Almost Ready Blogs

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Maizey Home Remedies Part 2

Ready for more?


100% Aloe Vera. You can find it in a tube in the drugstore, or you can get a plant and take off one leaf and use the gel inside. Frequency is the key. Put on Aloe every time you think about it.


Assuming you are NOT allergic to a bee sting and would need to take more decisive action, cut a potato in half and put the starchy inside against the sting. This will ease the pain and draw out the toxin.


This works really well on...spider bites that are puffy, inflamed and painful; an inflamed and painful in-grown toenail and a million other EXTERNAL maladies.

Poppy's Poultice

Bar of Ivory Soap

White table sugar


Wood Match (it HAS to be a wood match)

Shave a small part of bar of soap into a spoon and add equal amount of sugar. Add one drop water (just enough to make a paste) and then stir with the business end of a wood match. Using a match under the spoon - or over a burner on the stove, heat until warm - NOT HOT. Apply generously and cover for 24 hours. Check it and repeat if necessary.

This is actually my Dad's recipe and family and friends come from miles around for him to treat them with a poultice (he is our local Miracle Max). Please know that the business end of a wood match has sulfur in it. So if you have a sulfur allergy, please use caution.


I got this recipe from Parent Hacks several years ago and it is the BEST!

Indian Milk

12 oz. warm milk

1 Tablespoon honey

Dash each of ginger, turmeric and cardamom. (Be judicious with these. When it's all mixed you want it to be the color of parchment.)

Serve while still warm.

There is a home remedy book I really like:

There is some really good information in there, but there is also stuff that's...well...crazy and dangerous; bee stings, turpentine and kerosene. Please use good sense and if you have questions call your doctor.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Maizey Home Remedies

Alright, folks - you requested home remedies and I am here to serve!


Gargle every four hours with warm salt water


Mix 1 tsp. of honey and 1/4 tsp. of turmeric. Apply as needed

Take a mouth full of Aloe Vera juice and hold in mouth for 1 minute. Repeat several times daily. Warning: Aloe Vera juice IS SAFE to swallow, however it is a natural laxative.


Go into the bathroom, shut the door and turn on the hot water. Read a magazine in the steam and wait for your nose to clear up. Should only take 5 to 10 minutes.


This is my dad's recipe. As a kid, when we saw this stuff coming at us, we RAN! That being said, it really does work.

Graveyard Stew

  • 2 pieces toast
  • Warm milk
  • 2 teaspoons sugar.

Tear the toast up into pieces in a mug, add sugar and cover in warm milk. Eat while still warm.


Put mentholatum on the bottoms of the feet, wear two pairs of socks overnight.

Here are some for now...coming soon PART II

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Movies and Subsidies

 have been laying sick in bed for two days and that gave me time to catch up on a little movie watching. This afternoon I watched "King Corn". It's incredibly informative, if not a little scary. To follow the food supply from seed to consumerism is nothing less than shocking. This movie is incredibly interesting for those who are dealing with a corn allergy in some capacity, but equally interesting for consumerist America.

Part of what I learned is this: the government, with subsidies, rebates and "incentives" essentially control food production in the United States. 60% of non consumable corn is used for feed for cattle, pigs and chickens - those in the corn allergic community already knew that. According to Wikipedia, high fructose corn syrup in soda can produce 10 times the carbonyl compounds (which are incredibly harmful). Increased carbonyl compounds can lead to diabetes and diabetic complications such as foot ulcers and eye and nerve damage.
Large amounts of HFCS can lead the liver to produce large amounts of triglycerides and can induce insulin resistance. For those who say, "yes, but you would have to consume gallons of that to cause those problems" - on average, Americans consume approximately 70 pounds of HFCS per year - that's almost 9 gallons. A 2004 study found a cause and effect relationship between HCFS and obesity.
Here's my thought. The government, with their money, control corn growth - of which 30% is turned into sweetener. By extension, they are funding America's obesity problem. Now, they want to provide subsidized health care - in 2008, an estimated 24 million people in the US suffered from diabetes; as a matter of fact, according to the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, diabetes costs $132 million dollars in healthcare every year.
I have a novel solution, decrease the amount of money subsidized to HFCS! That would decrease the cases of high triglycerides, diabetes and obesity (which costs 147 billion dollars in healthcare annually). We would save money in taxes, decrease the amount of money spent by health insurers on the results of obesity and diabetes; which would drive the costs of healthcare down incredibly for the insurers and the public. Maybe we could call it "trickle down sanity".

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Not at all corn related, but......

DB said the cutest thing at supper. As he devoured a chicken leg, he screamed, "ME FOUND DINOSAUR BONE!" Apparently he found a dinosaur bone in his chicken. Big Poppa almost spit milk all over the table! It was so funny, I just had to share.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Safe water bottles for people with a corn allergy.

I went water bottle hunting. It took a little while. I sat with my cell phone in a camping chair at Dick's Sporting Goods and started calling companies. I hope you can find my research helpful. If you have found a great water bottle safe for corn allergic folks, please share!


  • Nathan's water bottles' straw is made out of polyethanol. Ethanol is made of corn.


  • Nalgene water bottles contain polypropylene which MAY be made from corn.


  • Sigg refuses to say what their lining is made from; Sissy is way too sensitive to take a chance on a mystery lining.


  • Camelbak is totally safe and reasonably priced!

They have both metal and plastic - which is actually a form of polyester and is BPA free.

  • Klean Kanteen is made from 18/8 Stainless Steel and has no lining. The cap has polypropylene, but not on a part which touches the water. Safe for people with a corn allergy.

Klean Kanteen Stainless-Steel Water Bottle with Loop-Top Cap - 27 fl. oz.The only downside to Klean Kanteen is the price. They can be expensive - but you really are paying for quality.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Eating Out

Since Sloan's diagnosis with a severe corn allergy - I have found it most convenient to make almost everything.  But I get tired of cooking 3 meals a day, 7 days a week. So we consider eating out - but that is easier said than done. Almost every restaurant has a specialty menu for people with allergies to the Top 8. Unfortunately corn allergy is not in the top 8. So we CAPs (Corn Allergy Parents) do what we do best - research and innovate.

Denny's and Culver's both include corn, on their allergy awareness menus; they, as far as I know, are the only two. When dining out at a restaurant with a food allergy not listed in the top 8, there are some steps you can take to ensure a safe trip to dine out.

  1. Plan ahead. Give yourself a couple days if you can.
  2. Have a plan B. There are some restaurants, believe it or not, that are not at all cooperative to people with food allergies. It's too dangerous to take a chance, so it is worth it to tell the restaurant, "I'm sorry but we will be dining somewhere else until you are able to accommodate people with food allergies".
  3. Call ahead. Try to call at times when the restaurant is not experiencing a rush.  I typically try to call at either 11 or 2.
  4. Ask for the kitchen manager or the general manager.
  5. Have a pad of paper and pen handy - TAKE NOTES! Note the name of the person to whom you spoke, their recommendations and other pertinent information.
  6. This conversation can be lengthy so make yourself comfortable.
  7. Explain your situation - most managers are VERY helpful. Ask a lot of questions, and be very friendly - remember that you catch a lot more flies with honey!
  8. If they simply do not have anything that you or your child can eat, ask if you can bring in a meal.
  9. Stick with what you know. We have maybe 10 places where we know exactly what Sissy can eat; they range pizza joints to a place to get a nice steak dinner. We go primarily to those places to dine.
  10. If you find something your kiddo can eat - WRITE IT DOWN! I keep a binder in the car that contains a list of the restaurants that can accommodate Sissy and exactly what to order. That way, if Big Poppa and I have the kids out, we can stop somewhere to eat without going home and researching.
  11. When you get to the restaurant ask to speak to the manager to whom you spoke on the phone. Tell him who you are - it's good for restaurant management to know when people with food allergies are in their restaurant. They are going to make sure you are well taken care of. They don't want someone going into anaphylaxis in their dining room.
  12. Remember to check drinks! Sissy typically sticks with milk or water.

Most of all, remember to have fun! Eating out can be a difficult task - so enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Have you been to a restaurant that was very helpful? Tell us! Share your stories with the rest of us!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Epinephrine shot how-to

Most parents are lucky enough to have never have given their child an epinephrine shot. Unfortunately it is something I am all too familiar with. But for those who have never given a shot, it can be scary. How do I give it, how does it work? Here is the how to. Feel free to print and post somewhere you will see it in an emergency.

* Know in advance that when you give an epinephrine shot, you must immediately seek emergency medical attention - go to an ER or call 911 for an ambulance.

* Know the signs of a reaction and act quickly - every minute counts when you are addressing an anaphylactic reaction.

* You may need another person to help hold down your kiddo while you administer the shot. If you are alone, WebMd recommends that you place your leg over your child's upper body to keep them still.

The last time I had to administer an epi-pen to Sissy, we were at a high school football game. When I took out the shot she bolted! The good news is she tripped and fell on the grass by the paramedics. I was able to give the shot and have medical attention right there. Since then, however, we have talked about why we can't run from getting a shot.

1. Grasp the shot firmly with the black tip pointing down. DO NOT TOUCH OR PUT YOUR FINGER OVER THE BLACK TIP. Remove the gray cap.


2. Hold the black tip close to your child's outer thigh. Press the black tip firmly into your child's thigh (through clothing if necessary). The injector should be at a 90-degree angle to the thigh. DO NOT give the shot in the buttock or a vein.

3. Press firmly until you hear the "click" or "pop". Count slowly to 10.

4. Remove the injector and rub the area where the medicine went in. Look at the black tip, if you see the needle, then your child has received the shot. If not, your child has not received the shot and you need to repeat steps 1-3.

5. Get medical assistance immediately.


For more information check out these sites:

Or contact your doctor.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Cold and Flu Season

For kids with a corn allergy, cold and flu season takes on a new difficulty and danger. Many liquid medicines (Tylenol, Advil, etc.) contain corn syrup and their tablet or orally disintegrating tablets contain corn starch or corn syrup solids. Therefore, again, reading labels is VERY important. Make sure to check inactive ingredients as well as active ones.

A good amount of my effort is spent on prevention. Sissy takes a probiotic every day - this was recommended by her allergist - we drink lots of water, lots of fresh fruit and vegetables. Milk, exercise and a good night sleep every night. Sometimes we struggle with the sleep, so Sissy and D.B. both take 1 mg of Melatonin each night before bed - this was recommended by their pediatrician. I encourage playing outside in the sun to promote activity and help in the acquisition of vitamin D. We don't take vitamin pills, because it has been quite difficult to find ones without corn. All those things that our moms told us to do are surprisingly effective in preventing illness. I try to enforce hand washing and keeping our fingers out of our noses, but, with a 6 and 3 year old, that is a constant up-hill battle. I mean if the Queen does it........

 Here's the thing, no matter how much prevention you cram into your daily lives, kids are going to get sick; Sissy did this last week. When you can't rely on the pharmacy department at Safeway, it's easy to get overwhelmed. So I went old school. Push fluids, stay in bed (watching cartoons of course) orange juice (Vitamin C and Folic Acid). For a super stuffy nose, we went in the bathroom, closed the door and turned on the hot water. A little steam therapy and the stuffiness had subsided. Turmeric is a natural antibiotic and antiseptic. So for a cut I use turmeric, for a sore in the mouth I mix a little honey with turmeric and apply as needed - honey is a natural anti-microbial and has even (according to some studies) shown effective for MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus)

I make my own cough syrup. Remember that a lukewarm bath, a glass of ice water and a pop-sicle will effectively bring down a fever. Be sure that you are in contact with your doctor. If your child's fever won't come down or they have trouble breathing, get your child to the doctor ASAP PDQ Right darn now. Before you start your child on probiotics, Melatonin or other over the counter remedies, please consult with your doctor or pediatrician. Using home remedies is not a way to exclude your physician - they still need to be involved, but when you explain why you are using these home remedies and what they are, your Doctor should be able to give you other ideas as well.

According to Big Poppa, my homemade cough syrup tastes like feet (although the kids never mind taking it) so here is the recipe for...

Foot Funk Cough Syrup

1 large onion - sliced

Approximately 12 oz. of honey (CHECK LABEL! Sometimes you find "honey product" which contains corn products)

1 Jar with tight sealing lid

Layer the slices of onion in the bottom of the jar and cover with honey. Seal jar tightly and shake well.Leave it on the counter and shake it every time you walk by. It will take about 8 hours for the onion to break down and thin out the honey.

Give 1 Tbs. four times a day.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Creamed Corn Blues

There are days, many of them, when Sissy gets overwhelmed by her allergy. When there's a birthday party at school and she is eating something different than everyone else; when we go out to eat and D.B. has the Rootin' Tootin' kids meal, and she has an unseasoned chicken breast and plain vegetables she gets the blues. It's hard for a little person to be different from the crowd.

Even the best substitutions don't quite cut it when you're 6 and your friends are pigging out on stuff that could kill you. It gets equally overwhelming for mom and dad who wish that they could make the allergy go away and are exhausted from being terrified about all the things that could potentially hurt their child. So I have been brainstorming ideas to have non-food related fun to include everyone!

1.     Run through the sprinklers.

2.     Take a walk and collect leaves.

3.     Learn pig-latin.

4.     Make funny faces on the window with dry-erase markers.

5.     2 words...DANCE PARTY!

6.     Make up a story.

7.     Talk into a fan and sound like an alien.

8.     Jigsaw puzzle

9.     Board games

10.   Play dress up.

11.   Make flashlight shadow figures.

12.   Twirl!

13.   Lay in the grass (on a blanket) and check out cloud shapes.

14.   Go to the park.

15.   Read a book.

16.   Look at family pictures.

17.   Make a tent with blankets.

18.   Tie Dye something!

19.   Take up a hobby - knitting, stamp collecting

20.   Write a letter.

21.   Draw a picture.

22.   Play catch.

23.   Back yard race

24.   Summersault contest

25.   HUG!

Do you have ideas you would like to share? We'd love to hear from you!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Travel Tips for the Little Kernels

Recently, Big Poppa and I took the two sproutlets to Nebraska. Road trips with kids are always a test of patience and ingenuity, however, when you add a severe food allergy the difficulty level increases exponentially. I learned some things that I thought I would share. I hope this helps! Do you have any tips to share?

1.  Make a list

This sounds tedious, but sitting down to think about what your child needs daily can really help in packing and planning.

2. Don't wait until the last minute

Give yourself a week or two so that you can do all the things you need to do without rushing.

3. Research!

Check out local restaurants and hotels and ask a lot of questions - don't be afraid people will think you're obnoxious. Better obnoxious than put your kiddo in danger.

4. MapQuest/Google Maps/Bing

Find pharmacies and hospitals located near your hotel. Print a map and have this information readily available.

5.  Plan your route

If "Road Tripping" choose a route that will allow you to get medical attention no matter where you are. Typically traveling via the interstate is the best choice.

6.  Oh Sheet!

There are very few laundry detergents that don't use corn so, depending on your child's sensitivity, consider packing bedding and towels.

7.  Check medicines

Check expiration dates on epinephrine shots and other medicines. Also check storage requirements. Do you need to keep medicines cool? Take extras if you have them. Remember that from the time you administer and epinephrine shot, you have about 20 minutes. Depending on how far you will be from medical attention, plan appropriately.

8.  Find travel friendly snacks

There are often times when finding food can be difficult. So take snacks! Just remember: can opener and plastic flatware!

9.  Ask for what you need!

Most hotels will provide a refrigerator and microwave on request. When you make hotel reservations, ask for those accommodations. Also make sure (depending on your needs) your room is smoke free and pet free.

10. Trust yourself!

You have done the prior leg work. Trust your research and planning. Even if, Heaven forbid, you child has a reaction you have planned for it. Try to remember to have a good time. If you are relaxed and having fun, your child will too!

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Section 504

The difference in a corn allergy and other food allergies, e.g. a peanut allergy, is that corn is found in so many "non-food" items. Dry erase markers, crayons, play-doh, kleenex, cleansers and more. Sending a child to school with a corn allergy is a stressful and highly involved proposition. In this case, I have found that it is best to get all teachers and staff on board. The best way to do this is by filling out a 504.

According to Wikipedia, a 504 is defined as...Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act created and extended civil rights to people with disabilities. Section 504 has provided opportunities for children and adults with disabilities in education, employment and various other settings. It allows for reasonable accommodations such as special study area and assistance as necessary for each student.

Essentially, a 504, ensures that all people who interact with your child at school are made aware of any special requirements and are held to a FEDERAL mandate which ensures that any reasonable provisions to keep your child safe will be followed.

So how do you fill out a 504? Call your school. Ask for the school nurse and/or school counselor. Explain your situation and how there are serious concerns for your child's health that are not limited to the lunchroom. They will set up a meeting for you to meet with any number of school personnel involved in creating 504 plans. You will have the opportunity to specify what actions need to be taken to keep you child safe. For instance, my 504, for Sissy includes that she cannot sit too close to the white board because the fumes from Dry Erase markers are mostly corn alcohol.

1.  No one will fight for your child if you don't, so don't be afraid to firmly assert yours and your child's  needs.
2.  Public schools are held more stringently to federal codes than private schools are. So in the case of food allergies and any disabilities requiring a 504, public schools are the safest option.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Top 10 Unexpected Places to Find Corn

Corn is ubiquitous in the American culter/diet/lifestyle. Here, in no particular order, are the top 10 most unexpected places to find corn!

1.  Wallboard - Cornstarch

2.  Drycell Batteries - Cornstarch

3.  Explosives/Firecrackers

4.  Adhesives on envelopes, stamps and packing tape - Pyrodextrins

5.  Toilet Paper/Kleenex - Cornstarch

6.  Paints and Varnishes - Tetrahydrofurfuryl alcohol is a resin made from processing corncobs

7.  Wallpaper

8.  Tires - Cornstarch is used to prevent the rubber from sticking to molds

9.  Antibiotics

10.Finished leather

Friday, September 11, 2009

Niblet News

I thought I would share a little background on corn in the United States. When we see how much is produced, how much money is made and the tremendous amount of products in which corn or a corn derivitive is used - it's easy to see how difficult life with a corn allergy can be.

* Corn accounts for more than 90% of total value and production of feed grains
* 80 million acres of land is devoted to corn farming - that's approximately 125,000 square miles - which is an area slightly larger than the state of New Mexico.
* In 2007, the total gained from American corn exports was $11.2 billion.
* Approximately 332 million mentric tons of corn are grown anually in the United States.
"* Of 10,000 items in a typical grocery store, at least 2,500 use corn in some form during production or processing.
* Your bacon and egg breakfast, glass of milk at lunch, or hamburger for supper were all produced with US corn.
* Besides food for human and livestock consumption, corn is used in paint, paper products, cosmetics, tires, fuel, plastics, textiles, explosives, and wallboard – among other things."

Other Sources:

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Welcome, friends!

My daughter was diagnosed with a severe allergy to corn. Once I had the diagnosis in hand, I went to the internet for information. Unfortunately there wasn't much out there. So, after a ton of research, I decided to share what I have learned so that hopefully it will help someone else. If you have questions or comments please feel free to email me!