Monday, February 1, 2016

Is Glute Free Really Gluten Free?

This week, I am on a business trip in Austin. Before I came, I decided to be smart and buy gluten free snacks. I bought these great little single serve packets of gluten free sweet 'n salty mix. 

They say glute free right on the front of the package, but when you look at the back they say "manufactured on shared equipment that also processes wheat." 

That is not gluten free. I will take the fault for not reading the label and taking gluten free on the pacakge at face value. Please let that be a lesson to you. Always read the label, even when it says gluten free.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Send Me Gluten Free: It's Like Gluten Free Christmas Every Month!

I have always had a love for trying new gluten free products. However, that need to constantly try new things can be quite expensive after a while. Thankfully, there is a convenient and affordable way to try gluten free products that are even delivered to your door!

Send Me Gluten Free is a subscription box that is delivered to your door each month with new gluten free foods to try. Plus, you also get a bundle of coupons in the box. It's like gluten free Christmas every month!

What I love about this box is that it has products that I have not heard of or tried, and I get to try them without purchasing a full size product that I may or may not like. The snack size samples are also great for me to stash in my desk for when I get hungry at work and need a little pick me up to get me through the day. 


Here's a look at the box I received this month. As you can see, it has a ton of products inside. The box contained items like Qwackers, Choco Rocks, and 
Massel 7s Vegetable Bouillon Cubes, just to name a few.


Here's a look at all of the coupons inside the box for this month. With everything that you get in this box, it is certainly a steal! 

Send Me Gluten Free is certainly worth $19.95 per month plus $5 shipping. That price, of course, is if you just order one month. The longer your subscription, the better the price you get.

If you would like to get your hands on a subscription, you can do so at http://www.sendmeglutenfree.com. You can get 20% off any subscription when you use the code BLOG20.

Now, it's giveaway time! If you would like to try out a Send Me Gluten Free box, just comment on this blog post with your number one reason for wanting to try it. I'll select a winner on September 30th! Good Luck!




Friday, May 8, 2015

Gluten Free +1

Living gluten free can be tricky at times, but it really is something that you get used to living with. I have been gluten free for over a decade now, but in the past few months, I've added a new challenge in my life. I am thrilled to say that in November 2015 I will welcome my first child into the world.

This is such an exciting time, but I can honestly say that there are a ton of concerns already in my head about whether or not my baby will have Celiac Disease like me. If he or she does have Celiac, it's not the end of the world obviously. My experience with living gluten free all these years will help ensure that he or she never feels out of place in the world. 

My concern was how does it affect my pregnancy and how soon will we be able to test the baby to find out. I have already been researching formulas and baby products to make sure what is and is not safe. I suppose you could say I'm going a bit overboard for as early as I am in the pregnancy, but when it comes to my child, I hold nothing back.

I still have a long way to go and a ton of research to do, but I actually feel really great about where I am with everything right now. I'm so excited about the addition to the family, and can't wait to see whether I'm having a boy or girl. There will be many more blog posts to come on the subject, so stay tuned.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Wild Wood Bakehouse: A Gluten Free Experience

Out of all the restaurants I visited while in Austin, my clear winner for a favorite is Wild Wood Bakehouse. Unlike all the others, Wild Wood Bakehouse is a 100% gluten free restaurant. It's amazing the feeling you get when you can order absolutely anything off of a restaurant menu. There are so many choices!
The first thing I ordered was the onion rings. 

I love onion rings, and I can honestly say that these are the best ones I have ever had. They were crispy, and the breading did not fall off the onion rings when you broke them apart.
The next thing I ordered was the chicken strips and sweet potato chips. If you've read my other posts, you're probably wondering what this crazy girls fascination with sweet potatoes is. The simple answer is they're delicious. 

As you can see, the chicken strips were huge! They were crispy, well seasoned, and the chicken was very moist.
By now, you knoww what comes next... dessert! Being a lover of coffee, I ordered the tiramasu.

This dessert was everything it should be. It was a velvety cake soaked in coffee with a sweet cream frosting. The only downside was that I couldn't eat it all. 
This was my favorite restaurant out of all of the ones I visited in Austin. I will certainly visit there again. To check out their menu, go to http://www.wildwoodbakehouse.com/food/.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

P.F. Changs: Deliciously Gluten Free

While on my trip in Austin, another restaurant I went to was P.F. Chang's. Their gluten free options were listed on the menu, and the bartender (I sat at the bar since they were so busy) was quite knowledgeable about the gluten free options. 
I ordered the Chicken Fried Rice and was quite surprised when the brought out the plate. There was so much food!

It was absolutely delicious. They rice was cooked fantastically and the chicken was moist and tasty. Of course since I am a girl who loves food, I didn't stop there. I had to try some dessert. They have a Chocolate dome dessert, and anyone who knows me, knows my love of chocolate.

It was almost too pretty to eat. It came with strawberries, blueberries, a sprig of mint, and the berry sauce. The sauce was the perfect compliment to the richness of the chocolate. 
P.F Chang's delivered an amazingly delicious and filling meal. This is a restaurant I will be visiting any time I am in a town that has one.

Gluten Free at Cheesecake Factory

One of the hardest things to do as a Celiac is to travel. Depending on where you go, it can be quite difficult to get food. The Cheesecake Factory made ordering gluten free simple, and the food was fantastic!
When I first found out I was traveling to Austin on a work trip, I decided to do some research and find celiac friendly restaurants. The Cheesecake Factory was not my first choice, but it certainly surprised me.
At the restaurant I ordered a gluten free cheeseburger with sweet potato fries. 

When they brought the cheeseburger to me, it was on a giant bun, which automatically set off alarm bells in my head. Being my overly cautious self, I asked the waitress if it was in fact gluten free. Not only did she answer that it was, she explained how to tell the difference between a gluten free bun and a gluten containing one. That kind of care to make sure the food is gluten free makes me more inclined to return there again. The cheeseburger was quite tasty as were the sweet potato fries. 
Of course you can't go to the Cheesecake Factory and not get cheesecake! They have a gluten free Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake which is great for me, since I love all things chocolate. When they brought it to the table I was shocked by how delicious it looked!

This edible work of art was absolutely divine and my favorite dessert of any restaurant.
I can say with absolute certainty that the next time I am in Austin, Cheesecake Factory will get a visit from me.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

How I Beat 2014

I have been a Celiac for over 10 years now. As I'm sure you know, having Celiac changes your whole life. What you may not realize yet, is that is can actually change your life for the better. Since my diagnosis all those years ago, I have been less than eager to stand up for myself and make sure that I can have some of the food at work lunches and events. I have also been less than eager to advocate for more awareness of Celiac Disease and the need for gluten free foods. However, 2014 changed all of that for me.

At the beginning of this year, I made a promise...to be true to myself. I can honestly say, for the first time in quite a while, I kept my New Years resolution. I advocated for myself and my Celiac Disease, and what I discovered really surprised me. When you tell someone you have Celiac Disease and have to eat gluten free food, you don't expect to hear "I know someone who has that". More often that not, that is exactly what I heard. Telling people about my Celiac Disease did not make me feel like an outsider as I feared it would.

Another fear that I fought this year, was the fear of change. I have always been a creature of habit, but this year definitely changed that. In October, I made the decision to change careers. This was a huge step for me as I had been with this employer for seven long years. I was so scared of changing things that I stayed in a job that made me miserable, and honestly, kept me from doing a lot of things that I really wanted to do. So, I overcame my fear, and became a teacher. This was a huge move for me, but as it turns out, I love it. I can actually see the difference that I can make for some of my students, and that is a feeling I would hate to have missed. 

After switching jobs, the life changes continued. I started dating a really great guy who is probably more eager than I am to advocate for my being gluten free. He has truly been amazing at making sure I can eat at family dinners, and eat safely when we go out. He loves eating the gluten free foods that I make, and truly loves me. As many of you may understand, when I got diagnosed with Celiac Disease, I began to doubt that I would ever find someone who would be able to deal with my Celiac Disease and the restrictions it put on me. Life really surprised me with him. Now after a few months of dating, we are getting married!

2014 was a challenging year for me, but I learned some of the most important lessons of my life during this year. The first, never be afraid to advocate for yourself. Second, don't let fear keep you from living your life. Finally, the most important lesson of all...change can be scary, but sometimes you have to turn your life upside down to end up where you belong. It's worth the change to end up happy.