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Mother’s Day, Sunday 31st March

It’s nearly the time of year that mothers across the nation put their feet up and get spoilt rotten by their little ones (or big ones).

Popular Mother’s Day gifts may not be suitable if you live with an allergy, so here are some ways to celebrate and keep your special day safe.

Be showered with gifts…

  • Chocolate – If you’re on a restricted diet due to food allergy, you’ll find free-from options in leading supermarkets, but make sure you carefully read the full list of ingredients. To help make safe food choices, food packaged within the EU must include the 14 major allergens (common types of food allergens such as milk, egg, fish and nuts) on the ingredients label and they’re usually highlighted in bold or italics.
  • Flowers – It’s unlikely that someone living with a pollen allergy will experience allergic symptoms from flower pollen. The pollen that we become allergic to are very light, non-sticky and extremely small. Flower pollen is heavy, sticky and large, therefore doesn't become airborne like tree, weed and grass pollen do.

However, when flowers are cut and brought indoors some people (especially those with asthma) can experience chest tightness from certain types (lilies are one of these flowers, with very strong smelling scent), this can act as an irritant for the lungs and also for the skin of some susceptible people. 

  • Perfume/cosmetics - Avoid gifts that might exacerbate symptoms of eczema, such as perfume, bath bubbles/oils or cosmetics.
  • Or maybe go for something a little less traditional that won’t break the bank: A family photo, a book/magazines, handmade cards and crafts such as friendship bracelets or keyrings, world’s best mum mug, selection of teas or something linked to your favourite hobby.

The old classic, breakfast in bed…

There’s nothing quite like watching their tiny, proud faces peeking over a tray of burnt toast and spilt tea. So stock up on your favourite free-from breakfast items and throw a few hints on Mother’s Day Eve.

Oli Weatherall @FreeFromFourteenVegan, dedicates his free time to developing delicious vegan, free-from recipes and has designed a simple but yummy breakfast menu for us, which is also easy for little fingers to prepare*. Find him on Facebook and Instagram for more of his tasty recipes!

The new classic, afternoon tea…

If you’re being treated to an afternoon tea out, remember it’s #easytoASK. Tell the restaurant in advance or at the time of booking about your dietary requirements. Don’t be worried about double checking the ingredients on the day as well, communication is really important and it’s your right to ask. Make sure you get all the information you need to make safe food choices and enjoy your Mother’s Day treat safely. Remember to take your allergy medication with you as even with the best intentions, accidental exposures can happen.

Alternatively, an afternoon tea at home could be even more special. Spend some family time the day before baking free-from cakes and treats. You’ll find lots of recipes online to pick from.

A family dinner cooked by the kids

Children learn best through play. So there’s never a better time than when they’re young to get them involved in cooking a family meal. Not only does it expose them to sensory play, maths, home safety and following process, but it can also help them begin to understand nutrients and the allergens found in food – in a fun and hands on way.

Oli has also designed a nutritious Mother’s Day dinner menu especially for children to prepare for their family*.

Follow Oli on Facebook and Instagram for more vegan recipes which are free from the 14 allergens:

Facebook @FreeFromFourteenVegan Instagram @freefromfourteenvegan

Finally and most importantly, we hope you enjoy your day and let your children and partner look after you. You deserve it! 

*Although Oli’s menus have been designed for children to prepare, an adult should supervise at all times and help with the chopping and any other sharp or dangerous appliances.

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