Surviving Easter on GAPS

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Ever since my little guy hit toddlerhood, certain holidays have been challenging because people are always trying to give him candy. It’s gotten increasingly difficult as he’s gotten older. I didn’t mind so much when he was a one year old because he didn’t eat much sweets anyway. When he was two, I decided to let him gorge on Halloween candy and he ended up getting sick with a cold, and I felt awful about it because what if he had been exposed to something much worse? So much of his health is my hands. I know that too much sugar, artifical food colorings and flavors, GMO ingredients, chemically derived ingredients, and preservatives can all have negative effects on his health. At the same time, I don’t want him to develop a Willy Wonka complex (that’s my own made-up term: if you’ve ever seen the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Johnny Depp, you’ll know what I mean).

Now that we are on GAPS, having problem foods can inhibit our progress. But would it have been okay to throw caution to the wind for one weekend? While I don’t want him to develop a complex over not having candy, I also know that if I allow him to have something, he assumes it’s good for his body. And why wouldn’t he? I’m his mother, and he trusts me.

I had made these candies  for him so he could have some candy and not feel like he was being deprived. However, I underestimated the power of the jelly bean. He saw those brightly colored jelly beans in the plastic eggs from the egg hunt at my parents’ and he was so excited. Then I told him they weren’t good. 😦 I put some of the homemade candies in a plastic egg and gave it to him and he was really excited about that but the whole thing was like this up and down roller-coaster of joy and disappointment. I hated it. He seemed to take it well, and even told his grandma that he can’t have the candy. No tears, no complaining.

Until Sunday (we were at my parent’s on Saturday). At church someone gave him some jelly beans and hubby took them away from him, and he burst into tears and cried all the way home. It was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I think it would have been better just to let him have them that one time. Too late. Now I have to try to make jelly beans with honey.

Okay, didn’t expect to ramble on about candy for so long… Onto the food.

We went to my family’s Easter celebration on Saturday. As usual, it was a potluck dinner. I volunteered to bring salad and deviled eggs. My deviled eggs were not exactly GAPS, since I was afraid that if I used homemade olive oil mayo then people wouldn’t like them, so I used my husband’s Best Foods mayo. I also put in some of hubby’s sweet pickles. I figured I’d only have a couple anyway. I was planning to load up on salad and ham. Problem was, there wasn’t exactly a ham. The only ham was these little cubes in a potato casserole. I ate a lot of eggs, salad, and luckily the fruit salad didn’t have any dressing on it. I also had some homemade soda made with fresh pressed orange and grapefruit juice and sparkling water. Little boy got the same foods as me, but he barely ate anything besides the fruit and soda. I hadn’t thought it through–he doesn’t like egg yolks, so the eggs were out. He doesn’t like my honey-mustard dressing, so the salad was out. I even gave him a little cube of ham, but oh, yeah, he doesn’t like ham. Luckily I brought some of our homemade yogurt, which he chowed down on while the other kids ate cake.

In hindsight: I should have brought my own ham, and some deli roast beef for my boy. I should have done the eggs with a recipe that was more GAPS-friendly. I should have brought some baby carrots and dip or some other veggie my son would eat. And maybe some GAPS dessert (although we was fantastic about the yogurt).

Fortunately, dinner at my in-laws on Sunday went much smoother. My mother-in-law had plenty of good options for us to choose from and did not try to give my son candy, but rather did an egg hunt for him with raisins, nuts and homemade candy provided by me, and grapes provided by her. At dinner, when I placed a plate full of food and a cup of homemade soda in front of the little boy, she said, “He doesn’t look deprived at all!”

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5 Comments Add yours

  1. Janice says:

    Oh, I can completely relate — it really bothers me when people offer my son candy and I have to take it away from him. I keep organic Yummy Earth lollipops in my purse for these occasions, but not sure if these would be GAPS friendly… I love that you did an Easter hunt for nuts, raisins, homemade candy and grapes! What a great mama you are!

    1. Lisa C says:

      Thanks Janice. It’s hard, isn’t it?

  2. Cassie says:

    Well besides small holidays like fourth of July an stuff now you are home free until next Christmas!! Whoo hoo!
    I just hate holidays and candy. Easter is NOT about candy. Neither is Christmas. Neither are any of them really. But they all have that nasty stuff attached to them.
    I’m glad you got through Easter. That was rough. Especially the non gaps dinner :/ with no ham. At least at your inlaws there where good choices. I like your ideas of things you could have brought. By the time you become master of bringing things places you’ll be done with gaps. But it’ll be better anyway, better off bringing healthy alternatives. I wanna start a ‘healthy party’ trend for kids. Maybe we could start a healthy kids blog. Then advertise like crazy so people start having healthy birthday parties

    1. Lisa C says:

      You forgot about HALLOWEEN!!! Yikes, why did I ever let him know that Halloween exists? LOL His memory is too sharp, he will remember there is candy associated with it, even if I try to change it. I think last year was my last chance to nip that one in the bud. Oh well.

      You’re right, by the time I’m expert on GAPS, we will be done, haha. Interesting idea on healthy kids blog. Like one that makes it practical and fun. There are lots of healthy kids blogs out there, but I have yet to find one that has it’s basis in traditional foods (aside from Nourishing Our Children).

      1. Cassie says:

        Oh yeah Ug. Halloween. Good think Luke is too shy to care 🙂 scared of the day when that changes!!

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