Sunday, January 20, 2013

Blessed Simplicity & Lessons Learned

We just had the most amazing fun day!  Our oldest baby opened a lemonade stand with an adorable little friend of his while we had a yard sale (ok, the yard sale was not the fun part!).  Her mommy, a dear friend of mine, had wanted to bake the cookies from the refrigerated section in the grocery store.  You know, the ones they can slice with a butter knife and then put on a tray and bake?  That does sounds like it would add to the fun doesn't it?  It probably would have been cheaper too...but, I hesitated.  I was silently calculating the cost of selling only Enjoy Life cookies- but even I knew that was a little over the top and financially impossible. Knowing that I am usually a little more cautious than my cutie pie husband, I went to him- he is the yin to my yang- and he admittedly keeps me balanced.  Thankfully, he agreed it was just not worth the risk.  We also both agreed that our little guy would be kept inside to be doted on my his Grandfather and Daddy (so very thankful for loving grandparents!) until later in the day when we could all pay closer attention to him.

So, we purchased some store bought cookies that are free of egg, tree nuts, and peanuts- our three anaphylatic food allergies for the children.  Bee could not eat them as they contained dairy and gluten.  So, our sweet big boy ran back inside and made some cookie bags free of gluten for mommy and his brother- without prompt.  He did it completely on his own with all the love in his heart.  Then, he even came back with several enjoy life bars free of top 8 allergens, "in case other children come to the lemonade stand and have allergies".  I can honestly tell you, a sweeter cookie has never been eaten!!!

I love good old fashion fun.  It makes me think of my own childhood.  It makes me think of simplicity, core values, and doing things right.  Yes, a simple lemonade stand represents all of that.  You should see people's faces soften when they take a couple of moments to make little children feel important and successful.  You should see the little one's as they shout "Lemonade!  Fresh lemonade for sale!" in unison with chocolate smeared on their faces and sticky lemonade on their fingers.  My goodness they were cute little sales people!

The day went by almost perfectly.  Then during cleanup time, our little busy, busy Bee grabbed an "empty" bag that was left in their cookie basket and ate a crumb from it.  (All the other baggies were filled with safe, Enjoy Life cookies, but he grabbed a crumb from the one empty and unsafe bag left!  The crumb was the side of a a quarter.  I am so very glad that we made that decision to exclude their anaphylatic foods and really wish we could have afforded the Enjoy Life cookies for all their sales!  I was not overly alarmed, just disappointed I could not grab the bag faster.  As I was running towards him, I felt like he was in fast forward and I was in slow motion!  It was a tiny bite and there were not any anaphylatic ingredients.  He did spit up several times during the night and the next day and his little belly looked like a watermelon.  Thankfully, he did not get violently ill.

I am so gratefully that my husband and I are a team.  I am so thankfully that my sweet-hearted oldest thought to take care of his mommy, brother, and other children/adults with food allergies.  I feel so very blessed that my friends and their children may not completely understand, but support our families' crazy food allergy needs.  I am so glad that while I may sometimes feel a little pressure to step outside my comfort zone, that the "mama bear" always wins, and I do not cave to what would make others happy, even though it feels counter intuitive as I am a natural people pleaser!  I am so grateful that today, when we were reminded it only takes a second for children to get into foods they are not supposed to, that there was nothing that could cause anaphylaxis!  Counting my blessings and grateful for the simple moments in life today!


By the way, the chair in the driveway, card tables, and plastic bags litering the yard are part of our yard sale!  NOT  typical yard decoration for us!  Smile.

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