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Yenni

Family Dinners- A Nightmare And A Rant.

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Oh dear....

If it makes you feel better, my in-laws are just as bad - if not worse than yours!

I understand 100% how you feel (re: the in-laws). Mine also have a hard time understanding things that they themselves have never experienced firsthand and they cannot imagine what it is like for me. Not to mention that they don't really believe me when I say I'm gluten intolerant - they are under the impression that I'm randomly making stuff up just to be dramatic, or just to be annoying.

Sigh.

I got pretty sick the last time I ate at the in-laws and I have (silently) declared that I will never go back there and eat - though I just realized that I already committed to spending New Years Eve with them this year. I would cook my own food, but the biggest problem I have is that the in-laws' kitchen is like, The House Of Gluten - crumbs EVERYWHERE (they're a big family, so mom-in-law spends lots of time cooking for everyone). Plus mom-in-law would never give me a separate area where I could store my own pots and pans, so...

As for your strict diet - do you have a steamer? I tend to eat a lot of steamed fish or chicken, and vegetables. I don't really mind it plain, though sometimes I will use some herbs, or just some salt and pepper. I've also been REALLY into soups these last few weeks - it's the only thing I've been eating for 2 weeks straight. I just put in turnips, an onion, a little bit of garlic, carrots, leeks, and some chicken, then some salt and pepper. Sometimes I will add some rice noodles too.

Good luck with everything...

I am in to soups too. I'll try yours but with out the carrots.

We actually live with my husbands folks. And I have no kitchen really. I use theirs but can't store anything there. I keep it upstairs where we live and we got a little fridge here for my stuff. There are crumbs everywhere here too, big family and a lot of cooking and baking.

We hope to be able to move out next year/summer. Money is the reason we haven't been able to.

No, no steamer. I think I am gonna look into a steamer and a mixer. Try the smoothie thing and stuff. Some more options.

They used to be skeptic about this but not any more.

There was actually a big fight in this house 1

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I think egg problems can build over time. As a kid and a young adult I could, and did, eat them all the time. But problems grew and I became more and more sensitive. If I have the slightest bit of egg now my digestive system stops working for several days. I tested as sensitive to egg and I can only think of twice I had any in the previous year (cake on my birthday and Thanksgiving -- not like I hauled off and had some omelets or something).

Millet? I've discovered an easy millet/winter squash/cranberry casserole if anyone is interested. I'm not much on the flavor of this kind of squash (however nutritious), but put the cranberries in there and the flavors play off very nicely. It does require a veggie broth, though, I don't know how that would work with your allergies. I suppose you could make your own cooking a bunch of veggies you can have, but this seems to defeat the purpose of having something easy.

Buckwheat? I've found 100% buckwheat soba noodles and they go nicely with a Thai sort of curry. I will cook up an assortment of veggies, then add a can of light coconut milk, some Thai curry paste, and thicken with some arrowroot.

Nutiva makes some nice bars with assorted seeds that I like. I especially like the one with chocolate. Perhaps if you have just a little it wouldn't bother you? Anyway, here is a link:

http://nutiva.com/products.php

They say that they might contain a trace of peanut. A problem?

I haven't noticed a reaction to the seeds I buy at Whole Foods. You must be more sensitive than I am.

Yes, there is hemp milk. This is what I usually use. I like Living Harvest brand, which is carried by Whole Foods. I've tried Hemp Bliss which I've found elsewhere and found it rather nasty. One nice thing about this kind of milk is that it doesn't have any additives like carrageenan and it has omega3's.

If I get another idea, I'll post again.

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I am in to soups too. I'll try yours but with out the carrots.

We actually live with my husbands folks. And I have no kitchen really. I use theirs but can't store anything there. I keep it upstairs where we live and we got a little fridge here for my stuff. There are crumbs everywhere here too, big family and a lot of cooking and baking.

We hope to be able to move out next year/summer. Money is the reason we haven't been able to.

No, no steamer. I think I am gonna look into a steamer and a mixer. Try the smoothie thing and stuff. Some more options.

They used to be skeptic about this but not any more.

There was actually a big fight in this house 1

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I think egg problems can build over time. As a kid and a young adult I could, and did, eat them all the time. But problems grew and I became more and more sensitive. If I have the slightest bit of egg now my digestive system stops working for several days. I tested as sensitive to egg and I can only think of twice I had any in the previous year (cake on my birthday and Thanksgiving -- not like I hauled off and had some omelets or something).

Millet? I've discovered an easy millet/winter squash/cranberry casserole if anyone is interested. I'm not much on the flavor of this kind of squash (however nutritious), but put the cranberries in there and the flavors play off very nicely. It does require a veggie broth, though, I don't know how that would work with your allergies. I suppose you could make your own cooking a bunch of veggies you can have, but this seems to defeat the purpose of having something easy.

Buckwheat? I've found 100% buckwheat soba noodles and they go nicely with a Thai sort of curry. I will cook up an assortment of veggies, then add a can of light coconut milk, some Thai curry paste, and thicken with some arrowroot.

Nutiva makes some nice bars with assorted seeds that I like. I especially like the one with chocolate. Perhaps if you have just a little it wouldn't bother you? Anyway, here is a link:

http://nutiva.com/products.php

They say that they might contain a trace of peanut. A problem?

I haven't noticed a reaction to the seeds I buy at Whole Foods. You must be more sensitive than I am.

Yes, there is hemp milk. This is what I usually use. I like Living Harvest brand, which is carried by Whole Foods. I've tried Hemp Bliss which I've found elsewhere and found it rather nasty. One nice thing about this kind of milk is that it doesn't have any additives like carrageenan and it has omega3's.

If I get another idea, I'll post again.

I am gonna look for that Hemp milk. Give it a try a day when I feel brave.

Thank you for all the suggestions.

One good thing happened the other day: I was doing ok eating a "klementin" (those little "oranges" that they sell a lot around Christmas-I don't know the American name for them). That was great. The small things that can make you happy.

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I forgot to mention for the soup, I put in a cube of bouillon (either chicken or vegetable, depending on what mood I'm in). It's an organic brand that I bought at Whole Foods and brought back here to France (where every single brand of bouillon cube is made with wheat flour - go figure!). My thing is to also boil everything in the pot for awhile, then the veggies get really soft and I find it easier to digest.

I would definitely invest in a steamer - I found the same model here in France that I had in the U.S. I can't remember the name of the brand in the U.S. - I think it might be Moulinex. It's a two-tiered steamer and it was not expensive (something like $35 - $40). You could get one for yourself and it would be YOURS COMPLETELY and make sure no one else in the family touches your steamer - that way it is sure to remain completely gluten and crumb free. The only problem with this steamer model is that it can be a pain in the ass to clean, but at least it would be totally yours and you wouldn't have to worry. Plus, I find steamed food tastes so much better, and it's much healthier too.

Oh, and I totally understand re: the crumbs and the big family and lots of cooking. It's all been a shock for me because I am an only child, so it's a different planet when I go visit the in-laws. My biggest problem is that my husband's 18 yr old sister lives with us and she tends to be very unaware of things - like she rarely helps out around the house and for some reason, she eats bread and cheese without a plate. (I don't know, I've always been taught to use a plate when I eat anything, but for some reason, she puts her bread on the table - totally weird). Anyway, I've started to pretty much cook ONLY for myself, and eat whenever I want to - I just can't deal with getting glutened every evening, and I don't like to eat at 10 - 11 pm like the other two. My husband and his sister have been quite irritated about it all ("What do you mean, we have to cook for ourselves? What do you mean, you ate already?") but I don't really care - they just don't understand (and I suspect that they don't really want to) and it's so much less stress and hassle to deal with on my end.

I know that for the past month, I've been so depressed about it all - and a huge part of it was that I have been/am still not feeling that great - I've got terrible stomach pains, and my face is breaking out like crazy - I would literally cry hysterically ALL DAY for weeks on end. I just couldn't/can't take it anymore. My advice would be to avoid the in-laws as much as possible without alienating them, and try to maybe not eat with everyone all the time.

It can be very hard dealing with this disease. The hardest thing for me has been the social part. I feel I get punished for not being like everyone else. Food is such a social thing..emotional thing. People seem to always eat when they get together. It alienates you lots not being able to take part.

Some are lucky having a smart and caring family around them, others do not and it makes things so much harder. I really feel this thing put me on my knees.

Hugs to you from someone who knows how hard it can be.

Thank you everyone for your replies. Means a lot.

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