I’m thrilled to share that my children’s book about food allergies, HumFree the Bee Has a Food Allergy, is now available! I’ve been anxiously awaiting the moment I could introduce you to this special little someone who has been a source of hope, comfort and inspiration for me and my family for quite a while now. HumFree the bee is like all of our kids. He just wants to feel good and have fun doing what he loves. For HumFree, this means buzzing around super fast with his friends! After discovering he has food allergies that are making him sick, he learns how to do just that. I hope you find his story as inspirational as we have!
When the Auvi-Q first hit the market, I must say it soared in, hot and shiny. With its relatively smaller size, faster delivery and voice activation, I felt myself breathe a little easier. But now I know it likely was a false sense of comfort. And the repercussions of what could have happened are frightening. So when the maker of our formerly beloved Auvi-Q epinephrine auto-injectors, Sanofi US, in an Oct. 28 press release issued “a voluntary nationwide recall of ALL Auvi-Q due to potential inaccurate dosage delivery,” the food allergy community was hit with a huge blow. In my mind, I’ve started thinking about what has happened as “the Auvi-Q effect.”
As we move forward on our food allergy journey, I’m realizing our diagnosis remains the same but everything else continues to change: our safety measures, our outlook, our comfort levels, our village of helpers, our forms of advocacy, and especially our levels of awareness. Two years ago after participating in FARE’s walk to find a cure, I realized I needed to focus much more on my son’s awareness. After my family walked again this year, I was reminded that change is constant, and that we as parents need to be ready for it as it calls us and keep moving forward.
I have to admit that the writing and production process for my new book, HumFree the Bee Has a Food Allergy, was much more fun than marketing and sales. I have one small problem: I just want to give everyone a free copy! I’m so excited to share HumFree’s messages of hope, empowerment, inclusion, awareness and friendship with everyone. I want to reach children who feel alone and help them feel and know they aren’t. I want them to feel empowered. I want them to feel included. I want all of our children to find a way to do what they love–while staying safe and happy! So I’ve been wrestling with how to share HumFree in a way that feels comfortable to me. And then I got it: have a giveaway!
I came up with the story HumFree the Bee Has a Food Allergy one lunch break when I was feeling emotional about our journey managing food allergies. I always had a vision of what HumFree would look like. My husband and I literally looked through a few hundred portfolios to find Brian. Once I saw his other adorable illustrations, I knew we had found the one. Many of you have asked about the artist behind these beautiful illustrations, so I put together an interview with Brian to share more about him!
HumFree the Bee Has a Food Allergy is a story about hope, empowerment, awareness, inclusion and being able to do what we love while staying safe. It’s a tale about a cute little bee with a very big message. As we continue HumFree’s launch countdown, I’d like to share additional elements of the book that I hope will kick-start our important conversations about food allergy awareness and education. In particular, I’ve included an illustrated Q&A at the end of the story so the connection, dialogue and learning continues.
What a fun and rewarding few weeks I’ve had as friends, fellow food allergy mamas and bloggers have reached out to talk about my new children’s book, HumFree the Bee Has a Food Allergy! One mama in particular asked some questions that really got me thinking about how the inspiration for HumFree began and what his message of inclusion means to my family–and hopefully will mean to you. What will HumFree’s message mean to you? You can find out now, because HumFree is available on my website!
As we celebrate the 238th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, I continue to think about what it means for us. Declaring our freedom takes courage. It takes strength. Guts. Conviction. Inspiration. Persistence. Hope. Faith. The word “independence” is powerful, isn’t it? It has so many important meanings for us–especially for those of us managing food allergies. Let’s Declare Our Freedom From Food Allergy Fears Last year, in the spirit of freedible.com’s independence movement, I wrote one of my favorite posts about how my family declared its independence from food allergy fears. It was a powerful post for me. It had so many levels of meaning. What my family and I did was start a tradition of writing down our fears on a piece of paper, reading them out loud, […]
Parenting can be hard enough. Wouldn’t it be great if we could just reach out to each other and our kids and have a redo whenever we want? Well, why not? During this past week of Easter, I’ve been thinking a lot about new beginnings and what they really mean. Starting over. Forgiveness. Isn’t it a relief when we can truly start over without bad feelings and lingering resentment? Forgiveness and letting go of deep resentments and hurts are big emotional hurdles. But what about smaller stumbling blocks? What about simpler issues? With two strong-willed kiddos who inevitably want different things–or the same thing like the same toy, tensions inevitably can rise. Words are said. Behaviors occur. Feelings are hurt. Frustration mounts. The Beauty of the “Redo” What can […]
Do you like to doodle? Have you ever had a doodle workbook? Are school, after-school and weekend activities pulling your kids in all different directions and leaving them with some very big feelings? If so, Elise Gravel’s new workbook, How Do You Doodle?, may be just what your family needs. She provides over 40 fun, thought-provoking and creative “doodle games” in a 96-page workbook that inspire doodling, writing and working through what can feel like very big thoughts and feelings.