The Pretty Bee — Allergy Profile
Name: Kelly Roenicke
Food Allergens: I personally don't have food allergies.
How many people in your family have food allergies? Of those, how many have been diagnosed by a doctor? My oldest son is sensitive to gluten. My youngest son has life-threatening allergies to peanuts, tree nuts, and sesame, which has been diagnosed by a doctor.
Has your son outgrown any of his food allergies? If so, which ones? My son outgrew his egg allergy at age four.
What is the one food that you miss the most since your son’s diagnosis? I do miss eating nuts. But I make up for it by eating a lot of seeds.
What are the things that you never leave home without? EpiPens, my phone, and safe snacks!
What is the toughest lesson you’ve learned since your son was diagnosed? There will be some things that my son will have to miss out on, no matter how hard I work to make sure he is included. For example, the freedom of being able to stop anywhere to eat or the option of walking into an ice cream shop and ordering anything. It's not an option for him. We make up for it with lots of safe treats at home and at safe restaurants, but it's still a loss.
What is the most ridiculous thing someone has said to you or asked you about your son’s food allergies? I often get asked if I breastfed, had a C-section, had him vaccinated, and when I introduced solid foods. I find all of these questions ridiculous.
What is one piece of advice that you want to offer to the newly diagnosed? Hang in there — it seems very daunting at first, but it will get easier. Find a few safe recipes that work for you, and then add to that collection.
What inspires you in the kitchen? Seasonal flavors. I love to cook with fresh produce, and we spend a lot of time at the farmer's market in the summer and fall.
What has been your biggest surprise when experimenting in the kitchen? I was pleasantly surprised to find out that my family loves egg-free French toast more than the egg version.