Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Allergies CAN Affect Your Behaviors

Food allergies. They cause wheezing, hives, anaphylactic reactions, and even death. But what happens when your child has a very different reaction? What happens when your child eats a food and rages for hours, has red cheeks, red ears, an extremely high pulse, anxiety, depression, and horrible behavioral issues?

Let me tell you what happens. People do one of two things. They either whisper behind your back about how horrible of a parent you are, or they start using words like mental illness, schizophrenia, and more. The last thing they do is say, "have you considered that this might be a food, environmental, or chemical allergy?"

The thing is, they need to start saying that, especially doctors. 

Meet Dr. Doris Rapp. She is saying that (or was). I was introduced to her a while back and kind of ignored her thoughts on this issue. I bought her book but read a small piece of it and put it to the side for other "more important" things. 

Finally I couldn't ignore it anymore. I was doing some research on my younger son's issues and the term "cerebral allergy" kept coming up. Once I started to look at that it was like reading studies of my kid. It described him over and over and over. I couldn't stop reading. I began to look for the experts in this field and found two books I knew I needed to buy. One was "Brain Allergies" by Dr. Philpott and the other was "Is This Your Child" by Dr. Rapp. Wait ... I got up, went to my bookcase, and there it was (amazingly right in front). I pulled it out and began to read. 

Tears fell down my face as I read page after page after page of stories that sounded just like our younger son, even down to tiny things I never would have pinned to food in any way. Weird things he did popped out from the pages. I couldn't deny what I was reading. 

I had to share this with my husband, and I did. He was shocked. His first words were, "what do we do now". I didn't know. I know we have to find out what he's allergic to so we can help him be healthy. 

I took to YouTube to see if she had any videos. Boy did she have videos. I am sharing three of them below. When you watch them, know you are watching our little Linus in his day-to-day life. THIS is what I mean when I blog about our son having a food reaction. THIS is what we see. 

The good thing, at least until we have his list of foods, environmental triggers, and chemical sensitivies, she gives the antidote for reactions. Let me tell you, I have watched this antidote help within 5 minutes of my child receiving it during a massive raging meltdown where "everyone hated" him (one of his feelings during these episodes). I am talking from hours and hours of raging to over in 5 minutes. I told my husband about it and he was skeptical but hopeful. Tonight he had his first chance to witness the change after administration. I gave it to him and asked the time. It was 8:00 pm exactly.  By 8:05 pm he started to tell us about Minecraft creative mode. By 8:06 pm there were no signs of rage. It was over, done with, ended. 

Please check these videos out and then get her book(s) if your child is shown in them (or go to her page on YouTube and watch more about her like her episodes on Donahue in 1988 and 1989, her talks about mold, and more). 

That link is: Dr. Rapp - YouTube

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Know Before You Glow

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It's coming. April is Autism Awareness Month and the "Light It Up Blue" campaign is about to be in full force.

Having a son with Autism, you are probably thinking I am stoked for the awareness campaign that Autism Speaks puts out each year. I am not excited at all. In fact, I have asked all of my family and friends to NOT light it up blue in honor of my children, as I do every year at this time.

I will spend April spreading awareness. I will share our story, share advice and information, and really help spread the message. But my lights will remain white and I hope yours will, too.

Before you jump the gun, I am also not in the "accept us how we are and do nothing to fix our medical issues" camp either. My son has real medical issues tied to his Autism and I can't sit by and allow his body to be sick. I make sure he has the medical care he needs for each issue that arises.

Autism Speaks doesn't use the funds donated to their organization wisely, in my opinion. They have VERY high paid board members (ridiculous for an organization with it's purpose). They waste their money and this is completely inappropriate for an organization that is supposedly all about people with a specific medical issue. If I donate my time and finances, I want to know it's being used for the purposes stated or intended, not so that someone can drive a Lexus or Bentley.

Last report I read, only 4% of their budget went to help families. Of course 22% went to fundraising, so they are spending more money raising funds than they are helping families, much more.

They support pre-natal testing for Autism. Now, that might seem like a wonderful idea. The problem is, there is a pre-natal test for Down Syndrome which is very often wrong (false positives) and have lead to more abortions than I can count. I would support a test done the same day of birth or later on an infant. More knowledge would help the parents. But Autism is not a life ending disease that we must know about before a breath is taken by the baby in order to make sure we deliver in a hospital that can handle the medical needs. Pre-natal testing means really one thing ... abortions.

It might shock you to learn that not one single person on the Autism Speaks board actually HAS Autism. What a sad state of affairs that is. There are so many men and women well qualified to sit on the board that could give first hand, real world experiences with Autism to this organization. They have none. Oh, they had one. He quit. He said they were demeaning to Autism. That speaks volumes.

If you look at where the money goes they raise, you will see that it appears they are fundraising to line their own pockets, that the board members and such are the people in need and they toss out a few bucks to shut up the IRS on their status. They do very little research and most of that has nothing to do with true cures for the medical side of Autism, to help improve therapies and treatments for our kids, and to better their lives.

There are many organizations out there that do use your money wisely. There are even local organizations that are very small but are doing mighty things in the Autism world. You could even donate to a therapy center or a family living with Autism. But please, do not light it up blue, wear your blue shirts, or buy your blue ribbons and puzzle pieces. Give support to families that need it and donate to organizations that respect your finances.

My porch light will be white like it is every day of the year. Please know before you glow.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Tubie and Non-Tubie Foodie

Food, as you know, is a big deal in this house. It seems I am always thinking about food! If it's not what's for supper, it's what will the kids eat to get their calorie goal met, to how much do I blend to make this work, to why it didn't work so I can tweak it next time. Needless to say, food is a major part of our lives. It gets tiring thinking about it, but it doesn't have to be hard. 

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On a good eating day we still struggle a lot. I need to be creative in order to help them succeed in meeting their calorie goal orally. One idea I use is the food tray. 

I pull out two ice cube trays and fill each spot with something they like. I did it this week on a particularly hard day. Here is what I have in each space from bottom to top:

First Picture (bottom to top)
Gluten/Casein free cheese
Gluten free turkey

 Second Picture (bottom to top)
Gluten-free turkey

I added two skewers so the kids could either use them to eat their food or could make almost a kabob out of the different foods in any combination they wanted. For some reason removing the forks and adding skewers opens them up most of the time. 

If you don't have ice cube trays (which you can get them for $1 for 2 of them at Dollar General type stores), you can use other things such as muffin tins, muffin cups placed in an 8x8 baking dish, or anything small that you can find multiple of in your home. 

Of course there are days when even fun foods like this won't help them eat. On those days I pull out my Vitamix and begin blending. Sometimes I blend for the day. Sometimes I blend for a single meal. Sometimes I blend after they have attempted to eat and I use what's left of their meal. Each day is different in the dietary need they have. 

Blending foods can lead to some ... interesting (yeah, that's the word I will use) ... colors. But sometimes, some rare times, I get some pretty colors. Yesterday is the perfect example. 

Come on, PURPLE!! 

Ignore the extension that's yellow. One of the meds discolors them the second I use it. It's a clean extension.
So, how does one get a purple blend? It's pretty simple. Let me share the recipe.

  • 3 slices of gluten/casein free turkey lunch meat
  • 1 banana
  • 1 Cup almond milk
  • 1 handful blueberries
  • 1 carrot
  1. In a high powered blender (we use a Vitamix) add the almond milk and then the rest of your ingredients
  2. Start your blender on low speed, slowly building up speed as the ingredients begin to incorporate. 
  3. Turn on the high speed and blend for about 1 minute (blueberries can be grainy, this keeps you from having to strain your blend). 
  4. Turn off the high speed and slow back the speed down to the lowest setting. 
After blending this I got the notion in my head to taste it. I am not sure why, maybe it was the pretty color drawing me to it. I have to admit, if this was cold (it was slightly warm), I would drink it as a smoothie. It was delicious. It tasted like bananas with a touch of blueberry flavor. You couldn't taste anything else in the blend, not even the meat. Just a note in case you have a kiddo who would like a smoothie to take orally. 

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Friday, March 17, 2017

I am Dehydrated - Spinach!

About 18 months ago, give or take, my husband bought me a dehydrator. We were thinking jerky of all kinds. Then I was scared to use it. Maybe I couldn't make jerky. Maybe it would taste horrible. Maybe, maybe, maybe. 

Then I discovered a group on Facebook all about dehydrating. Yep, there's a group for almost everything on Facebook. I read everyone's post about all the things they dehydrated and why. It fascinated me. 

I kept stalling. 

Then someone on my blended diet board (mostly for families who use a blended diet with a feeding tube), someone mentioned dehydrating for blends. I was hooked. It was time to figure this out. 

I had some spinach that I couldn't use in the amount of time it would be good, so I decided to start there. 

Let me share what I did. 

1) I washed the spinach in my sink in 1 part white vinegar and 3 parts water. I used room temp water and room temp spinach, though that's not really required (the temp). This helped kill off any bacteria and such. I let it soak for 10 minutes and then patted it dry. I let it air dry while I set everything up. 

2) Next, I cut parchment paper to the size of the trays (need to find silicone mats so I don't have to do that each time) and laid it down on the trays. I then laid spinach on all 6 trays. That took a while to do one leaf at a time. 

3) Once all 6 trays were filled, I stacked them on the machine (short side being used, there is a tall for thicker cut items), and set it for the temp I wanted. I did low and slow to help maintain as many nutrients as possible. 

4) I waited and waited and waited. Finally my spinach was done. I wanted it crispy for this project, so it took a bit longer. I pulled all the spinach out (this is all 6 trays full once it was dehydrated). I stood amazed at the tiny bit of spinach before me compared to what I put in the dehydrator. My husband came by and kept popping the leaves into his mouth eating them like chips. Yes, he has requested I do more of them without the next step involved so he can eat them all. 

5) Since I am going to use this in smoothies and for tube feeds, I need it powdered finely. So, out comes my Vitamix blender. Now, as much as I love my Vitamix, I have to admit, it's overkill for this job. A nice coffee grinder would work very well and would have less clean up (smaller canister). But, I don't have a coffee grinder or such, so I used Mr. Muscle. 

6) Blending! 

7) Pulverized into a fine powder. I then put the entire contents into a Ball jar. By the way, what you see here is the entire large box of organic spinach. This is a neat jar made by Ball and it's for spices. It's about half the height of a Ball jelly jar and the spinach powder is half of that. Yep, my kids are amazed at my awesome shrinking powers. 

Let me warn you. If you decide to start dehydrating, you will be addicted with your first batch. I am already setting up for my next batch. I am thinking fruit leather (think fruit roll ups without the junk). I am going to let the kids decide on the flavors. 

Want a good site for dehydrating information? I can set you up there, too. 

Friday Humor

I had to pass this on today. I laughed at her response so much I honestly thought I would wake up my family (thankfully that didn't happen).


Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Healthy Unhealthy Milkshake

My younger son is having a hard time getting his nutrition in the last week. Last night I had a melting down child on my hands because he didn't want a tube feed. "No tummy feed, Mom, just no." What's a Mom to do?

I don't know what most Moms do, but this Mom went into the kitchen and tried to do a quick brainstorm.

I ended up with a 600 calorie brainstorm Linus decided to name "Mom's Healthy Unhealthy Milkshake". Call it what you want kid, as long as you like it.

And he did ... a lot!

It's simple but not horrible for you, so I didn't mind giving it to him. Here's what I did:


1 Cup gluten/dairy free coconut ice cream in dark chocolate flavor
1 Cup organic spinach
1 medium - large organic carrot (broken into 3 or 4 pieces)
2 Tbsp MCT oil or any oil to the calorie total of 135 calories (many traditional oils like avocado/olive/etc have 120 calories/TBSP)
1/4 Cup plain almond milk (or any safe milk for your child)
4 - 6 ice cubes
safe chocolate sauce or chocolate chips (optional for extra chocolate flavor)


  • In a Vitamix blender (use what you have), put in the almond milk, oil, spinach, and carrot. 
  • Blend on high speed for 30 seconds until smooth
  • Add in ice cream
  • Blend on high until smooth
  • Add in ice cubes
  • Blend between low and high for about 30 - 45 seconds; just long enough to crush the ice cubes for a smooth milkshake texture
  • Add in extra chocolate (chips or sauce) if you desire more chocolate flavor
Afterward I realized I didn't want a big mess, so I put the milkshake in a Squeasy Reusable Pouch to keep in the mess and to make sure he didn't smell it just in case it didn't 100% smell like a chocolate shake. 
Sorry for the messy lid. When I said he liked it, he REALLY liked it. 

Monday, March 13, 2017

So God Made a Farmer

I remember Paul Harvey coming on to tell us "the rest of the story". His voice is one of my favorite and the only one I could imagine reading the following piece (which, by the way, is from his 1978 speech to the FFA).

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"And on the 8th day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, "I need a caretaker"
-- so God made a Farmer.
God said, "I need somebody willing to get up before dawn, milk cows, work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper, then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board"
-- so God made a Farmer.
"I need somebody with arms strong enough to rustle a calf and yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild; somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery, come home hungry, have to wait lunch until his wife’s done feeding visiting ladies, then tell the ladies to be sure and come back real soon -- and mean it"
-- so God made a Farmer.
God said, "I need somebody willing to sit up all night with a newborn colt,  and watch it die, then dry his eyes and say, 'Maybe next year.' I need somebody who can shape an ax handle from a persimmon sprout, shoe a horse with a hunk of car tire, who can make harness out of haywire, feed sacks and shoe scraps; who, planting time and harvest season, will finish his forty-hour week by Tuesday noon, and then pain’n from tractor back,' put in another seventy-two hours"
-- so God made a Farmer.
God had to have somebody willing to ride the ruts at double speed to get the hay in ahead of the rain clouds, and yet stop in mid-field and race to help when he sees the first smoke from a neighbor’s place
-- so God made a Farmer.
God said, "I need somebody strong enough to clear trees and heave bails, yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink-combed pullets, who will stop his mower for an hour to splint the broken leg of a meadow lark."
It had to be somebody who’d plow deep and straight and not cut corners; somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeder and finish a hard week’s work with a five-mile drive to church; somebody who would bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who would laugh, and then sigh, and then reply, with smiling eyes, when his son says that he wants to spend his life "doing what dad does"
-- so God made a Farmer."

-- Paul Harvey

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

A Day Without Women - My Take

I wrote this yesterday in response to the "A Day Without Women" event going on today.

Tomorrow is "A Day Without Women" day. I will be honoring it in the following ways:
  • I promise to hug my children in the morning in a way only a Mom can hug.
  • I promise to worship my God as a woman after His own heart.
  • I promise to love and devote myself to my husband as only a wife can do.
  • I promise to be a sister, daughter, and girlfriend to my friends as only a woman can do in a time of need or pain. 
  • I promise to educate my kids as a Mom is called to do.
  • I promise to be the woman God called me to be.

I am not doing this to SUPPORT "A Day Without Women", I am doing it to show that my family never has to worry about such things as I will ALWAYS show up for "work" as a woman, a God designed and honoring woman. I will celebrate March 8 not by checking out, but by checking in.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

He Doesn't Need More Sleep

For a very long time I was sure my our younger son, dubbed Linus, wasn't getting enough sleep. He would go to bed at a decent hour, wake up at a good hour, but he always looked tired, always. Oh, he would run around, be the little wild man we fondly referred to as "ramrod, wreckage, and ruin" (if you don't know John Wayne well, you won't get that reference). But he always looked tired in the eyes.

One day, as I was browsing the Internet determined to help him sleep better, I looked up and noticed the term "allergy shiners". What? Crazy people. But, the more I looked the more I saw picture after picture that looked like my son.

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I also noticed something else. The cute little extra wrinkles he had under his eyes were a symptom. I decided to start with our doctor. I like Google, I am a researcher by nature, but I also am not Dr. Google and wanted some more facts to back this up. Seems even the most traditional of doctors recognize this symptom, though often they don't speak up until the parent asks about it.

I will stop right here. If, by some weird chance, a doctor reads this ... SPEAK UP! We want you to. We don't want our kids to suffer for no reason. Mention it, even if the appointment isn't anything about the shiners. MENTION IT! 

OK, off my soapbox. 

We did traditional allergy testing, intolerance testing, and kept a detailed food log. We learned a few things, but not everything. It wasn't until our dive into Feingold for other health reasons that we really saw the shiners disappear. I mean GONE! He has clear eyes that look healthy and like he got enough sleep. 

So, if your child always looks tired like mine did, maybe he isn't. Check it out, start simple. Make a food diary for a solid week, make an appointment with a trusted doctor who will listen to you, and see what happens. 

I am attaching a few links about this issue so you can start your own Dr. Google search. Enjoy! 

You also need to know that some old school doctors (usually those who are NOT keeping up with the medical journals, latest research, etc) believe only in anaphylaxis reactions to foods and nothing else. Thankfully MOST of those guys are retired, but you will find a few. If you run into one, you can try and educate them (but you need real help so educate on your way out the door to find someone else), but the best thing is to find someone who understands food intolerances and allergies. It won't be hard.

If you want to have the pollen count for your area sent to your email for free, here are two links for that, as well.


Thursday, March 2, 2017

Leave It Alone

Why does Hollywood have to try so hard to cram sin down our throats? It used to be we "just" had to have attempts to cram sleeping around, nudity, and foul language down our throats. It was easier to skip those movies because it was so obvious and the rating almost always gave it away. Or it was obvious because the made books that went against Biblical teachings into movies. These books like the 50 Shades series and The Shack we knew were books we shouldn't partake in, so it's obvious we shouldn't partake of the movies.

But that wasn't enough. It just wasn't good enough for Hollywood. Now they are attempting to hurt children. Disney has done it twice this year alone.

Their first attempt is a show called "Star vs. the Forces of Evil". There seems to be a boyband concert and everyone is kissing (why does that even need to be in a kids show), if you look at the scene, it's VERY obvious that there are a few same sex couples kissing (the kiss is obvious and very much not a silly friend kiss and the sex of the couples are very obvious). Attempting to normalize sin so our kids won't call it sin, recognize it as sin, or care if it's sin.

The second attempt this year (remember, it's only the second day of March) is coming soon. It's the new "Beauty and the Beast" movie. Oh, you know, Belle dancing, the pretty rose losing it's petals, the baffoon Gaston. Yeah. No. LaFeu will be gay and have an "exclusively gay moment" that is "delicious" as he "explores his sexuality" since he's gay and has feelings for Gaston. (the quotes are all the director's exact terminology, I am not basing this on anti-sites, but on his own interview with a major non-conservative media channel). WHY? Oh, that's right, to make sin normal, pretty, and to hurt our kids.

So, Disney, we are done. You want to hurt my kids, I will cut you out of my kids lives just like I would someone that held a knife in a threatening manner.

By the way, Disney, I would just like to leave this here for you, "And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea." Mark 9:42

"It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones." Luke 17:2


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