holidays

I know this is early but my husbands family is starting to plan for the holidays. they have everyone bring something for dinner. I am worried about going cause of my daughters pa. a lot of them use peanuts or things that contains nuts. I am not sure what to do, but this would kill all the kids and my husband if we didn't go. I have told everyone about her allergy. I would appreciate it if anyone can help me about this.

By survivingfood on Fri, 10-18-13, 00:55

Depends on how old your child is, how educated your relatives are and how many of them will be there. For example, If your child is very young and is around other relative kids the risk of her getting something is her mouth is high, if you have an older relative that thinks that a little bit of food with nuts won't hurt a kid but will make them tougher, well that might be a horrible holiday get together. Use your own judgement and do things so you don't have any regrets. I would recommend to bring your own food either way.

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By trudy g freeman on Mon, 09-30-13, 22:38

DESPITE THEIR GOOD INTENTIONS, EVEN FAMILY MEMBERS CANNOT BE TRUSTED WHEN IT COMES TO A NUT ALLERGY. THEY DON'T REALIZE THAT ANYTHING THEY MAY HAVE COME IN CONTACT WITH COULD BE A PROBLEM. THEN ALL OF THE FOOD SITS ON THE TABLE WITH THE POSSIBILITY OF CROSS CONTAMINATION. IF SOMEONE IS MAKING A DISH THAT MY DAUGHTER CAN EAT AND THEY UNDERSTAND HER ALLERGY I ASK THEM TO SET A PORTION ASIDE FOR HER. AND I ALWAYS MAKE SEVERAL SMALL DISHES THAT SHE CAN EAT, AND I SET HERS ASIDE. I USED TO GET MY FEELINGS HURT WHEN PEOPLE WOULD SHOW UP WITH DISHES MY DAUGHTER COULDN'T EAT, BUT EVEN WHEN THEY TRIED I DIDN'T TRUST THE FOOD ANYWAY. PEOPLE JUST DON'T GET IT. ID RATHER BE SAFE AND BE ABLE TO HAVE A GOOD TIME.

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By mom1995 on Mon, 09-30-13, 03:46

However you choose to handle the family event will set the tone for how your daughter will expect others to handle it. I know you have received much advice but I am surprized by any parent of a PA child that would reccommend not banning nuts from a family function. A family event should be a safe place for any child and to not provide that.... well .... anyway. Family should want to give a safe fun event for everyone. The fact that you are planning so far inadvance and seeking knowledge is a sure sign that you will have the very best holiday season.

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By tomanyfoodalergies on Mon, 09-30-13, 01:15

thank you for all the advice.my husband sent outa message to all of his family to ask them if their food has any nuts or could contain nut please make it. so I hope they will but we will take all the precautions for her.

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By Saralinda on Sun, 09-29-13, 21:16

My sisters and I are all allergic to different stuff, I have a BIL who can't have garlic or onions, and I have one kid who is a vegetarian. Does this mean we can not have a festive (and yes, even traditional) holiday meal? Of course not. Here is our basic menu: No nuts in anything (of course.)Blackberry jelly for the sister who can't have cranberries. Make the turkey stuffing without chicken broth, use turkey instead. Skip the onions and garlic. Who needs 'em? Can't have green beans? Have peas or broccoli instead. We make special stuffing for the vegetarian which can have onion and garlic. Pies are pumpkin and apple. Cookies are sugar. We can deal with dairy or gluten sensitivities. Not every one eats everything served, but no body starves and nobody has a reaction. A good hostess makes her guests feel at home and safe.

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By jap on Sun, 09-29-13, 16:53

Firstly i have looked after my 15 year old daughter who has never had a second exposure since age one. She is greater than 100 out of 100 on tests and is so allergic that peas and lentils are also an allergy.

Firstly your daughter will take her allergy as seriously as you do, hopefully you carry two epi pens etc ?

Sadly a girl died this summer when eating peanuts at a camp (frosting)
I cannot speak for the camp or parents, hindsight is always 20/20 and they have my sympathy.

What I do in functions is phone ahead and make sure no peanut products are served or contact the parents and organization ahead to let them know.

Your situation should be easy with family or should be and you have to be your child's advocate.I would contact all members and let them know that if peanut of any kind including oil is used this would exclude your child from the event. Schools recommend a buffer table between peanut so that could not be done at your family party. Quiet frankly if they could not make that concession to protect your daughter why would you go, it is a small sacrifice to make compared to your child's life, no food is worth that. this would ensure a nut free table, however it does not mean that the food is safe to eat for her. i cannot tell you how many times at events people have sworn blind it was safe and on re checking it had peanut . Unless you deal with it daily you don't know.
You then pack a cooler of all your daughters favorite foods, maybe she can help and you take her food with you then you won't have to go over every ingredient with every member.You just tell them that is the way it is, diabetics have to be firm ???
Advocate , advocate , advocate , donot bend and except no substitutes.

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By txtina on Sun, 09-29-13, 15:46

I adore my huge family, but in 10 years we have had to take our peanut kid to the ER 3 times because of peanut exposures at family functions. So many people, and every year someone forgets. For 6 years we avoided family gatherings, but we decided to get a new plan. We remind everyone OFTEN, and as they walk in the door with their dish...then my child only eats what I bring...nothing else. I'm sure to make several of his favorites. (Even though he doesn't eat their food he still does not to be around peanuts). We also either keep his food separate in a cooler, or let him go thought the line first...(cross contamination...people switching spoons, etc). Before we leave for the event I show him whats Ive made, and what dish it is in. He's 16 now, and still there are family members who just don't understand this and think we are just being dramatic....or that he's just a "picky eater". It's been such a hard journey to give him a "normal" childhood, and keep him safe. It doesn't get easier as he gets older...we just have a new set of problems.

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By momtoemie on Sun, 09-29-13, 15:20

I am a Registered Dietitian with a 2 year old with a peanut allergy. I created a handout for family that you could modify (it's just in word). send me an email address & I can share it.

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By tomanyfoodalergies on Sat, 09-28-13, 16:55

thank you everyone for the advice. I think I will send out a message to everyone(some of his family lives out of state) to let them no about our nut allergy. you guys really made me feel more at ease.

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By stressedmommy on Sat, 09-28-13, 04:40

My son has many, many severe food allergies. Granted we don't have as large of a family as some, but never the less, we all bring part of the meal for holidays.
Our family is use to me (and him now) asking, "what's in this?" or for packaged items like store bought rolls or something, "can I see the package?" My mom will even label containers with signs stating baked goods are free of his allergens so he will know he can eat them and attaches a recipe card to the side as well.
That in general is for his egg and fruit allergies. As far at the tree and peanut allergies...for holidays these products just are not used in anything, period.
For larger family reunions (30+ people) like this past weekend, we simply bring his food. It is too difficult for others we only see once or twice a year to work around his very long list of life threatening food allergies.

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