Typically, food allergies are confirmed by either actual reaction, skin prick testing, or IgE blood testing. By far the most reliable predictor of reaction severity is an actual reaction, but as anyone with an allergy can tell you, that's not a risk we want to take. There are countless peanut allergies that are determined via skin prick alone (like my son's), and you know what? They're not always accurate.
I'm not a doctor. I don't play one on TV, and I don't profess to have any great knowledge beyond my own experiences. But here's what I know: vaccines have saved the lives of more babies and children than any other medical intervention in the last 50 years. Let that sink in a bit.
My son turned five in December, and is in senior Kindergarten at a school that's literally a stone's throw from my back door. I work from home, and have always felt so relieved that I'm here whenever I get a call from the school saying he needs me. Last year there were bumps to the head, a swallowed plastic fork tine, changes of clothes needed, and more. Every time that phone rings, and I see the school's name on the display, my heart sinks and my stomach turns.
A new long-term study has released results that indicate feeding high-risk kids peanuts earlier can actually prevent the allergy. And I'm not happy. I mean, sure, I'm delighted that for every child going forward, these new findings mean peanut allergies could be reduced drastically. I'm elated that studies are being done to limit allergies. I'm just really, really sad that this came five years too late for us.
Sensational stories in the media and uninformed people are a combustible mix when it comes to an already-heated topic like handling food allergies. It's so easy to get our backs up when we hear another parent scoff at the inconvenience of food bans, or read about how other people are reacting to "jokes" in commercials that mock serious illness.
While flipping the pages of Chatelaine this month, I fell in love with the idea of making candy conversation hearts. I gave their recipe a try immediately, and while it didn't really work for me, with minor adjustments, I think the end result is perfect and my kids say they're even better than the store-bought ones. (Which, come on, doesn't seem too difficult, does it? They taste like chalk.) But conversation hearts are adorable, fun, and surprisingly easy to make.
People were lined up outside Canadian Target stores this morning in the hopes of scoring great deals now that the liquidation of assets has begun. I know you've all seen my list of must-have items before Target leaves Canada, but did you brave the crowds in the hopes of scoring a great deal today? I did not, but I did have a friend share with me what she found at the store today!
When I was a kid, I went to camp every summer. I learned to canoe, I swam in lakes, I did crafts, sang songs, learned to cook my own food, and met friends from across the country. It was a pretty amazing experience. But for those with food allergies, simple things like spending time at summer camp is just not a reality. Until now.
It's no secret our family loves a good road trip. When my daughter was almost two years-old, I drove to Newfoundland with her - just the two of us. People thought we were nuts, but it was one of the best times I've had with her. When her little brother came along, we wondered if he'd be as content in the car as she was, and thankfully, he was a born road-tripper. We've driven to Florida, to Newfoundland, and all places in between, so we're well-seasoned road warriors.
Maybe it didn't live up to our collective expectations, but the fresh appeal of Target is undeniable. We have nothing comparable in Canada, and now Target is leaving us after a too-short love affair. Are you going to miss Target in Canada as much as I am?
Here are twenty things you need to buy there before they leave us for good"
20. Orla Kiely everything I mean, honestly. A mod toaster and matching makeup bag? Orla Kiely's designs are dreamy, bright, happy and original, and there's nowhere else we can buy these here!
I'm opinionated, did you know that? (Shut up, I can hear you snickering through the monitor!) Saying, "I'm opinionated" seems to garner the same reaction as saying, "I'm a feminist" - it's not always positive. But why? We should all have opinions, so therefore all should be opinionated. (We should also all be feminists, but I'll save that rant for another time.) As the resident allergy blogger for YMC, I need to not only share but also discuss, defend, and sometimes assess and change my opinions. That's life in general, though, isn't it?
There's a never-ending bug making its way around my town these days. Runny eyes, noses, coughs, fevers ... it's always something during the winter months, isn't it? Last year I felt like my kids were sick more often than they were healthy. That's totally normal for school-aged kids, but how do you know when that nagging cough is something more than just a cough? How can you tell when that cough is actually something more serious, like asthma?
The other day we were out at a Christmas brunch with our family, and I found myself repeatedly apologizing for being a pain in the butt about Mason's food allergies. And in my head, I was reprimanding myself for apologizing because it's not like it's my fault he has allergies. I'm just doing my parental job by making sure the hot chocolate is safe, and double-checking that the foods are, too. But there I was: full-on stress mode, and also being utterly too Canadian in my constant apologetic state.
A three-year-old boy who attends a school in Oshawa, Ontario, spotted a delicious-looking candy on the floor of his classroom, and as three-year-olds often do, he scooped it up and ate it. That seemingly innocuous, typical little-kid decision nearly cost him his life because Emmett Huggard has a life-threatening peanut allergy.