Sunday, July 3, 2011

Pictures from Italy

I got home a bit after 6pm last night after a long day of travels.  Technically, if you convert Italian time to home time, I was up since 10pm the night before.  That being said, I felt great!  I had a cup of coffee - didn't have any all week in Italy and it was soo good!  Hubby did not go grocery shopping and we had, and still have, no real food in the house so we made some noodles I brought home and added the EVOO on them.  I ended up bringing 4 ltrs. home this time, it is so good and you can not get anything close to it here in the us.  Even the high end imported EVOO's do not come close to the ones produced in the small, family farms for the town.

Woke up at 4:30 am HUNGRY and wide awake.  Of course there was nothing I could really eat in the house and I am refusing all packaged foods this week that I ate in Italy last week, but ended up making myself some oatmeal and some organic OJ.  I did manage to find a block of my Whole Foods 365 Sharp Cheddar in the fridge and had a chunk of that too, so that should hold me for a while until we go to the store.

Now, the pictures:
Above is the incredible seafood pasta my co-workers shared.  Oh how I wished I could have had some, but the lemon on top would have just been one of the many allergies.  Now, here is what I had, so yummy!!
My other favorite dish was tuna, fresh from the sea with EVOO and garlic over it.  Sorry but I did not take a picture of that one.  

But this, this my friends was the best pasta I have ever had in my life.  Homemade with only wheat, eggs and a bit of sea salt.  The owner was kind enough to even show me the exact bag of flour that he used so I knew it was safe and unenriched.  He mixed the noodles with EVOO, garlic and a white wine with shrimp to create an incredible dinner for me!  I also ended up eatting a ton of bread this week as his bread was safe!  I need to re-create that at home for a special treat every now and then.  Of course, hubby will have to build me a big, Italian oven/fireplace in the back yard to get it just right.

I was trying to eat as much garlic as I could at dinner as I was getting the beginnings of the usual sinus infection that I always get in Italy due to the smoke.  This is the first time in quite a few years that my body has fought off a sinus infection!!!  It is amazing to me, it lasted only about 4 days and never progressed to much more than some mucus and a runny nose!!!

Im glad I went, I was anxious about what I would eat, but it worked out.  My go to food in the airports was plain yogurt.  Not very tasty, but it filled me up.  My allergies are severe, I will only eat something if I know, and can verify the ingredients.  I did it though without one allergy incident all week!  Yea!!! Travel ROCKS!!!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Photos and more

First off I must show you the best meal I have ever had since my diagnosis.
Except I can't! My iPad will some how not let me upload my photos... Hmmm none the less it was homemade Italian pasta with a white wine, olive oil and garlic sauce with bread! Wow incredible. I would neve be able to have a meal like that in the Us unless I knew 100% it was not from a box, like I did here. Christiano at Lo Squalo has gone above and beyond to accommodate me and it is soooooo yummy. Perhaps I might even come back home a size 4.
The trip us going great, I am so glad I took the chance. If you explain your issue in a kind way, looking for help, people are more than willing to assist. Enjoy, see the world as long as you are prepared. Pictures to come later, when I arrive home this weekend.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Prepare and Relax

These allergies are actually blessings. I had quite a few discussions with my Italian coworkers today about my allegies. Each one commented on how good I looked and I mentioned how much better I feel. The main point of our discussions was it it simply something that must be managed. Isnt that true? Allergies are not my life, they are a part of me that I always have to think about and be aware but they will not hold me back. I am happy I got over my fears and got my butt over here.
I went to the iCoop to buy my lunch today. I got some smoked salmon and yogurt and had that with my crackers. Oh yea, I ate Breakfast too so far and none of it was something I brought with me! Two hard boiled eggs and a kiwi. Both meals went great. I also took pear from the canteen and had it as an afternoon snack.
After work I took around a three mile walk and stopped to talk to Christiano. He is the owner of Lo Squalo, where I will be dining tonight. He was shocked by all of my new allergies but had no concerns about being able to help me. Christiano did suggest that he grill my steak on the grill in the back as the one up front is also used for pork.
I'm glad I'm here and having a nice time in a world different from my day to day life. We cNt be held back by allergies and the fear they bring with them, it's not worth it! Ciao for now.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

I made it to Italy

I made it after two plane rides. I ate only the food I brought with me on the plane but in e Paris airport I needed something to settle my stomach so I purchased some plane yogurt. It didn't taste the best but it worked. More later as I have gotten only two hours of sleep in the last 24 hours.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

All checked in...

Well, I'm all checked in for my flight as of last night. Bags are almost packed, I need to finish my hair and makeup for the day and then put that stuff in and weigh it.  Hoping it is under the 50lbs!!! I do get to take two free bags, so if that is the case I will just re-arrange a few things and check two bags.  No big deal, that is why it helps to be a frequent flyer, lol

I have lots of instant oatmeal, crackers, dried fruits and sunflower seeds - plus the cookies nana made me for the flight over.  If I need something, Im thinking a nice French cheese from the duty free.  Granted I wont eat all of it and most will go to waste, the ingredients will be on it.  In the best situation, I find Choibani in the food place at CDG.

Im getting excited, a bit anxious too as I really do not want to loose much more weight, but I'm sure once I get there it will be fine.  Not sure what I am going to do about posting the pictures since I found out yesterday my iPhone will not work in Italy or France.  Current plan is to still bring the iPhone and use Wifi to transfer the photos to the blog or the ipad to upload them here.

Ciao!  Till I am in France or Italy ;)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Packing some Food

Not too sure about food on this trip to Italy, I went once already this year (had throat swelling and face/neck redness after eating a lunch of white beans and green beans there - prompted me to get tested again) but at that time I only thought I had nut and peanut allergies.  This time it's a whole different ball game with all of the new allergies.

While I know a few of the restaurant owners on a personal level and a co-worker offered to go with me to the Coop (market there), I still do not know if there will be enough for me to safely eat so I'm packing a bunch of trusty items to get me thru if need be.
I'm going to bring a few things in the carry on with me: chips, crackers, pineapple, possible the instant oats (I've had luck with the quick cook from this brand so I will try the instant tomorrow to be sure), sunflower seeds and raisins.  The rest will go in the suitcase - my tuna, sardines and applesauce has to due to liquid regulations and I do not want to risk getting the tuna taken away even though it says it is not packed in any liquids.  I am also planning on bringing plastic baggies so I can bag snacks to have at work with me thru the day and some plastic knives and forks for the tuna and sardines incase I need a quick dinner in my room.

I sure wish I could bring a cooler with me but usually cheeses from Italy that I have purchased from Whole Foods have been safe so that will be a good option there for me too.  Any other ideas???


Sorry I left, I was just feeling, well negative.  I do not want this allergy to be a negative thing in my life.  So many good things have come from it but at that time, I felt I was dwelling on it and perhaps revolving my life around it.  But you know what, it is a huge part of my life and I can make of it whatever I choose.  I choose to be positive and manage this.

About a month ago I had TWO bad reactions in one weekend, scared the crap out of me.  The first was a Friday night, after dinner at the golf club my throat was closing and I felt awful.  I didn't think it was the food as I have had the same thing before, but you never know.  We went to get the kids at my parents and I started to notice a weird smell, kind of like old lady shampoo, lol.  I could not figure out what it came from, none the less, I took a ton of benadryl and even my rescue inhaler and things subsided for the night.  Woke up again and OMG the smell was back!  Throat started closing again.  Well, hubby went and got new deodorant.... the Advanced Degree brand that puts out extra fragrance when you sweat.  Um yea!  That was my problem.  Went to the store and got him the old brand that we can both safely use and the new stuff went in the trash.  Sunday I had another reaction but can not for the life of me remember what it was caused from.  That is why I need this blog, to document my journey, lessons and my progress.

I'm starting to read Allergic Girl, and it has me thinking.  Thinking about all the anxiety that can come along with these food allergies.  These allergies can do some nasty things but they can also do some really great things when they are gone, like take away pain, reduce sinus infections, etc.  I will always be anxious for the next reaction, always weary when trying something "safe" for the first time, but I will also live my life and be positive about this.  I will document my successes and failures but not dwell on the bad parts, just learn from them.  There is no getting around it, this is a huge issue to overcome in my day to day living but a positive attitude will prevail.

Sorry this post does not have a great flow to it, just wanted to get my thoughts out there for now.  Stay tuned for my trip to Italy and planning details ;)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Yea to my visitors from South Korea!

My baby boy, Monkey is from South Korea!!!  So excited that you have visited, please leave a comment.

Oh My Gosh! I am sooo hungry!

Yesterday and today I have just wanted to snack, snack, snack but what does one snack on when they are allergic? I found some sunflower seeds all zip locked up on the basement bar last night and went to town on them.   They were sooooo good and it was so great to just snack!  At this point, the house is pretty empty.  Tomorrow we will go to the Farmers Market and Whole Foods, but there is not much to snack on - or at least things I can snack on.  The kids have their stash of goldfish crackers and cheeze it mix but, nothing really for me.

I will be getting some 365 Sea Salt Potato Chips tomorrow along with more sunflower seeds and some Lundenburg rice cakes.  Perhaps I can find something else as well as hopefully hubby will be wrangling the littles while I shop.  Those are my snacks.  I can say I am doing much better in the drink department.  I discovered Divine Vodka, made in small batches in copper pots in MI!  Mix that with some grapes or watermelon blended up in the VitaMix and I have an awesome martini with pretty low calories since I'm just using the natural fruits with all the fiber, vs juicing.  Such a nice after dinner treat while relaxing and reading.

Tomorrow night we are going to a good friends house for dinner.  I am in charge of bringing the main course.  She wants salmon so I will go to WF and see if I can eat it, none the less, they will have a beautiful salmon dinner and I will see what I can eat for a main course and bring it.  I really do not want to eat farmed salmon.  I need to place an order from but waiting to see if my paper tax refund with my adoption credit will continue to be processed by our wonderful government before I place that order.  That reminds me, hubby and I need to plan a date afternoon where we go to Capital Grille for a nice fillet and then do some shopping after.  Perhaps next Sunday we can get this scheduled.

What are your favorite snacks???

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Exciting News

Last night was a breakthru for me!  It was the first time I actually ate out since my recent diagnosis.  Our good friends invited us to their club for dinner.  I ate a snack ahead of time and packed my Chobani but when I got there, the menu seemed wonderful and it might just be the place to try eating out again.  The menu even had a little blurb about notifying them of allergies and it was not crowded at all!

I had my choices narrowed down to the Ahi Tuna or the Filet.  Both had pro's and con's.  Ahi may be frozen and there is a small chance I might have a reaction to the filet due to citric acid.  But, the filet  sounded soooo good and I have never had a reaction in the past to meat, etc.  So, with my system clear after all of my careful eating I decided to order the filet.  I figured if I was to have a reaction, at least I would know it right away as I have been feeling really good lately.

Two glasses of a nice, quality red wine and a filet later NO ISSUES, none at night, none in the AM.  YAHOO!  Now,  if I stick to high end steak or seafood places and get something grilled with NOTHING on it or touching it I can try to eat out again.  Of course in moderation here, but geeze, even if I could go 2x a month that would be wonderful.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

100% Pure Rocks Con't

Ok, for some reason after I added the picture of the awesome foundation, the iMac locked up and I was not able to add the foundation on this site so I will keep typing and add it at the bottom of this post ;)
Anyways, I got home and washed my face and used the tinted moisturizer and foundation and my face looked gorgeous!  So bright and it was not the typical yellow color that never works with my skin tone.  I then applied the powder foundation and wow!  Went on so nice without the typical dryness!  I need to get an extra one of these to keep in my purse!
I feel so good about using this makeup knowing that they use Rice for the source of the vitamins!  There are a few things that have shea or coconut in them but lucky me, my skin is not so sensitive!  If you are interested, I am now a rep for 100% Pure through Alex and Von!  It is an awesome opportunity to support Women owned business who believe in natural and pure products!  Send me a comment if you are interested in trying these great products and I will help you determine what will work for you and your allergies.  Meanwhile, I am in LOVE!  This product is incredible and is better than any makeup/cream I have spent major $$$$ on at Neiman Marcus!  Bonus is I can read and understand EVERY ingredient.  For those readers who have babies (mine are still my babies at 6 & 7) the kids line is INCREDIBLE!!!

Healthy Flawless Skin Foundation Powder with SPF 20
100% Natural, 100% Vegan, Gluten free
Super lightweight face powder to give you a beautiful, flawless, poreless complexion. Use alone or over our tinted moisturizer. All natural formula packed full of anti-aging vitamins, antioxidants and skin purifying eucalyptus, soothing calendula, chamomile and rose, oil absorbing rice powder and flattering color from fruits and vegetables. Does not contain talc, chemical preservatives, fragrances or any other toxins
Color Chart: Creme, White Peach, Peach Bisque, Golden Peach, Toffee
Ingredients:Rice Powder, all or some of the following fruit pigments: White Peach, Golden Peach, Apricot, Cocoa Bean, Papaya, Pomegranate, Cranberry, Strawberry, Raspberry, Cherry and Cabernet Grape, Vitamin E (a-tocopherol), Eucalyptus Leaf Powder, Vitamin A (a-palmitate), Vitamin C (ascorbyl palmitate), Flax Seed Oil, Chamomile, Calendula, Rose, Pomegranate Seed Oil, Avocado Butter, White Tea Powder, Grape Seed Powder, may contain mica (natural shimmer mineral)
SUNSCREEN ACTIVE INGREDIENTS: 10% Titanium Dioxide and 5% Zinc Oxide
Net wt.0.316 oz / 9 g
US $26.00


My first shipment of 100% Pure came!  All of my makeup basics and it ROCKS!  I had to wash my face and try the tinted moisturizer and the foundation powder ASAP.  The rest (eye shadow, cheeks, lips, etc will be tried in the am as part of my normal get ready for work routine)
I was a bit nervous about selecting the color,  here is the chart.  Awesome how they use a real person to model so you can really see the colors:

Facebook Swatches

The tinted moisturizer I ordered is in White Peach:

Fruit Pigmented Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 20
With SPF 20 (sheer to medium coverage)
100% Natural, 100% Vegetarian, Gluten free
Tinted with natural fruit and vegetable pigments to give your complexion a flawless appearance while feeding your skin with nourishing white tea, acai oil, pomegranate oil and vitamins. SPF 20 protects your skin against the sun’s harmful UVA (ultra violet aging) and UVB (ultra violet burning) rays while antioxidants protect your skin from other environmental hazards such as pollution, smog, smoke, exhaust, etc.
Color Chart: Creme, White Peach, Peach Bisque, Golden Peach, Toffee
Ingredients: Pigments of Peach, Apricot, Carrot, Pomegranate, Cocoa Bean, Goji Berry and Tomato, White Tea, Cucumber Juice, Aloe Juice, Acai and Pomegranate Oil, Vitamin E (a-tocopherol), Vitamin C (ascorbyl palmitate), Rice Starch, Candelilla Wax, Extracts of Rosemary, Oregano, Thyme, Grapefruit Seed, Japanese Honeysuckle, Goldenseal & Cinnamon
SUNSCREEN ACTIVE INGREDIENTS: 15% Titanium Dioxide and 10% Zinc Oxide
Net wt.1.8 oz / 50 g
 US $32.00

Monday, April 4, 2011

Cheese oh Sweet Cheese

So, tonight I ventured to try some Gorgonzola Piccante from Italy on top of my grilled venison. Yummy! Got it from Whole Foods and so far so good.  Had some venison marinated in the sulfate free Our Daily Red with Garlic with the cheese and organic shrooms on top!   The plan for tomorrow night is venison burgers stuffed with the 365 sharp cheddar and Gorgonzola cheeses.
One of my orders from 100% Pure come in tomorrow.  I will be soooo happy to have a real foundation, lip gloss, mascara, etc. that I can use!!!!  More bath and stuff will be coming on Thursday!  I tried the mineral makeup route and it dried my skin out way too much!
I got some products from and - the shampoo and conditioner seem to work great, my family hates the smell of the hand soaps and the face moisturizer is just not as good as 100% pure for my face.  This is so much trial and error but I am feeling so much better so it is worth it!

What have you changed in your beauty routine since your allergy diagnosis??? Come on, comments people, please!!! lol

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Shopping Fun

Well, I managed to go shopping today for a new wardrobe.  Hubby told me the other day my clothes are too big and I should get some new stuff...Ok, sure.  So, I had Inky and Dinky with me (their shopping names as it was like herding cats in the stores)  We went to a village where the stores are all outside and I found some pants at GAP, a sweater at Parisian and then we went to White House/Black Market.  LOVE that store!  The sales ladies there asked what I was looking for, I told them and before I knew it there were like 50 things in the dressing room.  They gave me about half of that in black pants and jackets, which I do not need at all.

So, after weeding through those I found some cute black jean capri pants, two black tops and a black sweater with a belt.  Plus I have $75 off next time I come in.  Plus they said I can make an appt if I call ahead they will have more things ready for me!  See, allergies do have a bonus side to them!  I got all of the junk food out of my life and all the processed foods and I get new clothes!  YEA Me!

Now, I just need to get a few more pieces and some shoes and here I come Spring!!!  I also went thru my closet again and got rid of all of the too big clothes.  Im going to spend sometime tonight organizing by outfit and putting matching jewelry with each outfit.  Fun stuff!  Inky and Dinky even got to go to the toy store where they purchased this cool magnetic dart board to play with!

After we put all of our packages in the Burban, we headed into Whole Foods to get some yummies for the week.  This week I got a watermelon (granted it was over $6 for a quarter of one but I need to mix up my fruit) some blood oranges which are now juiced and in the freezer with some potato vodka for an evening drink later when Hubby gets home, some mushrooms to go with the venison tomorrow, a lovely slice of Ahi Tuna that I just sauteed with some EVOO after I worked out.  Hmm, kind of a run on sentence but lets see, what else was there?  Oatmeal, Organic Ice Cream for Kids, Organic French Fries for them, some bread for them, some 365 Sea Salt Potato chips to try later with my drink (I heard they were safe online), and a delicious smelling pizza that I just got done baking for the kiddies.  Plus, more things that I won't bore you with.

Everything has been going good.  Granted I will never have a glass of non-organic wine in a restaurant again, gave me a horrible head ache the next day.  But that is the only reaction I have had lately.  Not sure if pineapple made me a bit anxious lately but I will take a break from it for a while.

What foods have you had luck with lately?

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Please vote for me!!!

Granted I can go and get a case at Costco but wouldn't it be awesome to win a case because of my corn allergy?
Please vote:

The first party

Sooo, tonight is my dad's birthday = dining out, cake, ice cream drinks.... The restaurant was easy, we got there early and I explained to the waitress I have severe food allergies and if she could just bring me a plate and not take my order.  Easy peasy, plate came and out came my boiled eggs and yogurt with maple syrup. Granted not nearly as yummy as the pan fried perch hubby had, but I could pretty much guarantee no issues.  No one even mentioned it or anything, beautiful birthday dinner and I even had some Pinot Noir (granted not my organic, sulfate free but I was living on the edge here people!)

Next came the cake and ice cream celebration. OHHH, that icing...
You see, before this allergy I ALWAYS got the corner piece.  It took everything I had not to even have a little lick!  But, It looked so good but the angel on my shoulder reminded me that it could be a potential breathing issue in front of the babies which I would never want in a million years.  So, I declined and assisted in handing out the cake.  Meanwhile, enjoying...
The party is over, I am now at home enjoying 2 small baked potatoes with Organic Valley Butter and Redmond Real Salt.  Sure, it is different, it is somewhat hard, but I feel a million times better and just can not let myself go to that one slip up. Granted 2 weeks ago I was not wiser, but now I know what has caused a lot of my issues and allergies and I vote for healthy and happy over the American norm.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ohh, I am in LOVE!!!

WOW!  It feels soo good to be able to use an acutal moisturizer on my face instead of just olive oil!  Today my shipment from 100% Pure came.  These products are ALL NATURAL and VEGAN and ORGANIC!  Seriously, what can get better than that?  Your skin is your largest organ and what you put on it gets absorbed, so why use chemicals when you can use products derived from 100% pure natural ingredients that Mother Nature provided for us?

Yummy Ice Cream Mint Chocolate Gift SetRed Wine Resveratrol Nourishing Cream

Im this shipment I got Red Wine Resveratrol Nourishing Cream, Organic Coffee Bean Eye Cream, Purity Spot Treatment, and the Kids 100% Pure Mint Chocolate Chip Body Wash/Shampoo, Lotion and Bubble Bath!   Sweet Pea and Monkey rated this the best body wash and bubble bath they have ever used!  The soap comes out foamy and they loved that too!  I loved that I can know what every ingredient is and know that I am using natural products on my babies!

I am signing up with a company called Alex & Von to represent 100% Pure!  I am excited as these are wonderful products that are safe to use, natural and not tested on animals.  Let me know what you are interested in and I will get you hooked up!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Grass Fed Beef

Today I tried some grass-fed organic ground beef from my friendly farmer.  We have purchased this before, mainly in the summer when we had a taste for burgers.  This time I wanted to try it to see if I had a reaction to it.  I stuffed burgers with some of the organic sharp cheddar I found at Whole Foods and grilled away.  Oh, so yummy!  So far so good!  I am excited to meet the farmer again to order some steaks, if those go good then I'm considering buying a bigger freezer and either a 1/2 or 1/4 moo moo!

Things have been going well, sleeping great and the key is to make sure I am prepared each night before with my meals.  Im also trying to make the kids lunches the night before too.  Preparation is the key.

What things do you do to make living with allergies easier?

Monday, March 28, 2011


Tonight my mom made Mr. Chicken for dinner and tomorrow she is making me a nice broth out of it.  Oh, it was soooo good!  I had a baked potato and asparagus on the side and my tummy is all full!

I had to go on a bit of a drive during work today to get some things set up for testing and I realized I forgot my food!  UGH, then I remembered what I wanted to share last night... CHOBANI YOGURT IS SAFE FOR PEOPLE WITH CORN AND NUT ALLERGY!  That was almost too good to be true!
Look for yourself, click on the nutrition info and there it is, for the world to see!  Safe for people with CORN ALLERGIES!  Oh, one of my favorite foods is back.  I think I'm going to go and write them a thank you note now.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Bulgogi and Mr. Chicken

Well, today I had my parents over for dinner.  I made everyone's favorite dish, Bulgogi.   Granted I can't eat it anymore, and Monkey, who was born in S.Korea wants nothing to do with this ethnic wonder, it turned out great.  Instead of the normal beef used, I used some venison backstrap. I sliced it thin and added the CORN allergic marinade (this is per handful of meat per a Korean friend):
4 tbl Soy Sauce
2 Tbs Mirin
2 Tbs Sugar or Honey
1 Tbs Chopped Garlic
1 Tbs Sesame Oil
Some Sesame Seeds and Pepper
2 Tbs Pear or Apple Juice

Let this marinade for a bit with the meat in the fridge, a few hours is all that is needed and then put in a nice flat pan.  I love my big All Clad, and use chopsticks to move the meat around as it cooks.  What did I partake in you ask?  Oh, how sweet of you!!! I had some venison marinated in Our Daily Red Sulfite Free and Organic Red wine and Garlic with a touch of EVOO from Italy.  This was all served over rice.

Mr. Chicken ended up going home with my mom to cook.  It appears that frozen chickens can take a while to defrost, more than the day that I allowed so he will be ready for me around 5:30 tomorrow night after we get done with Sweet Pea's ortho appt.

In non food or allergy related issues, Baby Beak needs love! I told Hubby to relocate his house back to the family room so he can be more a part of our daily activities.  Hopefully we will do this soon. Isn't he cute???

Saturday, March 26, 2011


Why is this blog time so off and how do I correct it? The times posted are not even close to when I really posted??? Thanks in advance

Move Over Kingsolver

Started off the day with a trip to the farmers market to meet the wonderful farmers that I follow on FB.  Picked up my order of 4 organic chickens, 3 dozen fresh organic eggs and 4 lbs. of organic grass-fed ground beef.  Mind you I was mainly vegetarian before my allergy diagnosis.  I have NEVER made a whole chicken, what in the world am I supposed to do with this thing?? The kind farmer gave me some suggestions and assured me it is cleaned out and ready to cook.  Just give it a nice rinse.  Ok, we will see. 

Whenever I did buy organic meat before I always made sure to buy skinless, boneless ready to cook.  Always white meat and never any real work involved besides grilling.  I do know how to roast a turkey breast though, perhaps this will be the same???  None the less, I got my book of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle off the book shelf as it looks we will be eating close to the seasons and from the farm.

We all had eggs for lunch, hubby and Monkey had scrambled, I had them sunny side up and Sweet Pea had organic ravioli.  Wow!  I forgot how wonderful farm fresh eggs were!  I wish I could have mine scrambled but I can't have milk  Perhaps I can leave it out, but didn't want to risk it today and run these lovely eggs.  All US milk is fortified with Vitamin A Palmitate thanks to the USDA who is worried about us poor Americans being deficient.  All Vitamin A Palmitate is an alcohol derived from corn.  The government has to put all the corn somewhere I suppose, but I just wish they would not put it EVERYWHERE...

With Easter on the way, I have been thinking of baked goods.  Granted I need to find safe flour that the government hasn't had enriched for me and some other substitutes but that should not be that hard.  The long lead item for baking is vanilla.  Most vanilla is made from soaking the beans in corn alcohol of course.  There are brands out there, especially with Passover upon us.  But I would rather try to make my own.

So, after dragging the kids to the stinky liquor store I scored some potato vodka.  Might as well buy a big one and a cute teeny bottle to make my vanilla in.  I read how to do it online, involves soaking the beans in potato vodka but I do not remember, nor did I look up the specifics.  It can't be that hard.

1. Open up cute baby bottle of Chopin potato vodka.
2.  Pour off a bit of excess, plus more from big bottle if you desire, into glass of fresh squeezed      organic orange juice.  Place orange juice/vodka mix in freezer to sip later. 

3. Take vanilla beans and gently slice down the middle to expose beans inside.
4. Put beans in baby bottle of vodka, close and put in cool place for 4-6 weeks.

Now, for defrosting the chicken.... Ugh, Hubby is out doing estimates so I suppose I can do this on my own.  I had a Pyrex glass dish ready and placed in the laundry room next to the utility tub. No need to rinse off chicken in the kitchen sink and be paranoid all weekend about contamination.  Plastic gloves were put on and the bag was sliced open and disposed of in waiting trash by my feet.   Chicken was rinsed and placed in Pyrex and wrapped in plastic.  I was told it was clean and the neck was removed but it kinda looked like it was on.  I will have hubby inspect when it is defrosted.

So far it has been a good day, no reactions and got the kids Easter outfits ordered and didn't even have to give Gymboree any money.  With all the coupons and credit card gift certificates (paid in full every month so there is no hidden cost to me with the reward program, btw) they were free!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Great Day When My Throat Didn't Feel Swollen...

Wow, I had a pretty good day eating today! AND!!! To top it OFF, Whole Foods had Cod on special!  I have been trying to mainly stick to the foods that I have not reacted to on my allergy skin test and cod was one of them.

I baked it for about 20 min at 350F and it was so good!  Sweet Pea even liked it!  I bought 3 lbs of it so 2 are in the freezer now but the sale for all of $8.99 a lb is on until Sunday so I need to get some more for the freezer.  It was funny as Meijers had cod on sale for $4.99 a lb but I could not even imagine getting an answer out of a Meijer fish person that it has not been treated with anything,  WF knows their stuff when it comes to how the products are handled.

Tomorrow should be exciting!  I meet the chicken people and get some chickens and eggs to have.  I can not believe how much better I feel eating organic, pure foods!  Nothing from the box, and just a bit from the bottle, lol.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Look What Came in the Mail Today!

Well, Hubby convinced me to get this.  If anything G*D forbid, ever happened I could have a very serious reaction to a simple IV - it could contain CORN!!!

So, this has the IVs on the back that could give me serious issues, my MedicAlert number that someone could contact to get a list of all of my allergies.  While it is a personal decision, it is not just about me.... It is about my family and I don't ever want to cause them to worry.

And yes, I agree the picture looks really odd - doesn't really look like an arm HAHA

So far, knock on wood, today was a good day.  Had a swelling to possibly eggs and bananas though so eliminating those for a while.  Foods of the day so far: eggs, EVOO to cook them in, tuna, avocado, asparagus and a touch of Organic Valley unsalted butter.  Hopefully a glass of Our Daily Red, Organic and Sulfate free wine will follow soon :)

Did you know most of the corn grown in the US is not edible???

We don't have cable TV in the house, it is just not a good influence for Sweet Pea and Monkey.  That is not to say we don't have entertainment - I would have issues if it wasn't for our Mac collection, lol.

The other night I was searching Netflix and came across this movie KING CORN!  Oh my, someone actually did a documentary on corn and it is on Netflix?  Ok, cool lets watch.  Hubby and were amazed at all we learned and actually more freaked out about how nasty all these corn things are and how the government is actually supporting all of this.  But, if you are so inclined, take a look for yourself and make your own decisions.  Remember, this blog is about me, lol

The light is back!

Ok, this is to get caught up to yesterday.  By the weekend I noticed I started to feel a TON better.  My mind wasn't constantly churning a mile a minute, I wasn't so short with Hubby and the kids and the constant ache in my back was well, wait!  Where did it go?  It was gone.

I woke up this weekend actually feeling HAPPY, Giddy actually.  My mood has improved tremendously!  Perhaps this diagnosis (yes, it could be a TON worse) was going to be a good thing!  So what if I can't eat out, at least I'm starting to drop those last stubborn pounds and will be in my sz. 28  (European size people) True Religion Jeans (haven't worn in 2 years) in no time.  Not to mention I'm pretty much pain free and happy with a clear mind.

I can do this!  I can survive on this diet even better than on my previous one that had some of the typical American crappy food sprinkled in here and there between the vegetarian organic produce.  

Plus, you know what??? This means I get to shop!  I finally have a good reason to start over with all of the personal care products our family uses!  I have placed several orders and will be discussing them when they arrive.  I can't wait to get all new makeup and stuff!  BTW, this was prompted by research and also the horror of when I went to give my kids a bubble bath the second and third ingredient on our all organic and natural bubble bath had corn displayed in parenthesis after the chemical technical name.   At least they were nice enough to tell me.

Depression sets in

So, just trying to get caught up to today.  The few days following my diagnosis were really upsetting.  I did  a lot of research and found a lot of great sites to help and explain things to me.  Corn is the allergy I feared the most though, corn is in everything. For goodness sakes, when our basement flooded two years ago we got the carpet replaced with carpet made with, you guessed it CORN!

Here are some corn allergy sites that I found really helpful:

Here is an interesting conversation on the effects a lettuce allergy can have on your system:
Wow, I learned so much in such a short period of time.  You know what, I have always had severe upper back pain, I'm a bit anxious all the time and some may say high strung.  You know, total type A???  HAHA, always wondered what was wrong with me.  Perhaps it was my food.

Well, there was not much I could do except focus on what I could eat so I took the list of all the foods I was tested on and made a sheet of what I can eat.  I went to Whole Foods and got some basics: organic chicken, organic white rice, canned tuna and salt that has nothing else added, some avocado (I wasn't tested for this but never had any issues) and started eating simple meals consisting of one item each time.  I'm also very blessed to have a freezer full of venison thanks to hubby!  

BTW, you can't just go to any store or butcher to buy meat.  Thanks to our friendly and helpful government, most is sprayed with citric acid or injected with some corn variant to make it pretty and perky still when we get it.  Remember those diaper looking things between the Styrofoam tray and meat?  You guessed it, corn!

So, needless to say, I ate bland foods and really watched everything.

Background History

For as long as I can remember, well back to 4th grade I had allergies.  At first it was environmental stuff and dust mites and I would get awful stomach aches from tomatoes, beef, dairy and a few other things I don't remember.  I do remember getting really sick every time my mom would make her beef barley soup... I grew out of most of the food ones until around 2006 (mid 30's) when I was diagnosed anaphylactic to Almonds and Brazil Nuts.  It was kinda funny, I would eat almonds every day and I guess I really just got used to my throat being kinda swollen.  In 2008 I was diagnosed anaphylactic to peanuts.

I traveled a lot to Italy last year for business.  I was always very careful and Delta always kindly added it to my flight register, but what can you do when bowls of nuts are passed around with glee in business class???? Take some ben*dryl and fall asleep of course.   I got by, enjoying my life, traveling for work and eating what I wanted to as long as it did not have nuts.

I went back to Italy the end of January this year and had a weird reaction to lunch one day.  Hmmm, I ate green beans, cannelloni beans and a bite of this really spicy pasta.   The skin on my throat was bright red and my cheeks were flushed, not to mention a slight swelling in my throat.  I took 4 of my CVS brand ben*adryl and it subsided in about 3 hours - BUT WHAT CAUSED IT??? My diet was really good, I was practically a vegetarian who occasionally ate some fish or some vension.  I thought there were nuts in the pasta, perhaps, but my Italian colleagues assured me there were just a few ingredients: pasta, olive oil, parsley and red pepper flakes.   Hmmm, well not the red pepper flakes because I love BWW Spicy Garlic sauce on my pizza and am always fine with it, not parsley.  THEN WHAT???

On March 22, 2011 I visited my friendly allergist.  She gave me a full round of skin testing and the culprit was identified as most likely the cannelloni beans!  WHAT?  I love beans, remember, I am practically a vegetarian.  Next, she said cabbage.  Really, cabbage?  I don't get any stomach upset so how could that one be?  Carrots, lettuce??? Pork, ok who really cares about that one, lol, not me.  The list kept growing!!!  The results of the skin test were:

High (Must carry epi-pen and avoid per Mrs. Allergist!) (3+)

  • Peanut (ok, knew about this one)
  • Barley (Yea, ok I remember 4th grade and the soup)
  • Pea (Who can be allergic to the lovely little green gems that come out of the pods each summer to eat?)
  • All Tree Nuts
  • Clams (Seriously?? So much for the Fisherman's Way dish at Lo Squalo)
  • Lemon (UM WHAT?)
  • Buckwheat (Can't say I have ever eaten this to my knowledge, but since I have researched it I found it is somewhat common in Italian pizzas)

Medium (2+)

  • Soy (Not really a big fan of the soy industry so don't really eat this, but like it's corny friend who has been GMO'd like crazy, Mr. Soy lurks everywhere too)
  • Carrot (UGH, you were so lovely shredded on a salad)
  • Lettuce (Odd, people say it is to the pesticides but I eat mainly organic - also found on yahoo that it can cause anxiety issues)
  • Cabbage (So much for Kimchi)
  • Tomato (UGH!  Well, this really sucks)
  • Coconut (Always kinda suspected this one so no big surprise)
  • Green Pepper (What am I to dip in my Hummus?  Wait, I probably can't have hummus due to the bean relation, not to mention the tahini)
  • Sesame Seed (This is a new one and I was shocked)
  • Scallop (Not that I eat them a lot, but they are yummy)
  • Trout (Don't even like trout!)
  • Mustard (Well, not like I can have sandwiches at this point but goodbye store bought horseradish and pickles)

So, there you have it my friends.  I got home before Hubby and the kids (Sweet Pea and Monkey) and when they got home Monkey said "Mama's Allergic to Everything!!!"  Great, thanks


First, I need to start of by saying that this blog is about me - it is not intended as a medical tool or anything even remotely close to that for you, the reader.  It contains a story of my journey with food allergies.  All information contained in this blog is for my reference.  It works for me, it may not work for you.  You are responsible for your own health and determining if something mentioned herein will work for you.  Everyone's allergies and chemistry is vastly different so do not consider this in any way, shape or form medical advice.  Got it??? Good, let's get started.