Monday, July 6, 2009

Off to Camp!

We did it!

In the end, there was very little fanfare. No one noticed the extra box and cooler of food. The young nurse in charge of the camp looked a little nervous while I was explaining everything to her at the last minute, amidst the chaos of 100 excited middle schoolers, but when I told her that he is a healthy boy who knows all of this himself, almost better than I do, and that he won't die immediately if she makes a mistake, she relaxed visibly.

And he and his twin sister are off to camp!

For five nights. Without me. And I won't even hear from them.

But I didn't realize until I talked to the camp cook just how much food I would be sending with my little celiac for the week! We basically replaced every meal and most snacks for six days! Whew! It took a day-long buying, cooking and packing session to get it all done. Luckily, the cook is familiar with other food allergies and cross contamination issues, so she will separately prepare his food. And since he'll most likely go to the same camp for the next several years, this week will serve as a trial run to see what works and what doesn't--and then we'll do better next time.

I searched the internet, trying to find specific tips from someone who'd done this all before, but the most I found were more general ideas. The book, Your Celiac Child, had some helpful information, but I like a road map to where I am going, so I am posting the specific things I sent, hoping that will help someone along the way. I'm also posting information on where I got everything, which will only be helpful to folks in the OKC area, but I spend so much time figuring out where to get everything, that information ought to be worth something to someone else!


*breakfast cereal (2 kinds of Chex)
*muffins (Gluten Free Pantry mix by Glutino, made with fresh blueberries--yum! This was at Akins on Memorial)
*protein bars (a couple of different kinds--I let him eat the South Beach bars)
*instant grits
*gf (gluten-free) spaghetti (Ancient Harvest Quinoa--our favorite)
*gf nacho cheese sauce (Rico's, available at Walmart. Thank you Sandra at!)
*gf spaghetti sauce (I'll get back to you on this brand!)
*potatoes for baking
*snack-sized cups of peanut-butter
*boxes of gf crackers (Blue Diamond Nut Thins)
*gf pretzels (Glutino--these are our very favorite!!! So crisp! I have to order them on Amazon, but this time I got them in smaller snack bags. I try to never be without.)
*3 kinds of gf cookies (chocolate chip, ginger snaps, and sugar cookies--The Mi-Del chocolate chip cookies were from Akins, but Homeland usually carries the Ginger snaps. And I made his favorite sugar cookies, the Cherrybrooke Kitchen Gluten Free Dreams mix. I use my food processor on this mix and it makes it slightly less gritty.)
*fruit cups

In the cooler:

*1 package frozen gf chicken strips (thaw and cook)
*3 pre-cooked frozen chicken breasts (thaw and reheat) (from Chick-fil-A)
*1 package gf hot dogs
*1 frozen gf pizza (Amy's Rice Crust cheese Pizza from Akins)
*1 package cheese sticks
*1 package frozen pre-cooked hamburger meat for spaghetti sauce

I also included a simple explanation of celiac disease and a short list of ingredients to look for on labels.

And they're both going to have a blast at camp!

And I'm going to have a week at home without my tweenagers! Now what?

1 comment:

  1. Yea!!! Grace is going to camp next year and these are great tips! I have wondered how to handle this and figured she would exist on cereal and cheese sticks for a few days.

    Best of luck to you and your kids! I am sure they will have a great time.