Tag Archives: whole foods

More about Twinkies

So the next morning, after I calmed myself down from the indignation I was feeling regarding the ‘Twinkie incident’, I geared myself up for bringing this up with his teachers.

His teacher in the morning, well, there is a wee bit of a language barrier. And also a ‘no sense of humour’ barrier.

“I would really appreciate it if you would not give Vince any Twinkies. We don’t eat food like that in our house and I would rather him not eat like that at school too”, is what I Canadianly said to her.

“So no sugar at all?”

“Um, no. He can eat sugar. Just not too much of the processed type and more from the natural group of things”

I think she understood. She promised me she would mention it to her co-worker. I left feeling better.

And then I thought about it all day long. And then when I pulled into the parking lot to pick V up, I decided to mention it to administration as well…

That conversation went a little better. Ms. Erika assured me that the last snack on their regimented list of meals was at 2:30 pm. There are no other snacks to be provided. There should not be any Twinkies or Doritos given to anyone. She promised to talk to the teachers that evening and I practically skipped to his classroom. V was there, snack-free, and that evening he ate all of his dinner.

The next afternoon, when I picked him up, I was not greeted with a sincere smile. Not really much of a smile at all, actually, from teacher #2. The Twinkie-giving teacher.

Hmm.

Oh well. That’s too bad that she’s taking it hard.

I feel great about it.

And this afternoon, as I wheeled V around Whole Foods and picked up a few ‘treats’ for him, I flashed back to ‘treat’ shopping with my Mum in the local Health Food store of our tiny town.

30 years later, here I am, doing the same thing with my child. Just upgraded.

Larger ‘town’, larger store, but pretty much the same person.

And while I remember hating yogurt-covered raisins and peanuts as a child… who knows? V might like them? I happen to have a container of that very item (recently purchased) in my pantry.

Funny, eh? any of you parents out there seeing yourself following in your parents footsteps?

xoxo a.m.

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Fever times 2

sick-blog

16 months in and my first experience with a really, really sick little boy started yesterday…

All in all, not too shabby. All we’ve had to deal with prior has been food allergies, allergic reactions, mild asthma and lots of poop. Ok, looking at that list, let me revise that  ‘all we’ve had to deal with’ comment, that kind of made it sound like parenthood has been a cake-walk over here.

Really what I mean is that this is my first experience with scary high temperatures, scary lethargy and projectile vomit (Exorcist-style).

V woke up yesterday a wee bit warm. Babies are warm in the morning, so I didn’t think too much of it. He ate all of his breakfast, drank his bottle and just was a little quiet. I took his temp, it was 99 degrees…a little ‘ping’ of concern hit me, but again, he’s been warm like this before so I figured that it would go away once he was more active…

I WAS going to make Canadian Thanksgiving dinner Sunday for all my peeps in Orlando. We were also supposed to be going to see Elmo at UCF Arena in the afternoon. So we had things to do and so off we went to do them. Whole Foods (that I might leave M for and marry in a legal, binding ceremony) and Ikea. Done and done.

On our way there and back, he dozed the whole time. That ‘ping’ of concern started to ping a little louder. As I unbuckled him from his car seat and picked him up, he was really really warm. So warm, in fact, that when I handed him to M once entering the house, he immediately said to me “Wow, hes really hot, you aren’t going to Elmo, are you?”, to which I replied “No. Not at all” (although secretly I really wanted to).

I gave him some infants Tylenol and took his temperature.

103.2

What. The. Fuck. (Pardon my dirty mouth, but seriously, what the fuck!)

That is one high mothering-fucking temperature! So high that I remember using temperatures like that as bragging tools when I was in Elementary School to illustrate how sick I had been. “Ya? Well, my temperature was 103.4 and my Mummy said I might die. DIE!!” (I tend towards the dramatic). I tried not to remember that as I calmly said to M “We are going to the walk-in clinic”.

He calmly replied “OK, I think that’s a good idea”.

In reality both of us had cartoon steam-whistles on our head and steam was shooting from our ears. And my body might have become an ambulance. At least that’s what I told myself as I did 75- 1.000.000  (miles per hour, folks) down the expressway to the Pediatric clinic.

An hour later, I emerged with V and my awesome in-laws. Who are awesome and met me there, at the clinic (M called them) and stayed with me the whole time. Again. Awesome.

Influenza type A. And an ear infection. Antibiotics and Tamaflu (which makes me think of Tama-chan, that seal that swam into the Tokyo Harbour and became a national icon [I have a Tama-chan doll somewhere]).

The rest of my evening was not awesome. I went and got the meds filled, drove home, medicated V up. He remained hot. In-laws returned with food (M was at work). The rest of the evening was a blur of trying to force food and fluids on Little Man. Mostly fluids.

He cried non-stop and was so hot I swear I could have cooked something on his forehead. At about 9 pm he projectile vomited all over the place and as I went to pick him up, he threw up down the front of my tank-top. Wonderful. Hot and shivering at the same time, I stripped him down and washed him down in the tub… the rest of the evening was a blur.

We finally got him settled down with some fluids in him and he went right to sleep. Poor baby was so exhausted.

I went to bed too. Poor me, so exhausted….

Actually, I went to bed on the floor of V’s room. He made so many little noises and I woke up and trekked into his room with every one that finally I made a make-shift bed from a duvet and the pad on an Ikea chair and slept with my hand on the edge of his mattress.

Fever all night long. It finally seemed to break around 2 am… and we both slept.

And did I mention that M came home from work with the stomach flu?

Our home is a bubonic plague zone right now. DO NOT COME OVER.

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Wheat

wheat-blog

Now that we have moved completely away from formula in the last few months and well into the land of Dairy, we are going further than that.

As you may or may not know, V is allergic to Wheat and Peanuts. I capitalize them because it is necessary. I need to take notice of all things Wheat and Peanuts in his (and our) world. They are Important. Especially the Peanuts. Peanuts are a super huge issue. A ‘turn his face red and hot to the touch’ issue. Wheat is an issue, not as severe, but one that still necessitates careful monitoring.

So we have embraced a Gluten-free lifestyle for Little Man. I know we will eventually for us as well, but haven’t yet. Wheat=Bad

We decided to try and integrate it into his diet to see how his more mature system reacts to it. Perhaps, since it’s been almost a year since we discovered the issue, his little body would have developed a tolerance to it? That’s what we were hoping anyways. And our Pediatrician agreed that it was a good idea, done in moderation that is.

So we started introducing Wheat Chexs as we felt that it would be the safest . A few during breakfast and dinner…carefully monitoring his reaction day by day.

It took about 12 days before a reaction showed up. Itchy red cheeks and dry skin patches on upper back. Total wheat reaction. However, he went almost 2 weeks before anything really showed up. This is a bonus!! Before it used to be instantaneously!

So based on this, I feel confident that gentle steps towards increasing the amount of Wheat will gradually improve his tolerance. And as he gets older, just imagine, he might even be able to eat a piece of toast. Or a piece of pizza. Or cake. The types of ‘pieces’ he could eat… oh my brain goes wild at the thought…

And then I grow sad at the thought that my bi-monthly trips to Whole Foods would be eliminated…

It’s a double-edged sword.

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WME

happybaby-blog

I got home today thinking that things were pretty much in order….

Sped home, picked up V, dashed to Publix and got home at a reasonable time. 6 pm. Not too shabby!

Dinner preparations began. First some peas….

I heated them up, cooled them off a little, walked over to him and slowly spilled them onto his highchair top. He giggled. I guess the sight of all those peas rolling around was quite funny.

Peas are his new favorite vegetable to eat whole. He happily picks them off his tray and stuffs them into his little mouth. During this stuff-in time, I add some cubed Edam cheese while I heat up a veggie pattie in the microwave.

My new favorite foods for him are from *surprise* WholeFoods! I know thats a huge shocker… But they do have the best gluten/wheat free selection I have found in town, and also have an interesting selection of gluten-free toddler food.

My current favorite? HappyBaby‘s HappyBites. The veggie-tots are what are currently swinging around our kitchen…

I cooled the veggie-tot down on the counter, pick ed it up and hand delivered it to V’s table, to his apparent delight.

One piece in. No problem. And chewed to evident delight.

Number 2 hit that little mouth and the screams that issued after could seriously have woken the dead. I spun around, only to see V clawing at his little mouth.

Oh. My. God.

I quickly figured out that it was just too hot for that tender little palate. I swear I temperature tested it before hand…. bad mummy. I felt so horrible. That little face was so red and those little eyes were clenched shut. I did an ‘extraction’…. which means that I scooped that little mess right out of his mouth. Oh man. There was a hidden chunk of potato that was hotter than everything else. Oh that poor little mouth…

But problem solved… he has such a good temperament that he quickly moved past it and went on to stuff something else in there. Oh great. Same thing. Veggie tots. Hot.

Scream. Wail. Shriek. Claw at face. Turn red. Awesome.

By this time I was almost crying myself…. more mad at myself than anything. How could I have missed that piece that was slightly hotter than everything else? So much for my temperature testing skills…..

And then…..*sigh* it happened again.

Clearly I can’t tell temperature at all. Seriously!

This time it was so hot that those little chubby fists shook with frustration while those finger tried to claw everything out of that mouth.

Again, how did I miss this. Or was it just hot enough that, piled on top of the other hot things it pushed everything over the limit.

I felt awful. AWFUL.

Bad mummy. I completely checked everything temperature-wise…. perhaps I just…. oh… I don’t know…. I still feel awful. I gave him some ice-cream to cool that little mouth of his down. We brushed his teeth and off he went to bed.

Worst Mummy Ever. Total WME event. Embarrassingly enough, on top of all of this I felt the need to share this with random Internet-slash-family.

Clearly I am just looking for punishment…

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Brick-like

bricks-blog

I just got a chunk of waffle tossed into my hair.

Since this is not breakfast-time, I know you are surprised. I was.

It was unearthed in Chewies Dog-bed (which really is a cat-bed. Even though he’s a dog). Chewie has this tendency to bury things he won’t eat in his little bed.  I just found it a few minutes ago and thought it was funny. Ever since M became ‘Mr Mum’ I have found a lot of random bits of food all over the house.

Now part of it might be that we are doing a lot of ‘wheat-free’ cooking. Tapioca bread and wheat-free waffles. Tapioca bread does not toast well. If you make it golden brown, that actually means ‘brick’ in the language of toast.

And M is such a good Mr Mum. He toasts things to perfection, a lovely golden-brown. Which might make for deliciousness in our wheat-filled world. But actually means ‘cobble my sidewalk with your toast pieces’ in the land of the wheat-free.

I have accidentally stepped on it. I know. It is as hard as a m-f’er.

Apparently Chewie is not interested in our new wheat-free life-style. In the evenings, when I am home and M is off at his summer evening job of serving…. I find little morsels in corners of all the rooms. Waffles in the living-room. Biscuits in the bedroom. Toast everywhere. Chewie hates toast. Well, wheat-free toast anyways.

At least, this wheat -free toast. I think he would have liked what V was eating in Canada. We needed a dog in Canada to clean up the mess V made.

So, unbeknowest to V, wheat-free sucks. It sucks as even the dog won’t eat it.

And then, Chewie did something that surprised me. In retrospect though, it shouldn’t have.

He ate the waffle. So I guess, in hindsight, it wasn’t that bad. I just wish M hadn’t thrown it at me first……

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Dedication

dedication-blog

Shopping at Whole Foods the other day (I might as well add them as a sponser I am there so much) looking for peanut butter substitutes.

See if you can follow my logic here. Peanut-butter substitutes are mostly for people who are allergic to peanuts. Correct? Or for people who have wide and adventurous palates… perhaps?

OK, so lets say we swing with the allergy folks, we know there are lots of you out there. If you are like me, you read the ingredients because just saying that it’s peanut-free on the label is not enough for me. I need to check and see for myself. When I see things like…. oh…. I don’t know, perhaps an addition-slash-warning on a label that says something like “Made in a facility that uses machinery that also processes peanut products“….

DANGER DANGER WILL ROBINSON! DANGER!!

Seriously…. I am disappointed in you. Why would I let my child eat a product that quite potentially has come in contact with something he is really allergic to? Do you think I am stupid? Or perhaps you think I don’t read?

This was what I noticed as I carefully perused the ‘nutbutter’ selection at Whole Foods. I know there are sunflower butters and soy nut butters. Yes, yes… I know all about these…. but what I am looking for is something that actually tastes good.

A few months ago I bought soynut butter. The first few tastes were pretty good. V even liked it!

It makes me gag. For real. There is an awful after-taste of soynuts that, it turns out, make me heave even thinking about it. AND I like roasted soynuts. Just something about the butter, I guess. And looking at the sunflower butter made me think similar things. I like sunflower seeds. I don’t want them to be ruined for me too.

And that is when I started thinking about hazelnuts, almonds and other yummy nuts. Especially hazelnuts. Hazelnut butter sounds divine.

Guess what? All the brands that Whole Foods stocked were all processed in plants that also process peanuts. So thats the end of that.

I left sooooo mad. Not at Whole Foods, but at the brands out there that aren’t looking at the whole picture. You can take the step to branch out to an area that you will have success in, but are incapable of seeing beyond that little area.

Dedicated factories man…. now thats what I am talking about. Come on, be ballsy…… take that next step….

To read about a family being nut-free (and egg-free), check this out. It certainly is interesting to read about what a family with a pretty serious situation does. My kudos to them for find new and interesting ways to make it work with little kids…

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Charles Schultz

peanuts-blog

This morning I took a trip to Whole Foods. Have I mentioned before that it’s my favorite place ever? Well, if you didn’t know that, you do know.

I love Whole Foods. I would move in there and set up a tent in the produce section. I went there this morning without makeup and also pre-shower and not only that but my hair was barely brushed. V, of course, looked immaculate and flirted with all of the ladies.

And of course in the state I was in, I randomly ran into an old co-worker I hadn’t seen in a year and a half. That is just the way that Life throws it these days. Good times.

So as you may know from previous posts, V has some allergy issues. Wheat and peanuts. They are sort of mid-range in strength. According to my pediatrician the peanut allergy is ‘partially my fault’ as I ate too many peanut m&m’s post-preggo. I 50-50 believe this. I did eat a lot of peanut m&m’s. A LOT. But whether it’s totally my fault or whether he would have had allergies anyways? Who knows.

Anyways, it was easy-peasey to deal with when he was young, but as he gets older it gets trickier. Toast, sandwiches, cookies, cake, pizza, chips, sauces, fast-food etc etc. Wheat is my enemy. Sometimes it’s hard not to get frustrated with it all. A few weeks ago, one of the girls at daycare wanted to share her cookie with V and did it behind Ginette’s back. A few hours later, his face broke out in an awful rash. *Sigh*

Anyways, Whole Food’s has a Gluten Free section that I am all over. Today I found cookies, cookies kinda like Oreos, but gluten-free. Awesome. And cereal, sadly though it was made in a factory that also processed peanuts so that’s a no-go as far as I am concerned. Dedicated factories are the way to go baby!

When I find things like this, it makes me feel like I can bring some kind of normalcy to V’s diet. Make it less of a ‘big deal’ to feed him a meal or organize lunches for him. I totally high-five myself (mentally) and am pretty sure that no-one is as excited as I am to find gluten-free mac and cheese and tapioca bread. But I expect you to be. Just so you know.

With his 1st birthday on my mind, birthday parties weigh heavily on me.  I keep thinking about the years to come, his little friends and the dietary issues that will arise at sleep-overs, sports events, parties etc etc.

Challenging is not even the right word to describe it. Even more so with his Italian background. How will he enjoy Great-Grandma’s lasagna or eggplant parm? Or even Gramma’s? I have a feeling that rice-lasagna noodles either don’t exist or aren’t as good. Man.

So anyways, from time to time there will be more allergy related posts. I am fascinated by wheat and peanut allergies, dedicated factories and gluten free products. It’s quite interesting.

Anyone with interesting tips on sites with products that are wheat and peanut free, or allergy info in general…. I am looking for more sites, info, blogs, anything…. please email me with any info.

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