my child and this daycare. How can she just ignore my note??

At 5pm, I pick up Nathan, she isn't there because she talks a big talk and can't face you. I walk in get Nathan, get all his stuff and walk out without saying a word to anyone. Nathan is coughing and telling me he has a frog in his tummy. He said mama, I ate peas.

That was the last time we stepped foot in that place. I feel like I need to report this daycare. This is the place that the 2nd day Nathan was there broke his arm (needed a cast) and didn't get treatment, he also got nurse maid elbow on another day (didn't get treatment) and wanted me to feed Nathan wheat. I am asking myself why were kept him there just over a year.

It seems like ever since we told the daycare owner that we would be leaving in October (because we are moving) she has wanted us out so she could fill Nathan's 4k spot there, there is no 4k in that school district. She is greedy and money hungry.

Since we paid for the whole week and his field trip next week we are going to request she refunds our money.

Read more about this day care:
They possibly gave him milk.
Broken Arm
Gave him wheat
Daycare has a dog (Nathan is allergic)
Lunch problems at daycare

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Peanut Butter at the Beach

We went to the beach today and I noticed a father rinsing a small child off in the water, the child just got done eating peanut butter and had it all over him. I knew this because I looked at the chairs where the family was and  the jar of peanut butter was sitting out.

I think having a child with food allergies makes a mom very aware of her surroundings. I feel like a hawk always watching and noticing other kids and what they are doing.

Is it just me or are all moms observant as me?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Nathan's 4 year well check

Today, Nathan went to the doctor for his well check.
Weight: 30.5lbs
Height: 3"1"
It seems small for a boy his age but for him this is normal. He had a few shots and got his prescriptions re-filled.

Therapy for food issues?

At our doctor visit today we discussed Nathan's food allergies and his issues with his eating and food. He will come home from daycare and say "mommy, I didn't throw up today at lunch."  There are so many emotional issues he deals with daily such as: he has to sit at a separate table, having to eat something different as everyone else, or even being left out at a party.

The doctor told me that in the future it is very common for children with food allergies to need therapy. When you have a child that is 4 years old you don't want to think about therapy already.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Dirt Cups

Today while sitting at my desk at work, I remembered that daycare is making dirt cups with Oreo cookies and chocolate pudding. Nathan won't be able to participate because I didn't get to the store and get special cookies and soy pudding.

So I feel horrible today, feeling like a bad mom who is too busy to get special food for her allergy child. I will have to figure out a way to make it up to him.
Update: It turned out fine, when I picked him up they told me that they gave him one of his brownies with his soy ice cream and put fruit snacks on it. He loved it.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Contest Winner

The winner of the Divvies Bakery Cookbook is Victoria A. Congratulations Victoria!!!
Thanks to everyone who entered and watch for more contests in the future.

Food Label

These are not allergy safe for my son since they do contain milk, but the allergen information caught my eye. I don't think I ever saw a label like this. 

Good manufacturing practices used to segregate ingredients on the facility that also processes eggs, soy ingredients, wheat peanuts and tree nuts.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Nathan's lunch time at school/daycare

Today, while I was at work I got a call from daycare/school. I was unavailable and my husband got the call. This is the second time they called about Nathan not eating his lunch and then getting very upset and even sick.

The first call was a few weeks ago, about how Nathan is not eating his lunch and then he gets upset and will even cry, cough, gag and vomit a little. This is what he does when he gets upset. Well the director goes on to tell me that maybe I should try sending foods that the other kids are eating, so if they are having chicken nuggets to send some allergy-free chicken nuggets for Nathan. She seems to think the reason that Nathan is having a hard time eating lunches is because he wants to eat the same thing as other kids. Maybe, maybe not. As a result, this call made me feel like a bad mom and Nathan was feeling left out.  I sat at my desk at work in tears. When I picked him up that day I told the director I would try to find foods to match the daycare menu but I also told her not to call me at work about this. It is something that she can tell me when he is picked up.

Last week I sent chicken nuggets, he didn't eat them. He hasn't liked them at home, I don't know why she thinks he will eat them at school. But then she seems to think she knows everything.

Fast forward to today. My husband gets the call from the director about how Nathan didn't eat his lunch again (a lunch that is the same as the other kids) and he got upset. She tells him that Nathan is small and how he needs to eat more, he is acting out at lunch and she can't have that, etc. My husband calls me at work to tell me this and again I sit at my desk in tears wondering if he isn't getting enough to eat, am I bad mom, what am I going to do?

Then I get a little angry, this is something that she doesn't need to call us about at work, it can wait until we pick him up, who is she to tell me what to feed my child. She isn't a doctor. Things were better at lunch time until she told me to make lunch items to match her menu. I guess I will bring this up to our pediatrician next week at his 4yr old appointment.  And send Soy nut butter and jelly sandwiches every day. He is a picky eater, I thought most kids were.

I am looking forward to Nathan starting a 4k and a new daycare next fall. And I am sure new problems.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Email from a Reader...

My name is Victoria and I was reading your blog today and found so many things that are so useful.  My daughter Kaelyn is going to be 1 in a few weeks and she is allergic to milk, eggs, peanuts, brocoli, and has eczema.  I just started a mommy group in my area here in Florida because there is nothing at all for moms like us. I had joined several mommy groups in the area but it's so hard when they all bring snacks that Kaelyn cannot be around.  Just the other day we went to the mall to see a puppet theater and one of the moms pulls out a bag of peanuts for her son who was sitting next to Kaelyn.  I made her aware of the situation but she just nodded and went ahead in giving them to her son.  I see that you have done a lot of researching and also started a local playgroup in your area if I'm correct.  I wanted to get your opinion on how to get the word out.  It seems that although there are not groups like mine around I can't find other moms in the area that go through the same things I do everyday with Kaelyn.  Any help would be much appreciated!  Oh, and I love your pretzel recipe.  I'm going to try it for Kaelyn's first birthday! 
Thank you!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Nathan's 4th Birthday Party

Tonight we had Nathan's 4th birthday party at Flabbergast and it was a good time. He had so much fun playing with his friends.

They offer parties with food and just cake. I decided to do a party with just cake from 6pm-8pm as an after dinner party. I didn't want to deal with food and making sure Nathan had something he could eat and have to be different so I got cupcakes and all the cupcakes looked the same. You couldn't tell which one was allergy free. I bought plain chocolate cupcakes and frosted them myself.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


No Nuts. No Eggs. No Dairy. Just Delicious!
By Lori Sandler
When Lori Sandler’s son Benjamin was diagnosed with severe food allergies to dairy and nuts at a young age, she decided to take action. While she wasn’t trained as a pastry chef, she had many fond memories of visiting bakeries as a child and wanted Benjamin to experience those same warm moments and treats. And so after years of testing, tasting, and refining, the Divvies Bakery was born in 2005, a bakeshop dedicated to peanut-free, tree nut-free, milk-free, and egg-free products located in South Salem, New York.
Since then, the company has thrived, with their signature pastel blue and white-packaged products sold to thousands online, as well as through retailers, including Whole Foods, Balducci’s, Blooomingdale’s, and Disney World. And Benjamin went from being the “kid with food allergies” to the one who always has fun treats to share with his friends and classmates. Now in THE DIVVIES BAKERY COOKBOOK (St. Martin’s Press; August 2010; $25.99 hardcover), Sandler shares her story, mission, and the recipes that have made Divvies a beloved and winning brand.
I have my own copy of this cookbook and I love it!! I made the fudge recipe and the chocolate covered pretzels using Nathan's wheat free pretzels as his class birthday treat. It was a big hit!!
You can WIN a copy of The Divvies Bakery Cookbook!!!
Please complete the entry form below.
Your email will only be used for this contest and will not be sold or used for any other reason. This giveaway will close on July 31st at 11:59 CT time. I will pick a random winner using After a winner is picked, I will email the winner and the winner must respond within 72 hours with mailing information. The book will arrive directly from the publisher. Winner must have a US or Canada address. Must be 18 years or older to enter.
If you can't view the form below, you can email me with your name and subject line use "Cookbook Giveaway". Please only enter once.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Nathan's Birthday Treat

At school/daycare I needed to make a treat for Nathan's class and I usually make Rice Krispy bars but Nathan doesn't really like them anymore and is more into chocolate. I got this idea out of the Divvies Bakery Cookbook by Lori Sandler. I had to use gluten/wheat free pretzels instead of regular pretzels, a dairy free chocolate and sprinkles. It was pretty easy and all the kids loved them.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Defensive v.s. Rude

Background: We had T-Ball last night and after there is always a snack. I sent an email to all the parents on the team to let them know Nathan has food allergies and we would provide a snack.

When the game ended, Nathan (almost 4) ran over with the kids to get drinks and snacks. A mom handed Nathan a bag of MM Chocolate Chip cookies. I grabbed the bag from Nathan and handed it back to the mom and said, "No Thank You, he has Food Allergies" and we walked away.

My husband was there and saw the incident and told me I was being "rude," I said "no I am protecting my child" - I felt very defensive. My husband said "we should have took the cookies." "No," I said, "Nathan has never seen those cookies and I didn't want him to have them." Maybe my husband wanted them? And then eat them in front of Nathan. That is rude.

Was it rude for me to not accept them? I was a little mad that she even handed them to him. All the parents all got an email about his allergies (I mean, know that is not their priority to remember). What if they weren't packaged and then he touched them and started reacting.

Maybe I am over reacting or maybe I am defensive or even just a rude mom.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Food allergies and festivals

It is hard to go to festivals when you have food allergies. When we go we usually get Nathan a plain hot dog, corn on the cob (no butter) and chips. Usually that is the easiest.
Today, we were at a local festival that had more food and more choices. They had burgers, chicken, fries, etc. I wanted to get Nathan something different then the usual. So, I asked the cashier if the burger meat had anything other then meat or if they cook it in anything like for example butter. She looked at me as if I am just being picky. Then I said I wanted one plain no bun or anything on it. Again the look. Then I asked about the fries (Nathan really wanted fries). So, I asked the cashier again, "are the fries cooked in peanut oil?" again the look then she asked someone else and answers to me "no". Then I ask "are they regular potatoes, no wheat seasoning or anything?" again the look and she asked someone else. The answer was "no, just plain fries." Then I said "I just want to make sure, my son has food allergies and I don't want him to end up at the hospital." She had a look of shock and said "no, of course not!!" in a friendly manner. He ate it and was fine.

In the photo: Nathan sitting in the firetruck at the festival.

Monday, July 5, 2010

4th of July Fireworks

We went and watched the fireworks on the 4th of July at a local lake by our house. We met up with friends and Nathan's friend who also has the exact same allergies and the is the same age was there. They had fun watching the fireworks together. Nathan had his cotton candy and corn puffs, he was happy.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

4th of July Parade

We went to the 4th of July Parade this morning and it was great, except - there was tons of candy. Nathan had a bag full and he was excited about it. He gave me every piece he got. I told him not to eat any of it unless he asked. As he gave me items he couldn't eat, such as Toostie Rolls, I would give it to our neighbors' kids.

Monday, June 21, 2010

A dog.

When I went to pick up Nathan at daycare/preschool today I noticed an animal cage, with a dog. The director immediately told me it was their new dog, they just lost their old dog and it was hypo-allergenic. She continued to tell me that they bring the dog here and the kids love him, but my immediate thought was: Nathan is allergic to dogs. She told me that she is allergic and this is a great dog for allergies and Nathan has been around him and was fine.

I didn't know what to think. The allergist told us to keep Nathan away from dogs because he is allergic, but part of me wants Nathan to be able to pet a dog ans be ok and enjoy a dog as a friend like the rest of us.

This whole thing makes me nervous. What can I do, pull my child from the center or make a big fuss and look like a bitchy parent.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Nathan Rode a Pony at the Zoo

For Nathan's first birthday (years ago) we went to the zoo, I let Nathan go by the petting zoo and he got licked by the animals and broke out into hives. I had to give him Benadryl, it was horrible. Even since he was one, I haven't let him go by animals, especially farm animals.

When we were at the zoo yesterday they had free pony rides and Nathan asked to ride one. I wanted him to ride one as much as he did but then fear came over me. My husband said, let's try it, we can always use wipes when he is done and you have we did.

He did fine and he loved it so much.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Email from a Reader....

I just found your blog researching soy challenges. I have a 3 year old girl that is allergic to Soy, Milk, Eggs, Peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, Pork, Beef, corn, a low wheat allergy, and she is a picky eater. Needless to say that we've struggled with getting her on the growth charts and out of her failure to thrive diagnosis. She is currently drinking So Delicious Coconut milk supplemented with a special (expensive) formula for children with digestion problems. This milk has been a life saver, they make yogurt, ice cream, and ice cream sandwiches out of it.

She also just got diagnosed with bronchitis and they've warned asthma is probably on its way.

I just talked to her doctor and her Soy levels are so low they want to do a challenge. I ran down the halls of my work hooping and hollaring. Everyone thinks I'm crazy because they don't know what kind of doors this would open in terms of the foods she would be able to eat and the financial break it would give us.

I just wanted to let you know there are others out there going through the same struggle.

Zakia V.

Monday, June 14, 2010

First T-Ball Game

Follow-up: I wanted to follow-up on my T-Ball snack post.

An email went out to all the parents about our team and it specifically asked if any kids had any food allergies. Here is the email:

If any of the children have a food allergy, please reply to all so those bringing the snack can be aware when selecting snacks. In addition, on whatever day is designated to you for snack or drink, it might be fun for your child to announce to the rest of the group that they brought the snack or drink today as it could be a good ice breaker for the kids to get to know each other.

This was my open door to reply to all the parents and tell them about Nathan's food allergies. Here is my reply:

Hello all,
My son Nathan has severe food allergies to Dairy, Eggs, Wheat and Nuts so we will be bringing our own snacks. He wears an allergy bracelet but I wanted to make sure that no one gives him a snack without checking first.
Thanks so much,

Nathan had his first T-Ball game tonight and after the game a mother pulls out Cheez-It's. Yes the snack that has dairy and wheat. No, it wasn't fruit or something that Nathan COULD eat. She goes to me "Is that Nathan with the food allergies?" As if she was doing me a favor by being aware or checking with me. Nathan saw the snack and all the kids getting a bag and asked me for some - I said Nathan, "You're allergic to those (broke my heart), I brought you a snack from home."

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Boys will be Boys

When I picked up Nathan from school today the teacher warned me that on the bus on their way to or from a field trip, Nathan and another boy were licking each others' tongues (they are 3). EEWWW GROSS, was many peoples first thought. My first thought was OH NO, what did that other boy just eat? Did he eat peanut butter, drink milk, anything? I panicked!! No one even thinks about this, no one mentions it as if it is not a concern. It is.

Then the teacher went on to tell me that the boy just tested for Strep. What??? I asked why he was there and she said he was symptom free that he was sick over the weekend and was tested then but the results came just came back. So my immediate fear of a food allergy attacked turned into a longer fear of waiting for him to get Strep Throat.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I Don't Think So

I have been starting to plan Nathan's 4th birthday birthday party and I called one of the local play places. Seemed like a good ideal, not a lot of work or food prep. The kids can play and we can use a party room.
So, I called them to get some more information. They have a party menu choice of Pizza or Subs (neither that my allergic son can have) so I asked them about it and the man's response was: "You can choose Pizza or Subs for the party and serve your allergic child (aka the birthday boy) something different." Ummm, I don't think so. This is a party for him, why would I make him eat something different, it is bad enough his cake is different. I was not happy with the answer and I said, "I know you sell hot dogs there, my son is not allergic, can we serve those?" He said that would be ok.

Really, was that so hard. Why didn't he offer us something else.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Team Snacks, What to do?

Nathan will be starting T-Ball and each week a parent is assigned to bring a snack and/or a drink for the team. I am not too worried about the drinks, most will bring juice or water, I don't think too many parents will bring milk, but the snack is my concern. If it is fruit it will be fine but what about the crackers or cookies or other snacks that parents will bring that my son is allergic too. Will most parents bring healthy foods, such as fruit? So here is my question....

Which of the following would you do if you were me?
A. Bring a snack for Nathan every week just in case the snack is something he can't have.
B. Email the parents on the list to let them know that I have a child with food allergies.

After I typed this out, I think I answered my own question. My answer is A. I don't want to draw attention to us and I don't want any parents to feel obligated to bring something that my child CAN have.

They will be having an ice cream social at the end of the season. We will bring our own Soy ice cream. Stay tuned for how this all plays out.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Email from a Reader

I love getting emails from readers, so please feel free to send me an email.
Here is one I received recently...

Dear Jeanette,
While I was surfing the internet, I found your blog. I have a 10 year-old son who has severe food allergies to wheat, eggs, milk, peanuts and hazelnut. He was diagnosed to food allergies at about 8 months-old to soy, milk, oats, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and eggs (looks like he had the same allergies as your son). He has asthma since 18 months-old. Now he is a happy 10 year-old boy, who loves to play soccer and to talk to his friends. I have an older son who doesn't have food allergies, but has a lot of seasonal allergies. It has been very hard to manage my son's food allergies at school, but I am happy he didn't have any reaction there and I try to be very involved as much as possible with the activities at school.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Allergies and the Ball Park

We had tickets to a baseball game last tonight. It was a minor league game so not as busy as a regular game. I know they have peanuts at these games (which Nathan is allergic too) but I just hope that I can keep his hands clean and bring our own food. I can't or don't want to keep from doing normal kid things so I try as hard as I can to do it without having any allergy problems.

Well it happened.....towards the end of the game I noticed a hive on his chin. I thought of two things it could be, peanut residue that is on the chairs and in the air OR his little friend that kept licking his face - they are 3.5years and being silly. I cringed every time he did it.

As we walked to the car he started coughing and kind of gagging so I gave him the Benadryl. By the time he was in bed, he was all better.

I don't really know what the reaction was but I don't want to keep him from going to a baseball game. I do wish there were more peanut free games in our area.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Nathan's Summer Starbucks Drink

Nathan and I went into Starbucks today to get my coffee that I needed so badly. They were giving out samples of their Strawberry Frappuccino's and Nathan wanted some but he couldn't because the sample was made with milk and I told him he was allergic, etc. The lady working there overheard me and said we make them with soy and just leave out the whip. I was thinking great, a strawberry milkshake with soy milk, perfect. She offers to make one on the house for Nathan. I kept asking her if she was sure that it was dairy free - they don't put cream or milk - other then soy and she said "completely dairy free."

Nathan loved it and so did I. No reactions!! I am so happy that he can get something that is somewhat good for him and we can get it Starbucks. He calls it a strawberry shake!!!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Homemade Granola - No Nuts

I am going to attempt to make homemade granola. I need a good quick morning snack. Nathan likes oatmeal so much so hopefully he will like this.

4 cups of old fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup of pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
1 cup of dried fruits (raisins, cranberries, cherries, etc)

Heat oven to 350F One rimmed cookie sheet toss the oats, oil, salt and syrup.
Bake tossing once until golden and crisp, 25-30 minutes
Add dried fruit and toss. Let cool.

I will also add some non-dairy chocolate chips and even sunflower seeds.

Should keep in airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Food Allergy Awareness Week

Food Allergy Awareness week is coming up soon, May 9th-15th. It is a week to help spread awareness of food allergies and to help educate others.

I am planning to make teal ribbons to share with family and friends and the allergy support group to wear and help spread awareness.

What types of activities do you have planned for Food Allergy Awareness week?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

New EPI Pen Design - UGH.

It seems all our Epi Pens seem to expire at the same time and it usually early Spring. I placed an order for a refill and they were different. The design was not round anymore, but more of an oval and the bag I take everywhere with his Epi Pen that had an outside pocket to fit the round Epi-Pen perfectly. The new oval design doesn't fit in the pocket. What am I going to do now?? Ugh

And with this new Epi Pen design the cover that was gray is now blue. I trained my family to use the old design (which is used the pretty much the same) as the new one but it looks different and could be confusing to my family.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Cold Stone Creamery

It was a nice day out today and feeling really summery so after the park I decided to take Nathan to the get an "ice cream" well not a real ice cream but I knew that Cold Stone Creamery had sorbet so off there we went.

They only had one Sorbet flavor and it was lemon. The guy working said he could put gummy bears in it and rainbow sprinkles so I said sure. Nathan saw blue ice cream and that is what he really wanted and I told him I have blue ice cream at home, which I didn't. He didn't really like the lemon just took a few bites. So on the car ride home I thought about how I could give him blue ice cream and then I thought I would buy his vanilla soy ice cream, add blue food coloring and then sprinkles.

That is what I did, it worked well and he was so happy to have blue ice cream.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Doctor's Orders: Overcoming Allergies - ABC News

Go to ABC News to view a news story on overcoming food allergies. It brought tears to my eyes for this boy, I was so happy for him.

I hope my Nathan can do this therapy someday. I can't wait for the day he can eat more foods.

Read the story here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Cake with wheat.

School was having cake and they had a cake that was free of all of Nathan's allergens except wheat. It had wheat. They called and asked me if Nathan could have some and since the recent allergist told us that Nathan isn't allergic to wheat. I said, sure if you feel comfortable giving it to him and they said yes they did.

When I picked up Nathan they said he ate the cake and did fine. I notice a little redness on his cheeks.

Later in the evening I think the wheat affected him more. He told me a few times that his tummy hurt. He would say he is hungry and even eat but again would complain of a tummy ache. I think he had to much at once, maybe if he would have it everyday a little bit at a time it might be better and his system might be able to handle it.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

At the park today

It is a nice day out and we were at the park. This park is a new park that has a really nice big play area and it is very busy. There is a sign that says no drink or food allowed so that is why we like going there. Last year it was clean and no one ate in the play area. This year I guess the rules no longer apply, there was tons of food all over. Kids were running with cookies in their mouths and playing in the sand box with cookies, people eating lunches and spilling food by the swings, a big bag of popcorn just open on a bench in the play area. Not only does this scare me because of food everywhere, but also it makes the new playground look bad when there is spilled food everywhere.

Kids were eating yogurt and drinking milk, all I was thinking was I need to wash Nathan's hands every time he touches something. I know that if your child doesn't have food allergies you are not going to even think of it, but at least follow the rules.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Whole Foods for our Allergy Products

We make trips to Whole Foods for items that are free of allergens and usually buy organic. But after I saw this news story I am not sure that I want to buy their products.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Nathan Needs Snacks

I hear this phase a lot from Nathan's teachers. "Nathan needs snacks." I am out of ideas for snacks. The other children eat string cheese, yogurt, graham crackers, crackers, etc. All items that include dairy and wheat. I try to bring soy yogurt and keep them in the fridge at his school but the teachers never remember them an they expire. So I try to bring non-perishable snacks that they can keep in a bag for him.

I am running out of ideas...he used to eat allergy friendly animal crackers but lately he doesn't want them, I tried the apple cinnamon rice cakes he isn't too fond of those, I send corn puffs and he is tired of those, marshmallows, wheat free pretzels, applesauce, raisins - blah, blah, blah. I am running out of ideas.

If you have some ideas, please leave a comment.
Mom to Allergy Kid

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The March preschool calendar

Today I got the March calendar for Nathan's preschool and I instantly felt my stomach sink. They are doing all these cute themes for Dr. Seuss, St. Patty's day and Easter - that include food. Ugh!!

The first week they have a "Special Snack" for Dr. Seuss and making the "cat's hat". I will have to find out what that is and try to copy it in a allergy friendly way.

For St. Patty's Day, they will be making and eating a "Rainbow Bread" - not sure what that is but I am sure it has wheat. Don't know how to copy that unless I get the recipe and copy it with no eggs and wheat free flour. Then for St. Patty's day they will hunt for the "Pot of Gold" which they will find gold chocolate coins and eat some. Well, I can't easily make gold coins but I am going to look for a place online and try to order some if they make them with dairy free chocolate. I am sure they will be expensive.

Then there is Easter......the children are to bring in 2 hard boiled eggs to dye. Nathan is very allergic to eggs but in past he has colored eggs and had no problem so I will let him dye eggs again this year, he just can't eat them. His egg allergy is deadly.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


I ran to the grocery store after work to find something to feed my allergic son something to eat that is quick because it is after 5pm and I didn't want him to eat at 8pm.

I saw this other mom pushing a cart at the grocery store (in a hurry) filled all kinds of boxed kids foods that she will probably go home and feed her children. She had TV dinners, Kraft Mac N Cheese, Tyson Chicken Tenders, Frozen Pizza's, Breaded Fish sticks, etc. All those foods that are FAST and CHEAP and kids like. I was so envious of her!! I wanted fast and cheap meals that I could feed my child allergic child and he would eat.

Yes, I know I should feel good that my child eats very healthy now and most of the food are organic but sometimes a child just needs to eat kid friendly foods.

It seems as he is getting older he isn't liking the allergy free foods that I make anymore. He used to eat his Corn noodles, Soy milk and Rice cheese -Mac N Cheese, I would make him - but not so much anymore. I have tried the Ian's Natural foods that are marketed towards children and have many products that are allergy free but my child is smart. He know those taste as good as the "real thing".

Friday, February 12, 2010

The wheat again

I tried one more time on the wheat product just in case there was something funny tasting to him in the cookie. I tried giving him licorice which has wheat and he took a bite and didn't like it. Then I tried a few other things he wouldn't try. I think he just knows that there is something in there that he doesn't want or he is so used to his few foods that he gets on a regular basis that if I give him something that is unusual to him he doesn't want it.

The wheat is put on hold, I am going to continue the wheat free diet.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

We SOLD our condo...

I don't know if I mentioned that we had our condo up for sale for a very long time. It finally sold and we need to be out by the end of the this month. We don't have a house picked out so we need to move into an apartment for a while until we find something.

We found an apartment really close to where we are living now and they do a 3 month lease with month to month after. We went to look at the apartments today and then my question came up....did the previous owners have pets? With all of Nathan's night time coughing, all I needed was to live some where that the previous people had pets and Nathan would have a hard time living there. They said the apartment was dog free and would check the previous owners file. They were so nice to us - they found us an apartment where the previous owners had NO pets and they just put in brand NEW carpet and floors. I was relieved.

The night cough again

Back to the doctor for the cough again, his pediatrician. He is even on a steroid now and still is coughing. I am at wits end with the coughing. He seems good all weekend then Mondays after being at school he is coughing again. I wonder if he is allergic to something there. It could be anything!!

She gave me some options for him such as trying a reflux medication, having more environmental allergies checked (mold, dust, chemicals, etc.) or I suggested even getting some lung x-rays and seeing a pulmonary specialist. I said we will try the reflux medicine first and see if that will help and I took the name of a children's pulmonary specialist.

I then told her about the allergist we saw last week (see post on Feb. 3rd) and she said she has heard of him and that he was known to be a good doctor. She also didn't believe his statement kids not having wheat allergies. She told me that his partner is really good and she recommends patients to him all the time.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

I tried a wheat product

I tried a cookie made with wheat and no other ingredients that Nathan is allergic too - I didn't like what I saw. Nathan ate it and then started crying and trying to gag him self. He said it was "stuck in his teeth" to a 3.5 year old this could mean anything. I was freaking out, was he having a reaction??? There was no salt, why was he doing this?? I rushed to give him some Benadryl and he was fine. This was scary, I didn't like what I saw.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Another New Allergist

I am on this mission to find an allergy doctor that I can relate too, that I feel I trust and will really help us. We love our pediatrician, wish we could clone her to an allergist too.

I have heard about this allergist in the area and had also seen him on a news story so I thought we could try him and see what he has to say, he had been an allergist for more then 15 years so I thought he would be experienced. I made an appointment and today was that day.

When we got to the office it, was very basic, nothing fancy or high tech - I am not sure they used computers, everything was hand written and I think they used a book for appointments. The receptionist was also the nurse. She weighed Nathan, checked his height and then took us into the exam room.

The doctor came in and asked about Nathan's history and I told him. Then he examined Nathan and listened t his lungs and said Nathan was wheezing which didn't surprise me since he has Asthma and has had a cold. He gave us an RX for a liquid steroid. I told the doctor that we already know he has allergies to Dairy, Eggs, Wheat and Nuts. He then said "Wheat" I said yes. Then he asked what happened when/if Nathan ever had wheat and I told him I have never noticed a reaction but I also maybe given him wheat a few times. He then tells me "that in the 20 years of being an allergist he has only seen 1 wheat allergy and that patient was so allergic that he couldn't even be in the same room as wheat products." What?? is what I was thinking, so my child has been told that he has a wheat allergy for all these years and really isn't. He then tells me that the only way to tell if there is a wheat allergy is to be exposed and see if there is a reaction. The tests are usually not accurate. This I can agree with but as he is telling me that there are really no wheat allergies out there I am thinking and naming about 5 people in my head that I think have wheat allergies.

He tells me that we could do a wheat challenge now in his office, he told me to run to the grocery store and get a few food items with wheat and come back. I rush out of the office with Nathan to the grocery store. I have a million thoughts going through my head. What if this is it and we can finally give him wheat, this will open a new door of foods he can eat. I was excited but also nervous at the same time.

At the store I picked out 3 things, I got a loaf of wheat bread, a bag of pretzel sticks and some Ritz crackers. Checked the ingredients and the only ingredients that they had that he was allergic too is the wheat.

When we got back to the office the doctor came in and told me to start feeding him the food and he will be back. Ok, so I gave Nathan a Ritz cracker and he was fine. Then I tried the wheat bread but because it was soft and mushy (he usually eats toasted bread) he wouldn't try it. Then I tried the pretzel stick which had tons of salt and Nathan usually doesn't like salt. He started crying a bit and saying it was salty (not a choice of product on my part), so he didn't eat it. I didn't notice any reactions and we waited for the doctor to return.

The doctor came back and asked if there were any problems or reactions and I said no, just the pretzel with salt he didn't like and he agreed most kids don't like salt. He then tells us that Nathan is fine we can start feeding him wheat and see him in 6 months and we were on our way.

I didn't know what to think. I mean could Nathan really eat wheat now. I was shocked that the doctor didn't even check Nathan out after eating the wheat. He didn't check for hives, or his breathing or anything. He could just look at him and say, he is fine. Fed him wheat. I wasn't comfortable and the rest of the afternoon I was uneasy. I was afraid of a reaction later in the day or something.

Nathan and I went out to lunch and I ordered his food the same as I always to, wheat free - out of habit.

I never noticed a reaction later in the day.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The night time cough

Well the night time cough started again and Nathan coughed every five seconds until 5am when he finally fell asleep and my alarm for work went off.

I don't know if it is his Asthma, I know he has a little cold or something. He did have a slight fever a few days ago and runny nose. We tried everything last night to get him to stop coughing. Breathing treatments, cough medicine, Benadryl steam shower, vaporizer, elevating his head, Vicks on his chest. He would sometimes cough so bad he would gag and then vomit. That happened at 2am.

My husband and I are so tired of the coughing, it is always bad at night, I start to wonder if he has lung disease or something. It seems to happen at least once a month. If it was Asthma I would think the medicines would work.

I took him to see the pediatrician today since daycare needs a note saying he doesn't have Strep because that is going around. I didn't think he was that sick anymore, just the cough. They tested him fro Strep and he was negative and she said he has a sinus infection that causes him to cough. She said if he is not better in a week bring him back.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Article on Food Allergies in the Wall Street Journal
An estimated 12 million Americans, including four million children, have food allergies—up 18% from 1997. But many kids whose food allergies were diagnosed on the basis of blood or skin tests alone may not be truly allergic, experts say.

I found this article on Wall Street Journal very interesting. Maybe my son can really eat most of the foods he is allergic too. What do you think?

Monday, January 18, 2010

My Tongue Hurts

Nathan was eating dinner at home and suddenly he started crying and saying his tongue hurt. My first thought is that his tongue is swelling up and he is having an allergic reaction. I went through everything he ate in my head thinking what could it be. When he finally calmed down enough to talk, we found out that he actually bit his tongue. What a relief.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

May contain.....

I was shopping today and as always looking for new foods Nathan can eat at the regular grocery store. His school was asking for snacks so I was looking for items he could eat. While I was in the cereal isle I noticed the cinnamon Chex cereal, he loves cinnamon and the box said "gluten free" so I knew it was wheat free so I picked up the box and started reading ingredients. Nothing was in there that he was allergic too and I was excited until I read the bold print stating that it may contain milk. What??? What do they mean may contain?? Either it has milk or it doesn't, what is may contain crap?? I guess they are really trying to cover their butts if milk residue from their other cereals get into this cereal.

I still bought it, no milk in the ingredients, but when I gave it to Nathan the first time I watched him to see if he showed any signs of a reaction, he didn't.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year 2010

Welcome 2010.

When thinking of a new year and resolutions my first thought was this is the year when Nathan will be able to eat wheat. I don't think he needs to avoid wheat even if the numbers say it, I just need to find a Doctor to confirm this. I am also hoping that since he will be 4 years old this coming summer that he will be growing out of these allergies. I am over them.

Speaking of Doctors, I have a new allergist in the area we are going to try.

I am planning on expanding the allergy group, we now have a great website up and running at the end of the last year.

Hoping 2010 is a great year for everyone.