Traveling With Food AllergiesPosted: October 20, 2010
I am thrilled to be heading out tomorrow to the Relevant Conference for Christian women who are bloggers, but I am also excited that
both my DH and my Certain Little Someone will be coming with me! They won’t be attending the conference, naturally, but they will be there with me in their own way, and having their own fun bonding time together.
The only problem is that it adds an extra element to my planning! As all you food allergy mamas know, it can be very stressful to take your child anywhere where you don’t know what is or is not safe for them to eat. Your choices are:
-go on a wing and a prayer and hope you can find some safe food somewhere, anywhere.
-bring food with you, but be open for safe options where you go.
-bring food with you, and only allow him to eat that food.
It really depends on your personal situation, your child’s allergies, and even your personality, which one you choose. In the past, I’ve gone more for option #3, but this time, we’re going with option #2. Now that we know more of his limits, and have more experience dealing with restaurants and food preparation, we know what we (and he) can handle and what we (and he) can’t.
In any case, planning is certainly useful. It helps to eliminate stress, knowing you have safe food prepared for your child in any event. Here’s what I did to prepare for our short trip this week:
1. If you’re staying in a hotel, find out ahead of time what amenities will be available to you.
We’re staying in the conference hotel, which thankfully has a refrigerator in every room, and a microwave available 24 hours to all guests. I would recommend, if at all possible, finding a hotel with at least that much to offer, so that you can store and prepare the majority of your child’s food. It opens up so many food options, and allows you to bring more than shelf-stable foods. I’m planning to bring a small cooler with at least his coconut milk and coconut milk kefir.
2. Research nearby safe restaurants.
GPS’s are invaluable for this! If you have a safe restaurant where you know there are certain foods you can feed your child, look them up and see if they will be nearby. If you don’t have a GPS, a quick Google search will work, too, or you can simply go to a restaurant chain’s website and look up locations.
3. Be prepared in any case.
I have packed a box full of shelf-stable breakfast, snack, and meal items. He will more than likely end up eating most of it, although I’m certain his daddy will treat him to (more than) his fair share of safe french fries (from Wendy’s or Burger King) or other safe treats while out and about.
If you’re curious, here’s a brief list of what I will be bringing with us to feed him:
-Quaker instant oatmeal packets (the cinnamon spice flavor is safe for him)
-Nature’s Path EnviroKidz Gorilla Crunch cereal
-homemade granola bars
-Safe canned Campbell’s soups: Beans and Bacon, Chicken and Rice (I wish Walmart had Pork and Beans when I was there, because those are his favorite!)
-Gerber’s Graduates turkey stew
-individually packaged canned veggies (carrots, peas)
-individually packaged applesauce
In a cooler, I will bring:
-a homemade lunch, depending on when we leave
-coconut milk (for drinking)
-coconut milk kefir
And I can’t forget other essentials, like:
-snack cup for on-the-go snacking
Your Turn: How do you plan for trips with food allergies? Any particular safe foods you can recommend that are great for travel?