Thursday, May 29, 2008

Pre-Packaged Dairy-free Egg-free Peanut-free Goodness

(Whew... what a title!)

I admit it... I was a big pre-packaged cooker before Witt's allergies hit us. Yes, allergieS. The dairy allergy was obvious and then the egg allergy was confirmed when he ate something with egg in it... I don't remember what it was, but I do remember him scratching terribly about two hours after ingestion. Poor little guy. I have not tried barley again yet as I just haven't had the time to pay close enough attention. So, at least two confirmed allergies... possibly a third.

Now that Witt starting to eat more table food, I must be more careful now than I was before; so, I want to start a log of pre-packaged foods that he has eaten so I can keep a reference. I hope this list will also help others and verify some of the foods that "appear" to be dairy-free egg-free. By appears to be I mean that there are so many milk derivatives that it is sometimes hard to keep them straight. Also, some things have the same labeling, but might not be milk-derived (ie "caramel color" can come from milk or other places - I have to call the manufacturer to find out). It's a very tedious process of reading labels (many, many times) to keep Witt safe.

Some of these might appear obviously dairy-free, but you just never know... we found dairy products in toddler toothpaste!!!

Although I am do a lot more "from scratch" cooking now, here are the prepackaged foods that Witt has already had without reaction (this will be a living list as I will add as we go and is in no particular order):


UPDATE: Dec 2008 - Witt also tested positive to peanuts this year, so this list will also include peanut free foods he has eaten.

For Milk Allergy Mom's list of tried foods: click here.

I Can't Believe It's Vegan also has a huge list of dairy-free egg-free prepackaged foods.

Go Dairy Free has a wonderful list of not dairy free, possibly dairy free, and surprisingly dairy free ingredients.

For other DF Bloggers, check out my Dairy-Free Blogroll.




Cereal/Breakfast

Plain Cheerios
Cinnamon Life
Pop-Tarts: Brown Cinnamon & Sugar with icing
Pop-Tarts: Strawberry (no frosting)
Malt-o-Meal Berry Colossal Crunch
Van’s Wheat Free Mini Waffles
100% Pure Maple Syrup
Lucky Charms
Fiber One Caramel Delight
Kellogg's Frosted MiniWheats (Strawberry Delight)
Kroger Instant Oatmeal Lower-sugar Apples and cinnamon
Malt OMeal Marshmallow Mateys
Bluebird Mini Honey Buns


Cookies/Crackers/Chips

Nabisco Graham Crackers - honey
Cambridge Graham Crackers - honey
Pringles chips- Plain
Best Value Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (Wal*Mart brand)
Kroger Value Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
Ritz Original Crackers
Cambridge Ritz style crackers
Clancy's Pretzel Sticks (from Aldi)
Golden OREOs Original
OREOs
Vanilla MoonPies
SuperPretzels (plain)



Canned/Jarred
Bush's Black Eyed Peas
Del Monte Green Beans
Le Sueurs whole carrots
Plain Applesauce
Canned fruits
Fruit bowls (no parfaits, yogurts, ONLY plain)
Mushrooms

DelMonte Greenbeans


Sauces/Condiments

Ragu Sauteed Onion & Garlic Pasta Sauce
Parkay Squeeze "butter"
Fleischman's Unsalted margarine
Willow Run Vegan Margarine
Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
Tofutti Sour Supreme / Better Than Sour Cream
Heinz Ketchup
Kraft Creamy Italian dressing & dip
Kikkoman's soy sauce
Red Star Nutritional Yeast
Rachel Ray's Beef Flavored Stock
Heinz Worcestershire Sauce
Kikkoman Soy Sauce
Hormel Real Bacon Bits (50% Less fat)
Chef's Cupboard Onion Soup Mix (from Aldi's)
Private Selection Organic Chicken Broth (Kroger)



"Cheese"
I buy online from The Vegan Store:

Follow Your Heart Vegan Cheese: "Cheddar", "Mozzarella"
Veganaise Mayonaise
Parmazao Imitations Parmesan


Rices/Pasta

Near East Couscous - Wild Mushroom and Herbs
ASIA Specialties Soy Ginger (from Aldi)
Near East Rice Pilaf Mix - Original
Jehling Ramen Noodle Soup - chicken flavor (from Aldi)
10 Minute Success Boil in Bag Rice
Smart Taste Pastas
THAI KITCHEN Spring Onion Instant Rice Noodle Soup



Baby Finger Foods
Gerber Graduates APPLE wagon wheels
Gerber Graduates mini fruits (dried) - banana strawberry
Kroger Brand Little Comforts Puffs – Blueberry, Strawberry Apple
Gerber Graduates Juice Treats

Drinks
Nesquick Chocolate powder
Hershey's Chocolate syrup
100% Juices
Silk Soy Milk
Rice Dream Milk


Meat

Hebrew National Hot Dogs (of course cut up very small with skin removed.)
Great Value fully cooked Homestyle meatballs (frozen at Wal*mart)
Tennessee Pride mild sausage patties
Brookdale Vienna Sausages
Brookdale Potted Meat
Valley Fresh 100% natural while chicken in water
Ian's fish sticks (GF, CF, DF, EF, SF, NF)
Boca Burgers - original vegan
Hormel Real Bacon Bits (50% Less Fat)
Carolina Pride Beef Smoked Sausage
Banquet Chicken Nuggets
Hormel Natural Choice 100% Honey Deli Ham


Bread

Sunbeam King Thin
Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
Publix white
L'Oven Fresh white (Aldi)
Sara Lee Soft & Smooth 100% Honey Wheat - see Aimee's comment



Random

Mt. Olive Kosher Mini Dill Pickles (under close supervision/choking hazard... I know.)
Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Tater-tots
Old El Paso Taco Dinner Kit



Desserts

Tofutti Cuties (ice cream sandwiches)
Great Value Semi-sweet chocolate chips
Dairy Free Ice “creams” (DREAM, Purely Decedent)
Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe Red Velvet (substitute eggs with a little less than 3/4 c unsweetened applesauce)


Fast Food
McDonald's French Fries - see Melissa's comment

Burger King plain hamburger with bun

Burger King french fries

Chicken MeeFun (rice noodles) from our local Chinese restaurant (not at a buffet)
Terriyaki Chicken on a stick from our local Chinese restaurant (not at a buffet)



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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A Boy and His Blanket

I'm totally stealing this idea from Heritage Academy! Thanks for the idea!

My mom is making quilts to donate, but this one made it to our house for Witt's 1st birthday. It is loaded with colorful patches of fire engines, boats, trains, balls, Snoopy, Bob the Builder... all things boy. It is just adorable and all the boys love it.

Here is Witt with his new blanket as the backdrop and some excerpts from our "photo session". He mostly didn't want to comply (like Nathan), but I think I got a few good ones.










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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Somebody Thinks I'm Excellent! Thanks!


Mama Belle has bestowed the Excellent Award on me!

Thank you so much for the award! What a wonderful surprise!

Although I recently accepted this award and have already nominated my 10 favorite bloggers, I'd like to add these to my ever changing bloggy favs:

The Adventures of T & Super B

Milk Allergy Mom
Buncha Blue-Eyed Monkeys
The Great Walls of Baltimore
The Miss Elaine-ous Life

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Talking About Tiny Talk


Ok, this isn't my normal Tiny Talk Tuesday and it's been a LONG while since I've visited Talk About Tuesday, but this week I'm in need of some help with my 5 year old tiny talker, Will.

Seems as though just when school let out, so did his mouth. He's been pushing buttons, teasing, and just plain testing the waters on how much he can get away with. Common phrases lately include:

"No, I'm not going to do that!"

"I don't want to!"

"I want it NOW!"

All this with major attitude and whining. Oh, the whining!

This is all new territory for me since he is my oldest child, and right now nothing seems to be getting through to him. So, what I'd like to Talk About Today is adjusting attitude and proper discipline (when/if necessary).

I know this is a personal decision, but I'm asking for your opinion because I'm needing suggestions, so please feel free to leave it in the comments below. Thanks!

Help please!

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Monday, May 26, 2008

How Much is this Metal Worth?

It's been awhile since our last Unplugged Project and now that's summer is here, I have no excuses! :) This week's project is Metal.

It took me some time to decide what I wanted to do... especially since Jeff was out of town for most of the week and "metal" would normally fall in the "dad category". LOL! I thought about making a wind chime out of washers, nuts, and bolts. I considered doing something with aluminum cans. I even tried to think up something using utensils. However, while reading a book on teaching kids about money, I ran across the idea of separating coins. Not only is it a way to learn that they look different, but also an opportunity to talk about their names and teach how much they are worth. The author talked about using glass jars, but I decided to use more metal:


I gave Will and Nathan a pile of coins each.


We went over the names first and I asked the boys to separate the coins.


Will already knew the names and easily separated them. Nathan said "penny" over and over again. I showed him a coin, told him the name and asked him to find another one from his pile. He did this for each of the coins. One time. Then he started slinging coins across the room. His time with this project was over. (little booger!)

Will and I took the coins to his room. We sat down on the floor and used his train board for a flat surface. We went over the coin names again and how much each was worth. I tried to give him a visual by putting 5 pennies next to a nickel, 10 next to a dime, and 25 next to the quarter. I let him count out the pennies each time.


After 25 pennies, though, he lost interest. I'm thinking he was just more interested in playing trains since we were in his room together. ;)

This is something I will do again throughout the summer. This concept takes some getting used to. I remember learning in 1st grade how to count by 25's and that there are 4 quarters in a dollar. From what he displayed today, I'm pretty impressed with Will. He's heads and tails above the rest! :)

Head over to Unplug Your Kids for more Unplugged Projects!

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Organizing Roundup: Kids


For this month's Organizing Roundup, I tackled the kids' toys. Each boy has their own room with their personal toys in it and then there is the sunroom with the shared toys. This is the best before picture I could find as I forgot to take one in my excitement of getting started on the toys. (seriously)


Granted, the boys are playing in the picture, but it shows a good representation of how the toys don't have "homes". I fixed that and now we have no more homeless toys! Yippee Skippy!

I liked April's comment from this post at Org Junkie's place stating that she has six bins that divide the toys. She takes a bin out each day. I thought that was a really great idea. So far, I've just divided the toys into bins and allow the kids to play with what they want; but now there is no question as to where the toys need to go when it's time to clean up!

Here are the bins for: Thomas the Train, trucks & trains, bowling, tools, hats, and the animal train. (Yes, we like trains.)



Here are containers for puzzles, coloring books, and colors/markers/pipe cleaners. These are sitting on the craft table.


Here's the shopping cart and pretend food next to the building blocks and wagon.


I touched every toy in our house. They aren't all shown here (gasp! I know!), but these bins have made a tremendous difference in keeping the house clean. Thanks for the idea, April!

[Side note: For those of you who left comments on what color I should paint my kitchen/dining room, you can see the new color here. Jeff and I agreed with the anonymous commenter that the kitchen really didn't need a "striking" color. I love the results. Thanks for all the suggestions! Your helpfulness is much appreciated!]

Visit Org Junkie for more on organizing kids' stuff!

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

FINALLY!! [UPDATED]



















We finally chose a color! We've taped up the kitchen and we're ready to paint today! WOOHOOO! Our friend, Deborah, is here for the week and we'll be gettin' 'er done today! :)

Thanks for all the previous suggestions! Goodbye awful yellow-orange... hello ???

What's your guess? What did we decide?


UPDATE:

Although I really, really wanted a shade of green, I couldn't find any that agreed with our floor. I pulled tons and tons of shades from Low.es. Brought them home, compared them to the floor and had them hanging on the wall. I couldn't decide on anything. Then, Jeff and I went to Low.e's together and within 10 minutes, he narrowed it down to two shades. We went home and easily decided on this one called Sand.




Although the pictures really don't do it justice... it really is such a beautiful neutral color and so calming. My kitchen no longer screams at me! :)

Thank you, Deborah, for all your help! Ok, maybe I should let you say that to me because you did most of it and I just helped. :) Thank you so so much!!!

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Witt's Birthday Party

Where has this year gone?






My new friend, Rachel, and her family came to the party! The kids had a fantastic time playing together! The big boys played in the sandbox. (Although when they left, one of her boys was missing a shoe because he buried it!! LOL!)


The "middle" kids had fun on the slide.


And so did Witt!! Thanks, Grandmother!


The adults enjoyed the beautiful day, too. Copper and Penny were given lots of attention as well! They deserved it; such good dogs!



PRESENT TIME!!!







CAKE TIME!!!



Here is Witt's cake (click here for egg-free dairy-free recipe). The whole thing was his. I made a full cake for everyone else and his equaled 1/8th of a cake. What mathematical fun I had converting the recipe! LOL!


"Happy Birthday to You" and the first bites of cake on video:


And snapshots for the rest of the cake...









Happy Birthday, Wittman! Don't grow up too fast!

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