No Peanut Is Welcome In My Home

I said goodbye to my love affair with peanuts over 2 years ago.  No more Reece’s cups, no more Snickers peanut butter squared, no more boiled peanuts, no more PB&J.  I haven’t looked back since.

Snapseed

No, I’m not allergic to peanuts.  My son is.  You see, if I eat a Reece’s cup (a lifetime favorite treat for me), I can’t get near my son for hours.  No kisses, no cuddles.  Protein from the peanut stays in saliva for hours after consumption.  I had to kiss my love affair with peanuts goodbye or I couldn’t kiss my son.  I love peanut stuff but I love my son more.

This wasn’t an easy obsession to break.  Peanut in some form or another was part of my daily routine.  If I was eating healthy (usually lasting a day or two), I would eat peanuts with cheese.  If I was eating unhealthy (the other 28 or 29 days of the month), I would eat a peanut butter candy of some sort, usually a Reece’s cup.  I started out by refraining from eating peanuts while I was around my son.  I could eat peanut products at work, as long as it was several hours before I had to pick up my son from daycare.

But then one day the daycare called and my son was sick.  I had to pick him up just after I’d eaten peanut candy.  Mommy fail.

So then, I just stopped eating peanuts altogether.  It just wasn’t worth the risk.  My son is severely allergic to even traces of peanuts.  Once, my Dad had eaten peanuts several hours before giving my son a hug.  As they hugged, their cheeks touched.  My Dad had a beard that apparently still had traces of peanut “dust” in it from his earlier consumption.  My son’s face immediately starting swelling and turning red, just from traces of peanut dust in my Dad’s beard.  Crazy!

Of coarse, we cleaned out the pantry of any peanut contaminated food as soon as we discovered my son’s allergy.  My other children and myself stopped eating peanut products over 2 years ago.  I’m pretty sure my husband hasn’t completely broken up with Reece’s cups while at work…but still,

No peanut is welcome in my home!

Trick or Treat: Candy My Kid Can’t Eat

orange and blue pumpkins
Photo by Scott Webb on Pexels.com

Costumes, candy, and crisis.

Wait, crisis??

Well, it could be crisis for children with food allergies.  A night filled with excitement, imagination and candy treats is awesome for most kids but can be a nightmare for kids with food allergies.  Most candy treats just aren’t safe for them to eat.  Parents can’t read the labels of the candy to verify their safety, so the candy is taken away…that is, if the kid even gets to trick or treat.  Bummer.

One in thirteen children in the U.S. has food allergies, according to recent studies.  It’s time we take notice.  It’s time we include them.  Holidays are especially difficult for food allergy families due to the centrality of food at holiday celebrations.  No one wants to end up at the hospital on a holiday.

There is a way to make this a fun filled night for food allergy kids.  The Teal Pumpkin Project was created to include *not exclude* children with food allergies.  It’s pretty simple.  You just display a teal pumpkin outside your door to alert food allergy families that you have non-food treats.  Easy, inexpensive items to purchase are plastic spider rings, pencils, little rubber bouncy balls, etc.  Dollar Tree and Oriental Express are great places to purchase these treats affordably.  And here’s an important tip-keep them in a bowl separate from the candy you offer other kids to avoid any cross contamination.

You can purchase a plastic teal pumpkin to use year after year, or just paint your orange pumpkin teal.  It’s a fun project with the kids.  Use that opportunity to educate your children about food allergies and food safety.  Who knows, maybe one day they will save their friend’s life.

Thanks for reading and thanks for supporting children with food allergies!

“Act justly, love faithfulness, walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

person holding pumpkin beside woman
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com