Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Thanks for the invite, but...

I just received an invitation for a fun 3-year-old birthday party for one of Roo and Bean's little school friends.  The birthday boy is a sweet kid and I like his mom a lot.  Several of their friends will be there.  It's not too far away.  Doesn't interfere with nap.  Super.  Except that it's at an ice cream parlor.  A nut-crusted, egg-laden ice cream parlor.  So, as usual, we politely declined.

Yes if I really wanted that mom of the year award I could probably make this happen.  The routine would go something like this:

1. Call J's mom and warn her of Roo's allergies.  Plan to accommodate him while causing least disruption possible at party.  Reject her compulsory offer to provide a "safe" treat and tell her I'll handle it. 
2. Call ice cream parlor and ask about ingredients in ice cream as well as procedure for accommodating allergies (for example, changing gloves, opening fresh containers, using clean scoop, etc. to avoid cross contamination)
3. Bring back-up safe treat even if person on the phone promises on grave of loved one that none of their ice creams contain a trace of egg, nut, apple, peach, or beef (gross)
4. Arrive on party day feeling like my pants are lined with barbed wire at the prospect that a stray peanut or swipe of butter pecan accidentally migrated onto the table where Roo is sitting. Scrub table and chair with antibacterial wipes.
5. Ask person at counter AGAIN about all ice cream ingredients (usually we just stick with vanilla but it often has eggs in it  so we need to be flexible).  Possibly find a "safe" flavor. Ask for a fresh container to be opened, clean gloves, and clean scoop.  Allow irritated glares of busy counter staff to bounce off my skin like rubber balls.
6. Sing Happy Birthday to J
7. Hover over Roo as he eats exactly 3 tiny bites of ice cream, continuously examining his legs and belly for first signs of a reaction, and completely ignoring Bean, who by this time has surely climbed into her own oversize bowl of mint chocolate chip and is swimming in the greeny goodness. 
8. Leave party as quickly as possible to avoid the potential vomiting that's likely to occur after eating, allergies or not. 

So, yeah, I think we'll sit this one out.


  1. I'm sorry this is so hard. As you know, we face similar challenges. Maybe we should get together and form a regional semiannual "allergen-free" party :-)

  2. Thanks, Tammy. I know you guys are in the same boat and honestly it's not so bad right now, I just dread the ramifications as he gets older. Here's to more allergy-free parties!

  3. Don't worry about declining the birthday parties. They're not really that fun anyway, and at this age they can be excruciating. Seriously, with your 3 kids you'll be invited to so many parties over the next few years you'll soon be glad to have a built in excuse to decline. I know, I'm a birthday scrooge!!