It’s THAT time of year again! For parents of kids who eat a gluten-free, casein-free diet – it can be worrisome!


Public and private schools offer lunch programs, and some have breakfast programs. As part of the National School Lunch Program, the schools can receive reimbursements from the USDA for providing nutritious meals, but the guidelines say they have to offer four components – meats/meat alternatives, grains/breads, fruits/vegetables and milk.

This is not good for GF/CF children, as the grains will most likely have gluten, and milk presents a big problem for casein-free diets.

This is why it is very important that you provide your own child’s lunches every day! Doing this will give you control of your child’s diet and allow you peace of mind.

A typical lunch could include:

  • Some form of meat or GF/CF cheese
  • GF/CF chips or pretzels
  • A fruit cup or veggies in a baggie
  • A snack, such as a GF/CF “trail mix,” which could include raisins, GF/CF cereal and chocolate chips
  • A water bottle or 100% juice pouch

If you are going to have a child in kindergarten, or your child will regularly have snacks in class, it is important to provide GF/CF snacks to your child’s teacher every day. These can include GF/CF pretzels, fruit leather or fruit snacks, fresh fruit, and Envirokidz Cereal bars. You can also offer to take your turn bringing the snack, and share a GF/CF snack for everyone to enjoy!

For special occasions you can request a 24-hour advanced notice so you can prepare your child a special treat instead of having the class treat.

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When I was growing up I had the most wonderful loving grandmother. We called her Grandmuzzie. She was one of the most fun people I’ve ever known! She was always telling stories, or entertaining us with her ragtime piano. I was one of the youngest, and she called me her “chickabidee.” This is a picture taken in 1961 of my Grandmuzzie holding me!

She was such a huge part of my family’s life! I loved coming home from school to any of her cookies, but her carrot cookies with orange frosting were just the best! I really craved them after my celiac diagnosis, and so I tweaked the recipe to taste near the same! I love eating them, and reliving my memories of her! Grandmuzzie’s Carrot Cookies



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My husband brought me home some things from a pizza place last night. They were in foil packages and kept in the fridge overnight. I thought today I would be having a salad, but there’s no lettuce. I realized I’d be eating a DELICIOUS pizza in a bowl! I LOVE this idea for a hot summer day. This “pizza” includes chicken, ham, mushrooms, olives, jalapenos, tomatoes, onions, green pepper, & mozzarella cheese.

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I just returned from a 4-day family reunion at a beautiful cabin in the mountains. It was such an amazing location! We spent a lot of time on the deck gazing at the gorgeous trees and wildflowers.

There were deer in the woods at all times of day. Everything smelled so fresh and clean. Talking about it just makes me want to go back – right this very minute!

Each couple was in charge of one meal. For mine, I planned a complete gluten-free menu:

Savory Italian Chicken rice, veggie salad, and Heavenly Apple Cake for dessert.

For the rest of the meals, I examined what was served and asked questions about preparation. For example, when we had breakfast burritos, I ate the egg, hashbrowns, sausage, and cheese, but not the flour tortilla.

When the meal was barbeque beef sandwiches, I ate the beef along with potato salad, veggies and fruit, and had ice cream without the brownies for dessert.

Another meal was grilled chicken and baked potatoes – I checked the chicken marinade before eating it. I skipped the pancakes we had at another breakfast and had scrambled eggs and fruit. I managed to get all I could eat and had a great time!

A couple of times I supplemented meals or snacks with a gluten-free item that I had taken along. Eating gluten-free does not mean you have to miss out on great vacations. Just plan ahead.

This reunion was SO EXCITING – because it included every one of my brothers and sisters and their spouses, along with my Mommy. Her 82nd birthday celebration was a highlight of our time together. Doesn’t she look like she’s having a great time?


I just returned from vacation. More about that later, including how I managed to stay gluten-free with all of the great meals we had.

I have been reading articles on strawberries and how they relate to gluten.

Some say that people with celiac disease shouldn’t eat strawberries because of the fact that they are grown in straw. I NEVER KNEW THAT!

I emailed a grower to ask if it is true. YES, they grow strawberries in wheat straw!

This finding goes EXACTLY with my own experiences over that past several years! I’ve had to avoid eating strawberries because they made my stomach ache. My body was trying to tell me something!