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Friday, September 30, 2011

On the verge....

Tuesday's doctor appointment left me thinking....
He mentioned a preservative in supplements called magnesium stearate and its potential to be an allergy for some. Well I started J on a new calcium supplement about a week and a half ago that I thought seemed like a better option because it had less ingredients. She started getting a little itchier than she had been and I thought maybe it was because she was getting a virus. At the appointment the new doc prescribed a couple of things, one of which was a probiotic. I started that first because I thought it would help fight the virus and since then she got increasingly itchy. To a point that we haven't seen her in a long while. (Made me realize how much she had improved) I looked at those ingredients and both the probiotic and the calcium had magnesium stearate in them. Could this be another piece to her puzzle?  Could she be allergic to this filler? Gosh if not I may lose it! Today was a walk back to a horrible time when I couldn't leave J's side without her digging at her skin. It was awful, she looked awful and I felt awful for what she was going through. Fever, tummy ache, sore throat, red itchy skin and hives! Who can watch that without developing an ulcer?!?! I gotta figure this out!!! So I am either on the verge of figuring out another piece or losing my mind completely watching my child fight off this virus and whatever is making her itchy!!!!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Journey Continues...

Our journey with allergies began right around when J turned 2. She had already had some mild eczema on hands as well as breakouts all over very shortly after her MMR vaccine and her bout with pneumonia.  At that point we had HMO and I had to ask for referrals. The pediatrician we were seeing was a DO, but did not have a holistic approach. Gave her steroids for the croup, antibiotics for everything and pusher of vaccines to the extreme. He would not write me a referral for an allergist saying her eczema simply could not be related to allergies. That allergists don't test on 2 year olds and her allergies will be ever changing. I sat on that for a while, in the mean time I was seeing dermatologist after dermatologist and all the peds in his practice. They kept prescribing steroid after steroid, antibiotics, antihistamines and even anti depressants. I since then switched to PPO and went to an allergists. There is no manual for figuring out your kids ailments and hers was pretty obvious to the world and pretty brutal for her.

So while seeking these treatments I got the pleasure of fielding questions and concerns from well....EVERYONE. Even people in grocery stores. Very tactful comments such as "oh man did she get into some poison ivy???" This makes you seriously self conscious, desperate and very guilty for creating a child who is miserable in her own body! The first allergists did a couple of prick tests and said to eliminate what was positive. We got very little response from that and didn't know that it was not normal to not test further. I hit rock bottom when I took J to a dermatologist at Children's and was prescribed an anti depressant that made my 3 year old manic. It was supposed to knock her out in 30 min, 3 hrs later she was crazy hyper and a paranoid mess. If she heard the tiniest noise she would flip! It was heart breaking to watch. When I went back I was scolded for not keeping her on it. She was prescribed a different antidepressant. This one was in a different family from the first and was one that alters brain chemicals, not to mention not FDA approved for kids under 12. I opted to ignore the prescription and try alternative care. The eczema was an evil that we knew. Though painful and miserable for her and awful for us to watch, we were not willing to risk the side effects of the meds.  From there we went to a highly recommended chiropractor/applied kinesiologists. He gave us some very good strategies and some helpful supplements. We saw a little improvement, but he recommended eating lots of eggs and nuts, which turns out she is allergic to. She started to flare more and more. Then a very kind cousin recommended an 80 year old allergist who she swore by that cured her daughter of eczema. We went to him and were pleased! That is when we got all of her test results and started elimination. J has gone from constant itch to basically itching only at night and naps and if she encounters an allergen. She has improved greatly, but we are definitely not where we want to be. So we continued with the calcium and enzyme and elimination diet and were pleased with her continued improvement. We got air filters, changed lotions, soaps, cleaned ducts, wrapped her mattress and dress her in 100% cotton. Though she looks like a new person most days, we still see traces. We still have yet to figure out what is driving all of her sensitivities and her extreme reactions, but we continue to look. Our journey continued today in the office of a pediatrician whom is also certified in integrated health. He replaced the supplements she was taking with ones that are more hypoallergenic and added an omega 3, pro biotic and a couple other things. I am hoping that this will take us another step! He is addressing two things others have yet to focus on....her temperature change issues as well as inflammation in general. I am excited for the possibilities and nervous for the chance of more reactions. The journey continues and only time will tell!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Vegan nieman marcus cookies....FAIL

Yesterday was Sunday, on Sundays we have dinner at our house with Grandma and Grandpa. I decided to try a cookie with sugar in it for the girls for a special treat. I even took J with me to the store to get her special chocolate chips. We were so excited...J because anything with chocolate chips warrants excitement and me at the prospect of a Nieman Marcus cookie I can eat :) Well I printed the recipe and made the substitutions I needed, it was actually only the oat flour for wheat flour since it was a vegan recipe. They used applesauce for the egg and oil for the butter. I thought wow this is going to be great. So I followed the recipe to the T and when I went to switch the tray from top to bottom the cookies had slowly joined forces into one gigantic mass of goo. As I was cursing the creator of the recipe for not having enough dry for the wet ingredients. I was thanking God for my husband's bad habit of stealing my baking pans for his protein bars in the freezer and leaving them in there even after all the bars are eaten. Had he NOT done this I would have put all my "eggs in one basket" and baked it all at once and ruined the whole bowl. But since I was too lazy to go get the pans he left empty in the freezer I was baking them in shifts on one pan and added more flour to the rest of the dough. Thank goodness this worked and it ended up not so bad. The result was a pretty tasty chewy cookie that would definately be much better if J could tolerate grapeseed oil instead of olive oil. Gosh do I hate that taste of olive oil in something that is supposed to be sweet!!! This is definately a recipe that I will continue to play with and post when I get it right!

Saturday, September 24, 2011


So after much thought and brainstorming by my BFF and I, Halloween has been solved. The other day my friend texted me with the idea of melting J's hypoallergenic chocolate chips into lollipop moulds. We will be making Halloween suckers and ordering some allergy free candies from for J for Halloween. The only caveat is that she will not be receiving these treats from the houses that she runs to on Halloween. I will be carrying them and dropping them into her treat bag while her friend receives hers from the neighbors who are handing them out. This is okay right?? She is participating and will be going home with loot regardless right?!?!?! This is a huge leap from not having any options. I googled allergy friendly candies and came up and they actually have candy that doesn't have rice, corn, wheat or dairy!!!! I was beyond excited and actually found about 5 options for her. Not to mention Grandma is making a 100% cotton costume!!! She will be so excited!!! Cross it off the to do list :)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Nail clippings...ewwwww!!!!!

I started my day at a middle school in my district. Since I am not a classroom teacher I do not have a classroom. I had to start my consult time in the lounge for lack of a better place. While I was checking emails and setting up my consult plan I heard a strange clicking noise. I looked over at the person I recognized to be a district sub clipping his finger nails sitting on the other side of the room. This sheer fact that he carried a nail clipper grossed me out. But that he also found it acceptable to do it where people eat made me wonder what kind of people the district hires as subs. He did not catch the clippings in anything and certainly didn't throw them away. Before I got carried away and said something to him I quickly remembered my father carrying a clipper and clipping his nails anywhere he saw fit as well. I also remembered a day when I stood in line at CVS and witnessed a man clipping his nails with a clipper he was about to pay for and letting the clippings drop to the floor. Then I thought to myself that I must be the crazy one and this must be acceptable practice, at least to men. When didn't become okay to groom oneself anywhere and leave the clippings as souvenirs?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I've been deceived!!!

I was slaving away on dinner tonight when I received a very devastating phone call from my nephew (I'm being dramatic). He called to inform me about the results of the inquiry he made on Agave "Nectar". I was very surprised and very embarrassed by his report. Apparently Agave is pretty much the equivalent if not worse that HFCS. HFCS has a 55% fructose load and Agave has a 70%. This is obviously not the only factor, but a huge one since fructose has such a high impact on our health. Now I have been religiously using Agave in my coffee, baking and much more since I saw it on Weelicious a while back  and thought it was such a better option. It just goes to show you that you must must must do your own exploring when it comes to healthy options and whole foods are the only way to go. Looking into the production process of a product is very important as well! I have changed all my posted recipes to reflect this discovery. Here is further information on Agave:

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

To hoard or not to hoard….

I come from a long line of people who have hoarding tendencies. I always attributed my Dad and Aunt’s hoarding tendencies to their life style growing up. They were from a way different way of life and saving, reusing and recycling was a necessity to life. (She catches her shower water and uses it to flush the toilet BTW) But I am starting to realize that I may have some hoarding tendencies of my own and what excuse do I have? I saw the first sign when I opened my pantry door to put in an empty coffee can that I thought to myself, I will find a use for that, and saw four more of the same container. One holding oat flour, one holding coffee packs and the other empty waiting for its new use. Then I looked at J’s crafts and saw two more that were painted and holding crafts. The second sign was when I went to look for something in the dish cabinet and found 10 glass applesauce jars that were waiting to be reused. The third sign was when I opened the linen closet and started to clean it out to find a bag of old t-shirts, underwear and socks that I remember not being able to bring myself to throw out when going through clothes a while back. What the heck am I going to use those for??? My Aunt (see above) suggested using socks as dusters. “Just put your hand in them and swipe away the dust” she said. I even use one for holding the girls' hair ties. The more I think about it the more I am like them. I walk past a trashcan…if it has paper in it; I move the paper to the recycle bin!!! The other day I wrote a note on the garbage can in the teacher’s lounge scolding the wasters. It read: “walk two extra steps to save a tree.” I also brought home the large strip of laminating paper at the end of a sheet for J to paint on. I just couldn’t throw it away. This new realization has made me somewhat terrified as to what the future holds if I am starting to recognize the similarities between me and the tendencies that I used to be so embarrassed by in my past. It also has made me slightly motivated and determined to figure out what to do with the 7000 white t-shirts that my husband has an obsession with buying and ruining!!!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Beyond repair???

I recently finished a book called "autoimmune epidemic." I found it very eye opening and thought provoking. If you know me you probably know that this is not always a good thing, in my case. One part of the book laid out the breadth of what we encounter that would be called "endocrine disruptors"on a typical day. This included, but was not limited to: diesel exhaust, cleaning fumes, cosmetic products, plastic food containers, Teflon coatings, BPAs, lawn fertilizers, pesticides, hormones and this didn't even include what we eat and drink! It made me realize how far we have gotten from the land. What we eat, what we drink, how we live and what we no longer do. The sheer amount of garbage generated from one meal at home is astounding. I recently read a blog about Americans losing all the skills that once made life possible for everyday people. Take me for instance... I don't know how to sew, I don't ever iron, I didn't have any idea how to can, am on a mission to figure out my own chicken/beef/veggie stock. But we never have time to take the time to do anything!!! I want to make a quilt darn it!!! But my main issue is with all of the charities and research funds for diabetes, cancer and such looking for a cure. The cure is in prevention! The cure is keeping pharmaceuticals out of our water, keeping carcinogens off of our skin and out of our bodies. The cure is cooking and eating foods that can be traced back to the earth in which we live and not labs or factories engineering ingredients that closely resemble something edible. If a food has a long list of ingredients chances are there is more than one carcinogen on that list and if not a GMO. When are we as a nation going to demand more for ourselves? When are we going to stop the big M from taking our land from farmers that want to cultivate it for nutrient rich harvest and replacing it with crops that have been genetically altered?!?! Are we too far gone as a group to reclaim our health?

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Elana are you out there???? You are a life saver!!!

There is nothing better than finding a needle in a haystack!!! I have come across Elana's Pantry here and there, but didn't navagate her site fully so didn't fully appreciate the gems provided! I have come to find out that there are no wheels out there that are exactly what I need for my kids' diets. Paleo usually has nuts, eggs and coconut. Gluten free is all rice, corn and god knows what other kind of flours lol. Until now, I decided to delve into Elana's Pantry a little further to see what kinds of things she keeps in there that I could borrow and maybe do some substitutions with for baking. She has AWESOME ideas many are readily tweakable for J and M. She mostly uses Almond and Coconut flour which can basically be substituted with oat flour part for part. I made her cinnamon bun muffins tonight sans cream cheese frosting and they were AMAZING!!! Obviously I had to sub the eggs, flour and coconut. But they were so delicious and enjoyed by all of us! The only thing I need to change is the grape seed oil. J had a mild reaction to that I believe, but that shouldn't be that big of a deal. I have many other of her recipes ear marked for the future. I can not wait to try making the chocolate sorbet!!!

I posted my tweaks to her recipe under pages :) I called them Oatmeal Cinnamon Apple Muffins.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hypocondrical??? Me??? No way ;)

Today during my lunching we got on the topic of my dear sweet hubby dropping a CFL bulb right in front of my pantry and SWEEPING it up. I expressed my extreme outrage in a very calm way to the lunching group. We discussed the protocol of an accident with a CFL and how I would have expected him to call in the HAZMAT suits. This got us to talking about mercury thermometers which veered into a very comical story of one of my friends and her experience with biting and breaking a thermometer, and the lesson learned by the repercussions. (I'm still laughing) Anyway, then another friend discussed the thermometer she has and how it is infra red and I immediately thought YIKES! What does infra red do with repeated exposure. So then I got to thinking: I don't own a microwave, I put my cell phone on the other side of the bed out of worry, I know the American Cancer Society's list of known human carcinogens by heart, I look up every cosmetic product on the database and won't use hand sanitizer out of fear of a superbug.... Does this make me crazy or an informed person looking out for the health of my family? Sometimes I wonder if I am one of those people who are mentally ill and don't know it. Am I having unknown conversations with multiple personalities? Do I create my own normal and think I am living in reality when I am really a paranoid person? I should start wearing my brother-in-laws shirt that says "I live in my own little world...but it's okay, they know me here."

Thursday, September 15, 2011


In the middle of the night I woke to M waking for a night nursing (yes I still nurse her, eye roll) and was so excited for the morning to come to get my free starbucks. I ordered a latte with all the bells and whistles since it was free, soy milk of course, because of M’s allergies and my milk ;). I unfortunately got the wrong drink. I didn’t realize till I was half done that it was NOT my latte or my SOY milk!!! I am now on the verge of a nervous break down because I face the choice… which makes me a worse mom???? I nurse her still and give her an allergic reaction or not nurse her(weaning) to avoid the reaction and give in to the pressure. The pressure being that I not only still nurse my 15 month old (ewwww!!!) but I nurse her when she wakes at night (GASP!!!)
The more I think about this, it brings on my cascade of related thinking. For instance, our lounge discussion today revolved around milking. Many thoughts on milking, one being the outrage by one of my friends, when she heard a farmer gave a pig a cow’s milk to fatten them up. OMG!!! She said, they gave a pig a cow’s milk, how weird is that. UMMMMM, hello, if you open a large percentages of human fridges you will find a whole gallon of milk squeezed out of an udder of a half ton animal!!! I find this outrage ironic ;). The second thought was on how crazy it is when I get reactions to nursing my 15 month old. She is not 5, and she is small for her age, and she is drinking her mommy’s milk. Why is that gross? The third thought I had was about how crazy it is that breast milk is such a controversial thing. Husbands are grossed out about breast milk, people hate to touch breast milk and a debate still exists to some people about if breast milk is appropriate for babies. HELLO!!!! I am pretty sure logic is on my side. Human milk, human babies! No argument there! Women’s breasts were designed for that reason. Whether you believe in God or not, the designer of the female body was equipped with a way to feed its young!!! Anyway, soap box over! Point is why are people grossed out over human milk and not the milk from a half ton animal with saggy nips?!?!?!
Disclaimer: Everyone has the right to feed their child whatever milk they want and I do not begrudge anyone for using formula if that is what they need to do! Just do the same for me and know that yes I will nurse my baby until I figure out what I can do after to keep her healthy :)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hypoallergenic??? What does that mean??

Allergies are like onions, every layer you peel there is another one under it. I can see this comparison being true in every facet of my life as mom to J. Our current issue is socks!! J can't wear anything besides 100% cotton. She immediately starts scratching if she does, especially if there is polyester in it! I have recently learned, since she has to wear socks and shoes to school, that 100% cotton socks do not exist! I also learned this is because they wouldn't stay on your feet! Duh! So since she came home the other day and notified me that "she has to wear socks or she will get in trouble." I have been putting her in socks, but her feet are starting to look bad again. So this made me start thinking about another potential layer! Could her night time scratching be from the material her bed is made from on the inside?? Is she allergic to the fabric blends or do they just rub her wrong? Could she be allergic to the things the bed and couch are made from? Am I just grasping to figure this out? We have allergy covers for mattress and air purifiers. I know her pillow is hypoallergenic, but so are countless things that make her flare!! That word is an oxymoron!!!

Not on the white couch!!!!

Over the weekend we went to a really cute tavern for dinner with my nephew and his girlfriend so that we could see their new place. J must have really liked the choice for dinner because she inhaled hers as though someone was going to snatch it away. After dinner we went to see the new place. The first thing I noticed was the cute couch and it's stark white appearance. I was thinking how nice it must be to buy something so bright and light without worrying what's in store for the color, or lack there of :). Well j and m immediately fell in love with their new bed because it is one of those close to the floor beds. J was having a blast and doing forward rolls. She then calmed down a bit and came by me, I was cautiously sitting on the new white couch. She starts to pick up a similar color of the couch. Her lips a little pale, her face as white as the couch, then she said "mommy my neck hurts." I immediately start thinking she has fractured it in a forward roll and need to take her to the ER. Halfway through this thought J starts puking up the dinner she scarfed down 30 min prior. I am mortified at the amount coming out all over the new living room floor(wood thank god). Happy to report (J being a trooper yet again) only gets a speck on the white couch. Later that night I find out that my dear nephew was turning her upside down and flipping her on the bed and my guilt quickly diminishes!!! So lesson learned dear nephew... White couches are for catalogs :) 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Your preschooler eats what for lunch????

Today at lunch with the girls in the lounge, I was asked what J's school lunch looked like today. Today her lunch was packed in a Bento box. One section was full of flax crackers (flaxseed, mustard powder, onion and garlic powder, apple cider vinegar), a grassfed beef patty, some carrots and a plum. I also included an applesauce and a "J" muffin for her morning and afternoon snack. I can tell you right now she will come home today with the burger patty still intact, a couple of carrots and a slice or two of her plum. My daughter will consume just about anything within reason while at home. But she is high maintenance as far as wanting her food heated. She most likely is not touching the burger because it is not hot. Who could blame her? The ladies at lunch recommended requesting her burger to be heated. This sounds to me like a good solution. But does this make me one of "those moms" or is this an appropriate accommodation for a child who gets "interesting" lunches? A 504 plan came up out of humor because we are all special education teachers, but this may actually be in her future. Just not while she is attending a private pre-school. :) So after this conversation I thought to myself that this has got to be my next mission (along with the cake).  A new addition to my goals is to come up with better lunch options for J. She needs to open her lunch box and be excited for what is inside. Tonight she helped me put her lunch together for tomorrow. In one section she had a veggie and roast mix. One section had her flax crackers and the last section had 2 "j" muffins. Hopefully I can come up with more recipes to create her lunches. I wonder if she could tolerate sunflower seed butter????

Monday, September 12, 2011

Are you prepared for the unexpected???

On the way to work this morning my thoughts wandered to emergency preparedness (I drive an hour+). Thinking of this made me realize that I need to get moving to create an emergency kit!!! Allergy moms do not have the luxury of a grab and go life style. This spills over to natural disasters and such. I started brain storming of what I could put into mine. You would think eczema would be the last thing on my mind at a time like that, but it's the first. If j or m started eating things they were allergic to their skin would start to itch and eventually open for bacteria to feast. This leaves me lost as to what I can put into my kit given the amount of foods and preservatives that make j flare. Here is what I came up with (with the help of my lunch ladies): water, flaxseed crackers, canned veggies and canned fruit. What about meat???? Am I crazy? Do you think of these things? What happens if an emergency were to take place while I'm at work 30 miles away from my kids? What happens if j gets stuck at school? What will they feed her? Just packing to go on a weekend trip is a task.
Boy this is an overwhelming topic!

Friday, September 9, 2011

MAP this!!!!

So I teach students who have visual impairments, with this pleasure comes the responsibilities of making accommodations for them to access their educational environment/curriculum. The beginning of the year in my district brings the ever popular student growth measurement (MAP testing). YAY!!!! Trumpet sounds!!! Any vision teacher knows that there is not an assessment in the world that takes visual impairment into consideration.  Let me just include that this is the ONLY assessment my district has to measure growth in Math and LA. Add to this the change in presentation strategies that disables the compatibility between the test and Universal Access on the computer….they are just asking for my students to fail. Yesterday I walked in to check on one of my students and he was sitting at his table with a laptop flipped so that the screen was laying on the table and the keyboard in the air, reading the questions and clicking in the circle to answer using the projected enlarged image on his CCTV!!! His IEP states that he is to have large print and MARK IN BOOK!!! The most disturbing part of this scenario is the SPECIAL ED teacher that is also his case manager watching him do it as if this is okay. So I get to work early this morning to try to troubleshoot this issue. Anyway, three middle schools (in two hours) later I found myself stuck with a dead car battery!!! REALLY?!?!? I am supposed to figure out a solution to this glitch as well as calm the nerves of the new teachers that have my students and do it itinerantly with NO car!!!! At this point I am on the phone with my handy husband who tells me I need to go buy a new battery and change it!!! UMMMMMMM am I supposed to do it with the wrenches made out of recycled soda cans that you have outfitted my trunk with???? So I end up walking back to one of the middle schools, enlisting the help of a custodian to take my battery out. He so generously leaves one of his tools for me to put the battery back, after taking the old one out J. I walk a half mile down the road (carrying a 40 lb battery) back to my home school to borrow a car. I drive to the car part store, purchase a battery, drive back to school work with a student, then drive back to my car during lunch to change this battery. My pregnant friend agrees to drive me so that I can drive my car back. We are standing under the hood of my car trying to replace the battery, meanwhile getting hoots and hollars from passing WOMEN because the look of us was empowering :). We succeeded in dirtying our hands and replacing that battery all by ourselves!!! The lesson I learned from this is that my students don’t get to just start their car mindlessly and drive off!! They first have to take out the battery, walk a mile carrying it, exchange it for a new one and then put it back in without instructions or tools to do it to reach the same destination as their sighted peers. So what do I have to say to you powers that be… you are tying my paycheck to my students’ growth, please make sure that you think of all of the pieces of the puzzle that will get us there before making demands, instead of as an afterthought!!!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Is this a Kevin Bacon movie???

This week, while having a regular therapy session in the lounge at work, my friend said "It's the six degrees of separation with this kid!!!" By this kid, she meant my daughter J and by six degrees of separation she was referencing her allergies. Unfortunately I think food could be traced to her allergies in a whole lot less than 6 steps, probably more like 2!!! I am pretty sure that every dish or recipe would have at least 1 ingredient J can't have or an ingredient with an ingredient that she can't have. As the mom to a 3 year old this realization takes humor, because if not humor it would bring me uncontrolled sobs for what she is missing..... This morning, while "enjoying" her biscuits that were made with love for her last night, she says "these aren't too yucky mommy" and continues to chew and smile. Shortly after she requests a drink while making a yucky face and choking down the rest of her biscuit. All the while I'm giving myself a pep talk about how healthy she will be in her life due to the nutritious foods she does get to eat. How I shouldn't try to fit her diet (square peg) into a round hole (standard American diet).  She is a thriving, happy, smart, sweet child who is learning good healthy eating habits!!!  AND, though slowly, we are winning the fight her immune system is having on her skin!!This is the angel on one shoulder while the devil on the other is asking "what the hell is she going to trick or treat for next month?!?!" Most days the angel wins and I am completely motivated and committed to this life style. Some days I get so flustered and overwhelmed and the devil jumps from my shoulder to my brain and shouts "let's just give her the drugs!!! The side effects can't be worse than this!!!" the reality check and referee in this freak show is the realization, while watching her blissfully devour a "j cupcake" with hypoallergenic chocolate chips on the side is... This is my own issue within! She really IS happy, thriving, smart, sweet and learning amazing eating habits that will hopefully help her get through life's REAL challenges!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Biscuits outta WHAT?!?!?!

After three weeks of inconsistent lunch consumption on J's part I have stooped to an interesting low ;).  Trying to make her lunch tonight, with her after school attitude in mind, was difficult. She is a BEAR to say the least. Why???? Because she only eats the fruit in her lunch. The meat apparently has become boring. So tonight, right now, I am baking a biscuit for my girl to try to lighten her mood tomorrow. Whats in it you say. Quinoa and oat flour, baking soda, garlic powder, salt, oil and soy milk/water. YIKES!!! I try to do my gluten free baking without the xanthum gum and guar gum. 1 because the thought of how xanthum gum is created is a little weird, 2 it can have traces of corn and 3 I have no idea what guar gum is except it can have a laxative affect. I have a feeling after trying these biscuits I may want to adventure into exploring these two options no matter how much they freak me out! This GFCF baking is an interesting journey!

The kid who can’t have……..ANYTHING!!!

Today we have a birthday in the family and when trying to figure out what kind of cake we could all enjoy I started thinking….Does one exist??? First of all, how do you frost a cake without butter or margarine or powdered sugar? ( J can’t have dairy, corn, rice) and those three things all have one variation of the other three items. While looking for a recipe with those restrictions I found that powdered sugar CAN be made with pure sugar cane and tapioca, potato starch, arrowroot or cream of tarter. So starts my new challenge! By the end of the month I will have mastered (at least created) a frosted cupcake that does not make J flare!!! Maybe I should give myself some breathing room. By Halloween J will be eating a cupcake without getting itchy!!!! You are probably wondering if there is a recipe why would it be so difficult. The difficult part is… can J tolerate tapioca, arrowroot, potato starch or cream of tarter???? If she can tolerate one of these, how in the world am I going to get the powdered sugar into a frosting form without butter or margarine? I am hoping that I can make a fudge like frosting with oil. But…… what in the world is in cocoa besides chocolate???? Sweet Ali, why can’t you think of all these things for me??? Don’t fret because if this journey forms an edible cupcake I will post the recipe. Let’s face it you are all dying for a cupcake like this ;-)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Five months and counting!!!

We have been gluten free/dairy free since late April!! Boy have things changed! We learned that J our 3 year old is allergic to wheat, milk, rice, corn, chicken, bananas, peaches, nuts, eggs, dogs, cats, dust, mold, pollens and who knows what else.M our 1 year old is allergic to milk and wheat. So instead of listing all of the "frees" I will just say that we basically eat a variation of the cave man diet with the addition of Gluten Free Oats and Quinoa. J is a 3 year old champ and will try and enjoy just about anything...with the exception of unsweetened bakers chocolate haha. I wish I had a video of that! Breakfast is by far the hardest meal and I have found a quick solution. The Gluten, dairy, corn, rice, egg, nut free, and agave sweetened whole grain muffins. I call them "J" muffins. Look under comments if you are interested. Five months of crazy food restrictions and she looks loads better. Her lesions on her hands and feet are gone, her neck does not hive and she doesn't have frothy poop. I should say she also takes digestive enzymes with every meal. She still flares with itchiness and hives daily and especially at night, but is improving. We are on a quest to solve the J & M puzzle.