Sunday, July 25, 2010

Unfinished Business

I have it in my mind this school year not to start any new big projects, but rather to finish projects begun in this past year, or even earlier. I include in this a project I haven't actually cast on for yet, but purchased awhile ago when I saw it, loved it, and knew for whom I wanted to knit it. Since the person hadn't actually been conceived at that point, the project has been just sitting there, out of sunlight, waiting. Today I found a beautiful picture of it on Ravelry and decided that when I finish Grandma Helen's Stole and the Diamond Fantasy Shawl it will be time to launch that project. Hopefully I'll finish it before said person graduates from college and has his or her own babies. It's an heirloom project, with little practical value, so I'll have to knit up a baby sweater or something to go with it.

In addition to unfinished knitting projects, I have a master's thesis to finish. I've begun in the sense that I'm reading background knowledge books, but I've a long way to go on it.

Chris and I have launched a project to bring our family's eating habits more in line with what we think is healthy. We went out to dinner tonight for our anniversary dinner on grandma Judy's dime, and talked about the kinds of changes we want to make. We're going to start by getting rid of "seconds" but set fruit out at every dinner and allow unlimited servings of that. So we might still have chicken noodle casserole, but only one serving of it, and then any kid still hungry can fill up on grapes or apples or what have you. The second thing we're doing is identifying the three "worst offenders" on our regular rotation (they tend to be convenience foods I buy for the nights I'm not home to cook) and we'll replace them with healthier fare that Chris and the boys feel confident they can cook. We're not saying we'll never have hot dogs again, but we'll take them out of "Tuesday nights when Mom's in class," so the frequency with which we eat them is more in alignment with their nutritional contribution (e.g., not very often). We will not limit how much the boys can eat--I just think that sets the kids up for sneaking food and having weird issues with food--we'll just encourage healthier snacking. I don't think anyone ever ate themselves into a 35 bmi on grapes.

Finally, I'm, reluctantly, reading up on dairy allergies. Ben has had tummy troubles since birth and he often goes to bed with a bloated tummy you could flip coins on. He gets gas during the day and created a scene more than once in second grade. When Ben was entering kindergarten, I had the twins tested for allergies since their Dad and brother both have plenty (Chris way more than Max, though). On a hunch, I mentioned the milk allergy to the allergist then and he added that as a skin test.

I've never heard of testing milk issues with a skin test, but hey, it's his specialty. So the boys didn't react to ANYTHING . . . except Ben got an inconclusive with the dairy. His skin got red in that area, but there wasn't a full-on welt. The allergist said, well, they were still young. They should be retested at age 8 or so--and definitely to keep an eye on Ben and see what happens with the dairy.

Well, I'm not good at that stuff. I can only stay focused on so much at a time, so I basically shelved it. But with school only a month away, I'm hearing from Ben that he'd like to give dairy elimination a try. In part this is because he is seduced by lactaide commercials, but also because I think he is old enough to not want to be laughed at in class. So that's going on the list of things to do in September. We'll try eliminating dairy for Ben and see . . . if there's anything different or better about that. If there is, we'll trot back to the allergist and see what we can learn about that. Dairy allergies are pretty rare. Lactose intollerance is really very common, and it usually is something that develops in preteens and teens or young adults. It's less common in anglo saxons, but I'm convinced there's some Latino or Native American in Chris's genetic makeup anyway, and there's plenty of dairy intolerance in those blood lines.

Other projects we'll pursue include Ben and Milo's speech therapy. They're going to the same clinic at Penn State that Max went to when he was stuttering. He doesn't stutter/stammer any more at all, so we're very hopeful that this will bring success to the twins, too.

I'd better be off to bed now. It's been a great day, but I guess I've stretched it out long enough. Tomorrow is Scout Camp for Max and swim practice for the twins and work for Chris and me. Another good day, I'll bet.


kittygeorge said...

We limit hot dogs at our house too. When I was pregnant you were only allowed 1 hot dog a week! My boys love hot dogs, but when we have them I will only let them have 1 for that reason.

Sarah said...

Anika had a milk allergy. They skin tested for it and it came back positive. She was off it for 2+ years and now she has grown out of the allergy. Often this is the case. If it's not milk maybe eggs?

So if you need any tips for cooking without dairy let me know. It's not as hard as it seems to be at first. It just takes a little creative thinking and planning ahead so they don't feel left out. So on pizza night you make a calzone with extra toppings in it without cheese.

Let me know if you need any help.

Glad you are blogging again.