birthday parties

Posted on: Thu, 01/16/2003 - 2:33am
Annshel's picture
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Joined: 05/30/2002 - 09:00

How do you handle birthday parties that your child is invited to? I often find it hard when explaining that my son has multiple allergies and can't eat any of the food--and that I will supply his food. Some will try to accommodate him but often times it is still something that is unsafe or an unsafe situation. For example even if it is something he can have like potato chips I worry about cross-contamination the entire time between the chips and whatever else they are serving. Usually I just bring his food and give it to him when the others start to eat. I will always thank them for their efforts and try to explain but it's obvious that they truly just don't get it. I just find parties so stressful and he is such a popular little guy. We go to about 1 a month during the school year but I always dread them. I'd appreciate any feedback. Thanks in advance! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

[This message has been edited by Annshel (edited January 16, 2003).]

Posted on: Sun, 08/24/2003 - 10:38pm
becca's picture
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Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

You can ask, but I am not sure how your family will be about it. Maybe you are ready for that, though. We have a large family on dh's side and a niece who had dairy and chocolate allergies(outgrown now), and now my dd with egg and PN allergies. I do not expect anyone to bake an eggless cake, and frankly, I simply do not trust others baking. It involves too many unknowns for me. Was there a wad of PB on a knife in the dishwasher or on the sponge that cleaned the utensils and pan last time? That sort of thing.
I just picked up, before even having my own child with allergies, from my S-I-L to just teach her ery matter of fact that she cannot have certain things because they make her sick. We always be sure to have safe treats and always a decorated cupcake from home for birthdays(or any occasion where there will be a cake). I just keep a homemade batch in the freezer and grab one when we go.
Not sure if this helps. I wish you luck speaking with your family. I guess my point is, since I still would be uneasy with dd eating baked goods someone else made, I decided not to go there in general. They might try to accomodate us then I would feel obligated to consume it and wouldn't if I had doubts, blah, blah, blah. Seems like it would cause more problems.
I *do* try to ask that there be no nuts in something everyone is eating, though(Christmas was a nightmare anyway). Not sure if this special cake you speak of is covered in nuts as well!?
I understand your frustration and am thankful I am due to deliver a child 16 days after Christmas, so I do not have to travel to the In-laws and their holiday nuts. Ohterwise I was facing a similar confrontation this year. becca

Posted on: Sun, 08/24/2003 - 11:59pm
smack's picture
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Joined: 11/14/2001 - 09:00

Quote:I felt very bad that both my sisters children, along with the rest of the
family, could imbibe on this treat while my son had to sit at another
table by himself eating a popsicle. My son handled it well but I was
sad.
I am thinking that the next time we are invited to a party at her
house I am going to give her a choice. She can have a cake that
everyone can eat or we will come after the cake is served.
I have come to realize my son accepts these situations as facts of life and doesn't take them personally so I shouldn't either.
I now don't ask anyone for any exceptions but make sure that peanuts are not present in any shape or form [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]
Other than that I let people know we don't expect them to forgo a favourite cake for the person having the birthday just because my son can't eat it.
I don't want anyone not to invite my son thinking they have to make all kinds of exceptions.
He is promised a bowl of ice-cream when he gets home or usually everyone buys his safe ice-cream for the cake anyway so at least he can have some of that.
If the chocolate cake was covered in peanuts/nuts then that's another story. If it was just a chocolate cake that wasn't safe for your son to eat(may contain), don't take it personally.
People tend to be more accomodating if we are.
[This message has been edited by smack (edited August 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Mon, 08/25/2003 - 6:04am
samirosenjacken's picture
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Joined: 09/30/2002 - 09:00

I really can't expect others to not enjoy cake just b/c my kids can't have it. As the others said, I simply request that nothing with peanuts or PB be served. If I can't read the ingredients on the cake, my kids cant' have it and they know it. It's just the way it is. They handle it great. In fact, at my best friend's house they couldn't have the cake so she gave them popsicles. All the other kids wanted popsicles too so it was no big deal my kids couldn't have cake. If the cake was pb.. we would not attend the party. Otherwise, we always go to parties and have a great time.

Posted on: Mon, 08/25/2003 - 6:43am
CorinneM1's picture
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Joined: 06/20/2002 - 09:00

We experienced something similar to that when my SIL threw a birthday party for my brother and brought in a cake that had almonds in it. The ingrediants were listed on the cake box (from CostCo) and my son could not have any. He is also only 2 so wouldn't have understood. I stated that the next time I would bring something that he could eat (I brough a ho-ho, but that wasn't going to fool him and we had to leave). I normally bring a dessert anyway since I like to bake, but didn't this time around since my SIL insisted it wasn't needed. Now we all know, and I will continue my tradition of bring something else to the party.
If it is the tradition, let the tradition stand, but perhaps bake/bring your own verison of a chocolate cake or cookies so that your son has something a little more sweet to eat. I don't think that the family should necessarily stop the tradition, but you should tailor your needs. Since your son is old enough to somewhat understand, perhaps you can ask him what dessert he would want and then make it with him the morning of or the day before? That way he knows that it is safe for him and you wont feel as if he is so left out either.

Posted on: Tue, 08/26/2003 - 11:29am
Shawn's picture
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Joined: 09/07/1999 - 09:00

Give me one of those "you idiot" looks if I'm asking an obvious question here, but did you call the bakery? I'm guessing that the cake itself doesn't have nuts but that you're worried about cross-contamination. If so, and she always gets the same cake from the same bakery, perhaps a visit or phone call with the head baker about the ingredients and their baking methods would reassure you as to whether or not the cake is safe.
If the cake does have peanuts, I'd leave before it was cut. If it's just a cross-contamination possibility, I'd bring a safe home-baked cupcake or slice of chocolate cake for my child.

Posted on: Thu, 01/16/2003 - 3:43am
becca's picture
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Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

Generally, I just make it clear that for my daughter's sake in having things be consistent, rules the same, we have a house rule that, at this age, she only eats food from home or that we otherwise tell her is okay. That way, even if she does want to have a part snack, she has to ask me, or tells the grown up to ask me, and I decide. If I can check a bag, and there is not any nuts or nut products at a party, I do let dd have the food at the house, but it always goes through me. "House rule" so that my dd learns to always check with me. That way, it is less offensive to them, trusting them ans such, but more about "training" our child to not have anything unless we can read the label, until she is old enough to do so for herself safely and reliably.
It has taken some time and repetition, but other parents do eventually get it. You know, when someone says, "But the ice cream is just chocolate, no nuts...", I explain the cross contact danger. Now, at parties in the neighborhood, I have some mothers approach me to warn me there is a peanut(thai) salad on the table or walnut dressing... It is so nice, and thus far rarely the foods the children are eating anyway. In that case, I tell dd to stay away from the food table and strictly stick to our own and watch closely for any signs of hives or anything. We have been fine so far.
There are a rare few other adults I trust. In those situations, I specifically tell dd that I spoke with that adult and if she offers her food it is okay. Usually, they prefer to just give her the stuff I pack, to be safe. becca
[This message has been edited by becca (edited January 16, 2003).]

Posted on: Fri, 01/17/2003 - 12:46am
Annshel's picture
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Joined: 05/30/2002 - 09:00

Thanks for responding Becca.
I guess I just have to get used to the idea that i'm most often going to feel a little uneasy in unfamiliar situations with him. His safety is always my #1 concern. I basically do as you do and I guess that's all we can do if we want them to be a part of something. The joy that my DS gets out of these events definitely makes it worthwhile. He never seems to mind the fact that there are usually treats that he can't have (but he does know that I have a stash at home for these occasions!) [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Regardless, he has amazing tolerance--definitely my little hero. Anyway thanks again, guess I just need to toughen up!
Take Care!
Shel
_

Posted on: Fri, 01/17/2003 - 1:12am
joeybeth's picture
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Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

my kids (two PA) haven't started complaining yet about not being able to eat the food at birthday parties. so far, they just know that's the way it works for us. ui think so far they are just happy to be able to attend and food isn't really that big of an issue for them. recently, my 7 yr old was invited to a slumber party. (by the way, i thought 7 was a little on the young side to be sleeping away from home...but that's me). anyhow, my daughter was the only one who did not spend the night and the only one whose momma attended the party with her. : ) she actually asked if i could bring my sleeping bag and pillow so she could sleep over too. haha. isn't that cute? i didn't know the family at all so of course i didn't even consider letting my child spend the night. probably wouldn't have considered it even if i had known them. i'm just not comfortable with my kiddos being out of their own home at night. what i really hate is when another parent makes attempts at keeping the food safe and we still can't eat it. i feel so bad and hope that i never offend anyone. some mothers do try to come up with safe snacks which are still may contains. it is so nice of people to make the effort. at this particular party i just helped the parents clean up and kind of kept busy throwing away paper and empty plates and things so i wouldn't be so obviously in the way. : ) there were a couple of aunts there and a grandmother too so, thank God, i wasn't the only other adult in the house besides the birthday girl's parents. as always, we just keep making up the rules as we go. i'm sure there will come a time when i will not be able to attend every function with my girls without embarrassing them to death. or, without keeping them from developing socially. as my dad tells me (frequently - haha), "you can't raise a pony in a barn." it's hard to let go though when you know your kid has a need that might not be understood by others. joey

Posted on: Fri, 01/17/2003 - 2:11am
becca's picture
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Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

Yes, I do feel badly when others make an effort to make it safe, and we still decline. I did allow a neighbor/room mother at the preschool make cookies for dd. She asked me everything. How to wash the pans, is twice through the dishwasher good? I know she was so careful, so I did let dd have one. She even used my recipe, which did not work very well in her cookie treat pans! I tried to talk her out of it, but she really wanted to do it. So sweet, and she has been very helpful generally in buffering some of the resistence to the no peanuts policy. becca

Posted on: Tue, 03/09/2004 - 10:48pm
mattchrismom's picture
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Joined: 02/12/2003 - 09:00

I had a similar experiance with my pa son when he was about the same age, I started bringing a "special treat" like smarties (I'm in Canada) or some other safe favorite candy along with the cupcake, I also let him help to decorate the cupcake. I also found a bakery in my area that is peanut free and will guarantee a peanut and egg free cakes also, so he can have a cool cake like all his cousins (12)

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