Memories, good and bad, often flash inside my mind when I bake. They come on strong, and leave me laughing or tear me apart; throwing off my baking zen either way.
“Mama my eye hurts.” G. “What happened? Lets have a look.” Me.
I didn’t realize what was happening. I didn’t know this was just the beginning of a very long day.
I give my Dad and his wife a hug good-bye, and buckle G into his car seat. Bubba starts the car. N sleeps peacefully in his car seat and C happily sucks on a lollipop. “I can’t believe the Easter bunny is coming tomorrow!”
We head home.
He starts to cry. I turn around. Hives cover his arms, legs and chest. His eye lid is now the size of a golf ball.
“He is reacting.” (To what? I checked all the candy. I always check.)
Bubba pulls over; I give G a teaspoon of Benadryl. He won’t calm down. This should work, I tell myself. We get back on the highway.
He is hysterical. “My throat!” G.
“Mama, Daddy!” C.
Breathe. This is happening. He is having an anaphylactic reaction. The doctors mentioned this could happen. Remember? You know what to do. You played this scenario over and over, in your head, while your body ran; ran miles and miles in the rain, the sun, the bitter cold. Ran.
For a moment, amid the chaos I realize I’ve made the decision. I pull the dreaded epi-pen from my bag, unbuckle my seat belt and jam the auto-injector into my son’s thigh. He screams. C cries. “Mommy, no!” N is still somehow asleep. Bubba drives fast and remains calm. We are many miles from an emergency room.
Within minutes G is calm. The hives are still visible, bloodied from his constant scratching. His eye remains swollen. “I feel better now.” The epi-pen worked.
We arrive at the ER and a nurse evaluates him immediately. She detects wheezing. G is so sleepy. Poor boy. We are escorted to a room where we spend the next 6 hours watching our son sleep peacefully on a hospital bed, the ER physician checking in every hour to see how we are doing. Bubba kisses G on the forehead, he looks tired, and worried; tears ready to pour down his cheeks, if only he would let them. He takes C and N home, where my sister-in-law waits for them. I wait and watch our boy.
He wakes up and asks for something to eat, as if nothing happened. We just aged 10 years in 6 hours. He won’t understand that kind of worry until he has kids someday. He happily eats a turkey sandwich.
It is 10 pm and we are home again. G climbs up to his sleeping sister’s bunk and says “C____ I’m back.” She hugs him. He wants to play. “Time to go to bed G. The Easter bunny is coming tonight!”
Bubba and I spend the next two hours hiding Easter eggs and putting together their baskets. We climb into bed, exhausted. We snuggle up to each other, holding on tight, tighter than usual.
Slightly sweet with a hint of salt, Sunbutter is a tasty peanut-free alternative. The original recipe called for peanut butter and peanut butter cups, which I replaced with Sunbutter and chocolate chips. The result is a perfectly sweet and moist brownie with just enough chocolate chips. I love blondies because the possibilities are endless. Get creative!
Sunbutter Chocolate Chip Blondies
makes 12 bars
recipe adapted from Cooking Light
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 cup Sunbutter (I used natural.)
1/4 cup of unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 tbsp. milk ( I used 1 percent.)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup of chocolate chips
Pre-heat your oven to 350°F. Spray a 9 inch square metal baking pan with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Set aside. In a small bowl, combine Sunbutter, melted butter, milk and eggs, scraping down the sides of the bowl until the wet ingredients are well incorporated. Add the Sunbutter mixture to the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
Spread the batter into prepared pan. Place in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until a cake pick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs. Cool in pan on a wire rack for about an hour. Cut into squares and serve. The bars will last at room temperature, in an air-tight container for about 2 days. Enjoy!
5 Peanut-Free Treats Every Kid Will Love!
If you love Butterfingers, head over to Jelly Toast for Emily’s peanut-free butterfingers recipe!
Looking for a nut-free Nutella? Momables has a recipe for sunflower Nutella and it sounds delicious. Check it out!
Last year I made chocolate and sunbutter pretzel bars. Bubba and the kids went nuts for them. Head over to my blog for the recipe.
Instead of making peanut butter granola bars for the kids, how about trying sunflower seed granola bars with chocolate drizzle? Averie Cooks has the recipe for you.
Divvies allergen friendly chocolate cupcake recipe is a staple in our house for birthday parties.