Not long after Rapunzel was diagnosed with her food allergies, we were invited to a birthday party. We got there and I realized that she couldn't have the cake. And she couldn't have the candy. And I was not prepared. I was so new to this allergy thing and it honestly never dawned on me to bring her her own cupcake or safe candy for the party. She had an awful time at that party and spent most of it curled up in a ball in the corner crying. :(
Since then, I've made sure to be prepared for parties!! I find out if there's going to be food served at the party and try to take something equivalent for Rapunzel to eat. I always bake cupcakes so that she can take one to enjoy. And I keep a stash of safe lollipops in my "allergy bag" in my purse (I'll blog about what that is sometime) at all times (because you'd be surprised how many places candy shows up when you least expect it!). Good to go!
We attended a birthday party today and I was prepared! There would be pizza served, so I brought pizza that Rapunzel could eat. From Pizza Hut she can eat a thin crust pizza w/ regular sauce and ham, no cheese. So I ordered one and had it delivered to our house before we left for the party. I put 2 slices in a reusable food bag to bring.
And of course there would be cake! So I made cupcakes last night that Rapunzel could have. A baker I am not, so I was very happy when the box of Red Velvet cake mix in my pantry (leftover from Aurora's birthday last month) was dairy free! So I made those. Then I made Allergy Free "Cream Cheese" Icing. The only adjustment I made to the recipe was that instead of 1 c. of Earth Balance Soy Free, I used 1/2 c. Earth Balance Coconut Spread and 1/2 c. shortening.
They turned out great! The icing had a definite coconut flavor to me, but Eric said he barely noticed it. I think because I knew it was in there, I tasted it more, if that makes any sense. I let all the kids try one last night and they all gave it a thumbs up!
There were goody bags at the party, filled with candy and toys. Rapunzel is used to this and didn't bat an eye at dumping the candy into my purse to trade out for her own safe candy. She was really excited that there were still non-candy items in the goody bags that she could enjoy!
This was a bowling party and Rapunzel had only been bowling one other time, so she was really excited to get to do it again. She took it very seriously at first.
But once she found the "purple ball", she was all smiles!
The above pics are a good example of the balance we must find in keeping her covered (in the top pic w/ her sweater on) to prevent her from scratching, and keeping her cool so she doesn't get overheated (in the bottom pic w/ her sweater off because she was starting to get hot).
Rapunzel still deals with a certain level of anxiety at parties. She gets a little overwhelmed in groups where she doesn't know everyone well. And even though she's still eating pizza and cake like everyone else, it's not THAT pizza or THAT cake. But all in all I'd say she had a good time at the party with her friends!
And now we've got nearly 2 dozen cupcakes to eat over the next few days. I think that's her favorite part of birthday parties.