I was trying to be clever with my post title….in case it came off as more cheesy than clever!
We are on Day 3 of eliminating foods to end her eczema struggle. I thought starting on a weekend would be good, as we would have more time on Saturday to prep meals and think through our ingredients and choices. BUT, I did not take into account that HER BIRTHDAY IS TODAY and we always have cake on birthdays!!
Yesterday, my mother-in-law visited, and she picked up ice cream (the good kind, made from real cream and without a bunch of additives). Obviously, it contained dairy, so that was something we were supposed to NOT be eating. Since it was her birthday celebration and only day 2 of our journey, I figured it wouldn’t be too bad a choice. For good measure, I applied the 1% hydrocortisone cream (over-the-counter, not the prescription) last night before bed in case of any extra irritation throughout the night. Today, it doesn’t look as bright red, but she said she did scratch one spot last night.
So far, we have been doing well with food avoidance. Other than the ice cream, we really haven’t had any dairy or gluten. I did put half and half in my coffee this morning and topped our scrambled eggs with cheese without even thinking. Those were minor offenses, but I will do better. 🙂
Today’s breakfast was scrambled eggs and bacon. Lunch was big salads with hardboiled egg, avocado, red onion, great northern beans, romaine, spinach, green pepper, carrots and radishes topped with olive oil and raspberry balsamic vinegar. And the smoothie for today had rice milk, frozen banana, frozen blueberries, Spirulina, and wheat grass powder. It came out as a creepy purple-black color because of the Spirulina and blueberry combo, but it was delicious!
A friend from church gave me a gluten-free cookie mix, so we made those to have after dinner tonight (I subbed coconut oil for the butter in the recipe to stick to “no dairy”) instead of birthday cake. Lily does not seem to mind; I think she is enjoying being creative with foods. I took a quick taste of one of the cookies and they are SO good! I was pretty impressed!
I am realizing omitting gluten won’t be that hard for us; it will be avoiding dairy that I, personally, will struggle with.
For dinner, I want to make THESE meatballs. I am struggling with whether or not to omit the Parmesan cheese in them. 😦 I love Parmesan with meatballs, but to avoid dairy I know I should exclude it. I might grind up some oats to fill that dry ingredient void and maybe let everyone else top theirs with Parmesan (and watch and cry a little). I have some homemade red sauce in the freezer to pour over them. I will make brown rice to go with them as well. For veggies, I will probably just do some green beans or leftover salad and maybe some carrots.
Tomorrow is my big meal planning day for shopping on Wednesday. I am excited to be creative with our menu, hoping to be able to (at some point) bring everyone on board with no gluten or dairy. I DID read about using sheep’s milk cheese, so I may be able to win over my loves-cheese-on-everything husband with some yummy sheep’s milk cheese and some nutritional yeast (a cheese substitute that is non-dairy; popular in the vegan diet). We shall see!
AND, just to give everyone an idea for where we are starting with how her eczema looks, I have two pictures. I took these today at lunch, so they aren’t as “angry” as they can sometimes be when they are irritated and all red and yucky. But, as we get further along in our journey, I’d like to be able to see a difference from now, Day 3, and Day 50 or 100 or however long it takes to get the irritating food out of her body and her skin recovering!
Left leg and right leg. She is right-handed, and I definitely think that busy hand is why her right side is bigger and more irritated. She itches and doesn’t even know it, especially when nervous or upset…or sleeping. 😦 Cannot wait to post better pictures!!