Saturday, October 25, 2014

Our Halloween Preparations

My son and my niece, ready to face the villains!
My kids are in what I like to call the "Golden Age" of celebrating Halloween. Old enough to participate in crafts and baking, able to walk to trick or treat, and excited about dressing up, but young enough to still believe in the magic of ghosts and witches and to want to celebrate everything with their parents. I know it's only a matter of time before the older one will want to go trick or treating with his friends instead of his parents, or he'll be embarrassed that his mother likes to dress up to hand out candy at the door.

So I'm making the most of it while I can, and enjoying every minute. Kids of all ages can participate in Halloween decorating and treat making, provided the activities are scaled to their ability and interest level.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

10 Tips for Keeping Kids Safe on Halloween (updated)

I first published this post last year, but I think the content is pretty timeless. I've updated the post with new information and links where relevant, including safe Halloween candy lists for 2014. 

When your child has food restrictions or allergies, holidays that are supposed to be fun can turn into nightmares for parents trying to keep their kids safe. In addition to the usual safety precautions, there are the concerns about what your child can eat, and how to handle the disappointment that can accompany the realization that most of what’s in their trick or treat bag isn’t safe for them to consume. Here are some tips for a safe and happy gluten free Halloween.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The "Switch Witch" is Coming to My House This Halloween

A few days ago I wrote about my decision to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project this Halloween, which helps raise awareness of food allergies while also supporting allergic children by also making some non-food Halloween items available for trick-or-treating kids. It would be incredible if my son could come home with a bag full of safe items for him, but I know that much of his treat bag will contain gluten-filled snacks that he cannot eat.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

We're Taking Part in the Teal Pumpkin Project

I LOVE Halloween. Everything about it makes me smile, from the decorations to the costumes to the candy.

A few years ago my love for Halloween was tested when my toddler son went on a gluten and dairy free diet.

Halloween became a nightmare. Every piece of candy in his treat bag was a potential danger to him, and he was still too young to understand why he couldn't eat most of it. I spent forever going through each candy in his bag, still too new to the process to have a grasp on what was safe and what wasn't. What should have been a fun night was a scary, stressful one for me.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Gluten Free Candy Lists 2014

Each year, a number of different organizations post their updated Gluten Free Candy Lists. Most lists are specific to the United States, but My Gluten Facts offers candy lists for both Canada and the United States, which I find particularly useful. For some reason, some candies that are manufactured to be gluten free in one country may have a different formulation in another country, causing confusion for consumers.