non pa hosting party with pa child coming wants help

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DMB Member Posts: 6 Registered: Feb 2001 posted February 23, 2001 10:50 AM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- O-K . . . I guess I am going to have to stop posting! First my username and password disappeared and now I am making entire threads vanish! This was a thread started by a nice lady who wanted help planning her son's birthday party because one of the guests had a peanut allergy. The mother of the peanut allergic child didn't give her much to go on. She was looking to us for some help with snacks and the cake.

I think her name was jamiesmom. So jamiesmom if you read this, please post your question again or feel free to email me at [email]bann23@gateway.net[/email]

Deanna

IP: Logged jamiesmom Member Posts: 2 Registered: Feb 2001 posted February 23, 2001 07:57 PM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Yes that was me. One of the children that will be coming to my son's 6th birthday party has a peanut allergy. The little girl's mother has not offered much information. She told me that her daughter knows to ask if anything contains peanuts. I would very much like to reduce the risks and provide 'safe' snacks that all of the children can enjoy. I was looking for suggestions. I was also wondering if I should buy a birthday cake or make one myself.

I do have experience with anaphylaxis as my 3 year old daughter also has a severe allergy (cause unknown but it is not peanuts.)

Any ideas would be appreciated.

IP: Logged MattsMom Member Posts: 217 Registered: Oct 2000 posted February 23, 2001 08:58 PM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Making the cake is always the safest route to go, because you know EXACTLY what it in it. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe Betty Crocker will list a peanut warning underneath the ingredients on their cake mixes, if you're not wanting to make a from-scratch cake. I generally will make cakes from scratch (NO almond extract, btw), but if I'm in a hurry I'll use a mix. Haven't done that in awhile though, so I'm not remembering for sure what brand I went with. I really think it was Betty Crocker, but can't be 100% sure. Ice cream is another concern. You have to check the ingredients list on ALL flavors (I've found peanut listed in plain vanilla ice cream). The way I understand there are no guaranteed peanut-free (meaning from cross-contamination as well as ingredients) ice creams.

Other than that, check the labels on any candies you hand out in goodie bags, and for obvious reasons, don't serve pb+j, or have push the peanut across the room games. I hope your son has a good birthday party! =)

IP: Logged supermom1023 Member Posts: 53 Registered: Jan 2001 posted February 24, 2001 02:01 AM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jamiesmom, It's great to hear that you are concerned enough to find safe foods. What has really warmed my heart is when the mother of one of my Sara's friends make their child's b-day party safe for Sara. I like for the one having the party to call and ask me about specific foods and brands rather than saying "what can she have?". I feel like I'm planning the menu when asked that. If they mention something she can't have we can discuss an option then, like another brand or a good substitute. It probably seems that I don't offer much help to some, but I don't like broad questions as I mentioned above. I've had mothers call on their cell phones from the grocery store reading labels to me! That's how we know who really loves and cares about our children. I'm glad you have a caring heart. Good luck with the party!

IP: Logged care Member Posts: 87 Registered: Sep 2000 posted February 24, 2001 08:19 AM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Re: the ice cream. In Canada you can buy Chapmans ice-cream, they are very allergy aware. Their popsicles are also safe., IP: Logged Chris PeanutAllergy Com Member Posts: 578 Registered: Jan 99 posted February 25, 2001 03:12 PM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Reminder; Don't forget you have to know what is in all ingredients you add such as oil etc. and any grease or spray etc. you may use to make the cake not stick.

I like the suggestion of asking the parents of the child what kind of cake mix (AND FROSTINGS) to use. I personally would not have let our daughter eat something that someone else had made that was not trained in peanut allergy. I do applaud your taking peanut allergy seriously and encourage you to create an environment for the child that is as safe as you can. Maybe you could have the parents of the peanut allergic child buy or make the cake for you? We have done this for our daughter's friends parties etc. and it worked out well for all. It is a relief for the person putting on the party as they don't have to worry about making the cake and being responsible for it, and it takes some of the worry out of it for the peanut allergic child's parents because they then know how the cake was made. Of course if a cake is purchased from a bakery it would have to be one the parents of the peanut allergic child have checked out and know well, (and safe bakeries for the peanut allergic are few).

------------------ Stay Safe,

[email]Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com[/email]

IP: Logged Chris PeanutAllergy Com Member Posts: 578 Registered: Jan 99 posted February 25, 2001 03:45 PM -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Watch out for what we who are well educated about peanut allergy might call "the obvious", but (as I know from experience) many who do not deal with peanut allergy often overlook. I have attended birthday and other parties where the hosts had contacted the peanut allergic child's parents about the cake, frosting and ice cream, but never remembered when they purchased peanut containing candy which was to be given out to all the children attending the party (or in a dish on a table etc.) We read all ingredients labels of everything our daughter was going to be in contact with or was going to be eating. If the peanut allergic parents are not well educated about the allergy you may not receive much help from them.

Some tips. Don't forget you can replace food treats with small toys so there is less to worry about there as far as them eating something with peanut in it (of course be careful to pick a safe age appropriate toy for all). Think about everything such as pinata candy, pizza etc., anything which has to do with food that you may be planning to have at the party. These are all things that if I were the parent of the child I would want to have checked out ahead of time (and in the case of the pizza, checked out again at time of purchase by myself also). I have helped out parents who wanted our peanut allergic daughter to attend their parties by planning ahead with them the food, candy etc. I have even paid for some of the food at some of these parties kind of as a "thank you" for taking the effort to include our daughter. Other times the parents having the party have given me the money so I could pick up the food and check any take out items with the cooks etc. at time of pick up. While it is sometimes a disappointment for a peanut allergic child to not be able to eat a birthday cake or other item such as the pizza. It is usually more of a disappointment for the child and their family to not be invited to the party at all because of their allergy. I encourage you to do your best to make it a safe and fun day for all and not to be upset with yourself is something is found out during the party which has to be dealt with. Food doesn't have to be the focus of a party, I never wanted anyone who was hosting a party to feel worried or sad if something was not perfect, just use it as a learning experience for next time and keep the lines of communications open between you and the peanut allergic child's family. I am sure they will be thankful for your efforts.

Let us know how everything goes!!!

I hope this family has Epi-Pens on hand at all times with the child no matter where they are. This way if something ever does go wrong they have life saving medication with them.

------------------ Stay Safe,

[email]Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com[/email]

------------------ Stay Safe,

[email]"Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com"[/email]

On Feb 26, 2001

If you have posted above please do a "reply" post to this thread so your email address etc. will be on this thread for others. The original thread this information was on has had a problem so I had to delete it. We are working on the problem so it will not effect other threads on our boards and hope to have this problems fixed in the next few days.

------------------ Stay Safe,

[email]"Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com"[/email]

On Feb 26, 2001

putting my email on here. =)

On Feb 28, 2001

Thanks for all of your help. My son's party is on March 3rd so I have made some decisions as to what to serve.

The focus of the party is not food. I have hired a magician to entertain the children. For snacks, I plan to cut up some fresh fruit and make some popcorn in my hot air popper. I've read here that Canadian Smarties are peanut free and as I am Canadian, I will also set out small bowls of smarties.

I am not a baker and have always bought birthday cakes. This time I am making my own. Also, one reply indicated that Chapman's Ice cream is peanut free so that's the brand I plan to serve.

I have filled the children's gift bags with toys and a box of smarties.

On another note, in the reading that I have done to try to educate myself about peanut allergies, I have realized that I have been lax in ensuring that I carry my own daughter's epipen with us at all times. Although she is not allergic to peanuts, she did have a very severe reaction to something. This has been a good lesson for me. Thanks again.

On Feb 28, 2001

I presume you are not putting anything on the popcorn you will be making in your hot air popper, but I just wanted to remind everyone that you have to check everything. People often forget to check the ingredients of the butter and other things they use when cooking, such as non-stick sprays, oils they use to cook with, and other things they add without remembering to check out the ingredient first. Remember, if you did not check out an ingredient and added the ingredient before you remembered, don't give something you know is unsafe (no matter what the amount) to the allergic person! Not even if you washed it off or tried to remove the top layer to use what was under what you sprinkled on or what ever.

Just wanted to remind everyone.

Be sure to notify and discuss with the magician about the food allergy in case any of the tricks include food (check if any animals are part of the act also and what they are rewarded with such as peanuts or other food). I know this can be a lot of work and applaud you for your efforts to make the party enjoyable for the peanut allergic child's family.

Glad to see "The focus of the party is not food".

You also mentioned someone "indicated that Chapman's Ice cream is peanut free". Again I want to stress the word "indicated". While a tip is a great thing to hear about, it should only be used as a lead for you to find out more about a manufacturer and/or product. I want to be sure you know to check with the manufacturer yourself about the exact product you will purchase to see if there is anything you need to about their product and serving their products to a peanut allergic person. There may be many more things you need to think about and address, I just wanted to bring your attention to some of them.

------------------ Stay Safe,

[email]"Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com"[/email]

On Feb 28, 2001

I'm sorry I didn't go into more detail. I have in fact been diligently checking labels and have not assumed that anything is peanut free. I understand and appreciate your concern and advice. I had not thought to ask how the magician rewards his animals and will certainly do so. Thanks again.

On Feb 28, 2001

jamiesmom,

I think it's great that you are making such an effort for this child with the peanut allergy. There should be more people like you in the world. I hope your son has a great birthday!

Deanna

[This message has been edited by DMB (edited February 28, 2001).]

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