Food Allergy Recall Roundup – March, 18, 2016

RECALL ROUNDUP

Feel like you are getting inundated with all the food allergy recalls coming out?  It seems like my Facebook, Twitter and email is always getting filled up with announcements regarding recalls.  There are so many it can be pretty overwhelming!

So, to help you sort through the confusion, I will be posting all of the food allergy recalls for you all in one place.

Right here, on Fridays, I will post a list of the recalls from the past week with links to the official recall listing so you can easily access the information you need quickly and easily!  Of course, I will continue to share recalls on Facebook and Twitter as they come out because you need to know these things right away.

This Week’s Recalls

Northern Tier Bakery LLC Issues Voluntary Recall Due to Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk in Tuna Salad Wedge Sandwich

Be sure to click thru and get all the information for any recalls that might affect you!

Helping Your Kid Thrive!

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P.S. Have more questions or comments about recalls?  Feel free to ask me in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter!

 

Food Allergies and Dark Circles Under The Eyes

Did you know that food allergies and dark circles go hand in hand?

We have definitely noticed that when my children have been accidentally exposed to milk or soy, they develop a very specific set of symptoms.  One of these is dark circles under both eyes.  It is so common in children that it is known by medical professionals as “allergic shiners”.  So, when the behavior is off, the first thing we check is their eyes.  Whoever said that the eyes are the window to the soul only had half the story!  The eyes are the window to the health of our bodies.

Check out this video discussing some of the things that cause dark circles under the eyes in children.

Have you noticed food allergies and dark circles under the eyes of your kids?

 

4 Dairy & Soy Free Popcorn Recipes for National Popcorn Day!

Dairy & Soy Free Popcorn for National Popcorn Day!

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Are you going to watch a movie?  Do you want an appropriate snack?  What is better than popcorn when you are watching a movie?  Really, popcorn is a great snack food for anytime!  It gives us great fiber, is low in calories and helps curb those snack food cravings we all get.  But, popcorn has butter or soy you say?  Not when you make it yourself!  It’s so easy to use an air popper and make your own in less than 5 minutes.  And, In honor of National Popcorn Day, I rounded up some yummy dairy and soy free recipes for you to enjoy!

Dairy & Soy Free Popcorn

  1. BBQ Popcorn
  2. “Dorito” Popcorn
  3. Muddy Buddy Popcorn – be sure to check your chocolate
  4. Kettle Corn

Don’t leave all the popcorn for the butter lovers!  Be creative and try some new recipes for popcorn today!

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P.S. Got any other dairy & soy free popcorn recipes?  I’d love to hear about them in the comments below!

New Food Allergy Resolutions for A New Year

New Year: New Food Allergy Resolutions

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Welcome to 2016! Time to Tackle a New Year With Some New Food Allergy Resolutions!

It’s the beginning of a whole new year.  For me, it always feels like I get to have a fresh start.  Yes, I will still be running around trying to keep up with the demands of preparing milk and soy free food, managing my husband’s busy travel schedule, taking the girls to and from the dance studio, getting my workouts in, and, yes, I am still unpacking from our move last summer.  But, for some reason, January brings a reset in my mind that is settling, even motivating.  So, I am working on some new food allergy resolutions in 2016!

Every year I like to take some time to look back at both my successes and my failures to close out the year.  For us, 2015 had some big changes!  We finally found our home in Texas.  I launched 2 new eBooks.  The girls finished up their first year at a new dance studio and on a competitive dance team and are now well into their second year.  I still have boxes scattered in different areas of our house and many big projects to tackle from moving…

After looking back, I get to look forward…where do I want to be next year? in 2 years? 5 years? What do we as a family want life to look like both now and in the future?  I have many goals this year, but here are the ones that relate to our food allergy/intolerance journey.

Goal #1: Read more current research on food allergies.

In order to do my part of managing my girls food sensitivities, I need to understand everything that I can about the reason behind them.  This will also help me to better serve you as I learn new things about the development of new treatments and, hopefully, even cures!

Try out 1 new milk and soy free recipe each month.

Life has been busy lately.  I haven’t been making the time to find new dishes to prepare and, frankly, we are getting bored with our food!  It’s time to introduce some new dishes to our rotation.  I’d love to do it more than once a month, and maybe I will, but 12 new recipes in 1 year seems doable to me so that’s where I set my goal.

Find a new doctor for our family.

After moving to a new state last year, we looked for a doctor we thought would be near where we were buying a house so that we could get our prescriptions set up.  Unfortunately, our new house is on the other side of the city and it takes longer than I want to drive when I am sick to get there.  So, we are looking for a new family doctor who understands our various conditions and can manage the majority of our family’s needs.

What are your new food allergy resolutions?

Maybe you need to find a new doctor, or decide which vaccinations are safe for your child.  I’d love to discuss it with you!  Leave a comment below and let me know what you are working toward this year.  Or chat with me on Facebook or Twitter!

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P.S. If you are brand new to this whole food allergy and intolerance world, be sure to check out my FREE eBook Your Kid CAN Eat This! It’s a 7 day meal plan with recipes and shopping list that is free of the 8 most common allergens.

 

Food Allergy Recall Roundup – January 15, 2016

RECALL ROUNDUP

Feel like you are getting inundated with all of the food allergy recalls coming out?  It seems like my Facebook, Twitter and email is always getting filled up with announcements regarding this food allergy recall or another.  There are so many it can be pretty overwhelming!

So, to help you sort through the confusion, I will be posting all of the food allergy recalls for you all in one place.

Right here, on Fridays, I will post a list of the recalls from the past week with links to the official recall listing so you can easily access the information you need quickly and easily!  Of course, I will continue to share recalls on Facebook and Twitter as they come out because you need to know these things right away.

This Week’s Recalls

Good Earth Egg Company 12-count carton label

Good Earth Egg Company Voluntarily Recalls Shell Eggs Because Of Possible Health Risk

 

Good Earth Egg Company, LLC of Bonne Terre, Missouri has announced a voluntary recall of its shell eggs because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.

 

Kermit, Inc. Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Soy and Anchovies in Various Barbecue Sauce

Kermit, Inc. of DeLand, Florida is recalling products co-packed for Peddlin’ Rooster, P.O. Box 1743, DeLand, Florida 32721, because of an undeclared allergen on the label. The undeclared allergen is soy and anchovies as a ingredient in Reduced Sodium Worcestershire Sauce and Organic Ketchup that is used in making of several products.

 

Be sure to click thru and get all the information for any food allergy recall that might affect you!

Helping Your Kid Thrive!

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P.S. Have more questions or comments about recalls?  Feel free to ask me in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter!

 

Dairy & Soy Free Thanksgiving Meal Plan

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Thanksgiving is almost here!  Are you ready?

Is this your first year preparing the turkey feast?  Or perhaps, you have been doing it for years, but now someone in your family has a newly diagnosed food allergy or intolerance?

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I remember the first time I had to prepare the Thanksgiving turkey.

It can be pretty intimidating.  I was in graduate school and it was going to be my first Thanksgiving away from home.  I probably could have found somewhere to go, but I really wanted my Grandma’s bread filling!  So, I ventured through the store in the craziness of the weekend before Thanksgiving and my little dinner was a success.

I felt like I was doing it for the first time all over again when I had to adapt these recipes for my children and their milk and soy food intolerance.

So, this year, I put it all together in a meal plan for you.  You don’t have to plan!  All you need to do is open the file and get to the store and you, too can prepare your own Thanksgiving dinner! Of course, you WILL still have to do the actual cooking. 😉

This is my personal plan for putting together a real Thanksgiving Dinner (the same menu my Grandma prepared) while still enjoying time with my family.  And, now, I’m going to share it with you.

My brand new Dairy & Soy Free Thanksgiving Meal Plan will help you pull it off without breaking a sweat!

Helping Your Kid Thrive!

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P.S.

And don’t forget to get my free 7 day top 8 food allergen free meal plan!  Your Kid Can Eat This is everything you need to eat allergen free for the week!

 

Halloween Fun! Easy food free ideas to keep the fun in Halloween!

Halloween Fun!

Are you dreading the Halloween season this year?  Are you concerned that your child will feel left out with all the candy and fun because of food allergies or intolerance?  It is entirely possible to have a great tie AND stay safe this Halloween.  Here is a list of things you can do!

Get a cool yard sign!

Decorating the house in Halloween themed signs, skeletons, etc. are a great way to bring the fun right to your front door!  And, who doesn’t love the look of cute smiling pumpkins and friendly ghosts while out Trick or Treating!

 

Try out a cool inflatable!

Why not enjoy the fun of the latest trend in everything?!  You just really can’t beat the Minions and a 3 ft minion on your front lawn would just be too cute…Hmm, I wonder if you could change the sign and use it for Christmas, too!

 

 

 

 

Bake some allergen-free cupcakes and use a cool liner.

Okay, so this idea is not exactly food free, but, it should still be safe if you remember to check the labels for your specific food allergens.  And these cupcake liners are just too cute to pass up!

 

Or, why not try out a Halloween themed Lego?


Legos will keep your kids busy and happy for hours…Just be sure to check for dropped pieces before you walk around barefoot!

 

 

 

And don’t forget the costume fun!


I just love this Olaf costume from the movie Frozen, but sadly, my girls are only interested in Anna and Elsa.  And, we did that last year, so I think we are going to be searching for some other princesses this year.

 

 

 

 

So, get out there and enjoy Halloween this year!  Don’t be afraid to have some fun with your family, just be sure to follow your safety precautions.

Have a Happy Halloween!

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Don’t forget to checkout and participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project this year!

 

Why I Chose the Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker (And What You May Not Like About It…)

Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker Review

The Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker

When the electronics on my old trusty oval shaped 7-quart slow-cooker failed, I knew I had to replace it.  I tried to make do with the smaller round one that I like for soups, stews and the like, but it just doesn’t cook a good roast or chicken the same as the oval.  So, I headed over to Amazon to replace it.

I settled on the Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker for several reasons.  First, my smaller round slow cooker is a Hamilton Beach and it has been functioning like new for nearly 8 years now.  Second, I wanted a slow cooker without all the fancy electronics.  The heating elements on my old unit (a different brand) still worked, but I could not get the electronics to function.  Plus, the electronics limit the amount of time you can cook without it automatically switching to a warm mode.  I like to make broth in mine overnight and it would turn off in the middle of the night leaving me with another day of waiting for the broth to become broth.  It’s just plain frustrating.

The Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker lists the following features on Amazon:

  • 7 quart oval stoneware crock holds an 8 lb roast or 2 4 lb chickens
  • Keep warm setting maintains serving temperature
  • Recipes included for meals, soups and side dishes
  • Removable dishwasher safe stoneware and lid
  • Lid Latch strap included for easier portability

When it Arrived

As usual, my package arrived from Amazon in excellent condition.  The manufacturer’s packaging was fully encased in a larger plain brown box with the tell-tale Amazon tape over the seams.  Inside was a fully sealed box from the manufacturer.

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After opening it, I set it up on the counter after hand washing the crock and lid.  I could have run it through the dishwasher, but I didn’t want to wait.  I had a slow cooker meal planned for dinner that night!

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Negatives

There really isn’t a whole lot to complain about with the Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker.
There is a big rubber band device to lock the lid in place to take the full crock with you for a pot luck.  I am still trying to figure out how to use it, but most likely will lose it before I actually use it to travel.

If you are gone all day and need to have a timer to switch it over to warm so you don’t burn food, this slow cooker is not for you.

The Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker is a keeper!

If you need a basic, large oval slow cooker, click through to order your Hamilton Beach 7-Quart Slow Cooker from Amazon now!  Plus, if you are a Prime Member, you get free 2 day shipping!

 Click Here to Read the Amazon Reviews!

 In the interest of full disclosure, this post contains affiliate links.

Milk-Free, Soy-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

Milk-Free, Soy-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

Does your child like to have a special treat when their friends are having one?  Do you need an option for chocolate chip cookies that are both milk and soy free?  Do you want a recipe to make with your kids so you can participate in your family’s holiday traditions?MKHW_141211_00132.jpg

 

I grew up eating the best cookies.  My Grandmother made them.  Every year we would visit her for Thanksgiving, and then, the day after, when most people were shopping, she and I would bake the Christmas cookies.  They were the best cookies.  We made several different kinds.  She always used butter, so I had to play with the recipe a bit to make them come out right so that my girls could enjoy them as well.  These days, I make the Christmas cookies.  And, it’s not always the day after Thanksgiving.  Today, I am going to share with you my adaptation of her Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe.

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  • 1 cup milk-free, soy-free margarine (I used Earth Balance)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cup milk-free, soy-free chocolate morsels (I used Enjoy Life) or chopped up chocolate bar (like Aloha superfood chocolate)

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1. Beat margarine, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla with electric mixer.

2. Add eggs and beat well.  Gradually beat in baking soda, salt and flour until well combined.MKHW_141211_001-7

3. Stir in chocolate chips by hand.

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4. Refrigerate 30 minutes or overnight.  (You can also go ahead and drop the cookie dough onto cookie sheets and freeze as dough balls to bake later.)

5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. And drop dough by rounded teaspoons onto an ungreased cookie sheet.

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6. Bake 9-11 minutes, rotating halfway through.

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7. Let sit on cookie sheet 1 min.  Then use a spatula to move them to a towel to cool.  When cool to the touch, you can stack them.

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8. When completely cool, store in an airtight container with a piece of bread to keep them fresh.

I hope that you and your family are able to participate in this holiday baking tradition.  For more allergen-free holiday baking ideas, be sure to check out the Freedible cookie exchange.

Back to School Checklist for Kids With Food Allergies

Back to School Checklist for Kids With Food Allergies

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It’s easy to take care of your kids when they are under your constant supervision.

But, at some point, we have to let them go out into the world and learn to manage their allergies for themselves.

Here is a back to school checklist of things that you can take to help your child as they head back to school or off to camp this year.

  1. Learn to inject epinephrine. Speak with your child’s doctor about training your child to use an epinephrine auto-injector. Younger kids will need adults to do this at first, but as they grow older and more responsible, children need to learn how to administer the life-saving medication themselves.  You can even let them inject an orange when your current stash expires so they understand exactly what to do.  Practicing will help make the proper response more automatic in a crisis situation.
  2. Don’t share food. Though they may have the best intentions, your child’s friends can accidentally hurt your child when they share their snacks or lunch.
  3. Wear your allergy bracelets. The choices of bracelets, necklaces and even shoe tags are as numerous as the children who need to wear them.  Be sure to find one that your kid loves and is not embarrassed to wear.
  4. Introduce yourself to adults. Teach your child to greet adults and explain their allergies when going to a new place. This includes school. Even though you may talk with your child’s teachers about the allergies, it helps if the educator can put a face to your child’s name.
  5. Recognize the symptoms of a reaction—and tell someone. Severe allergic reactions require immediate medical attention. Help your child learn to recognize the early symptoms of an allergic reaction. These symptoms may include itching, coughing, chest discomfort or tightness, difficulty breathing, and nausea or vomiting. If these symptoms occur, your child should speak with an adult immediately.