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This post may not resonate with moms that don’t have children with allergies, but I hope you will read it anyway. First let me say I LOVE peanuts and peanut butter. So when my son had his first allergic reaction to peanut butter I was completely taken by surprise. No one on either side of the family has ever had a peanut allergy, and I ate peanut butter throughout my pregnancy. (looking back I have major mama guilt about how I was probably torturing him….)
We have done everything we can to ensure he is safe in the house and I always carry the epi-pen in my purse, just to be safe. Now that he is in school, going on playdates and going to all his little friend’s birthday parties having an allergy has created new challenges.
As I mentioned earlier parents of kids without allergies don’t tend to keep food allergens top of mind. While my son has become pretty good, even at the young age of 4, to ask “does this have peanuts?” not every parent knows the answer. Nor should we realistically expect them to have that information, especially when it comes to birthday cakes, cupcakes and cookies. Even if they did ask for a peanut-free item, there are not many bakeries or ice cream shops out there that can guarantee no cross-contamination, so my mama tip here is be your kids advocate and bring your own. I keep a stash of peanut free cupcakes in my freezer and if we are going out to a birthday party, one goes right into my purse. I usually seek out the host to let them know I am giving him “outside food” just to be polite and mitigate any potential misunderstandings. I also pack snacks and/or lunch for him to go on play dates.
I know I cannot protect him from everything, but this is something I can do, it’s just not worth the risk. Once we had given him his own cupcake at parties a few times he stopped asking for a piece of cake and even sometimes asks for his cupcake before the cake has been served. Cheeky monkey!

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