Wednesday, April 29, 2009

How do you find out whether your kid has peanut allergies?

How about seeing what happens when the babysitter decides to give him a peanut butter sandwich?

To be fair, because I like the babysitter, we didn't specifically tell her no peanut butter. And there is peanut butter in the fridge. Chunky unsalted, which is the best kind ever and people may like creamy but there is no accounting for taste. And food allergies don't so much run in our families. And Lord knows the kid has been able to eat whatever else we've thrown at him (or allowed him to throw) without a problem.

But still -- the pediatrician had asked us to hold off. And a friend, a few months back, had tried giving a peanut butter sandwich to her son and ended up calling 911 when he had trouble breathing. And now she has those epi-pen things.

So I had a "yeek!" moment when I found out about the sandwich. But he's fine. As fine as he gets, in fact. So I'm torn between continuing the "yeek!" moment or just being glad that we can give him peanut butter sandwiches for lunch. Because planning lunches was starting to get difficult anyway.

I bet he'll really like peanut butter and banana sandwiches. His mommy does.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I have decided that kiddie shows don't think much of parents.

OK, I get it, they're from a more or less kiddie point of view and so grown-ups are supposed to fade into the background a bit. That's fine. You want to do that? Do it "Peanuts" style and have all these disembodied voices around the kids going "Wah wah wah wah wah" then disappearing. (Much funnier in retrospect, actually.)

But no, that's not what these shows do -- and I'm thinking of "Wonder Pets," but "Dora" and "Diego" have been guilty of it too. How does the plot go in these shows? Save the baby whatever-it-is animal of the week and bring it back home to its flaky parents who were neglectful enough to let the kiddie animal wander off through the rainforest or the ocean or onto the Statue of Liberty's nose (actual episode of "Wonder Pets"!) in the first place. So these random stranger kiddie heroes are supposed to spend all their time picking up after the lousy parents of the animal world? Couldn't they just start handing out Supernanny's business card and save themselves some trouble in the future?

The parents, of course, are never the slightest bit embarrassed that some pint-size strangers went out of their way to bring their missing animal kiddie home. They say "Thank you, [name of show's hero here]! Let's have some celery or dance or something!" And they all lived happily ever after until the kid wandered off again two days later and the kiddie heroes had already moved on to the next abandoned elephant/lemur/ Tasmanian devil.

I know I'm reading too much into harmless kids' entertainment and if I'm so irked about this I should just drag kiddo away from TV and read him "Harold and the Purple Crayon" again. But still. If I have to occasionally sit through this stuff I shouldn't have to suppress the urge to roll my eyes at the screen.

And seriously, what's with the celery anyway?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

I quit and I ate bread. Man, the whole pregnancy diet is tough enough without taking away my bread products on top of it. Bagels. Focaccia. Giant coffeehouse muffins. Whole wheat toast with peanut butter and raisins on it. (It's good, I swear, no matter who tells you it's vile.) I made it to today and that, I think, is good enough.

Sadly I don't think there's enough matzah left to justify bringing it in to work. Also, my co-worker brought in fudge cookies today and what a letdown I would be. Maybe I can use it for insulation. Or build an addition onto the deck with it. Hmm. Possibilities.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Breakfast for kiddo: English muffins and pear. Breakfast for me: matzah with Temp Tee cream cheese (absolutely required) and yogurt.

Being interfaith in April can make meals a little strange. I don't expect husband and son to follow my no-bread Passover rule for the next week. Frankly I spent most of my childhood (and adolescence, and young adulthood) complaining about it. (Though mostly because the prepared foods available back then were inedible, to put it politely. There were these "rolls" my parents got once that I wanted to spit right back out.) I continue to do it because I like to honor some part of my heritage, no matter how small. (No, really, she's still Jewish! she insists. Though her old rabbi would just snort "Feh!" and stalk off.)

But since DH and kiddo will continue to eat bread product without me, that means things like, say, turkey burgers for them and burger minus bun for me. Regular pasta for them, special Passover pasta for me. Lunches are actually harder because I try to stay away from carb-heavy vending machine food. Fortunately I eat a lot of fresh fruit and veggies anyway. Trail mix is my friend. But you have to go with things like salads; 1. matzah makes a terrible sandwich (it crumbles when you breathe on it, for heaven's sake) and 2. if you eat too much of it it will kill your stomach. It's heavier than you think, goyim -- this is your warning. Because I know you'll scarf it up when I bring the leftovers to work. Always happens. DH, though, does enjoy the stuff with melted cheese and barbecue sauce on it. Really.

Kiddo actually did seem to like matzah when I gave him a piece. Go figure.

Part 2 of the conundrum, of course, is Bunny Sugar Chocolate Day, which is more or less how I enviously saw Easter when I was a kid. Boy, everybody always focuses on the Christmas-Hanukkah thing but they're totally missing the boat. I never felt jealous of Christmas. Hanukkah has a cool backstory and you get to play with fire. Also, eight nights of presents. (Toys, people, not pencils. Don't listen to Lewis Black.) But Easter killed me. There I was, eating matzah and macaroons and dark chocolate, which was the only kind kosher enough for us tribe members, and all my little Christian friends got Cadbury Eggs and Peeps and jelly beans and giant chocolate bunnies and wah. (I didn't know the bunnies were hollow. I thought they were solid chocolate. I've since been corrected.)

Now kiddo is not nearly old enough for a big sugar binge. But I do figure on coloring some eggs and I did get a little candy. Which must have puzzled the cashier at the supermarket, what with the Paas and the Cadbury Eggs and the Temp Tee and the Passover soup mix all in the same cart. Heh.

You may ask, but what about the religious significance behind all these things? And it's a fair question. Each holiday has its own fascinating story, but each seems to me to be ultimately about new life and new beginnings. I think it's appropriate that they're both in the spring. And I like that eggs are an integral part of both -- whether dipped in dye or placed on the Seder plate. I think those things become our starting point, when kiddo is old enough for us to really teach him what's going on. And I think it's neat actually that he was born on a Good Friday, during Passover.

In the meantime, it's all about the food.