To My Friends

I love it here at WordPress. The more I look into other blog sites the more I realize how really well organized and easily navigated this site is. This was my first home and I’m not ready to give it up yet, however…

As the stay-at-home mom of a child with multiple food allergies (which as most of you know adds quite a bit to the grocery bill) I was hoping at some point in the future to make a little extra income with this blog thing. WordPress does not allow advertising, and I know that is a plus for most, but I would like to try putting ads on my blog just to see if it’s worthwhile. I have started a “new” blog at blogger and am going to be adding adsense next month. At the moment it is pretty much just a copy and paste duplicate of this one so not very interesting if you are already here. I am writing this so that if at any time in the future you come here and see that I have gone you will know where I am. My new/other address is http://yummyallergenfree.blogspot.com . I adore everyone of my new friends here at WordPress and I hope that when/if I move I will not lose touch with anyone!

Motherhood is Middle Mannagement

I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately. My husband used to work in middle management and it was a terrible time in our lives, we were miserable. He was working long hours with no appreciation and was consequently not in a very good mood even when he was home. As I was in the midst of one of my “I can’t do this anymore” tangents the other day I realized that being a mother/housewife IS middle management. Off the top of my head, a few similarities…

1     Upper management (my husband) is rarely around the actual working environment of the business to witness what really goes on, therefore they don’t have a realistic view of how much time each task should take.

2    Upper management (again not being in the trenches) also does not usually have a realistic idea of how the finances work. You are given a budget that is way too low and expected to make it work.

3    Due to the low budget it is hard to keep the other employees (the kids) motivated. A happy working environment helps, but at this point middle management is stretched way too thin to also be in charge of keeping up morale.

4    The final result is that the boss always feels like you are not doing as much as you could, the employees are unmotivated and whiny, and poor middle management is over worked, under paid, and under appreciated!

I want to say to all you moms out there that I appreciate you and all that you do! A fiend of mine has a new blog and for some reason this title just had me rolling: “My House Was Clean Yesterday, Sorry You Missed It!”. I know how hard you all work. Even if you are a not-so-energetic mom like me (no soccer, no PTA, and this year no dance recitals) that does not mean you aren’t busy all day every day. The very average (even halfway lazy) mom is still a housekeeper, a chauffeur, an accountant, a personal shopper, a nutritionist, a chef, a nurse, a receptionist, a therapist, and most importantly a provider of love and stability.

Allergen free hugs to everyone! God bless us all!!!   :)

Stir-Read-Stir-Read

I am making risotto! Actually I made my first ever risotto a few nights ago and loved it, now I’m making rice pudding from the same arborio rice. I keep seeing risotto made on the Food Network and wondering why my husband’s Italian family never makes it. Then again, my mother-in-law had 6 children…who has time to stir for 20 minutes?! I always thought it was difficult to make but now I know it is super easy, just VERY time consuming. Well, I’ve figured out the trick. My computer is right next to my stove…hence my new stir and read technique. I am alternating between stirring my pot and reading my favorite allergy blogs and it is working out devinely! I think I may be getting a smidge of exercise in the process too what with all the up and down motion. Oh my goodness, it’s done and it is incredible! I think I may be posting this on my other blog for anyone who has half an hour to kill and a sweet tooth.  :)

Emily’s Fruit Soup

                                                                    
 This is not my recipe! This is a creation made by my 6 yr old Daughter Emily, and I told her I would post it. Emily loves to go into the kitchen and just mix random ingredients in a bowl and eat it. (I have to admit she does always eat it…even the oatmeal salad… ugh) If you are an adventurous 6 yr old who loves to cook then go ahead and try this recipe, if you are an average adult…proceed at your own risk ;)

Here is Emily’s recipe in her words:

“You can put either 1/2 c of vanilla soy milk or 1/4 c of soy milk and 1/4 c of soy whipped cream mixed together until there’s no more lumps into a bowl and mix in it a spoonfull of sugar. Pour in one fruit cup (we used mandarin oranges). Then the strawberries. Put in 5 strawberries, cut the tops off and cut them in half and cut them in half again. Stir. If you want it can be warm, you can microwave it.”

Nonuttin’ – Amazing Products, An Amazing Company!

You may know that I usually stick to recipes, I’m not much of a writer, but I have a story I feel compelled to share. Nonuttin (http://www.nonuttin.com/) is an allergy friendly granola bar company in Canada who’s products are free of peanuts, tree nuts, dairy, egg, wheat, barley, rye, (and now gluten), trans fats, artificial colors, artificial flavors, preservatives-including sulfites, GMOs, and animal by products. I applaud them just for that, but their customer service is beyond anything I have ever experienced!
About 6 months ago I ordered a sample pack from the Nonuttin company. Admittedly it is difficult for most of us to shell out the $50 required for the minimum order, but they do offer 3 different trial packs for $10 each and these can be ordered without meeting the $50 minimum. We got our sample pack and devoured it in one day. Everything was delicious! I held on to their address so that someday when I had an extra $50 laying around I could order more…I haven’t gotten around to that yet. A couple of days ago, out of the blue, I got a letter from the company detailing some problems they have had recently with their new gluten free oats and with it came a free granola bar so that we could taste for ourselves that the problem had been rectified. It has, once again it was soft, chewy, and absolutely yummy!
Apparently the owner of the company herself was tasting the products one day and realized they had a somewhat sour taste. Long story short, she found out there was a problem with the shelf life of the new oats. Production was halted and all reachable customers were notified and their products were replaced. Then they proceeded to send out these samples to all customers (even me, who had only placed a $10 order to begin with) along with a very detailed letter about what had happened and what had been done to fix it. Needless to say, they lost a lot of money in this process and I have decided it is time for me to dig deep in my pocket and make that $50 order. Not only am I ordering wonderful products that my family will love, but at this point I also feel like I am supporting a cause. This is the kind of company that all businesses should strive to be like. I want to help ensure that the Nonuttin company continues to grow and be successful. I hope that anyone reading this will also consider placing an order, even a trial pack. I want to see good people triumph!

Allergy Friendly Chocolate

Just in time for Easter (a little late for Valentines day) I am finally posting my glorious find! Amanda’s Own chocolates at http://www.amandasown.com/index.html are completely nut free, dairy free, egg free, and gluten free…and DELICIOUS! I first tried them for Halloween when I ordered a bag of adorable little pumpkins to swap out for my daughters trick-or-treat candy. She loved them, but she’s not hard to please… However, my middle daughter and I who don’t care much for dark chocolate also tasted them and were amazed at how yummy they were! That’s not even the best part. Every year since my daughter was born I have wished I could put a chocolate bunny in her Easter basket and now I can. Amanda’s Own has shapes for all the major holidays and some other cute ones just for fun. I am just thrilled with my find and I had to share it with the world. Happy Easter everyone!!! :)

The Staff of Life

Yes, my avatar is a loaf of bread. The most satisfying loaf of bread I have ever made! When I found out my youngest daughter is allergic to gluten I set out on a quest to make the perfect allergen free loaf of bread. Up to that point I had amazed myself many times with my creations and I expected this to be the same. First I tried buying ready made, they were all like hard dry sponges…BLECH! Then I tried to make my own from scratch, mind you no gluten, no eggs, and no dairy. Every single recipe I tried came out gummy and gooey and 2″ tall. I tried a few mixes but the results were the same. With every failure I cried over how my poor baby would never have a sandwich. I worried (I still worry) about what on earth I would pack for all of her school lunches to come since she can’t eat one single thing on the hot lunch menu. Bread has been called “the staff of life”. How can that be something you can live without? Then one glorious day my husband asked “have you tried Pamela’s Wheat-Free Bread Mix?” I may have literally been one failure away from giving up hope, but I tried it…SUCCESS! I honestly can’t describe the joy I felt when this loaf of bread rose…and didn’t fall. It was moist but not gummy and tasted great too! I am here to sing the praises of Pamela’s Wheat-Free Bread Mix!!! I have to say I was sad to find out that most of her other mixes (maybe all of them) contain dairy, but I buy the bread mix by the case. I have made bagels and english muffins from this mix too. A word of advice, use an       8″x4″ loaf pan for a nice evenly proportioned loaf. and now a link to the product that changed our lives! http://www.pamelasproducts.com/Products_frames.html
I will be happy if this post helps just one person out there be able to enjoy bread again, it truely is the staff of life

The Cake That Wouldn’t Be

I guess I thought I was magic, that somehow I would be the one to create this magnificent recipe that no one else had been able to. I started out with a pretty amazing recipe with no wheat, eggs, or dairy. It rises beautifully, tastes great and has a decent texture although a little bit firm and chewy. The problems were 1) The recipe belongs to someone else who asked me not to post it, and 2) it works perfectly for two 8″ rounds or cupcakes, but I wanted a sheet cake.

 I started tweaking the recipe, I made 5 cakes in the one month leading up to my daughter’s 6th birthday. (By the time her birthday came I think she was sick of cake anyway!) I will admit that at least I have changed the recipe enough now that I can call it my own. The texture is softer although a bit coarse, and it has more of a “whole wheat” flavor than a yellow cake flavor. My saving grace is that I have an incredible dairy free frosting recipe…that’s all the kids eat anyway, right?

This weekend was my daughter’s party. I made the cake the day before. My last practice cake had turned out alright but not perfect, I don’t know why I thought this day it would macically rise to perfection! Maybe I should mention too that my oven shuts itself off every once in a while and I have to slam the door to get it back on. I’ve jokingly said before, “should I put in the recipe: slam oven door 3 times while baking?” Anyway, the final product was 1 inch high in the middle and maybe 1 1/4″ on the sides, but it tasted good (in my opinion) and was soft and moist. I guess it was sort of like a snack cake. I piled it high with bright blue frosting with little pink flowers all around…The kids ate it. The adults tried it, and honestly critiqued it-Thanks guys! (that was sarcasm by the way) Maybe next year I’ll just make a regular cake and give her Benadryl!

I thought I would sit down and write a lovely witty story this morning but I seem to be rambling instead. I feel like all of my energy along with my creativity has been sucked out of me.

I hate cake  :(

Allergen Free Recipes

OK, maybe I’m a flake. I can’t decide what to do. I was going to close this blog and move everything to Blogger but the problem is I’m not getting any traffic at Blogger. I moved there so I could use Adsense, but the reason I started doing this in the first place was to help other moms out there who need these recipes as much as I do. If my blog never comes up on any search engines (which it doesn’t so far) then I don’t see how I can help anyone. So, I have decided to leave this blog open and use it as my discussion forum. If you are looking for allergen free recipes then please come see me at http://yummyallergenfree.blogspot.com . And please…tell a friend :) ! (I don’t know how else I’ll ever get anyone there)

Love and allergen free hugs to you all,

Charmaine (foodallergymom)

Moving to Blogger

It’s official, I’m moving to Blogger. My new blog will be at http://yummyallergenfree.blogspot.com . I have bookmarked all of my friends here at wordpress so that I will still be able to find you and keep up. I hope that you all will do the same with my new address! There is still a possability that I will come back here, but then I have to change the name and entries and ughhh. Anyway…here I go…byeee.

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