My second year in the blogging arena has been educational and rewarding. From forming supportive relationships with members of the parenting and food allergy communities to staying up-to-date on the latest studies and legal issues, it has been an exciting year!
My focus on the blog continues to be one of sharing my journey as a mama managing food allergies while engaging in mindful parenting. In this spirit, I was thrilled to become a regular guest blogger contributor for Fancy Shanty and a part of freedible.com by sharing my posts and recipes in the food allergy blogger database.
Looking back over the year, five posts drew notable attention from the parenting and food allergy communities. I invite you to take another look at the posts and comment! I’d love to know if you’re going through the same things and any advice you can share.
My Top Five Most Popular Posts of 2014
#5 – Walking the Tightrope and Making a Difference, Step By Step – Managing food allergies often feels like we’re walking a tightrope: step by step, putting one foot in front of the other. Sometimes we stop to regain balance and composure, taking deep breaths, making sure all safety nets and safety plans are at the ready, and then continuing forward. Other days are not as hard and it’s more like walking on a balance beam. I know I’ve covered all my bases. I feel more secure. It does get easier in some ways as we educate ourselves and know the ropes. Too, on those days I feel such support and love from this food allergy community, my family and friends that it all feels doable and safe. I know I’m not alone. We’re getting through. We’re making progress!
#4 – Declaring Our Independence From Food Allergy Fears – On the eve of celebrating the signing of the Declaration of Independence, we engaged in a symbolic–and fun!–activity to declare ourselves independent from our fears. At least for that day, we did not want to feel anxiety. We wanted our freedom. What did we do? We wrote down our fears, read them aloud, crumpled them up and stomped on them!
#3 – What My Son Taught Me About Food Allergy Awareness – Think “A-E-I-O-U” – The Food Allergy Research & Education walk to “say FAREwell” to food allergies was a huge milestone for my family. When we signed up to participate in FARE’s event, I had two “C’s” on my mind: community and charity. But we walked away with so much more. Quite simply, I’d forgotten to focus on the awareness of the most important person: my son. Sharing food allergy awareness with others is so important, but awareness is just as important–if not more important–for our children who have the food allergies.
#2 – An Ode to Food Allergy Friends on Christmas: God Bless the Big and Small! – The holidays can be difficult for many reasons and many people, especially parents who are managing food allergies. It got me thinking about the Christmas spirit and what its message of new beginnings, grace, love and hope could mean for us. These verses were nudging me to write them out, and I’m so glad I did. So many of you said they gave you comfort, and on the heels of my own difficulties over the holidays, they’ve given me comfort too. I hope they show you how much this food allergy community–and the friends who support us–mean to me.
#1 – Trading Time-Outs for Time-Ins: Dr. Laura Markham Shares “Sweet Spot” for Parenting Happy Kids – When I heard that Dr. Laura Markham, the founder of Aha! Parenting, was speaking at a nearby church, I knew I had to get myself there. I’d just finished her book and loved her messages. Sure enough, her tips for parents about engaging in empathic parenting by setting age-appropriate expectations while offering love and understanding was met with gratitude and open arms. In a nutshell, we’re working to achieve cooperation without punishment, she told us.
Taking a closer look at everyone’s favorite posts, they are the ones that in addition to sharing helpful information really shared my vulnerabilities and feelings as a parent managing what can be both a scary and empowering area of pediatric health. They also are the ones I revisit myself when I need a pick-me-up or a refresher on parenting and food allergy management.
Did you enjoy the posts? What would you like to read more about in the new year? I’d love to hear your thoughts as I plan coverage for 2015. Thanks again for all of your kind support and encouragement!
Vector illustration courtesy of: Pavel L/www.shutterstock.com.