Thursday, October 23, 2014

10 Tips for Keeping Kids Safe on Halloween (updated)

I first published this post last year, but I think the content is pretty timeless. I've updated the post with new information and links where relevant, including safe Halloween candy lists for 2014. 

When your child has food restrictions or allergies, holidays that are supposed to be fun can turn into nightmares for parents trying to keep their kids safe. In addition to the usual safety precautions, there are the concerns about what your child can eat, and how to handle the disappointment that can accompany the realization that most of what’s in their trick or treat bag isn’t safe for them to consume. Here are some tips for a safe and happy gluten free Halloween.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The "Switch Witch" is Coming to My House This Halloween

A few days ago I wrote about my decision to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project this Halloween, which helps raise awareness of food allergies while also supporting allergic children by also making some non-food Halloween items available for trick-or-treating kids. It would be incredible if my son could come home with a bag full of safe items for him, but I know that much of his treat bag will contain gluten-filled snacks that he cannot eat.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

We're Taking Part in the Teal Pumpkin Project

I LOVE Halloween. Everything about it makes me smile, from the decorations to the costumes to the candy.

A few years ago my love for Halloween was tested when my toddler son went on a gluten and dairy free diet.

Halloween became a nightmare. Every piece of candy in his treat bag was a potential danger to him, and he was still too young to understand why he couldn't eat most of it. I spent forever going through each candy in his bag, still too new to the process to have a grasp on what was safe and what wasn't. What should have been a fun night was a scary, stressful one for me.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Gluten Free Candy Lists 2014

Each year, a number of different organizations post their updated Gluten Free Candy Lists. Most lists are specific to the United States, but My Gluten Facts offers candy lists for both Canada and the United States, which I find particularly useful. For some reason, some candies that are manufactured to be gluten free in one country may have a different formulation in another country, causing confusion for consumers.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Where I've Been: A Blog Update

Hanging out in Nice, France
I've been neglecting you, my readers, for a few weeks now and I feel terrible about it. So what's the deal? Where have I gone?

I'm currently on a six week "vacation" in France, scoping out where I hope to live with my family for the next year. We've been traveling from city to city, mostly in the South of France, to get a feel for each location.

Every few days is a new local, and while it's been a lot of fun, it hasn't left a lot of time for writing. In fact, I have pretty much declined any new freelance work, and struggled to get caught up on outstanding assignments.

We've been to Nice, Monaco (just for fun, not to live!), Menton, Aix-en-Provence, Lyon, Avignon, and we're currently in Montpellier. 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Review: Canyon Bakehouse Gluten Free Products are Perfect for School Lunches

My 5 year old is a typical kid, who likes to eat in a hurry and loves anything he can hold in his hands rather than have the need to use a utensil. Sandwiches, wraps, hamburgers, muffins- all those fun things that are not easy to find gluten free. Over the almost 4 years that he has been gluten free, we have tried almost every brand of bread on the market, with varying degrees of success. Most gluten free breads come frozen, and then not only have to be defrosted but also have to be toasted before being edible. Others have huge holes in the middle, or are dry and mealy.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Gluten Free Weekly Meal Plan (September 1-5, 2014)

We've been living in a hotel for the past week since selling our house, waiting for our departure to France. We leave for 6 weeks in France tomorrow, so the truth is, I'm not really sure what we'll be eating for the rest of the week, except that it will be gluten free! Still, it's back to school for most, so quick and easy meals are a must. Here are some simple meal ideas to make back to school dinners run smoothly. Did I mention that these recipes are all extremely budget friendly?

Monday: Chicken with Tomatoes & Olives (RECIPE)

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Move is Complete!

The past few weeks have been what can only be described as hectic and insane. My littlest guy turned two on Wednesday, so we had a joint birthday/going away party last weekend. We invited family only for the birthday party, and then had a few friends join us for a going away party before we moved out of our house and got ready to head overseas. For more about our upcoming move to Europe, check out THIS POST.
Then the real work began. Over the past week we have moved the contents of our entire home into a storage unit, or to a local charity, or to friends and family with small children. Essentially we packed up our entire lives for storage, with the exception of a few suitcases of clothing that we will take with us when we leave for France. Trying to pack up and move things with a 5 and 2 year old in the house was challenging to say the least!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Tutorial: How to Decorate a Sprinkle Cake

A few weeks ago I made a rainbow sprinkle cake as the Kid's Cake at a birthday party that featured a bigger main cake that wasn't gluten free. Since posting photos of the cake, I've received several requests for instructions on how to create one.
 It was actually one of the easiest cake I've ever decorated, since it's almost impossible to mess up. I think a round cake works better than a square or rectangular one, and would be easier to decorate.

Let's get started!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Five Tips for Surviving a Juice Cleanse

I finished my first 5 day juice cleanse on Saturday, and I have to admit, I actually kind of liked it. I'm a person who believes that food is pleasure, unlike those who only see food as nourishment. As a result, I was worried that five days of only consuming juice for their nutritional value and nothing else was going to be awful.

So why do it?

I wrote about my reasons for embarking on a Juice Cleanse in THIS POST. I also explain why I dislike the term "cleanse," but that I use it for lack of a better term.