12 November 2013

Welcome to the November 2013 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Feeding Your Family
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared recipes, stories, and advice about food and eating. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.
Food is really important to me, where it comes from and how it is grown.  I prefer to buy direct from the producer if I can, for fresh products at Farmers Markets or at the farm gate.  We eat fruit and vegetables in the season that they are grown, no strawberries in the middle of winter here.  I cook every meal we eat from scratch and we rarely, if ever, eat out.  Now I am not suggesting for one minute that anyone who does not do the same (always cook from scratch and rarely eat out) is letting the side down, but for me it is out of necessity.  There are a number of foods that I am intolerant of, if I eat them they make me ill.  A little amount is not life threatening but over a long period of continuously eating them I would be very ill.  I have excluded certain foods for over fifteen years to manage a condition called Crohn's and latterly I have also been suffering from Urticaria on my hands.  Both these conditions are in remission, the Crohn's for a long period and the Urticaria for about a year.

Intolerance can be defined as an unwillingness to accept views, beliefs, or behaviour that differ from one's own.  When it is used in conjunction with the word food it can be defined as being very sensitive.  In the years that I have had food intolerences I have found a huge amount of intolerance and complete lack of sympathy and understanding in so many quarters.  Eating out is a minefield, where some intolerances are deemed ok and will be allowed for, particularly gluten intolerance, but when I give my list of food I get raised eyebrows, rolling eyes and am left with the impression I am making a fuss.  All intolerances are serious, they all make you ill.

Christmas is a big minefield for me.  There is an abundance of food, often rich.  We get many invitations to eat out either at friends houses or in restaurants.  I have to be choosy about which to accept and sometimes end up taking my own food with me.  If we are staying with family I often end up cooking for myself.  We have to go on self catered holidays too so I rarely if ever get a long break from cooking.  My ideal holiday would be one where I do not have to think about cooking or meal planning for a whole week!

But all this said I am passionate about food and cooking.  I love to experiment with ingredients, putting together flavours that I think will work well together, and luckily I am often right!  What having food intolerances has shown me is that it is important to think about what you are eating all the time.  There is an abundance of convenient foods available to buy now they are not available to me and whilst I am not sure they make for the healthiest of diets if they are eaten all them time, when time is short they are something I wish I could make use of.

I am the food buyer, planner and cook in our house and everyone eats what I can eat.  I have been concerned that by doing this my children will be intolerant of the same foods as me as they don't get them in their diet.  I have made a conscious effort to include them where possible as an addition to their meals but they often choose not to eat them as they don't like them.  What is most important to me is that we are all getting a health balanced diet overall.

Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
(This list will be updated by afternoon November 12 with all the carnival links.)
  • Nut Free Desserts for the Holidays — Becky at Crafty Garden Mama will be talking about navigating the holidays with peanut allergies in the family.
  • Making Peace with My Picky Eater — Once upon a time, there was a boy who would try anything. And then he turned 3. Thus began the dinner chronicles at Dionna at Code Name: Mama's house.
  • Foodie Morphed by Motherhood — Rosemary at Rosmarinus Officinalis reflects on the changes of her family's food culture since becoming a mother, and shares a snapshot of their current food rhythm.
  • Introducing First Foods — Wondering what your little one should take a bite of first? That Mama Gretchen explains baby-led weaning/baby self-feeding and answers a number of questions that may come to mind!
  • Feeding Your Family — Coconut Oil!!! — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama is a coconut oil devotee. In this post, she shares her favorite ways to include coconut oil in her family's diet as well as why she feels it is important to do so.
  • We Thank the Earth for its Food! — Terri at Child of the Nature Isle spends hours in the kitchen each day trying to make medicine in the form of food.
  • Focusing on Healthy, Gluten-Free Foods for My Family — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now shares what her family is doing to eat healthily along with her recipe for gluten-free peanut butter oat bran muffins.
  • Intolerancesustainablemum laments the misunderstanding surrounding food intolerances.
  • Don't Let Food Sensitivities Ruin Your Holidays! — Rachel, the Titus 2 Homemaker, talks about ways to enjoy the holidays even if you wrestle with food sensitivities.
  • Losing grains, keeping empathy: Paleo and fat acceptance — Lauren at Hobo Mama vlogs about her family's decision to cut grains to improve health — and hopes she can retain her position as a proponent of size acceptance even as she loses weight.
  • Easy Homemade Crockpot Mac & Cheese — Amy W. at Me, Mothering, and Making it All Work, shakes off the blue-box blues with an easy crockpot mac-and-cheese recipe with no artificial dyes or excessive preservatives … just creamy, delicious, comfort-food goodness.
  • Extended Family Dinners — Shannon at Pineapples & Artichokes talks about sharing family dinners with housemates and why it works for her.
  • Five Suggestions for Eating Healthy During the Holidays — No need to feel powerless when it comes to our highly sugared/processed food culture during the holidays &emdash; Andrea at It Takes Time offers tips to stay on track.
  • How to feed your family — no food required! — Jessica at is kind of obsessed with food. But, lately she's realized there's more to nourishment than what she cooks up in the kitchen.
  • Food as family medicine: living gluten-free and beyond — Jessica at Crunchy-Chewy Mama sticks to her gluten-free guns but sees room for improvement in her pursuit of a real-food family table.
  • Feeding My Family — Challenges and Growth — Susan at Together Walking shares what has been most challenging about feeding her two kids and how she has grown in the kitchen since becoming a mother.
  • How I Lost 75 Lbs — What I Eat & My Top 5 Tips — Abbie at Farmer's Daughter shares how she and her family became healthy, happy and active.
  • The Weight of Motherhood — Revolution Momma at Raising a Revolution rethinks her relationship with food after struggling with post-pregnancy weight gain.
  • Geek Food: Pumpkin Pasties — While Jennifer at True Confessions of a Real Mommy and family might have food sensitivities, their geekery knows no limits. So, when faced with a desire to recreate Pumpkin Pasties from Harry Potter, they do not shy away!
  • Pumpkin Harvest Muffins — This summer Mama is Inspired and family grew pumpkins, and this autumn they are baking scrumptious, healthy muffins out of those pumpkins.
  • Reintroducing Meat to the Vegetarian Tummy — Ana at Panda & Ananaso shares some of the considerations she explored before transitioning from a vegetarian diet to reintroducing meat as a protein source and a few tips on making it an easy one.
  • Thanksgiving Meal, Thankful? — Jorje of Momma Jorje has never felt terribly thankful for Thanksgiving itself. Perhaps that could change if she's a little more invested?
  • 5 Ways to Use Healing Bone Broth — It's that time of year again, when unpleasant little bugs make their way into our homes. For Megan of The Boho Mama, guest posting at Natural Parents Network, homemade stock or bone broth is a natural remedy.


  1. Wow, I could have written that post myself - we have such similar ideas around food. Thanks for sharing. I hope you find more understanding this Christmas xx

  2. I find that people tend to take it personally when you eat differently from them. So odd, isn't it? It's not some sort of judgment on their eating habits, or an invitation for debate, but people seem to see it that way!

  3. Oh you are so clever, turning that word intolerance around ;) But you are right! Food sensitivities are often ignored or scoffed at, probably because of the SAD and cultural perceptions about diet. I hope you have a great holiday season - full of yummy, safe foods :)
    ~Dionna @

  4. "What having food intolerances has shown me is that it is important to think about what you are eating all the time."

    Yes! What a great takeaway!

  5. That's such an interesting insight into what you eat and why. Often people dismiss food intolerences as attention seeking but they are so often caused by real need. I'm pleased to hear your two issues are in remission at the moment. x

  6. As well as the gluten I am now intolerant to eggs, even in baked goods, gah! Such a nuisance!

  7. I can so relate to the ideal vacation description! I would pay a lot of money to have safe, healthy food prepared for me!

  8. I share that fantasy of a vacation where I could have healthy, safe food prepared for me! That would be worth a lot! Let's hope we both continue to improve! Thanks so much for sharing!

  9. My daughter has to be very careful with gluten and sugar, and her nutritional plan has helped our whole family become more aware of food intolerances. It sounds like you're doing a wonderful job of managing your diet and providing a healthy diet for your family.


Hello......would love to hear from you :)