Celiac’s Disease

A Sweet New Year



We did it. I did it. I survived another year of mad-dash cooking for the High Holidays. There was the fish head, and there were sweetened boiled beets, and carrots and leek and gourd and dates, pomegranates – ooh yeah – what a messy treat, can’t forget those. There could have been black-eyed peas but they just look creepier than a fish head to me, so I opted out. These are the foods we eat on Rosh Hashana that are symbolic to the blessings we ask for.

appleThat and of course apples and honey – the fam favorite! I made sure to pick the prettiest apples I could find.

And then I cooked like never before. There were round challot and long challotchallah and then one with sprinkled cinnamon-sugar and one with chocolate chips and one with a fish-tail braid…plus chicken wingsroastwings and a French roast and then honey-mustard cutlets and steamed broccoli, edemame, squash kugel (pie)lunch, potato kugel  and basmati rice, salmon, salad, couscous, chicken with sweet potatoes, garlic salted green beans and the list went on!!!! There was 3 pots-worth ofsoup hearty chicken soup and of course there was dessert. There was a whip-pie that found its way into the freezer, Ben & Jerry’s and an assortment of Sharon sorbet plus DH’s red velvet cake and an apple pie. I mean tons of food! Too much food! I felt so bloated, in a good way though after every meal it was worth all the effort. 


The beauty of all this prepping and eating and celebrating though for 3 days straight meant that I was really looking forward to Yom Kippur. The fast days of ALL fast days. The Holiest Day Of The Year! I was going for the ultimate cleanse. No eating for 25 hours and you know what? I was only a smidge hungry. Before the fast, there was another meal to prepare but I kept it fairly simple.  And because I felt bad for my daughter who suffers with Celiac’s Disease I made her these Betty Crocker gluten-free cupcakes that my sister-in-law was kind enough to bring to us all the way from the States. They were plain yellow cupcakes that I jazzed up with Duncan Hines vanilla frosting and good ol’ colorful jimmies. I placed then in the fanciest cupcake holders I could find  and the result was awesome. She was in heaven, after not being able to eat the apple pie, the whip pie or the red velvet cake – I made it up to her with these.cupcake

What a way to start the new year. Hoping it’s a sweet new year for everyone. SHANA TOVA~!

Buzzing Bees and Scraped Up Knees, Oh How I Miss These



As a follow-up from yesterday’s dramatic post – I did not cry. Not even once. The nurses did not make me kiss my sleeping child before being forced out so that they could do the biopsy.  The doctor did not lie, they were done within 7 minutes – 7 minutes? Yes 7 minutes. I had just enough time to say a small prayer before I was headed to the recovery (?) room. You know the place where all the relatives are forced to sit staring at their loved ones, willing them to wake up from their anesthetic slumber? So there I was playing Candy Crush (balled fists to you, level 213) when she opened her bloodshot eyes, staring at nothing in particular and said something in gibberish. PHEW! It took some time for her to really be alert and by then I was famished, she had been fasting and we were delayed one hour as it was. (When the procedure takes 7 minutes it makes you wonder what the hold up was, right?)  So finally we headed out for a slice and some fries and shared a drink and some mother daughter time which was really nice. And I didn’t even cry. Not once. 

MQSo as promised, today I took them all to work with me. I have successfully answered one e-mail and edited 2 items. Oh, and I figured out how to forward my bosses calls to my line. I have also handed out scissors, explained how the microwave works, and taken kids to the bathroom 4 times.  I was able to print 2 jobs and am about to write a summary  – fingers crossed. Each child is hooked up to a computer of sorts and I am about to get to the nitty-gritty of my pile.  But this is what happened: “No you can’t have more chips, leave those cookies alone, the stapler is not a toy, my phone is not a toy, my water – hands off -, please don’t lock yourself in again, I will print one coloring page for each of you, how many times have I asked for quiet if I am on the phone? That’s it, we are leaving in 10 minutes if you don’t stop.” I’m not sure what the allure of coming to mommy’s office is – seriously she is so cranky when we are here…I’m not my usual overly patient self – there is this weird version that comes to life after the 30th or so request for colored pens and paper clips. kitties

Where did summer go? I have been sitting here at this desk and have rarely seen the sun. No beach day so far! I want Sundays back again. It seems that there is never enough time for family fun days here.  As a child my summers were filled with days at the swimming club, swatting away buzzing bees, and rushing home on my bike to have my mom clean up my scraped knees from falling. I have definitely NOT smelled enough sun screen and I think we are overdue for some homemade slushies.  The first of my students arrive in one week and I am planning on being at the safari, though I don’t see myself getting tan or feeling rested but it has the potential for fun.

My calendar is full with wedding invitations, birthday celebrations and an appointment for at least one teenager to get braces, so I am busy and all for good things, so you’ll get no complaints from me. As an adult, I long no more for lazy days on the grass or even hearing the music of the ice cream truck but I am sad that my own children don’t have these memories. We are not members of any swim club, we have yet to landscape our yard and there is no ice cream truck and only one child so far owns a “real” bike.

So here is my plan. When on safari (at our cooler packed lunch break) I’ll ask them what their favorite summer memories are. Then, make a note to myself to make those happen more often.

To be continued…

Round 2: The Crying Mom

In less than a half hour I am leaving work to take my 12-year-old for a biopsy. Sadly, this is the second time I am headed to the same hospital for such a procedure. A little while ago, my 8-year-old needed one as well.

They both are super small for their age and after we checked the younger one and followed doctor’s orders we saw immediate improvement. However the experience was cukoo-kachoochoo. I was nervous about this little person going under and was a crying mess the whole 20 minutes the procedure took, the whole hour it took for her to wake up and then some more for no apparent reason as we sat and at ice cream when all was said and done.

Today, while I am prepared, and know what to expect I am still kind of anxious. No mother wants to have to witness their child in a hospital setting, even for minor reasons. My brain knows I want the best for her and this will determine why she has stopped growing, hopefully. But I am still sitting here with butterflies in my tummy, but making like it’s no big deal – she is super nervous but also has her game face on.

I am psyching myself up: Mantra station? Arrived. “I will not cry”, “I will not cry”. 

In other non-medical related news – I am juggling like mad to make this week work smoothly. While I still have some major projects at work, it seems that my personal social calendar is getting in my way. Today the hospital, tomorrow, working late so leaving early – balancing the shopping somewhere i the middle, Wed. night a wedding, and Thursday – well, Thursday is a big day. I may need to take off entirely. My husband, who is turning 40, is going to pick up his parents at the airport, while we, the busy bees at home, will be prepping for his “surprise” b-day party. He knows I am planning something, he’s just not sure who is going to show up. Surprise! Not many. It seems as if August has cleared the block. Most of his closest friends seem to be out of the country, working, or on vacation. Poop.  So there is family and pizza and Duncan Hines on the menu – which to me sounds great – I just hope he’s not too disappointed. If this is a bust – guess who’s crying? Yours truly. I just can’t seem to help it. There’s a lotta’ stuff that goes on and well, I’m a sensitive girl. I had this great idea for an 80’s themed birthday cake but was unwilling to splurge for the extravagance so I am thinking I may try that on my own, hee-hee I see “FAIL” all over that – but we’ll see.

All in all my mind is preoccupied with tons of things that are mostly good and I am pleased with the fact that the positives outweigh the negatives. But, I wouldn’t be surprised if I start crying for the good things too – I need more clothing with pockets so I can carry tissues with me wherever I go.

Note to self: make time to go shopping. 🙂

Just Breathe

Finally, an official diagnosis. It’s not terrible, it’s manageable. But it’s a disease for life – which means she’ll have to maintain a serious diet…forever. That’s depressing – but people with serious food allergies deal with this all the time. I am thankful it’s not worse.

Basically my 8-year-old has been diagnosed with Celiac’s disease. She is at stage 3 (there are only 4) and there is damage to her stomach lining. As it happens, I have at least 3 neighbor’s who have children also with Celiac’s disease so I’ll be going to them for recipes and support I imagine. The silver lining is the doctor said after a few months of adhering to the strict diet the damage to her stomach lining is reversible. She’ll start to grow and not be teased that she is a baby anymore because of her size (I hear growth is almost immediate after a proper diet is established).  We all need to be tested as well, I fear another daughter will also be diagnosed as she is quite smaller than her peers – but at least they’ll do it together.

https://i2.wp.com/assets4.designsponge.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/rosie_the_riveter1.jpgThat was yesterday.

Today, after meeting with the psychologist from school, we have a final assessment that our 8-year-old is quite intelligent and has tons of motivation but she lacks in language skills, in both languages so she suffers tremendously in school. We are trying to get her into a new class, a smaller class so that she won’t get as lost or feel frustrated that she can’t keep up. The problem may be that even if she qualifies to be in the class, it may not be held at her current school, where she has her sisters to rely on when things are too much for her to handle. We’ll have to wait and see, if there are enough students in her current school to warrant a special class, then she wins. If the majority of students are from another neighborhood then she’ll need to switch schools to where the majority go. That makes me nervous. She’ll need speech therapy. She’ll need to read more books and play more language based games, we’ll try to make it as fun as possible, which means lots of extra TLC – lucky girl.

Lastly, she has a hearing problem. Well, well, well. No wonder she is not thriving in school! She has a belly ache half the time, she can’t hear what’s going on and when she can hear she doesn’t always understand.  My poor girl.

We will be vigilant. We will see the speech therapist, the ENT, the dietician. I will enter the health food store, regardless of its funky barn-like stench, I will learn biology and what this really means so that I can offer her the best information and choices for her to flourish and blossom.

https://cheriblevy.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/be3f6-apple.jpgAnother day, another hurdle. To add to this emotional roller coaster I started eating better myself. Tired of the roly-poly me, even though she is so jolly, Chubby is watching her weight and even exercising, alert the media! Just kidding, please don’t = even though I love watching The Biggest Lose (Australia) – I wouldn’t want to be a contestant. So even though I still have not surpassed that major desire to wolf down a sugar packet, I am making smarter choices and taking smaller portions, but I am still kind of cranky.  I want to love healthy food…but I don’t. Not yet anyways. I know it will come, I know I need to keep the pantry stocked with better choices and the fruit and veg bin full at all times – this will help me from grabbing something I shouldn’t eat. Now that I’ll be consciously watching my daughter’s diet, I think this will help me overall as well. Fingers crossed people. The longest I ever stuck with any diet was a week.