Sunday, December 27, 2009

two days after Christmas-- wow had a great one, and now, it's Sunday and back to work, allergist appt and nutritionist tomorrow, and who knows what that brings. I get anxious that the doctors will take away a food or suggest that I don't use something I now cling to. Once I had to eliminate peas from our diets--and once it was chickpeas. the list narrows... --and who am I to talk--i just have to cook. If the list narrows any more, it's my son who suffers.
but perhaps we will find out that the numbers support lesser worrying about accidents--that if he ate a piece of meat that had touched cheese he would be ok.

been baking -- my usual lame baking, a small one layer cake with frosting that tastes really good, even a day or two old. and some Cherybrook Kitchen brownies--that I make as a chocolate cake, which I was just told is "too chocolatey"! oh well
Happy New Year to all- let's make it a good one.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

It's Christmas Eve--I love Christmas, growing up I had wonderful Christmases. Family.Big Seven fishes feasts with immediate family and my uncle Peter coming to check what kind of tomatoes my mother was using-- they never used the same type and always mock-argued about it. My mother was a phenomenal cook-- squid sauce, clams oreganata, fried calamari-- my mother could fry like noblody's business. Fried broccolli, fried smelts fried cauliflower... wow

Christmas Eve this year we are going out to dinner at a French bistro in our neighborhood with brothers -in-law--their neighborhood too, since all three of my husband's family lives in a three-block radius. ahh NYC. We love it.

No fish tonight, and probably just as well, since my cooking isn't up to that kind of task. It's in my blood, but not in my heart tonight. Tonight, maybe I'll have a token fish--
the reason by the way for fishes was that in Italain-Catholic (OK I;m not a Catholic, but that;s where it comes from) lore, you "fast" before midnight--hence fish -- and have meat after midnight! ( ya gotta love Italians, where "fasting" means eating fish and not doing without food!)

The city is white with snow and lots of ice, spent an hour in the fabulous grocery Zabars laughing with all the other patrons as we waited for our sliced meats and specialty items. I was number 86 in --and when I got there they were up to number 55! But fun atmosphere.
It's true-- It's a wonderful time of year.
Enjoy everyone--whatever faith you are-- it's a time for happiness and sharing and family and vacation from school--and fun. So enjoy my friends out there !

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

back from teen summit

We laughed. We cried. We carried food packs and Epi-pens and saw our kids palling around with other kids who get it.
It was great--met some new people and learned some new stuff--like:
  • check out the health services when you go on a college tour (just you --no children necessary).
  • Or that many many school districts across US will not allow a kid to carry an Epi pen.
  • And that "surimi"* is actually fake crabmeat made with egg. of course--fake shellfish made with another really potent allergen-- everybody knew that.
Met some great folks from Anaphylaxsis Canada-- I respect that org. They get out there and tell the stories and get legislation passed and research accomplished: go AC.
So tonight I am making decent chocochip cookies--and having a riot becuase I get to eat the raw dough-- take that you non-egg allergic people. I can eat raw cookie dough because I make it without eggs! that's a plus if I ever heard one--yummy.

* I may be spelling/saying this wrong-- but it's fake crabmeat used in sushi found in delis and the like.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Teen Summit is this weekend in Arlington-- 100 teens and parents gathered to think about, talk about, laugh about, vent about food allergies-- it's great!
was a good mom this weekend and made an individual sized cake so my teen would have something --we were hosting a 101st (yup!) birthday for great grandma-- she was loving every little minute of it--and the cake was beautiful--as was the individual one I made! so win win . Great Grandma blew out her candles (no not 101 of them) and my teen got a whole cake to himself--which I am pleased to say he did not eat all at once.
some days things are easier, some days things stink. Stinky day: Cafeteria served ribs and fries the other day--well I make that at home, but can't eat at school, and my son said that it's harder when the food served is something that he can eat(if I make it) and smells wonderful to boot. just want to rip phone books in half in frustration. These allergies are so random and so pervasive --that it just stinks. Stinks on ice is what my mom used to say!
gotta stop, barking dog downstairs is making me n u t s-- or since no nuts at our house, should I say crazy!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

teen summit here we come

OH man--just finsihed a post and hit the wrong button and whammo it's gone!
what i was saying was that I finally finished my presentation for the FAAN* Teen Summit
(*Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network) which is in DC in a couple of weeks. 100 teens and parental units gather for separate, but totally amazing, weekend of presentations, improvs, and plain old camraderie! It is so great to be in a room where everyone gets it when you say: just a minute --does that hamburger have cheese--or could you move those peanuts...
It is great--in fact life-changing --as you see kids who thought they were alone, open up when they realize everyone in the room is just like them!
yes, I'm teary eyed just thinking about it. Great for parents too as we laugh about the eye-rolls in restaurants when we ask our questions, or how we pack for airplane trips, or what type of gluten-free cookies do we buy--it's great!!!
next year in DC!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

9:49--about to make lunch-- still am not making lunches to write home about. meat, lettuce, some sort of carb and some cut up vegetables...
Found a website called the Happy Tiffin where you can purchase Bento boxes--or layered stainless tins that latch onto one another --to make a cute lunchpail type thingey. I want to get some --seems like you could put chicken and rice or stew or mixed salads in those and better than using baggies.
I guess I'm coming to these late in the game, but a friend of mine whose son is also allergic, is of Japanese descent and she pointed out the places to get these--before that all i knew was that the Chinese store on Canal Street sold plastic ones--but they were small and appetites were large.
enjoy the three day weekend! off to a playoff game tomorrow--go NY.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

my webmaster just had a baby boy! how wonderful. I remember those early days of no time to do anything but change, feed, put down to nap and start over! exhausting but luscious.

So nothing on the site will change for a while-- have to make do with those same old recipes for a while.
had a great chat with a young woman who has a third grader who is having some nervousness about having a reaction--had a couple of "unexplained" ones --possible Worcestershire sauce --and who also just became allergic to banannas. yuck I remember being told to take another food off the list-- I used to cry. Now I don't vary anything on the list--which brings me to what my friend and I were discussing--what to make for lunch. I have no ideas anymore and lunch in the pack in boring if nutritious-- have to send a lot! esp on days with sports. I'm thinking of Bento tins to layer up the lunchables-- that would be something different!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Readying myself for making lunches every night--I had forgotten in the scheduless days of summer! I am flitting around like a butterfly without lighting long enough to buy what I need--indeed to even think about what I need. What I need--really-- is some organization. Maybe I should get one of those Mead 5-Star notebooks!
New York food stores are gettting lots of new products for gluten free. PAstas--that actually taste like pasta and don't get mushy. Cookies from Cherrybrook Kitchen nut-egg-wheat-dairy free; and energy bars from Enjoy Life... feeding a growing active 16-yr old can be a challenge sometimes.

Monday, September 7, 2009

the school year begins anew. Am I ready for Junior year? I guess if I'm ready is irrelevant-- but it begins. Had a great summer, full of new thoughts, new ideas, new recipes and a new way of "hands off" life.

Monday, August 31, 2009

one of those days where the week unfolds in front of you and all you can see is what you need at the supermarket. Turkey and roast beef and lots of finger veggies for us to take to the US Open; there's a party today-- all afternoon and dinner--so that's portable dinner and dessert (which I do badly, have I mentioned?) and then there's dinner tomorrow night--but thankfully I get home from office early enough to throw in lamb chops. Next week we're having a party and I have gotten the OK to make whatever I want as the party is not for my family, but for a theater group we are a part of.
if I say, 'whew' or "that make the party easier" I feel guilty--and well I should. I only have to cook the food, I don't have to live the life... that's the hard part.
Also, yesterday on the beach--we got fries and a handmade lemonade. Ten minutes later the sneezing, the runny nose, the eyes watering, the genreal miserableness. never progressed into anything else, thank goodness, but... We were on the beach-- so I figure it's the fries--can't be the lemonade--lemons and water?? so no going there anymore--I mean, it's a boardwalk, there's more than one place for fries. But the sneezing, and misery went on for a good few hours, Benedryl and all. just never know.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

late night, thinking if i should surprise the family and make chocolate chip's ten o'clock am I up for it? I think I'll stick with ice pops since it is still warm out (and in). bad mom, I know, but I'm tired from the heat. BTW I use cherrybrook kitchen chocchip cookie mix--but usually I make it as a one layer cake in a round layer pan. only problem is that I eat a lot of it --I may even like it more than my kid.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

wow so much has happened in the past weeks. I finally finished my cookbook--can always add recipes but the structure and basics and intro etc are done. yay--anyone out there a publisher? haha and then I discovered herbs. For so long I'd been boring--yes boring--and then i decided to buy one of every green herb in the market and try them. OK so I don't know what to do with tarragon--it smells so sweeet. But rosemary in turkey rolls and cilantro in stuffed peppers and plain old parsely lemon and garlic heated up some nice roast chicken. I stuck a little scallion and chive in too. not as sweet as onions and kinda tangy.

school approaches and I know I will miss the easy summer cooking life. school lunches, every day and lots of food--teenagers can really eat. So I am thinking about new things to make and looking for a great thermos for soups/stews/rice and beans.
My teen's off to a dinner party--and downloaded the menu and checked ingredients and off he went. Salad and steak and lots of fun!

Monday, July 27, 2009

So I did it again. I have accepted the "good enough" solution--the one where someone says, "I think I can manage that"--and I say "thanks." Sometimes I think I should say--as I would in business--that's not enough, need to make it better. But, at the program my child is at, the food service said they would provide X, Y and Z. Well I got the "I'm hungry " call and the "there's not what they said would be here" call. And, I checked in with food service-- and viola, some of it got fixed, and some--like "have to take some food off the line" stayed the same--rather unaccpetable--way. And, I said --sure, we'll make it work,.

And work it is--I haven't gotten a call about food or being hungry or not having any good snacks-- actually I haven't gotten a call so I guess all is good and fun and busy!

But I feel like I should press for the best of the best--or is good enough enough? (confusing huh?) I sometimes feel that if the solution is solid and safe, then go with it, and don't act like a ninny and ask for the moon. But, then again, is asking that food be plated and not taken off the line(cross contamination) acting like a ninny? No, it's safety .

ugh I really go crazy when this happens, I get so emotionally washed out from it-- and I hate that my kid has to negotiate, and work the system so much for something so basic.

But I'm happy that for three weeks, this kid o'mine is making it work and is living away at school --doing the laundry, making friends AND dealing with the food. gotta have the bright side!


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

been a long long time--I have been enjoying the sun and surf.
Shout out to Wendy Mondello who wrote a great article in Living Without magazine about teens and food allergies and vulnerabilities. in depth and solid article.
other than that having lots of discussions at my house about how boring food is and how I need to change it up, but I seem out of ideas -- so anyone with a clue, let me know. Just click on comment and send me a message.

I've been wondering if allergies get easier to deal with as kids get older and make their own choices or harder because the limitations pinch more as time goes on. Does the pizza always smell that good? I guess that's the real question.
During adolescence, maturity helps me let go a little, but the adolescent identity struggle goes on, and allergies sometimes become the focus for that. will keep thinking on this, keep safe,

Thursday, June 18, 2009

What a month--end of school parties, end of school celebrations, lots of supplying hungry studiers with food-fuel. And lots of rain! Whew. looking forward to the lazier days of summer with some time to collect my thoughts and revamp my menus. Want to put a set of new recipes up . Upcoming summer program, going to talk with food services--which i consider a good thing-- and see how a college dining hall is run. Should be interesting and a good "starter kit" for looking at colleges which is also on the horizon, although we don't intend to look via food allergies, but rather find places that are a good fit academically, socially et al. then work on the kitchen stuff.

getting a bit stymied about what to serve as healthy snacks-- got the fruit, salad, crudite down pat--looking for some other ideas that are good to fill you up, but are still healthy--no wheat or dairy or nuts please.

Monday, June 1, 2009

been a while

It's been a while since I've written. School had an allergy incident that was dealt with very nicely--undisclosed nuts in the sauce for a chicken dish. Kid had an Epi and went to hosptial accompanied by nurse; all other nut-allergic kids were spoken to in class and lunchroon to make sure that they knew not to eat the chicken. Sauce was removed. But just goes to show how easily one mistake can lead to something pretty scary. Kid was fine next day--but I'mthinking of his family--yikes I'd be super nervous. Any hopes of mine eating at the cafeteria went out the window even though never would have touched a sauce...but safer to eat what I send from home. Hey, I'll miss it when I don't have to make lunch anymore--just like we all miss the the things our kids did when they were bathtime or playground or reading to them.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I officially have the best pediatrician. In my time zone it is 9:00 pm and he just called to clarify why I needed a paper prescription for a medication. I had refills, and the message he got did not include my note that said the paper scrip was for Campus Meds which fulfills the everyday medications (not Epi-pens) for students attending a particular summer program. So my pediatrician called, asked me to clarify and then said sure--pick it up tomorrow.
It's 9:00 at night... that's overtime in anyone's book.
This is the pediatrician who, at two weeks, took one look at my baby and said--food allergies. The baby had eczema (atopic dermatitis, excuse me) and the Dr. said--the baby's nursing--what else could it be but what you're eating-- so no more: eggs, soy, corn, peanuts, oranges, and not too much milk and cheese. Guess what--eczema cleared up. and the Dr. who suggested RAST testing and plenty of other smart moves too.
I officially have the best pediatrician.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

This weekend went to the fabulous FAAN conference ( and heard Hugh Sampson speak on new research toward tolerating foods; a nutrionist that made me certain I need to do a food diary for my child and a wonderful speech by a dad who has been there, done that and gotten the t-shirt!
All in all a great day to network with other parents about socializing, about how to do a food challenge--about how our kids are dealing with new foods and how they are willing to step in and take charge situations all across their lives because they know how to advocate for themselves about their allergies.
Pretty heady stuff-- and seeing old friends and watching the kids gravitate to each other like magnets. It was great-- everyone there is one of us-- with Epi-pens in one hand and a lunchpack in the other-- and it's easy to share the good and the bad and the everyday. I met a woman who has a 2 year old with the same allergies as my 16 year old. Well seeing me--having made it this far--and seeing my kid standing tall next to me, obviously in find health and welfare very nearly overwhelmed her. She was ready to go home and know that all would be OK. very moving.
check out the next conference in your neck of the woods.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

this is the second week my oven is broken. I shouldn't say broken--crippled. I can turn it on for about twenty minutes before it beeps and flashes a code that means I have to turn it off...or it turns itself (!) some alien robot. I never knew I used my oven so much--of course the burners work--otherwise I'd be crippled-- but the oven. What about roasted zucchini and peppers; what about a roast chicken (FYI I forgot and started one, then when *F3* started flashing, I turned off oven and put chicken in huge stockpot with carrots and onions. I turned the flame up pretty high and tilted the pot top so air escaped--and cooked that chicken. Before serving I put in the oven again for about twenty minutes...just the time it took for my alien robot oven to shut off again. The chicken was browned and nicely juicy and cooked....but I was worn out!
so I continue to be ovenless--for anything over twenty minutes.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Did You Know?

  • Egg substitutes may contain egg whites; egg replacers do not. (Always read those labels.)
  • Baby food in jars can make excellent snacks: They pack /travel well and can be eaten with a straw if necessary. (The sweet potatoes were a big favorite at my house.)
  • Sometimes shipping dry foodstuffs to your destination can relieve some of the anxiety of trying to find what you need once you arrive. Most hotel front desks are very nice about holding packages. Note, however, always take what you need for your travel day-plus extra in case of delays or the unexpected.
  • When at a restaurant and served a meal that is incorrect--like cheese on the burger--keep the plate and ask for a replacement, as the meal is still as dangerous if only doctored--like the cheese is scraped off the top.
  • A stainless steel thermos--though it has to be heated up by filling with boiling water for a few minutes--keeps foods much hotter than the plastic version.
  • You can often buy direct from a manufacturer on those items your household uses frequently--can be less expensive than the specialty store, and more convenient. Fruit leathers, rice milks, baking mixes, and candy are all items we buy direct.

Cooking . Cooking . Cooking.

Sometimes it seems that all I do is cook. Not only breakfast lunch and dinner, but many breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Every day. All day. I figure--conservatively--I have cooked over 6600 meals in the last 15 years. That’s only counting two meals a day for 10 months a year--I’ve shaved a number of meals for ordering in, going out, dinner at Mom’s, vacations …

All that cooking can be tiring. Not just the banging pots and pans around, but the thinking of what to make and when and how. The planning, the shopping, the putting meat to fire–-all of it ends up being too much sometimes.

To make matters worse, I’m getting to be a boring cook. I make chicken and pot roast. Broccolli and roasted carrots. I make a pork roast and applesauce and a salad--when I was growing up, that was Thursday night dinner. I’m that boring.

But what can I do--I have to cook for my food allergic kid. Dinner has to come from somewhere and that’s usually from me. As college looms, I know I’ll miss it, but right now I’m stuck in the boring middle. So what to do?

The first trick I tried was pull all the vegetables out of the refrigerator and line them up on the counter. Then group the compatible ones--like onions and potatoes or carrots and zucchini. When I got a grouping together I figured out how to cook them: sautee in oil and garlic? Roast? Boil (no!) And then I tried it--and I added chicken breast sliced, or leftover rice and a healthy dose of cilantro.

OK--some of the combinations were odd: ground veal with carrots, onions and diced potatoes. Some were great: fresh spinach wilted in a little oil and lots of garlic. (Note though that a huge bag of spinach melts down to a serving for two, barely--who knew.)

But mission accomplished: I stopped looking at the food in the same old boring way. Butternut squash could be mashed and used as the filling for a vegetable lasagne with strips of onion, carrot and zucchini. Chicken thighs could be sautéed with hot sausage slices and served over rice. Cutlets could be breaded with potato pancake mix and flash fried with parsley. And my piece de resistance: zeppole without wheat.
I had a mix that promised Pizza Crust or Sandwich Bread--well neither of those ever worked without eggs. But mix a little salt, water and--wow -–I got zeppole when I dropped those handrolled balls into hot hot oil. With a little powdered sugar, they could pass at the St Jerome’s Italian Festival in Long Branch New Jersey!

So I’m still cooking, cooking, cooking. But, for the time being, I’m dazzling my family with allergy –free delights.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

hey all of you out there--it's 10PM and not only do I know where my children are--I'm still cooking!!!
Tomorrow's lunch menu will be sliced pork, cooked carrotts, and brown rice bread with an applesauce and an energy bar for afternoon sports... the bread mix is new, and never gets unsoggy in the middle so I have to brown it in the broiler every morning before it pops in the lunch pack. what happened to Orgran Quick White Bread??? I loved that--so easy and never even needed egg substitutes. I am not a "let's go in the kitchen and bake some bread" kind of gal--so that Quick Mix was awesome for me...oh well...
gotta get the pork off the stove.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Went to a terrific food allergy luncheon today--that is a luncheon to raise money for a food allergy organization. Five hundred women--mostly--in the same room all for a common cause. Very moving and made me feel very Helen Reddy: I am Woman, hear me roar.
also, the sheer number of people there connected to someone with a food allergy really brings into sharper focus the rise in food allergies in the last 15-20 years. Most of the moms had little kids--and mine's a teenager. The increase is real; I didn't know but a few other food allergic families--and now there were 500 in one room. Granted this was in support of an organization, but the numbers are growing. And, the vast difference between now and when I had a young 'un is awareness. The public at large is more aware of food allergies (and the danger of them) than even 10 years ago. Thank goodness.
So, I will think on this large network that's out there, ready to raise awareness even more through education and ready to reach out a hand to help.

Friday, April 17, 2009

hope everyone's well out there. Just been thinking about the phenomenon that I call the "cold food" phenom. I am so happy sometimes that a camp/school/party can feed my kid, that I don't ask for them to do the nice things--like heat up the food I send-- or vary the menu from chicken and rice. I accept what's offered and don't push, because so often there's nothing offered. I'll hang up the phone and realize that I just OKayed a cold meal right from the pack I sent --because so often things do NOT go as you have carefully planned.
on the other hand, we went to dinner at family this week--and the cook called about all the ingredients, made only food my kid could eat and lots of variety--so I guess the moral is, take the good with the cold.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Been reading a few articles about food allergies, and while I like that food allergies are in the media, the slant that many of the pieces take is too negative for me. "oh woe is me" is not my kind of attitude. I surely know the extra effort food allergies take --with travel or for school and the stress food allergies add to everyday life. Call me Pollyanna here, but life is good. Spring comes, flowers bloom (alright so that comes with itchy eyes and runny noses...) our kids are learning to fend for themselves and we are more creative in our approach to life. see ya soon.

Monday, March 9, 2009

I just made another rocking cake--with a gluten free cake mix and egg replacer (I like Orgran). Went over big as a Monday night dessert. And, being a NYer, I was happy to read that restaurants in NY will now have posters with the six major allergens/pictures and exhort cooks and servers alike to respect food allergies-- I think Ming Tsai had a hand in this, so a shout out to him!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

That Time of Year--Again

It’s Monday morning and you’re doing the final shopping for Easter (substitute as necessary: Passover, graduation) and your cousin calls and says “I’m making strudel for the holiday dessert and I know that Johnny is allergic to nuts, but it really doesn’t taste good without them, so I just wanted you to know.”

You hang up the phone and (circle one):

A. Scream

B. Cry

C. Laugh

D. Shake your head

E. All of the above

“All of the above” is the correct answer--and then you get the baking mix from the cupboard and learn how to make a strudel.

This is a typical conversation for a food allergic family. We’ve all been there, and we all know what it feels like to substitute one ingredient for another or forgo that special family recipe all together. Food allergies can cut us off our roots, our memories--and this is especially true around holiday celebrations when ritual meals, steeped in tradition, are the standard fare.

Personally, it hurts me--yes hurts me--that I can’t plunk down a plate of pasta for my son on Christmas Eve.

But I can’t. And neither can my mother or my Aunt Sadie. Instead, I can select a menu that does not include a pasta course--and no one will know the difference. I can ask Cousin Pesky to bring a green salad, since that would be ‘easier’ for her--and ditch the strudel altogether. I may feel a pinch at giving up a family tradition, but over the years I’ve already picked and chosen which traditions I keep anyway. Christmas Eve dinner is supposed to be the “fast” in Italian tradition: Fish courses before midnight and meat after. I’ve already given up that timeframe--I’m in bed by midnight--so why not serve the roast beef at 7:00?

What really makes the meal a tradition is that we gather our family and close friends to share it. That part doesn’t change.

On Thanksgiving my family always served ravioli then turkey. When I got married and some of my in-laws kept kosher, no big deal--we substituted pumpkin ravioli instead of cheese and meat. So when my son was diagnosed with wheat allergy, we shifted again--this time to an antipasto course where there’s lots of peppers and olives and meats that he can eat--and I can still include a nod to my Italian roots.

Of course, you must think ahead, prepare, and possibly substitute traditions--that’s a given in the food allergic household.

But, while the menu may need to change--the message of these meals does not. What we are eating should not be as important as who we are eating it with--no matter if it’s ravioli or rice cakes and jam.

The love, the sharing--as well as the laughter and gusto we bring to the table--are what truly matters and there is no substitute for that.

Monday, February 23, 2009

It's been while--you now how it is, life gets busy. I've been a boring cook these days and am trying to spice it up with different combinations of the foods I know--so instead of chickn thighs with garlic--I've added sliced hot or sweet Italian sausage--that went over big for dinner.
I have tried a few different cuts of meat too--did not like the chuck pot roast I got--too fatty and even when cooked for four hours, tough. But I liked "kebob" chunks--which are like first cut stew meat but in larger chunks--not a bad price tag either. And those I simply simmered with onions and garlic and salt and pepper over rice with some greens. That made a nice change from stew or meatloaf.
Also I made a great three layer birthday cake for my teen. Did I mention I am not a very good baker-- Three layers because without eggs the rice flour doesn't rise too high--and anyway who doesn't like that much frosting. Guests and all family liked it (witness second helpings) and I was pleased because aside from the thorny issue of how to get layers on top of one another without breaking --Any help out there???-- it looked, tasted great and wasn't too tough to make.

Monday, January 26, 2009

weathered a few storms this week. class trip --lots of preparing foods, but the director of food services (lots of emails to him too!) was great and my teen got the meals I cooked, served hot on a plate with the other kids--you all know what a victory that is. I made lunches and dinners, put each meal in a zippered plastic baggie and labelled it with a name, meal time and school name (just in case). The biggest challenge was the third day when lunch was on the bus--thank goodness for prosciutto--stays delicious while refrigerated or not. that and individual applesauces. whew.

And and overnight debate trip that only meant two meals to store. What I think is a riot is on Sunday, we were going out to lunch with old friends who suggested a burger and fries place which is great for us--easy to eat a burger without bun and fries were purportedly great. Well my teen --who with the debate group had gone to a TGIFridays at midnight and ordered a burger and fries--my teen went nuts about how possibly unsafe the lunch place was (I had asked about dedicated fryers) and how it's tough to try a new place!!! Ah the teenage years.

I was glad about the "Fridays " dinner-- spontaneity is what is so hard with allergies --and the camaraderie of it. I suppose I should have anticipated the spillover anxiety/ tiredness the next day. Live and learn . Hope all's well out there with you.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Well it's sumertime again--just kidding, but it is time to investigate summer programs for teens and just when one sounded really fun--friends going, fun program--whammo. The program can't provide meals for food allergies. Usually I would try to figure out a way, but this administrator was honest and honestly did not feel that the meals would work out well or safely, and I felt that a teenager shouldn't have all the responsibility of making meals or finding food--it's summer for pete's sake. So I hung up the phone feeling crushed. I felt angry that I had not called before my teen got interested-- that would have saved some heartache. Lots of anger --frustration--disappointment followed.
We always say that allergies shouldn't define these kids, shouldn't stop them from doing things,. Well, in reality, the allergies CAN redirect them, CAN even stop them in their tracks.