Saturday, 6 December 2014
Thursday, 6 November 2014
Friday, 31 October 2014
Last weekend we went to The Bold Dragoon in Weston Favell, Northampton to celebrate my Mum and Dad's Ruby Wedding Anniversary. I rang in advance to warn the chef our our allergies, I don't think the man taking the phone call could quite believe that one family had so many! However he promised to pass on the information to the chef, who would call me if he needed further details. Upon our arrival one of the waitresses came over to me to say that the chef was aware of everything and it was all taken care of. Then the chef came out to check which people had the allergies, and to tell me that he had been and bought gluten/soya free gravy, Yorkshire puddings and that the crumble was safe, nothing had peanuts in and that he'd been extra careful to make sure that nothing we were eating had come into contact with any flour. It was a carvery and as there were so many of us only the children went up to pick their food and the chef was great with L and R. The adults had their meals bought over to them and he did mine separately. We had a lovely meal and celebrated Mum and Dad's Ruby Wedding Anniversary and were all full up at the end.
If only all chefs were as thoughtful as the chef here (I wish I had gotten his name) I would rate The Bold Dragoon a 10/10 for people with food allergies/intolerances.
Well our second Halloween with children with allergies, and it was much better than last year. For a start L is only avoiding peanuts, not all nuts which makes things a whole lot easier. Secondly I googled all of the sweets that came home before anyone ate anything to check for peanuts for L, and wheat/gluten for R. Then we switched sweets about so everyone had safe sweets. Easy peasy, and happy children all round ☺
Wednesday, 15 October 2014
We've been bimbling along fairly well and I'll update properly later in another post.
Today however I bought some different free from wraps. They're BFree and R prefered them to the Warburton ones we've been having and as you get six instead of four I thought we were on to a winner, but they've disagreed with me. The only thing I can see in them that could have upset me is pea starch, so next September! I will get them to test me and try to avoid peas in any shape or form until then!
Thursday, 25 September 2014
Today R had a bit of a wobble at dinner. I had made chilli con carne and he doesn't like rice, usually he will have bake at home bread with it instead. I cooked the bread as usual as the others eat it as well, and R was not impressed when he realised that he couldn't eat it. I did give him our gluten free bread, but he had a bit of a melt down. He did calm down later and we had a chat about it all, I let him know that I knew it wasn't fair and that I feel the same way sometimes, but he did have some yummy food that was only for him, some of it even I'm not allowed as it contains soya and that made him feel a bit better.
Tuesday, 23 September 2014
Well, that's the first day of little man being gluten free. We got off to a great start when he loved the cereal.
I was very nervous all day about whether he would like his lunch after he hadn't liked the roll last night, but he came out of school raving about his chocolate cake, it was apparently REALLY CHOCOLATEY, although had been ver difficult to get in to. I asked about his sandwiches and he leapt into the air saying they were delicious. Phew!
Dinner was enchiladas and so we used the gluten free wraps and they were declared yummy. He was very pleased with pudding, as I'd bought screwballs, and later on he ate a chocolate chip cookies and a rice cake.
I hope we get seen quickly so I can get him some items on prescription!
Let's hope tomorrow goes as smoothly ☺
Monday, 22 September 2014
This morning started off as normal, the chaos of getting four children off to school. With the two eldest gone the youngest two sat down to breakfast, my youngest R had toast and weetabix, about twenty minutes later he was doubled up complaining of stomach ache, to begin with I suspected Monday morning blues and gave him Calpol and sent him brush his teeth. Then I remembered that this had happened the last time he ate weetabix, and that he'd bought his pasta home from school only half eaten because he had tummy ache and only has one slice of pizza last time we had it because it gave him tummy ache. I gave him anti histamine and got an appointment with the nurse. She was fantastic, she was only covering the holiday for our regular nurse, but I'm so glad she was as she was really on the ball. Checked him out from head to toe and said she thought it was either an intolerance or allergy to wheat/gluten. After a bit of a discussion we decided that I would take him for a coeliac disease blood test today and put him straight onto a gluten / wheat free diet.
My little man was so brave having his blood test, he hates even watching anyone else have blood taken and only shed a few tears. Then we went off to Tesco to buy him a reward for being brave (he chose a small remote control car after trying his luck with the new avangers game!) We then bought him some gluten free goodies for his lunchbox, he has tried the chocolate bars that are like KitKats and the chocolate chip cookies and liked both, but didn't like my gluten free rolls or the oatcakes. Fingers crossed that he likes the bread as that's what his sandwiches will be made with!
Now we've got to wait about a week for the blood test results to see if he's got coeliac disease, personally I think it's an intolerance, but we'll wait and see.
Saturday, 30 August 2014
Very proud of my eldest son. He wants to be a chef when he grows up and his Grandad managed to get him a morning working at Langan's in London on Friday. He had a great time and helped to prepare lunch, peeling vegetables and dipping orange peel in chocolate. He loved it and still wants to work in the restaurant environment. To do this he has had to spend a couple of days at his Nana and Grandad's, so today we've gone down to pick him up and spend the day day having a get together. I took myself a Tesco free from bake at home roll (which by the way are delicious, much nicer than the normal free from rolls) but C had taken Grandad shopping and bought me a loaf of genius bread and some cider! Also they had remembered not to put peanuts out as L is allergic to them and had made sure that the food was safe for her. We've had a great day and are all free of stomach ache etc :)
Monday, 25 August 2014
I wouldn't say we eat here often, but when we're out and about with the kids and we need a quick bite to eat, that doesn't cost us a fortune, we often give in to the kids and go to McDonalds.
Today I took two of my children and my god daughter shopping at Milton Keynes and the children wanted McDonalds for lunch. When I was just soya and lupin free I could eat here, only the nuggets or selects, but it was still a meal. Now I'm gluten free as well, I can only have the garden salad, fries and drinks (not the cappuccino if you have the chocolate sprinkles though)
I am quite disappointed that a company as big as McDonalds don't have a gluten free range, they say that their chip fryers are safe for gluten free, hence the fries being ok to eat, so they could easily cook gluten free nuggets etc in there as well. It wouldn't be too hard to have gluten free rolls for their burgers either on a 'safe' area to serve up, they keep all of the vegetarian food separate from the meat. I don't know if there is gluten in the actual burger patty, but I seem to remember my daughter's friend eating just a patty with her fries when I took them there a few years ago, so that would open up a much larger menu for coeliacs and people following a gluten/wheat free diet.
On a positive note, we went to New Quay and found a lovely little fish and chip shop called 'The Lime Crab'. Initially I only went in to revive myself with a coffee after an extensive day on the beach (it was only cloudy, not rainy, but windy) and then crabbing off of the causeway, whist I was in the queue I noticed a chalkboard with 'gluten free chips, chips for all :) ask for details' and 'Gluten free fish now available :)' So whilst ordering my cappuccino, I asked for details, all made separately and cooked in a separate fryer, no extra charge either. I went back to the family and told them and we all decided that we would have dinner from there that night. I received my order and the staff kindly wrote on my box for me so that we wouldn't get muddled as it was now raining and we had to go and eat in the car rather than along the sea front, typical British summer!
Monday, 4 August 2014
I decided it would be much easier for myself and my Aunt, who was preparing the food, if I took along food that was safe for me to eat. I took a portion of gluten/soya free, home made lasagne, my bread, and some nibbly bits. (Nakd cocoa and orange bars, homemade lemon muffin and crisps I know I can eat). I also took a few sweet bits that are free from nuts for L just in case, as once the food is out on the table it isn't always easy to tell if it's safe for her to have and I didn't want her to be left out if the other children were munching away.
A lovely and food safe evening was had by all, my Aunt joked that in future we should all bring our own food as it would be much easier for her!
Monday, 7 July 2014
Well, something I ate last night disagreed with me. I was in pain with stomach ache all night. We had slow roast pork, with roast potatoes, carrots, peas and gravy. My gravy is soya free but does have wheat/gluten in. The dietician said to eat food containing gluten/wheat in small quantities to see how I got on. So for example, if there was gluten in the sausages, I could still have them. Either I am more sensitive than we first thought or it was the peas, which were on my query list as I've had stomach ache after eating meals containing peas before. I guess I'll have to play detective a bit more!
Thursday, 3 July 2014
I have got to do another 3-5 weeks before I go back to the dietician (must remember to book an appointment tomorrow) and am keeping a food diary, the only thing I've had to put in it, other than the food I'm eating, is that I had a migraine on Tuesday. I think it was atmospheric rather than food related though, as my eldest woke up in tears with pain from a migraine. I had managed to get his pain under control by lunchtime. Then, bam I noticed my vision going when up the primary school giving my youngest his hay fever eye drops. I was supposed to be working after doing that, but one of the receptionists kindly gave me a lift home and I went to bed and slept until it was time to pick the youngest two up, when I also rescued my car. B cooked dinner for us all, pasta, gluten free for me, and tomato sauce. Then when J got in, I went up to bed and didn't wake up until the alarm went off Wednesday morning.
I have still managed to eat out, I blogged about going to Prezzo and I also managed a lunch laid on for staff. I had jacket potato with a bacon and chicken filling (free from gluten, wheat, soya and lupin!) followed by water melon and washed down with fresh orange. I did have to turn down the Cornetto, but would have had to even if I wasn't following a gluten free diet as they had soya in. Today at the music afternoon at the primary school I was unable to have the biscuits which had been put out as refreshments though. All in all, I'm doing ok, and think I'll be happy and able to cope with this long term.
Sunday, 29 June 2014
My eldest daughter's best friend has coeliac disease. Today I received an email from her with the allergy menu for pizza hut and a message telling me that the gluten free pizza was nice. However the gluten free pizzas all contain soya, the only thing I could eat in there before I was gluten free was the lasagne, I can't eat that anymore for obvious reasons. The only thing I can now eat in there now are two flavours of ice cream! So I guess we won't be visiting them any time soon.
Yesterday was our 17th Wedding anniversary. We went to Starbucks for my favourite coffee. Caramel macchiatto then after a wonder around the shops, we went to Prezzo in Northampton. The waitress wasn't very helpful when I asked for the allergy menu I was told it was being updated, I told her what I couldn't eat and she said the chef would make me a salad with chicken. I told her that I'd looked at the allergy menu online before I left and would download it again. I knew that the gluten free classic tropicana pizza was free from soya, lupin and gluten and so I went for that with melon and prossecco ham to start and a glass of blush wine. I only managed half of the pizza and had the rest boxed up to bring home. I was a bit upset that I couldn't have my favourite pudding, tirimisu, and went for affagato instead, it was delicious. I will have to see if I can get gluten free sponge fingers so I can make my own. We left rather quickly as we didn't have much change and left a measly tip! Still we reasoned that she hadn't earned it as she hadn't really shown any help or concern with my allergies making me do all the work.
We then decided that there wasn't anything on at the cinema that we wanted to watch so stopped off at a lovely pub for a drink on the way home.
Happy 17th anniversary J xxx
Today I have done my first gluten free cooking since going on this diet. I have made gluten free mixed berry muffins after looking up a recipe online and gluten free dumplings to go in our stew (I just made these in the usual way double flour to suet and as much water as you need). I was worried that the dumplings wouldn't taste very nice, but everyone liked them, J said he preferred them as they weren't as stodgy as the ordinary ones and the muffins went down really well as well so I am very pleased.
Wednesday, 25 June 2014
After she looked through my food diaries we concluded that the best course of action was to go gluten and wheat free for about six weeks to see if that sorts me out. She doesn't think I need to exclude every trace of gluten/wheat as I can eat a little without getting any symptoms, so she just wants me to exclude the bulk of it, bread, pasta, cereals, cakes etc.
So this afternoon I've been to Tesco and bought wheat and gluten free pasta, flour, lasagne sheets, spaghetti, chicken nuggets and "breaded" chicken. So I guess we'll see how it goes. I'm off out for dinner on Saturday to celebrate our seventeenth wedding anniversary so along with avoiding soya and lupin I'll now have to cross reference those along with the gluten free menu.
I'll keep you updated with how things go.
Thursday, 29 May 2014
Well half term has been a bit of a wash out. Yesterday I decided that the only thing me and the kids could do without getting drenched was to go out for lunch. The deal was we'd have lunch wherever they picked, Harvester won, then they'd watch a film whilst I finished my OU EMA off.
Off we went to Riverside retail park in Northampton. We arrived around 12.30pm only to discover that for some reason the Harvester wasn't opening until 1pm. Mmm so much for not getting wet. After a quick toilet stop next door in KFC we decided to have a mooch about in Homebase to look for Father's Day present ideas. We arrived back at the Harvester just before 1pm and got a lovely table. The allergy menu was provided without a problem, however it was in a mess. It took me an absolute age to find the junior menu to check what L could eat, it appeared everything much to her delight. Then I had to work out what I could eat. By this time the kids had drunk their drinks so I was glad we'd ordered the refillable soft drinks. Eventually I was ready to order and had the bacon and cheese burger. C had beef burger, B had chicken burger, L had chicken breast and R had BBQ chicken wings. Off they went to get their salad and to use the toilet again lol. Before I knew what had happened L had wolfed down two rolls and half a bowl of salad, there was no way she was going to eat her meal!
At 1.50pm lunch arrived (was it still lunch or was it dinner now?) Everything was delicious more fizzy pop was drunk, they were very impressed with the ipad dispenser and kept concocting weird drinks. As predicted L struggled with her dinner hiding most of the chicken in the cup in which the chips had been delivered! A discussion about pudding then en sewed as I wanted them to have the meal deal for £5 plus drink (very naughty I feel) they however wanted different puddings to the tuti fruity or boring sundae. We compromised. They could have their chosen pudding if they gave me £1 each towards the extra, if they didn't want to do this they could have the boring pudding. They all picked more exciting puddings :) I however had to have plain vanilla ice cream, which to be honest wasn't the best ice cream I've ever had, it was very watery and not very vanillery.
I was fine, L felt sick. I think she had just eaten too much and had too much fizz though rather than eating anything she was allergic to. Although I can't be 100% certain due to their disorganised menu.
Overall I don't rate this Harvester as highly as the one in Meadowhall because it was almost impossible to work out what we could eat from the mess that the allergy menu was in. Our waitress also wasn't prepared to double check anything for me and there was no offer of having our food prepared separately. I would have been better off looking online and would have done if my phone wasn't playing up. Next time I'll check before we go.
On back holiday Monday we visited Wrest Park and managed to have a great time despite the weather. Well until lunchtime. We had taken a carefully prepared picnic free from peanuts and nuts for L and soya, lupin and kiwi for moi. I munched on my marmite sandwich, homemade chocolate brownie and a flapjack bite bought by my parents (which were safe for me but not L, but she's not keen anyway) I quickly developed severe stomach pain, I took ibuprofen and antihistamine and managed to keep going. I thought I had eaten too much wheat, but last night whilst visiting my Mum and Dad I had two more flapjack bites (well it would have been rude not to), and again within twenty minutes had severe stomach pain, not sure how I made it home! Again I took ibuprofen and antihistamines and after a few minor alterations on my OU EMA went to bed with what felt like a red hot poker in my belly. I woke up feeling okay, if a little tired as the two little ones are having swimming boosters this week and we have to be at the pool by 8! Managed to get shopping and home in time for dear friends who were visiting only to immediately get a migraine :( I survived the day on pain killers and am now resting but unable to sleep. The ingredients in the flapjacks are: oats, sweetened condensed milk, golden syrup and margarine. Not sure what doesn't agree with me, but I will be mentioning it to the dietitian if I ever get an appointment. Must ring them again tomorrow.
Tuesday, 20 May 2014
I knew I shouldn't have had the pasta for dinner like everybody else. I knew I'd eaten too much wheat today. A wrap for lunch, with a couple of the chocolate brownies that I'd made (well I had to test them, I'd also had some of the batter when making them too) and now I have bad stomach cramps and I feel sick.
Here's our favourite chocolate brownie recipe. It's nut and soya free. I Googled chocolate brownies without using chocolate years ago and this is the one I chose. I don't know where I got it from and I've changed it slightly as it uses a lot of sugar.
Makes approximately 30 shallow brownies or 16 deep ones. I use an 8 inch square pyrex ti cook them in.
225g melted butter
300g caster sugar
60g cocoa powder
225g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Mix it all up with blender and cook at gas mark 4 for about 25 minutes.
I have made these with only 2 eggs and they still worked, they were stickier in the middle and made a lovely hot pudding with ice cream.
Less cocoa makes them less chocolaty.
You could add nuts or chocolate chips if you wanted to.
Monday, 19 May 2014
Well it's been a bit busy around here lately. I made a coeliac friendly birthday cake for my daughter as her best friend has coeliac disease. B had asked for a brownie cake and so I bought a packet mix, I usually make my cakes from scratch but I had heard baking with gluten free flour can be difficult and didn't want to risk having a flop. It worked well and was delicious.
Sunday was R's football presentation and it was a lovely day, the sun was shining and he won the trophy for most improved player :)
Food was more of a problem though, there was only a bbq and crisps/peanuts from the bar and so I couldn't eat anything. I had taken a few snacks with us and I did have an ice cream from the ice cream van that arrived half way through the day. We were there longer than expected though and really enjoyed dinner when we got home.
Tuesday, 13 May 2014
Monday, 12 May 2014
I've got stomach ache, it's not a bad one, just an annoying one and I feel so bloated. I haven't eaten anything with soya in so I don't know what has caused it. It's such a pain. If I knew what was causing it, I could avoid it and not have to spend the night curled up on the sofa. I hope that my dietician appointment comes through soon so I can work out what's causing them and stop thevpain and bloating.
On another note, J and I were buying some bake at home bread earlier, one of the packets had lupine flour in. Needless to say we didn't buy those ones as we weren't sure if that was lupin, so I must go and look it up so I know for next time.
Yep, it is lupin. Good job we didn't buy it!
Sunday, 11 May 2014
All in all a great time had by all (after the stress of getting four children to help tidy up anyway. Blood, sweat and tears were shed!)
Well lunch was a success. After we'd spent an hour walking around the food court trying to decide where to eat! We ended up in Harvester. I asked for the allergy menu and the manager (who was seating us, Amber) knew exactly where it was (a good sign) and said that it I was unsure about anything to just ask. When we placed our order Amber double checked that it was ok for me, and then when she bought our food over she told me that she'd made sure that the chef had cooked it on a separate, clean grill away from any other food so it didn't become contaminated. I was very impressed. This is the only restaurant I've been in where this has happened and I knew I could eat my meal without any worries about becoming ill. I give Amber 10 out of 10 and wish she could train waiting staff everywhere :)
Saturday, 10 May 2014
My mum, sister and I are having a girlie day shopping at Meadowhall shopping centre. We've finally stopped for coffee, and we're hungry so thought we might treat ourselves to a cake too. I wanted to go to Starbucks, it's my favourite coffee shop and I have money on my Starbucks card so I can treat everyone for a change. I took their orders and they went to get a seat. It's very busy, but the lady kindly goes to check the ingredients. Their cakes however come in two's only in plastic, no boxes and no ingredients list! Their go to"free from" brownie does have ingredients, and contains soya. So we've just had the coffee, and the Vienese whirl that my dad kindly packed for us so we could save money. Just hope I have better luck finding a proper lunch, don't really want to have McDonald's when we're without the children!
Thursday, 8 May 2014
Well, I finally succumbed to the Christmas pudding that has been hiding in the cupboard. I ate some with some rum flavour sauce and it was delicious. I could have eaten more as I'm so hungry lately (just hope it doesn't mean I'm going to get a migraine! ) anyway, now I can't stop itching, its driving me bonkers. The pudding contains milk, wheat and gluten, and the sauce just milk.
I'm starting a blog to review the restaurants, pubs, and supermarkets that I buy food from.
I am allergic to lupin, which nobody has heard of, check this out
soya, Quorn and kiwi fruits. I think I also have either an intolerance to, or an allergy to wheat as my mouth and lips tingle if I eat something like cake, muffins and rolls and if I have a lot of wheat/gluten (like I had to when I gluten loaded for the coeliac test) I end up with severe stomach ache, headaches, feeling tired and bloated. I am currently waiting for an appointment with a dietician and am keeping a food diary (again!)
My nine year old daughter has also recently been diagnosed with a peanut allergy after having a reaction to a Snickers bar.
Last night I went out for dinner with my Mum and Sister. We went to The Sun Inn in Hardingstone, Northamptonshire.
After looking at the menu I had a couple of dishes that I thought looked tempting, so I went to the bar to ask if they could find out if either soya or lupin was in the lamb Shish. As the waitress went out into the kitchen I said to my Sister that I bet I got told that it was gluten free (this is what often happens when I say I can't eat lupin) sure enough, I could hear her say 'No she said lupin not gluten' pleased that the lady had listened properly and corrected the chef who had obviously thought she had meant gluten, I waited curiously for the outcome. The chef came out to see me himself, a lovely chap who confessed to never having heard of lupin. After an explanation from myself as to what it is, he said he couldn't be sure if it would be in the dish, he didn't think it should be and he did list the ingredients, but explained that he did not know whether or not there would have been risk of cross contamination before they had got to the kitchen. (He was very knowledgeable about coeliacs and the need to make sure nothing with gluten comes into contact with the food as he has family members with the condition) As lupin causes an anaphylactic reaction in me I decided to avoid that dish and went with my second choice, which was on the specials board, creamy chicken, mushroom and bacon chicken with chips and salad, which was safe, and delicious. I have to say the whole night was lovely and I felt like the chef took my food allergies seriously and would definitely eat there again. The chef even went to look up lupin after our chat.