A few Sundays ago, I dropped Rosie off at a birthday party, and about two minutes in, her cupcake (which I brought special for her) fell in the dirt. I wanted to cry. That might be the reaction you would expect from the child. But for this mom, there was so much tied up in that little cupcake. I had stayed up late the night before to bake and decorate her "special" cupcakes so that she would feel "normal" at the party. There was all the daily tension and challenges of dealing with food sensitivities in that stupid cupcake! It represented more than just a few bites of sweetness. For a moment she looked at me and I looked at her, frozen, as I decided my next step. Did I say, oh well you can have another one at home. Or, did I schlep back home and get her another little cake which I hoped would bridge the gap of "normalcy" for this child? Sometimes you can't give your kid what he needs, and the disappointments of life must be faced--even by a four year old. And sometimes Mom can go home and pull another cupcake out of the freezer. Which I did.
Sometimes your kids ask you for things which you cannot deliver. And sometimes you can. Sometimes the request are of the roll your eyes variety (on the parents part), and sometimes as a parent you stop and say "Yeah, that's actually reasonable." On the cover of the October/November issue of Living Without (a magazine dedicated to "Gluten-Free and Allergy-Free Living"), there was an appealing picture of blueberry muffins with spider-web frosting on the cover. The request from my gluten-free and food allergic children to make them was actually of the latter variety. I got the usual, "Please, can we have them, yes, when, when, tonight? NO, tomorrow? Please (accompanied by expectant smile)". However, given that we have a new "flower" in our garden (k'neina hara), I was rather busy to say the least. Just serving dinner was a huge effort, decorated cupcakes too?! I told the kids they would be a special treat for the then upcoming holiday of Sukkot. I decided Sukkot was an very outdoor oriented holiday, and spiders are part of nature...so there's the connection.I found it slightly odd the original recipe called for using blueberry muffins. I subbed out chocolate cupcakes from my new favorite cookbook Sophie Safe Cooking, which uses oat flour and no eggs, nuts or dairy products (see previous post for new found love of oat flour). So these recipes are great for my kids.