I took Katherine to a fall birthday party at our favorite pumpkin patch on Saturday. Helicopter parent that I am, I stayed the whole time (respectfully in the background, of course). And, the curtain opens....
After the hayride out to the pumpkin patch, two girls needed to use the bathroom. One decided to wait, and one decided to go in the field, with limited success.
While the children were choosing their pumpkins, the farm owner chatted with me about the different varieties of pumpkins planted in the field, such as pie pumpkins, which are good for cooking, and "cow pumpkins," which are good for carving and for feeding the cows. He even cut open a pumpkin with his pocketknife to further illustrate a point, and he gave me some soybean plants from the next field so that I could show them to Katherine. Seeing the soybeans, another girl on the hayride said that she was allergic to milk, too, and her grandmother concurred.
We returned to the picnic area in time for lunch and dessert. I was standing off to the side holding Katherine's dairy-free cupcake, and a girl slid up next to me and said, "You're Katherine's mom."
"Yes, I am! How did you know?"
She raised one eyebrow and pointed to the cupcake. I laughed. "I sit by Katherine every day at lunch and I drink milk every day, but she never touches it or takes a drink of it," she reassured me. "That's good to know," I said.
The other dairy-allergic girl ate cheese pizza and cake made with milk at the party. I said, "Oh, so she just can't drink milk straight, but she can eat it cooked?"
"No, she's not supposed to have dairy at all, but we let her cheat sometimes," the grandmother said.
In addition to a pumpkin, each child received a candy apple, made that morning by the farmer's wife. Katherine brought hers home and shared it with her brother.