A SURPRISE Gluten and Dairy Party for Harry!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011
So, y'all know that Harry has not really eaten much gluten, dairy and soy for the past 5-6 years. And for the past 2 years, he had not had a drop of those foods. So at every single birthday party where there was cake and ice cream and pizza~ he could not have them. Sometimes, I sent coconut ice cream or a gluten free/dairy free cupcake.  But often, Harry preferred not to have anything rather than have something "different." It has been VERY VERY hard on him. Think of the snacks at school for every occasion (cupcakes, pizza, etc).  Harry could not have them.  Think about all of the snacks parents bring to soccer and baseball games (pretzels, crackers, granola bars, etc).  He could not have those either.  I don't think he had ever had a Chic fila nugget or a girl scout cookie in his life.

Well, two weeks ago, his gastroenterologist told us to start re-introducing gluten and dairy in order to complete some tests.  This week, Harry will have his stomach biopsied and they WANT him to eat gluten and dairy before that test (and some others).  

At first, Harry was petrified to try these foods because he could still remember how sick they made him years ago.  But slowly, we got him to taste cheese and bread.  When his buddies at school found out he could eat regular food they were so excited for him and they excitedly told their parents..."Harry can eat regular food for a few weeks."  One of the Dads jokingly suggested that I give Harry an "unbirthday party" so that he could eat all of that birthday food he has missed over the years.  I responded by saying, "that is a great idea BUT I have Kate's party this weekend and my Mom is visiting and we have a lot going on."  But then I thought about it and I realized that next week, the doctors might tell Harry that he can never eat these foods again for the rest of his life.  I also thought about what a tough week or two of testing he has coming up and I realized that this party could really boost his spirits. 

So, I e-mailed the parents of his close friends from school and begged them to keep the "Got Gluten? Got Dairy?" party a secret until the day of the party.  Almost all of the kids came and it was a complete surprise.


I did not even tell my Mom or Will until right before the party!  We sent Harry to play at a neighbor's house and immediately ordered pizza, chicken wings and I bought stuff for root beer floats.  Another Mom brought cupcakes:)




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He was very stunned and confused since it was Kate's birthday party that morning and his birthday is in December.  He asked "why are y'all here?"

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Double fisted eating chicken wings

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{this one is for you Miss Shana!  He is LOVING his Pizza:)}


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With all those boys around, I guess Kate felt the need for a tiara:)


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Several of the boys brought gifts (which was a TOTAL surprise to us).  They brought things for Harry to keep him busy at the hospital this week such as sports magazines, comic books, trivia books and madlibs.  They also brought their favorite snacks that Harry has never tasted such as Cheetos and thin mint cookies. I actually got teary-eyed when I realized the parents thought to do that.  Harry is very loved by his friends as well as by us.

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I wish I had snapped a photo while all the boys where still there...this is about half or more.

The boys ate, drank root beer floats and played kickball in an empty lot down the street.  They had a BLAST!  I LOVED being able to do this for Harry.  It was truly one of my favorite moments as a Mom.  And the best part is... Harry feels FINE after eating all of this food so we have high hopes for his tests this week:) We all love you so much Harry!!!!!

P.S.  He had one test today and all the food allergy pricks were negative!!!  They have also placed actual food patches on his back and we will take them off Thursday night to see if there are any longer term reactions.

46 comments:

  1. What a FUN idea!
    Love these pictures... his smile is priceless.
    Your love for your kids truly shines through, Kim! You are a wonderful mama :)

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  2. That is about the sweetest thing ever! I'm praying for Harry (and you all). I've had some major medical testing done and as a 42 year old it is awful. I can't fathom a little boy going through it. Hugs to you all.

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  3. What an awesome mom you are! Harry will never forget it!! Good luck with the rest of the tests.
    Snick :)

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  4. That is just awesome!! Hope the rest of his tests go well, sweet boy!!

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  5. Oh my gosh, I am so excited for him! Gives me hope for my boys allergies! Enjoy!

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  6. I LOVE that you did this for Harry. What a great idea that parent had. I can't imagine living so much of his life on such a restricted diet. Plus all the tests he has coming up, poor kiddo. What a nice way for him to just be able to relax with friends and eat good food. I bet you set a record for the amount of junk food you allowed in your house at one time :-) Its great that he felt fine after too. Prayerfully you will get some good test results.

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  7. Yay Harry!
    I hope the rest of the testing goes just as well!

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  8. What a great story...and it's non-fiction! Hoping that Harry gets good reports from every test!! Normally I just lurk on your blog, but this time I had to speak up!

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  9. Love that you did this! Such a fun and special idea. Have to say it again - your kids are adorable.

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  10. Amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Love,
    Diana

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  11. Ooo...sounds hopeful that he has outgrown some of his issues with food. Hope so! What a sweet idea for a party. You go, Harry!

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  12. Great idea, great party, great smile on Harry's face and great news about no reacation....I suffer from celiac and I would be so excited to hear that he might be able to have a regular diet....it is so hard even with all of the choices we have today!!!

    Yay for Harry:)

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  13. Greatest party ever from the best mom ever!! Coming from a family with serious food allergies I totally sympathize with you and sweet Harry. I will say a prayer that all goes well!!

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  14. That is so wonderful! Praying that his tests go smoothly and outcomes are what you hope for. Glad he got to party beforehand too!

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  15. What an incredible idea! I'm sure he'll remember that always!

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  16. What a great idea for the party for Harry! So sweet! Hope the tests go well - fingers crossed and prayers said.

    Janet

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  17. What a great idea Kim!!
    Oh ....I pray all tests will be negative for sweet Harry!
    xoxo

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  18. What an amazingly AWESOME idea! So glad Harry got to be spoiled by his friends. Praying all goes smoothly with the tests and that the news is good!

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  19. Hope everything goes well!
    Tamara

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  20. Harry's expression as he taste the "wings" is priceless! I love this idea! Nothing like spontaniety! I love the gifts! Especially the CHEE-TOS!! Mmmmmmmm!!

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  21. came back to add: GOOD LUCK HARRY ON YOUR TEST!!! You are gonna pass w flying *chicken wings* er..uhhh..COLORS!!!

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  22. This was such a great idea!! You could see how surprised he was!

    I am so happy he got a day to splurge on all the things he has never been able to enjoy....and to do it with all of his closest friends makes it that much more special.

    So glad to hear the first test came back negative. Is it possible he is outgrowing the food allergies? I will say a prayer that is the case. Keep us posted~

    xoxo,

    Lisa

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  23. So happy for Harry! And I love the way Kate runs up to him after he opens the door in your video. She obviously loves him a lot.

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  24. Kim, I love this. Little Harry has been on my heart lately with all the tests etc... What an awesome way to celebrate. He'll remember this for a long time. What a great family!

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  25. Oh Kim,what a great party for Harry. Perfect way to send him for tests. Looks like they all had so much fun and I'm sure Harry had fun just being a regular kid. That was such a special gift...and after Kate's party I know you had to have been simply worn out. I am praying for excellent results for Harry this week. My dad just had a bunch of tests ran and his allergy list filled 9 pages.
    Norah

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  26. Hope the rest of the tests go just as well!
    Loved the idea of the un-birthday party :)

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  27. This is such a great idea. I'm so glad that you did it and documented it for him. How wonderful to have such a supportive and thoughtful community. I hope everything goes well this week and next (and I'm so glad he doesn't feel sick after the party!)

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  28. Awww, that's about the sweetest thing ever. You're so loving and focused on making your kids feel celebrated and special. Will, Harry and Kate are all so blessed to have you as their mom! :)

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  29. What a fun idea! Harry looked so happy "doubling fisting" those chicken wings... Oh, and that post script made my day!!!

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  30. Praying for Harry! I love love love how excited sweet Kate was for her brother:) Just love it!

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  31. One of the sweetest ideas ever. This post made so happy and teary eyed. You are such a great Mom and I can tell how happy you were to do this for Harry. He is such a wonderful boy. I will keep you all in my prayers this week. What a blessing and experience he had and I know he appreciated it. That's just the way he is. Kudos Kim
    xoxo
    Nancy

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  32. You are the best mom EVER! I am sure of it! That is an awesome idea and I am so glad you made it work!
    I will be thinking of you (all) as Harry undergoes the testing.

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  33. I hope he is able to starting eating those foods again!

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  34. What a fun surprise party! So glad Harry got to enjoy some yummy food! Hoping and praying his tests go well this week.

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  35. Priceless! Great way to get some gluten into Harry.....hope all goes well for your sweet boy. dx

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  36. What a great thing to do for Mr. H! Everyone loves an impromtu party and I'm glad Harry got to eat his way through it!

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  37. Wonderful, wonderful party for sweet Harry. I pray that all the tests come back great!!!
    Blessings

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  38. What a wonderful group of friends! Very sweet and thoughtful! I sure hope everything goes well for Harry!

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  39. This is great!! I love the look on his face and how surprised he was!! I've been wanting to call to check on him, but my voice decided to take a vacation :( Hope everything is going great and the results are good.

    Love you!!

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  40. I think this is one of the most creative and loving things I've ever heard of to do for a child!!

    Hoping his tests come back great and things go well for him!!!

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  41. Prayers going up for sweet Harry!

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  42. What a blessing Kim!! LOVE this! What a sweet and tender outpouring for your handsome boy! Praying as Harry has his tests and hoping he continues to feel good! Hannah has the same outfit Kate has on in these pictures...so cute!

    Hugs & Love,
    Heather

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  43. This was FUN! So glad to hear the first round of pricks was negative. Will hope the patches say the same thing. Great job!

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  44. Oh Kim! This was the BEST thing ever! I KNOW Harry will never forget your kindness and thoughtfulness for him! This is one of those 'mom moments' that cause even us blog friends to tear up. Wow!!!!

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Thank you for your kindness.