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Melimba2002

My 2 And 1/2 Year Old Daughter Has Celiacs

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Hi everyone, I just joined tonight and am looking for some major help. My daughter, 2 and 1/2 has Celiacs and I am packing her breakfasts, A.M. Snacks, Lunches, and P.M. snacks for Daycare, let alone scramble everynight to feed her something for supper. If anyone could be of help, I would GREATLY appreciate anything you can give me!!!! Thank-you!!! I feel kind of alone as my husband does not feel it is so important to stay with this diet, so he thinks I am dramitizing things alot!!! I know I came accross something good here!!! Mindy

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Welcome Mindy. Just wanted to say hello. Some of the moms will be here soon.

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Hi! I don't have to pack lunches yet, but for snacks at my daughter's preschool I send in a bunch of stuff in a "snack sack" with a long shelf life and they just let me know when it needs to be replenished. We send Glutino Pretzels, EnviroKids Koala cereal bars, Raisins, Midel Animal Crackers, and M&Ms (as a treat when the others get cupcakes or something). Would daycare let you do something like that?

I wonder if it would work to pack a lot of lunches on the weekend so on busy weekdays you just have to grab a prepacked bag. Some things that might be easy to send: applesauce or fruit cups, dry cereal (Envirokids Panda Puffs and Dora Stars are our favorites), carrot sticks, cheese sticks, yogurt, crackers or pretzels (Glutino brand are our favorites) with peanut butter.

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I know some parents send pancakes for breakfast.

Get yourself a good thermos so you can send hot food. How about hot dogs (send in hot water)? Or string cheese? Or hummas with veggies for dipping?

Try searching for something "lunches" or "school lunches". I know there have been lots of great suggestions from parents. I'm old so I'm perfectly happy with salads for lunch, but I'm guessing a 2.5 year old would be less than thrilled with that!

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Mindy,

We are just 2 months into the diet and let me tell you it's gets so much easier! Once you start to see your daughter turn into this amazing new kid who feels good, acts better, enjoys life more, you'll gladly do it. I still have a long way to go to, but like I said, it's getting easier. I still feel like I'm at the grocery store every day (and yesterday I was at THREE grocery stores!), but I'm getting better! Here are some staples we've found (and please chime in if you're more expereinced and I have something wrong):

PB & J - we still experiment with breads (homemade seem a lot better than store bought - if you have a helpful mother, sister, friend that has offered to help this might be an area. My mom makes a loaf of a bread for us each week and it's incredibly helpful). I slice it, wrap two pieces together with a piece of saran wrap in between and freeze in a ziplock freezer bag. Then in the morning I make the PB&J on the frozen bread, wrap in a 1/2 sheet of paper towel, put it in a sandwich bag and pack in lunch. By lunch it's thawed and ready to go.

Progresso Chicken and Wild Rice soup

Scrambled Eggs

Sloppy joe meat in a thermos (you do need a good thermos with this diet)

My sons favorite - rice with gravy and chicken/turkey in it. I try to make a turkey every other weekend. We make a big batch of cornstarch gravy. I then freeze extra turkey and gravy and add it to fresh rice and pop it in the thermos.

Cheese sticks, rice cakes, Fritos, cheetos, Mrs. mays cashew crunches, hard boilded eggs, gluten-free cookies, drinkable yogurts, Hunts pudding cups

We also eat A LOT of tacos and spaghetti (each once a week). A lot of people like Tinkyada spaghetti, but we love Quinoa pastas. I also get Bertellis (sp??) alfredo sauce and make chicken or shrimp alfredo for a quick dinner.

Meatloaf - use gluten-free breadcrumbs

Those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head. My best advice is to try different things. We tried a horrible spaghetti product. Luckily it was after trying the Quinoa (a friend had given us a gluten-free food basket, so we ended up with 2 kinds of pasta. We loved Quinoa so much we've never tried any others since). We've tried some gross stuff. We just make a face, laugh about it, pitch it and move on. Remind yourself that there are some pretty gross gluten foods out there too!

Another thing we do to help with time management is a make a list of each night's meals on the weekend. We've gotten away from that the last two weekends because of the flu in our house and I am definitely feeling it. It's so much easier if I can map out the week. I use leftovers for lunches a lot, so I try to map it all out on Saturday so I'm not crazy on a weekday morning with nothing to pack for lunch. Oh, and Bell Evans gluten-free chicken patties, nuggets, tenders are wonderful! They're another great weekend lunch, quick dinner etc.

Good luck and get excited! Your daughter's life is about to become so much easier for her! She's actually going to feel GOOD!

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Finding this forum is probably the best thing you could have done. I would have been lost without it, and I'm just barely going on 1 year of gluten-free from when my daughter was diagnosed!

The sooner you can convince your husband the gluten-free diet takes 100% diligence the better. I know it can be frustrating, and no matter how "dramatic" you seem about it now, it's because you love your child and want her to be healthy--especially after seeing her so sick! Wait until she accidentally gets glutened and he sees the reaction. It will be like night and day after having a healthy child back again for a while!

I definitely felt like I was constantly cooking and searching for food the first several months. It does get easier and you learn tricks and quick snacks. I provide snacks and lunch for my daughter plus our evening meal, all gluten-free.

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Hi everyone, I just joined tonight and am looking for some major help. My daughter, 2 and 1/2 has Celiacs and I am packing her breakfasts, A.M. Snacks, Lunches, and P.M. snacks for Daycare, let alone scramble everynight to feed her something for supper. If anyone could be of help, I would GREATLY appreciate anything you can give me!!!! Thank-you!!! I feel kind of alone as my husband does not feel it is so important to stay with this diet, so he thinks I am dramitizing things alot!!! I know I came accross something good here!!! Mindy

Welcome to the club! :lol:

Starting the gluten-free diet can be quite a challenge. Who am I kidding? It IS a challenge. But the good news is, it gets easier every day and once you've been at it a year or so...it will become second nature.

Here are some of my time-saving "tips".

1) Make as many meals at home gluten-free. You aren't a short-order cook, so if you're pressed for time, don't make it harder on yourself by cooking two separate entrees at every mealtime. There are plenty of gluten-free dinner options that should satisfy the entire family (meatloaf, spareribs, grilled chicken, chili, tacos, etc.).

2) When cooking....learn to make extra servings for leftovers. Leftovers can easily be reheated for lunches, snacks, etc.. Plus, you can also freeze them in containers for "frozen dinners" on nights that you just don't feel like cooking. Got an extra meatball or two leftover? Don't throw it out! Use it in lunches, mixed in with a variety of other foods to create small, balanced meals that offer more options for little, picky eaters. Look up the Bento lunch threads on this topic. The links are really inspiring and may come in handy as your dd gets older!

3) Schedule in two 30-minute baking sessions into your week. I do mine in the evenings after dinner. During this time, I have my dd help me bake cupcakes, muffins, rolls, cookies....whatever! We take 30 minutes to bake up a couple of mixes, eat one or two "treats", and then I freeze the rest in individual servings so that I can easily pack them into lunches or have them for special occasions (like birthday parties we get invited to). I also have learned to use the mini-muffin pans and other smaller-sized bakeware so that I can stretch the batches further. When making cupcakes, I make 6 full-sized ones (for school parties and birthday-related events) and then the rest I make into mini-cupcakes. Dd doesn't care what size they are...as long as she gets one!

4) Make crockpot meals over the weekend to serve during the week. I often will make several dishes on the weekend in order to buy myself some time during the week. So while I may be serving a roast chicken with mashed potatoes for dinner on Saturday, I can also be cooking up a pot of chili at the same time for Monday's dinner. Meanwhile, leftover chicken can be used in follow-up meals or in chicken salad for lunch. Leftover mashed potatoes can be re-used the next day to make potato pancakes for breakfast. This type of menu-planning really doesn't take that much more work. Once you get these foods started, you can sit back and relax until they're done. You do have a bit more weekend clean-up as far as dishes, but you have less to clean during the weekdays. So it helps cut down the insanity.

5) Keep up with your pantry and grocery lists. I receive my weekly sale flyers on Tuesday. I take 10 minutes during the next couple of days to shop out the sales on meat, produce and other staples. I purchase in bulk according to the sales and that way, I have more money that I can spend on some of those specialty treats. Plus, I can then take advantage of those sales to stock up my freezer with more freezer meals. For example, if I see ground beef, onions and cabbage on sale, I will buy two family packs of ground beef, and those veggies. On the weekend, I pull out the crockpots and will make a batch of cabbage rolls, meatballs and spaghetti sauce. In winter, I also make batches of chili. Most of this gets frozen in family-size casseroles for a later date. Some goes into individual-sized containers for lunch and of course, you can have some the same night for dinner.

6) Shop on-line. Many of the gluten-free foods can be purchased on-line for less than what it costs in the health food stores. For example, at vitacost, the Tinkyada pastas can be as low as $2.39 per bag. At the health food stores, it can be $4 per bag. I buy two months worth of food at a time, and the shipping rate is a flat $4.99. Not only does this save money over the long-term, I also save on fuel costs because I'm not driving 50+ miles to get to a specialty food store. And I'm not wasting 3+ hours driving from one location to the next. The items are dropped off to my house with no extra effort on my part. Amazon also offers some decent pricing on many gluten-free foods. And amazon definitely offers a wider variety than vitacost. But I also get my gluten-free, organic Giovanni shampoo from vitacost at a savings of nearly $4 per bottle!

7) Find a good cookbook. If you find a cookbook you like that offers a gluten-free flour mix you enjoy, you will find that baking at home can offer you a lot in savings and doesn't necessarily suck up more time. I've enjoyed Carol Fenster's books tremendously. Finally, I've been able to make and eat decent gluten-free bread....at a much lower cost than some of the awful loaves I have bought in the past. Luckily, we have a fairly local health food store that sells bulk flours...in sealed packages and that are run on dedicated lines. So no cross-contamination. The cost is often about 1/2 of what I can purchase it for at a health food store.

8) Pack lunches/snacks for daycare/school the night before. Yes, sometimes the days can be long, but they're even longer if you procrastinate and then have to rush around to get everything done to keep with your daily schedule. Allow yourself time to for sleeping in and/or for dealing with unexpected problems that can arise in the morning. If your snacks and meals are ready to go, you'll have one less stress at the beginning of your day. That can make a huge difference in how the overall day goes.

9) Enlist your husband's help. Who says dads can't bake up brownies? My dh has taken to helping out with certain snacks and treats and he has really come to enjoy this time with my dd. Of course, he's no longer allowed to help out with the mashed potatoes (he accidentally used shortening instead of margarine once....), but overall, he's managed quite well and he and dd have a lot of laughs in the kitchen. Not to mention that it really helps us all out in terms of time management and stress.

10) Try to ignore all of the comments that family and friends make in their uninformed views on this disorder. They are trying to be helpful when they continually tell you that your child will "outgrow" this. Educate them as much as you can....but don't count on them to jump on the bandwagon. You won't change them all. Concentrate on your dd and your own immediate family. If your dd is happy and healthy, that's all that really matters.

Good luck! Looking forward to visiting more soon!

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Oh, I forgot to include in my "book" about rice crispy treats. Erwhon crispy rice tastes just like Kellogg's version and is gluten free. My son loves them. For an added treat drizzle them with melted milk chocolate (I use Nestle's milk chocolate chips). And Lame Advertisement has them for less than 1/2 the price of our natural foods store and if you buy over $25 (which we easily do with a case of crispy rice and a case of spaghetti) you get free shipping.

General Mills Mickey Mouse Club and Little Einsteins are both gluten free and mainstream (read economical :rolleyes: ). My son has been bugging me to try the Mickey for rice crispy treats and the Einsteins taste almost like Fruit Loops.

Oh, and Danna Korn's book "Kids with Celiac Disease: A Family Guide to Raising Happy, Healthy, Gluten-Free Children" is an excellent first book to read. I didn't get it until about a month after diagnosis and I wished I would have bought it on day 1. It helps relieve so many anxieties and helps you realize this isn't a bad thing - and her son's intro is a wonderful look at how a kid views have Celiac.

Good luck!!

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Oh, I forgot to include in my "book" about rice crispy treats. Erwhon crispy rice tastes just like Kellogg's version and is gluten free. My son loves them. For an added treat drizzle them with melted milk chocolate (I use Nestle's milk chocolate chips). And Lame Advertisement has them for less than 1/2 the price of our natural foods store and if you buy over $25 (which we easily do with a case of crispy rice and a case of spaghetti) you get free shipping.

General Mills Mickey Mouse Club and Little Einsteins are both gluten free and mainstream (read economical :rolleyes: ). My son has been bugging me to try the Mickey for rice crispy treats and the Einsteins taste almost like Fruit Loops.

Oh, and Danna Korn's book "Kids with Celiac Disease: A Family Guide to Raising Happy, Healthy, Gluten-Free Children" is an excellent first book to read. I didn't get it until about a month after diagnosis and I wished I would have bought it on day 1. It helps relieve so many anxieties and helps you realize this isn't a bad thing - and her son's intro is a wonderful look at how a kid views have Celiac.

Good luck!!

"Lame Advertisement has them for less than 1/2 the price ..." I believe that would be A.M.A.Z.O.N.com (it's our site safeguard :rolleyes: )

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Welcome to this forum. Jello gigglers can also be provided for a treat. I don't have children to cook for, so don't have any real good advice like the other experienced Moms on this website. There is a recipe for gluten free oreo cookies (look like whoopie pies) on the "recipezaar" website. Recipe #186848. "Lame Advertisement" also threw me off when I first saw those words.gluten free oreo cookies

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