Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Food Allergy Awareness Week: Field Trip Tidbit

Matt accompanied Harper on a field trip today.

Ugh - field trips.

I could say a lot about field trips.

I will say more later.

Today Harper went with all the preschoolers from her school to a dairy. They got to see/feed animals (Harper wearing gloves because we couldn't be 100% sure the goat feed was free of peanut products). They got to watch a video about milking and got to milk "cow statues" (term credit: Harper). They got to sample some of the ice cream made on the premises (deemed safe after I talked to the general manager on the phone for nearly an hour one day last week). They rode a hay-less hay ride. And then they were all supposed to sit down to lunch together.

Even though no less than three information sheets went home about the field trip which asked people please not to pack peanut butter or peanut products in their lunches, people did. So Matt left early with Harper and she had her lunch at home instead of with her classmates. Once again (remember Valentines?) parents either failed to read the notes from school or chose to ignore them.

I was not happy.

A) It's preschool, if you can't read the volume of "mail" that comes home from preschool you are going to have trouble when your kid is in grade school. Or has to apply to college, or summer camp.

B) Ignoring the request that you not send peanut products to the trip could have endangered my kid's life - thanks!

C) I know, it is kind of a pain to make lunch for a four-year-old without peanut butter... Welcome to my world!


I totally supported Matt's decision (better safe than sorry) but am once again miffed that there was even a decision to be made.


Emily said...

That is REALLY frustrating. I don't think people realize the importance - I've learned what I know mostly from you! I'm glad you are doing this topic this week.

On this subject, one question I have: I know now Harper is in a preschool classroom that can pay extra attention to her allergy. When she goes to kindergarten, what kind of precautions will they have to do? What are the chance that she will grow out of it, and when will they test her again?

Giselle said...

Argh. That's all I can do is grumble at those people...argh.

Have you decided whether to send her there again next year? And thank you for the lovely card...I honestly don't know how you do all that you do.

Erin said...

Ooooh. Reeeeeally aggravating. Sorry.

(On an unrelated note: how cool that Matt got to accompany Harper? I mean, I know it's not MORE impressive for a Dad to do something, but I mean because you're both working and need/ get to split those kinds of duties.)

jill said...

You should hunt them down and mail them nasty letters. As if they would read them. sorry.

Hillary or Ryan said...

First of all, thank you for the wonderful letter for Mother's Day.

I know Harper's allergy has made me more aware of other children's allergies. These parents should be more aware too. I've heard that some schools are now going peanut-free b/c of some children with this allergy.

Christina said...

This is going to sound awful, because I do feel for you guys, but in some way, perhaps it is practice for later? I mean, you won't be able to ask the entire school not to pack PB&J when she goes to 1st grade. And is a peanut-free table/room enough for her? Just things you will have to deal with, unfortunately. I take all of this stuff for granted, but it frustrates me to hear of your woes.

And, I do find it awful that parents just don't listen. When the girls were in preschool, and we were deciding about snacks, THEY always reminded ME that Matthew in the class had a peanut allergy.

Mommy Daisy said...

Aww man, poo on those parents!

Kate said...

This happened on Colin's field trip, too--- and it made me very angry. The same rules apply when we aren't in school!! The poor kid in his class isn't going to stop being allergic the day we go to the zoo.

Last year we came up with some fun alternative lunches for people in our class that would still have quick protein:

cream cheese and apple butter sandwiches

Bologna sandwich spread.

chickpea hummus (made with olive oil) and pita.

These are JUST as easy as peanut butter.

Oh-- and all the crafts that used to call for peanut butter, we use vanilla icing or crisco for at work.