food allergies Archive

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.”

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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.

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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!

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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!

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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.

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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!

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Valentine’s Day, like most holidays, can be a cringe-worthy event for food allergy mamas like me. With boxes of allergen-laden candy taking center stage in our commercially-inspired celebrations, we must plan ahead to ensure our kiddos are safe and included, ideally with some food-free fun. This year, I found a cool, fun, allergen-friendly Valentine idea that is sure to be a hit with the kids: the tie-dyed Valentine’s Day card!

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While cooking and making new recipes doesn’t exactly come naturally to me, managing food allergies and coming up with allergen-free recipe substitutions has slowly transformed me into a better cook and baker. Now, on any given weekend, you can probably find me in the kitchen transforming a cookie, cake or bread recipe into something that is yummy and safe for my family. (I love coming up with my own desserts now!) My husband, on the other hand, is a natural in the kitchen. He often whips up soups, chili and pretty much every homemade dinner we eat. They are simple, safe and delicious. For Christmas, we enjoyed a big old ham for dinner and saved the bone with some of the meat. On New Year’s Day, […]

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My top five most popular posts of 2014 shared helpful parenting tips as well as my vulnerabilities and thoughts about being a mama managing food allergies. 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. I invite you to take another look at the posts and share your thoughts!

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Halloween. All Hallows’ Eve. All Saints’ Eve. It has many names and many meanings. But what about Halloween with food allergies? For some families, with all of the candy, traditions and celebrations inherent in the holiday, Halloween is the hardest to manage. Last year, I started crafting a plan months before Halloween’s arrival. And it was one of our best holiday celebrations ever!

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