So today at work I ate peanut M&M's and a Kit Kat! Both are no no's in our house now. When you don't get to eat them whenever you want anymore, it becomes such a treat. I have to say they were so yummy. This peanut allergy isn't all bad. We don't eat half the bad stuff we use to, and we don't spend the money on it either.
On another note I was able to stock up on some safe Hershey's Chocolate Chips, and Betty Crocker cookie, cake, and muffin mixes. All safe for our little man. We did a stock up because this past weekend we went to a small party and I didn't bring Cormac any dessert because I didn't have anything in the house. I felt so bad. They had these delicious cupcakes that he couldn't have. My husband and I had to take turns eating ours so he wouldn't see us. Good thing he is too young to remember.
So I learned another lesson: Don't go to a party without a special treat for Cormac.
Saturday, May 22, 2010
I know the FAAN Food Allergy Walk is still 5 months away, but I can't help being excited as I see our team No Nuts For My Peanut grow! We have 8 official walkers, and promises of more. It fills my heart to know how much people love our little man and want to support him, as well as our family with this challenge. I thank them all form the bottom of my heart.
The new statistics and research surfacing this week, only show that so much more research is needed when it comes to food allergies (FA). That's why this walk is so important to us. I mean before Cormac' s allergy, I honestly wasn't aware how severe FA's can be. You hear about stuff, but until you have to deal with it, it's not real. There really is very little awareness out there. I find my biggest challenge of being a mom to a kid with Food Allergies is educating the people that are around Cormac. Yes people get he can't have peanuts or peanut butter but the whole idea of cross contamination is so much harder to convey. I hope it gets easier as we go on.
So I guess the next step is to start fundraising! This is a new one for me too!
Posted by Diane at 9:50 AM
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Since Cormac's diagnosis, I've been doing my research. One of the first things I did was join an online group of moms who have kids with food allergies. They have tons of tips and advise. So I was completely surprised that we have to read the ingredients on skincare products. I never in a million years would have though of that. Apparently there are products that contain nuts in them (as well as other food allergens). How crazy is that? In addition to that, we have to read medicine labels. Unfortunately the government does not have the same requirements for medicine labeling as they do for foods. So it looks like we have some phone calls to make.
Posted by Diane at 9:20 AM
Monday, May 17, 2010
Well we survived our first vacation with a toddler. I have to admit, I was very anxious to go away with a toddler that has a peanut allergy, but it was easier than I thought it would have been. I think it's because of the kind of vacation we took. We were invited to go away with very good friends of ours. They made it possible for us to stay in our own rental house. They have twin toddlers and a new born. Having all the kids together was so much fun! We were also able to meet up with other friends with a little guy a few months young than Cormac. Four crazy boys together was just too funny to watch. Cormac really enjoyed himself.
Since we had a full kitchen my anxiety was at a good low. We were able to pack lunch's for when we went out, and made dinner there each night. It really took the stress out of it. We did eat out one day for lunch. When I asked the waitress about nuts she knew her stuff. I was so grateful. Our friends were great about asking what he could eat too.
When we went to the amusement park I brought his lunch and snacks. It made the day so much more enjoyable. I didn't have to worry about what to feed him, or if the teenagers behind the counter actually knew anything. It's really hard giving your trust to strangers. I think that is one of the hardest parts of this whole thing. You have to trust that a server actually knows or asks the chef about possible nuts. Then you have to trust them to tell the chef when putting the order in or for the chef to remember when he is preparing the food. I've worked in restaurants in the past and know first hand how easy it is for a waiter, waitress or chef to forget stuff. That is the terrifying part for me.
So we survived, and had an amazing time. This was a great first that I will always remember.
Posted by Diane at 8:17 AM
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Today I made an appointment with a pediatric allergist at Mount Sinai. I'm excited because it's at a center for pediatric allergies not just a Dr.'s office. Cormac's regular pediatrician said not to expect to get an appointment for 4 months. Well were going in 2! They were really nice on the phone and didn't rush me off the phone. That is a good sign. The bad part about this is, they are going to do the scratch test. From what I've seen, it doesn't look pleasant. I need to do more research before we go. The good part is, I feel like maybe we will get some answers about what is happening to our little man. I still don't understand how he was able to eat peanut butter the 3 or 4 times previous to his last exposure, where he had such a bad reaction. I guess we will just wait and see.
On another note, I've been talking with some friends who also have children with peanut allergy's. They have given me some really great tips. For example when going out to eat, restaurant desserts are a no no. So my friend told me to bring a little dessert for him so he doesn't feel left out. Such a a good idea! Thanks Sara! She also told me to start a list of local places to eat and look for a peanut free bakery. Well I already know the pizza place is ok. Couldn't live without my pizza! Looks like I will have to add a page for local places to eat.
Posted by Diane at 7:19 PM
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Since it is Food Allergy Awareness, week I was trying to think of something to do. Well I made shirts (the ones mentioned in a previous post). They arrived today just in time! Though they didn't come out as good as I hoped, they are still cute and get the job done. My idea is for Cormac to wear them when he is out and about around people who are not aware of his allergy. For example, a birthday party, bar-b-q , even just a friends house. We lead such busy lives and people who do know may forget. In the real world people forget. I thought this was a good way to keep him safe.
Now I'm thinking other parents could use these too! I've decided to go back to the drawing board, and with some help from my friends make
them even better. When they are all done I want to offer/sell them to others to help keep more kids safe. I have a bunch of crazy ideas and the motivation. But I have a lot to learn if I'm going to make this work.
The photos aren't the best because I couldn't get him to say still, but I think you get the idea. What I really want to know is, what do you think?
Posted by Diane at 9:14 PM
Sunday, May 9, 2010
It's been 19 days since we found out (the hard way), that Cormac is severely allergic to peanuts. I have to say it paralyzed me when we first found out. But after doing some research and reading other blogs about all kinds of food allergies, I am starting to feel differently. Yes this in not good, but it could be so much worse. It could be milk, eggs soy, and/or wheat. One or more of those foods are in everything. He did test moderately allergic to milk and soy but since he has no reaction to them he still gets to have them. So yes we have to read labels and bring his food places, but it's worth it to keep him healthy and safe. I am feeling like this peanut allergy is manageable and that we are lucky that it's just that.
Waking up this Mother's Day to my smiling little boy was the best gift I could ever receive. And knowing everything is going to be alright is an amazing gift too!
Happy Mother's Day!
Posted by Diane at 9:40 AM
Friday, May 7, 2010
Check out my newest creations! I can't wait for them to get here.
Want one? They will be for sale soon!
Front of Tee
Posted by Diane at 11:08 PM
I'm so excited! Someone suggested a few children's books for kids with Food Allergies (FA)! I think this will be such a help to us when Cormac and his friends get a bit older. Heck there's not harm in starting now. You can find a list of children's books at these links!
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Last night was the first time we went grocery shopping since we received Cormac's peanut allergy diagnosis. It took twice as long as it normally does. It was completely overwhelming! We even have to look at every ingredient we buy for baking. Did you know that you can ONLY use Hershey's chocolate morsels to make chocolate chip cookies? I know it will get easier, but that doesn't make me feel better right now. All I kept thinking was what if I don't recognise an ingredient and mess up? Mac will be the one to suffer. The thought of having to stab him with the epi pen make me cry every time I think about it. What about when he is at someone else's house. Than what?
There was one good thing that happened though. There is a lot more out there for him to eat than I thought.
Posted by Diane at 11:29 AM