I’m Tristan. A wife, mother, graduate student, child advocate (CASA), and safer skincare advocate. I am married to my best friend Chris, and together we have a daughter, Evelyn Grace. We live in a small town in West Virginia where my husband attends medical school. Our lives are busy but full of great things that set our souls on fire.
Food Allergies: Where it all started
While I was born with an allergy to dairy, other food allergies/intolerances reared their ugly heads in my twenties and so I have spent the last 5+ years learning how to cook and bake using no dairy, eggs, or gluten. It’s been challenging and rewarding. However, I have enjoyed finding alternative methods to consuming the right amounts of nutrients.
I’ve really come to enjoy making most of my food from scratch. Food sensitivities have encouraged me to eat a wider variety of fruits and vegetables . Eating healthy and wholesome food is now a part of who I am, and I can see how it has positively effected my entire family. Food is something that should fuel our minds and bodies! While there are obviously many resources available on the internet about allergy friendly recipes, I have always struggled with finding recipes that are at the very least dairy AND egg free, but could also be tweaked to be gluten free and still taste remotely edible. I hope to solve this problem for you and your family.
While many of the recipes on my blog are my own creations, many of them are inspired by “non-allergy” recipes that I altered to fit my family’s needs. I will always reference the original recipe! There are so many creative chefs/cooks/bakers out there with so many amazing recipes that I could never take credit for!
In May of 2015, our beautiful daughter Evelyn Grace was born…
… and I became utterly obsessed with feeding her whole, plant-based foods that were nutrient dense and fuel to her growing little body. As a first time mom I felt an incredible amount of stress over introducing Evelyn to solid foods. I wanted to know exactly what was in my daughters food, which for me, meant that I was making everything myself. Shout out to great blenders and make your own squeeze pouch systems for those early months! I made all of her food myself.. I really learned a lot from this process, so if anyone is interested in a post about making baby food, just let me know!
I hope to raise Evelyn to have an appreciation for all types of foods and be open to try new things. So far, this has worked for us and I hope it continues! Evelyn (currently 22 months) is anything but a picky eater. While I still make most everything from scratch, we have also found great snacks and meal additions that are minimally processed, full of fueling foods, and we feel really good about consuming.
Some of Evelyn’s favorite foods are dill seasoned fish, garlic steamed broccoli, butternut squash “mac & cheese” , spinach avocado “pesto” noodles, any kind of fruit, avocado toast, and roasted chicken in homemade barbecue sauce. She loves food, and needs a lot of it because this girl is never still. Our own little energizer bunny, this one.
Chemical Free Living
I’m also very cautious with the products that we use for Evelyn. Everything from her toothpaste, to her sippy and water cups, body wash, lotion, to the containers we store our food in. Unfortunately due to lack of regulation, toxic chemicals are lurking in most of these products that are out there. We have found some amazing, well trusted, and high performing products that we couldn’t live without. Creating a safe home free of as many harmful chemicals as we can is really important to both Chris and me. Since having Evelyn, our lifestyle and priorities have completely turned upside down (totally for the better). Our first thoughts of consideration when purchasing toys, personal care products, kitchen items, and even clothing are, “are they safe?”and “are they made ethically”. Yes, all of these categories are in need of some major overhaul of both ingredient selection and manufacturing processes. We are happy to have found companies like Beautycounter, Thinkbaby, Wean Green, Collapse-it, U-Konserve, Hape Toys, along with several others, that put our safety first and not their profit margins. You will find many posts that talk about our favorite products here on the blog.
I joined the movement of Beautycounter to be an advocate for change in the personal care industry because I think our kids deserve better than being handed products that are detrimental to their health and it’s considered “legal”. It is such a worthy cause because my daughter’s generation is the first generation in TWO CENTURIES to have a shorter life span than their parents. For me, this is unacceptable and so incredibly preventable. I couldn’t help but join the movement.
Child Advocacy: Why it Matters
You will also find several blog posts about child advocacy here on the blog. Taking a stand for children who have no voice is something that Chris and I are very passionate about. We currently serve through CASA while we wait for medical school to finish and we can become foster and adoptive parents. We believe that God has called everyone to care for orphans and to defend the fatherless. I don’t think there is anything more meaningful you can do with your life than stand in the gap for an abused and neglected child who literally has nothing. There are so many ways to get involved in advocating for children and you can read more about that here.
So, I welcome you into our nest! I hope you will find a recipe or two that inspires you and learn some easy ways you can switch to safer living in your home, or feel inspired to get involved in child advocacy.