In the News: Does your child's school allow food for classroom parties? Some have forbidden goodies due to food allergies (a rule that's great for protecting food-allergic kids from reactions and bad for putting them to blame for their classmates' cupcake withdrawal) or concerns over obesity (so really they should be thanking those food-allergic kids for getting the cupcakes outta there). Others leave things up to the individual teachers and parents, so perhaps other kids will bring treats while your kid may not. Jeanette Bradley, About.com's guide to Food Allergies, has some good options for Non-Food Birthday Celebrations at School, and if you're looking for more possibilities, my non-food Easter egg fillers could probably make decent birthday-favor loot as well. Also in the Today's News and Views file is a recipe for nut-free chocolate-chip cookies, another possible allergy-safe birthday-treat alternative, and a report on a possible link between high-fructose corn syrup and autism, which makes a birthday gift of pencils rather than candy and juice boxes seem like a pretty swell idea.
Image by Monica Rodriguez/Getty Images