Can I share a secret with you? My husband and I love the holidays – but also hate them. Because of the food restrictions and environmental/animal allergies in our house, there are so many activities during this time of year that we miss out on. We would never change our lives for the world – but every once in a while we just sit and think, “gee, I wish our family could go on a sleigh ride with the kids” or “man what I wouldn’t give for a rum and eggnog”.
But then, in the next breath we love how much family time we get with the kids and the wonderful things we do enjoy as a family without the overindulgence that is often experienced by people during this time of year. We don’t pig out on Christmas baking, or go to the neighbors for too much “Christmas cheer”. We focus on the true meaning of the holidays, rather than the fuss and muss that goes along with “keeping up with the Jones'”.
Over the years we have learned a few tricks about surviving the holidays with severe food restrictions:
- Eat before you go – you never know if there will be safe food there for you
- Always carry safe snacks in your vehicle – just in case
- Always have the anti-histamine, asthma inhaler, and epinepherine handy
- Offer to host the occassion – that way you know that the food and environment is safe and not cross contaminated
- Offer to bring foods so that the host (and you) don’t have to worry about safe foods
- Focus on the reason for the occassion – not the foods
- Remember to breathe and be patient with yourself and others
Most importantly, I want to take this moment to wish all of you a safe, happy and healthy holiday season.