Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Heros and Burnt Bacon

I need to start this post with a great big THANK YOU to the Swan family. The boys were invited to a birthday party (their first) on Sunday and they had a great time. Spencer was a trooper and did what was expected of him, and Taylor was himself and did what interested him. The first thank you is for including the boys. Many people are afraid to invite children with autism to activities because there really is no way of predicting how they will act.
My second thank you is to Kevin (b-day boy's dad). Many times we are on our own when we are out with the boys. People stare and look at us as if we have 2 heads and do not know how to raise children. It is a great relief to be a part of a church that steps up and wants to help. On Sunday Taylor enjoyed himself very much. I know this because he was screaming when it was time to leave.
Now, my boys are not small. They were both over 50lbs at the age of 5. (they are also tall)
When Taylor was screaming Kevin did not miss a beat. He walked onto the floor picked him up and carried, the flailing, Taylor to the place he was supposed to be. In some way that made me feel as if we are not alone in this battle. There is not a whole lot that others can do to help us along this road, but that was in my eyes one of the acts that Christ was talking about when he said
"Whatever you do for the least of these my brothers, you do it to me." Matthew 25:40
Kindness and understanding was shown to my boys on Sunday and for that I say "thanks".
A few years after the boys were born and we had added our fourth child to the circus that is our lives, someone asked me how I did it. My sweet smiling answer was "I did what I needed to in order to survive." This included boxes of chicken nuggets, pizza rolls, boxed mac and cheese, corn dogs and anything else that I could cook and get on the table in less than 10 minutes.

I was a great cook when we got married. I would wow Darrin day after day with my new creations. I am not a creative person, except when it comes to the kitchen. I used to be able to recreate, with some accuracy, the meal that I would have out at a restaurant. Those days became few and far between once the twins arrived and had not resurfaced until a few months ago when I was forced back into the kitchen by necessity.

I do have to say that, to some extent, I am enjoying trying new things. Many fail. I do not have the luxury of any starches. These include noodles, potatoes, wheat products, oat products or rice products. No cornstarch or other thickening agents are allowed on this diet. To top it off I am faced with the challenge of cooking without dairy products. (This will not be forever. In fact I have started to reintroduce this into the diet starting with butter.) This was fine. I have coconut milk which is a great substitute for milk. No cheese for a few months was doable. This was until we got the IgG Allergy reports back from the doctor. I am now faced with cooking with out eggs. OK people I did without all the other things, but eggs?!!!

What do you use for an egg substitute? Let me tell you...ground flax seed mixed with water - does not work in muffins unless you like craters. :) Mashed bananas or other fruits...many of these we can not use because of Addi's sensitivity to phenols. Egg replacement - made with potato and tapioca starch - not an option.

So tonight I tried to make pancakes with limited egg use and almond flour. I used some egg whites that I got at the store and applesauce. Let me tell you, I don't know if you could call what I made tonight pancakes. The kids ate them, for that I am happy.

I celebrated when I found this great easy product, that they could eat, at Costco.... precooked bacon. Hallelujah, something easy....Addi can't have pork! Go figure. I have hardly ever given them pork products, but it was on her "list."

Tonight, instead of easy bacon, I attempted turkey bacon. Now, I like turkey bacon as long as it is not burnt. :) Yes, you guessed it, I burnt it. Tonight was not the most appetizing meal I have made, but the kids ate it up. Kind of makes you feel sorry for them. They were pretty desperate.

So I will keep trudging on and trying to get my chef legs back under me. I just might come up with some pretty good stuff. If I do I will post it here so you all can join us in our very very low carb diet.

Until then, I challenge even the most skilled chef to make dinner with 3 little ones around your legs yelling "I want bacon, I want bacon" and another roller skating into your legs about every 5 seconds while the house fills with smoke, and not burn the bacon.


Catherine said...

Jennie, you're amazing!

Heather L. said...

I'm so glad the boys had a good time at the party!!! How wonderful!!

You are doing such a great job trying to figure out how to cook with all those limitations!!! I admire you -- it sounds very daunting. I'm glad you are going at it with enthusiasm and creativity -- that will make a big difference. I hope you stumble on something that will help with egg substitutes.

Hannah said...

They should have an iron chef contest for mom's of autistic kids:) Can you picture it now- you have almond flour, water, some sort of seeds, and coconut milk... GO!!!

I know you'd win!! You're doing a great job. Hope your weekend away was the best. Darrin looked pretty well rested and relaxed.

Monica said...

Okay, that was really me.

Alaina said...

You are doing an awesome job - you amaze me with your creativity!

The boys were adorable at the party - they had such a great time!

mom24 said...

Wow - you're really doing a great job! I totally (well not 'totally' as we haven't gotten an autistic diagnosis) understand what you're having to do. We cannot have eggs, dairy, wheat, almond, rice, and various other things. We had 2 of our 4 IgG and IgA tested and have had to make a spreadsheet to deal with the allergens and rotating the allowables! And I thought having our 4 in 6 years was tight until I saw that you stuffed yours even closer. It's a lot to handle but we have the Lord to lean on thanksfully! We will be getting our 5 yr old tested for Aspergers soon so I am looking for more info on that and food allergies.
I found you through Shine Again and am so glad! Your site is wonderful and I hope that I can be of some encouragement to you in the future!