My name is Sarah and I am the proud mother of four beautiful children (2 by marriage and 2 by birth) and loving (most days) wife of the greatest husband of all time. My son, Caleb, was born at home with the help of a midwife in 2012 and my daughter, Ella was also born at home in April, 2014 on the bathroom floor, before the midwife could arrive due to a whirlwind labor. She came into the world tiny and screaming (5 lbs, 12 oz of pure spitfire and determination) – and she has not stopped demanding attention since the amazing night. Ella joined her 3 older brothers and for the first 6 months of her life, was a fairly normal, if not fussy, baby.
Prior to 2016, the extent of my knowledge of food allergies was my husband’s anaphlaytic shellfish allergy that he developed in elementary school and mild oral allergy syndrome to some raw apples and raw cherries. Otherwise, I would sort of stare blankly at people when they talked about food allergies and shrug and say, well I’m glad I’m not allergic to anything! I enjoyed food of all kinds, cooking, eating, reading cookbooks and food blogs, and sharing endless recollections of ‘and what did you eat?’ with friends and family. Around Ella’s 8 month birthday, I decided to give my pediatrician’s off the cuff advice to ‘try cutting out dairy’ to help her chronic eczema that required a layer of protective clothing between her and her fingernails that would scratch her skin until it bled. I had a considerable amount of baby weight still to lose so I decided to cut out dairy and gluten and see if it helped. Her skin changed almost overnight, although still itchy, her scabs started healing and her skin actually felt like a baby’s skin again. Encouraged, I kept the dietary changes and hoped it was just a mild intolerance that she would grow out of in a few months.
Fast forward to Ella’s 1st birthday – April 14, 2016. After attempting to find a cake/frosting recipe that met my self imposed dietary restrictions, I decided to throw caution to the wind and make a gluten filled cake with real buttercream frosting. Ella immediately broke out in hives when the frosting touched her skin. That was the first of many allergic reactions she would have to both common and uncommon allergens. Weighing in at 14 lbs, 12 oz on her first birthday, Ella is small in stature but has the personality of someone twice her size. I am writing this blog to help navigate the confusing and complicated world of food allergies. I will be sharing our journey with helping her health allopathically, naturally, through diet and medicine and most of all, keeping our family on a whole foods diet while restricting many common foods (upon writing, dairy, wheat, peanuts, and tree nuts). I am learning to love cooking all over again from an entirely new perspective, setting aside my beloved milk, cream, cheese, butter and wheat in hopes they will have a place in our diet at some point in the future.