20 ways to raise awareness at your nursery setting on ORANGE WIG DAY

The Little Unicorn Day Nursery Bank Street Staff proudly wearing their Wigs on the Orange Wig Day Parade through Canary Wharf,London.

The Little Unicorn Day Nursery Bank Street Staff proudly wearing their Wigs on the Orange Wig Day Parade through Canary Wharf,London.

In its third year, the orange wig day, the day to raise awareness about severe allergies, will be held on friday, may 16th, 2014.

Last year, we teamed up with one branch of our local nursery and raised around 500GBP, which apparently covered the costs for the whole lot of wigs

that had been sent out.

So this year, our ambitions are even higher and we try to raise a lot more money. With all the branches involved, we were thinking

about ways to get people unfamiliar with allergies involved and getting interested in the subject.

Here is my top 20 of activities for ORANGE WIG DAY 2014:

and don’t forget, tell us about your way of showing off your ginger side of life!

Order your wigs early to avoid disappointment!

1. put an article about the orange wig day in your newsletter

2. organise a baking sale with

3. hand made free from biscuits,

4. cupcakes or other baking goods. Children love to get involved and will be eager to sell their homemade goods to mum, dad and other family members.

5. story time with a food allergy topic. There are a growing number of lovely allergy books for little ones out there, and it will be a great starting point to begin an age appropriate discussion.

6. encourage children to be good allergy helpers, and award allergy stars if someone helped to keep the setting allergy safe (washing hands after mealtime, no sharing food, etc.

7. dedicate the whole month of may to allergies.

8. create an awareness board and every day, add a new allergy fact to the board for people to see.

9. arrange a parade with your wigs. It creates a lot of attention if people see a bunch of children with their carers all

wearing orange wigs.

10. Hold a coffee morning first thing in the morning so parents can stop by for a quick coffee and cake before work.

11. Have an “allergy expert” on the premises to allow parents to get all the answers out they have about allergies.

12. Organize a quiz with allergy related gifts to increase levels of knowledge about anaphylaxis.

13. Offer GF DF SF porridge and tea/coffee for a donation to all parents in the morning, when they drop off their kids.

It is a good starting point to discuss ‘free from’ diets, it raises money and people are getting a healthy start into work.

14. Have the children get dressed up in orange.

15. Decorate the wigs with glitter, feathers, bows etc to add that extra sparkle.

16. Train your staff by an expert Trainer (e.g. Allergystars Ltd: http://www.allergystars.com, info@allergystars.com) about allergy and anapylaxis, including how to operate the AAI (adrenaline auto injector). Everyone should be familiar with Prevention, Recognition and Treatment of an allergic reaction.

17. Open a ‘teddy bear clinic” so children can gain knowledge about food allergies, its signs and what to do if a peer is not feeling well.

18. Challenge your catering team and ask if they can provide a free from dessert option that every child at your setting can enjoy (e.g., free from apple crumble and vanilla sauce)

19. Inform local media about your event.

20. Share your best shots on social media (make sure no children can be identified).

More great ideas?

Please share!



Grissini – the real thing! GF, NF, DF, EF, SF, vegan

I feel sooo guilty not having spent any time ‘on the blog’ lately. These days, I wish for 36hour days and 12hour nights, what I get is usually 20hour days and 4hour nights.
I am sure I am not the only one *waves to ALLERGYADVENTURES’ HAILEY*
I am very honored that the famous and great NIA shared one of her favorite recipes with us – Grissini, free from.
Breadsticks are not available in the UK for GF, NF, DF, EF, SF people like allergybabe. So here it is, your chance to offer a popular snack, free from.
Thanks again to NIA for the recipe.

She ingeniously develops the most versatile recipes without missing out on the flavor.

Makes a lot of grissini (about 20)
500 g gluten free flour (or wheat flour)
40 g flax meal
1 tsp salt
1 tsp xanthan gum (omit if using wheat flour or your blend contains it)
2 1/4 tsp dry active yeast
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp liquid sweetener (brown rice syrup, agave, honey…)
2 tbsp flax or chia seeds (nut free lineseeds available from Waitrose, nut free chia available from Wholefoods)
Soak 2 tbsp flax seeds in 120 ml hot water and sit for 15 minutes.

Pre heat oven to 220 degrees and place a water bath at the bottom of the oven (basically a roasting tray filled with warm water to create steam). Line a few trays with baking parchment or a non stick liner and grease lightly.
In a large bowl combine 500 g gluten free flour, 40 g flax meal (ground linseeds), 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp xanthan gum. In a separate bowl dissolve 2 1/4 tsp dry active yeast in 300 ml of warm water, 3 tbsp olive oil and 2 tbsp maple syrup, honey or agave and leave to feed for 3 minutes. Add all the ingredients together and mix until a soft dough comes together. I added more flour until the dough was stiff enough to pipe I go by eye and mix with a wooden spoon, if the dough is too stiff add more water. Take a piping bag and choose a thin nozzle, mine is a PME 18 nozzle or just cut the end off a reusable piping bag (about 5mm in width). Put the mixture into your piping bag and pipe long breadsticks onto the baking sheets, do not over crowded the sheet. Brush the top of the breadsticks with water or oil and sprinkle with salt, seeds or nutritional yeast and bake for 25 minutes then leave to cool on a wire rack.




… leading the way to an allergy friendly life…


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Phone: 07572.320024





Butternut Squash Soup


I just saw this post from the great Lucy from Lucy’s friendly foods, and I got reminded that back in October, I took a couple of pics of our favourite soup… So here it is…An all time favorite in our house, and i am happy to share this easy and versatile recipe with you.


1 Medium Butternut Squash or 1 large Hokkaido Sqash

1 Boiling potato

1 TBSP Olive Oil

1 Medium Red Onion

1 Clove of Garlic

1/4 tsp Cinnamon

1/4 tsp Sugar

1/2 tsp Salt

Chilli Powder if desired

2 TBSP Balsamico Vinegar

a Handful of Lentils (we prefer Beluga lentils)

1/2 -1 litre Stock (we use Kallo Onion Stock)



Cut and peel the squash and potato, onion and garlic. In a large saucepan, heat 1 TBSP of olive oil on medium heat together with the onion and the garlic. Add sugar and spices. Add Squash and potato and let caramelize on medium heat. Turn Squash occasionally. Add broth until Squash is covered. Cover and let boil on low heat until thoroughly cooked. Blitz the Soup and place back in Saucepan. Add Vinegar and boil on low to get the acidity out of the soup for approx. 15min. In the meantime, place enough water in another saucepan to cook the lentils. Add salt at the very end, otherwise it will prevent the lentils from cooking thoroughly. Serve soup with lentils. You might like to add other ingredients like salmon, sour cream (not dairy free), coriander or shrimp. a hint of Pumpkin Butter/Oil works very well, too.





A as in Anaphylaxis, All About Allergies, Egg allergy

The Sniffle Study-why it is essential to take part in research


Last week, we had the opportunity to take part in the SNIFFLE study, a multicentre study researching the now in the UK available flu vaccine. It has been used in the US for years and no severe allergic reactions to its content (among other ingredients, it contains egg) have been observed. The aim of the study here in the UK is to proof the safety of the vaccine for egg allergic children. The new thing about the vaccine is that it is given via the nostrils. No more needles, no more tears? We were especially looking forward to a needle free day at hospital (since it is a research project, vaccines are administered under supervision with easy access to emergency treatment).

So we happily decided to take part with our now 3 year old allergyBabe. We were welcomed with a friendly #hellomynameis, allergyBabe went straight for the train track and mum was seated in a comfy armchair. So far, so good.

After the usual observations (blood pressure, oxygen level, pulse, temperature) we were informed, consented and told that there would be a couple of skin prick tests prior to the administration of the vaccine. SKIN PRICK TEST. That means needles. So despite the fact that the vaccine is given as a spray, we still had to undergo the nasty procedure of skin pricking. Despite allergyBabe’s earlier statement not to want any needles, he was very brave and underwent the to him so familiar procedure without a big fuss. The test confirmed his egg allergy.

The vaccination itself was a walk in the park. 1 puff in each nostril, followed by one sneeze, and it was over. To make sure no delayed reaction would occur, we stayed for an hour afterwards, happily engaged in the play area. AllergyBabe showed no adverse effects whatsoever.

Around the third day, he complained about joint paint in his knees, which were gone after one dose of paracetamol. He also developed a slight head cold. Nothing else.

It was a very pleasant experience, from the initial call prior to our appointment to the courtesy call 3 days after the vaccination.

Thinking of taking part? You may think about the following:

If the aim of this study (to proof that the egg containing nasal vaccine is safe for egg allergic children) is achieved,

- egg allergic children will be able to be vaccinated with an easy and painless procedure

- GPs in Primary Care will be confident to administer the vaccine to egg allergic children

- parents will have proof that this vaccine is safe

It the above mentioned points can be achieved, it was worth the inconvenience of traveling to hospital, staying there and getting pricked.

After all, every vaccination that is performed is not only protecting the individual, but also the community in which they live and thrive.

Further reading:

Parent information sheet Oxford Groupdiscussion of the subject on mumsnet.com

WHO study listing

About allergybabe

NO DAIRY, NO PARTY ?! (part 2)

peek a boo - cannot see you...

peek a boo – playing at Gymboree Docklands

Yes, there is a second part to the much discussed part 1. Thanks everyone who shared their thoughts on how catering facilities deal with food allergic customers. Particularly important is NUTMUMS.COM view of the subject in legal terms. Read her blogpost here.

But hey, let us not dwell in the past. We had a great 3rd birthday party with lots of lovely people, great acitivities, fun, laughter and, yes, food. Gymboree Docklands was kind enough to entertain our guests and let us cater ourselves. Well done, we need more of these friendly places.

So we catered ourselves. With allergy friendly foods. Lots of it. Everything was allergyBabe friendly, which means free from most of the top 14 food allergens (Gluten, Wheat, Fish, Shellfish, Egg, Dairy, Soya, Peanuts and Treenuts, Sesame, Lupin) and others (including Buckwheat, Pea, Beans etc). We had a 3 metre long buffet piled up with all kinds of safe things to eat, lots of fruit, vegetables, but also crisps, breads, cupcakes and biscuits. Popcorn was a big hit with the children as well as the grown ups. The best moment of all was watching allergyBabe wandering free around the room, independently helping himself to anything he wanted to. It was so wonderful to see him at ease, not having to worry about if he can eat the cracker, biscuit, crisp or bread in front of him. He looked so confident and proud. For the first time in years, our world outside our “safety zone” (the apartment) did not revolve around food.

It was an amazing 3 hours and I cannot thank all our guests enough who came despite the fact that we would have only allergen friendly food items. You made allergyBabe’s day truly special.

I wonder, if I hadn’t told them in advance, would they have ever noticed?

PS: Sorry for the lack of pictures, I was so involved in the party, forgot to take out the camera… .


The Ultimate Gingerbread Biscuit (no kiddin’) GF, DF, NF, WF, SF, EF, vegan

If you are looking for a biscuit with a crunchy outside and a soft, almost cake-like centre, that smells and tastes like christmas, search no more. I came up with the ultimate spiced biscuit recipe, and I am gonna share it with you.

Gingerbread Star Biscuit

Gingerbread Star Biscuit

Kept in a tin box with a slice of apple, it will stay moist and fresh.

The Star Christmas Biscuit Dough

The Star Christmas Biscuit Dough


175g Doves Farm White Bread Flour

1/2 tsp Ginger Bread Spice Mix (Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Orange Peel, Coriander, Fennel, Aniseed, Clove, Cardamom) OR 1/2 tsp Ginger

1/2 tsp Vanilla Powder

1/2 tsp Cinnamon

1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda

3/4 tsp Baking Powder

50 g Pure Sunflower Spread

75g Light Soft Brown Sugar

3 TBSP Maple Syrup

1 TBSP Sunflower Oil


Preheat oven (Fan assisted 150 C, others 170 C), takes 10-12 minutes

Mix together the flour, spices, bicarbonate and baking powder.

Add the brown sugar. Stir until combined.

Add 2 TBSP of Maple Syrup and mix until combined.

Add the Sunflower Spread in small pieces and mix until dough forms small crumbs.

Add another 1 TBSP of Maple Syrup together with 1 TBSP of oil. Using your hands, form a soft dough.

The dough should be soft and evenly combined but not sticky.

Leave in the fridge for about 5 minutes.

Take your dough out of the fridge, cut it in four equal parts and start with the first quarter.

After flattening the dough with your hands, you can now use your rolling pin until the dough appears approximately 1/2 cm thin.

Cut out your desired shapes, and peel the biscuits off the foil.

Place on cookie sheet and bake for approx. 10 min.

Keep in tin for later, use them as gift tags, on the tree or treat Santa’s Reindeer… .

A Decorative Gift Tag

A Decorative Gift Tag

I like them quite plain, but they look also lovely with some icing on top, sprinkles, chocolate (df nf version) or marshmallows (make sure they are df and gf).

If you want to be a bit over the top, decorate with real gold (oh go on, it is christmas…!).

Easy with the kids, as well, as you can see:

allergyBabe busy working on his Christmas Biscuits.

allergyBabe busy working on his Christmas Biscuits.


Merry Christmas to You!

Merry Christmas to You!