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Hi everyone! 
I hope you're having an awesome Thursday so far. I just got to work and am enjoying my yogurt parfait :)
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And now I want to share some exciting news!
Last week Erin from Gluten-Free Fun asked me to write a piece about being gluten free in college to share on her blog. 
I, of course, said yes.
Well, she posted it today!

Check out my post: "A Gluten (and Pain!) Free College Experience" here!

Be sure to subscribe to Erin's blog and check her out on Facebook and Twitter.
She does a lot of great things for the gluten free community!

Lots of love,
-J
 

Zpizza!

08/28/2011

8 Comments

 
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It's pretty rare for a person on the gluten free diet to randomly go out to eat.
It usually involves (at least) a quick visit to the restaurants website to glance through the menu and maybe even a phone call to get some more questions answered. 
But not today.

Today, Joey and I just went to Zpizza.
(Admittedly, though, I heard great things from the awesome Gluten Free Gang of Columbus)
And I think I may have a new favorite pizza place.
Mind you, I say that almost every time I get pizza from somewhere new.
BUT this time was different.
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First off, they have Coke. In glass bottles. Heavenly.
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That's my Joey, drinkin' a coooke.
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I couldn't even wait 5 seconds to take a picture before having a bite. This is the ZBQ.
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My awesome boyfriend also ordered gluten free so we could share. This is the Tuscan!
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BBQ sauce, mozzarella, bbq chicken, roasted peppers, red onions, fresh rounds of tomatoes, cilantro, sweet corn.
This pizza was heavenly.
HEAVENLY.

Their gluten free crust comes in a small (10') and it is more than enough.
They use fresh toppings and their sauce, among other items, is organic.

Two pizzas and two Cokes was around $30.

Pizza is one of those foods that I didn't know I loved so much until I couldn't eat it anymore. 
I'm so happy that the Columbus area has an awesome selection of gf pizza!

What was your best gluten free moment this weekend?!
-J
 
 
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Want to be driven all around Columbus to be fed the most delicious gluten free desserts the city has to offer?
I thought so ;)
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Columbus Food Adventures, an organization that gives awesome food tours around Columbus, has gone gluten free.

Their second gluten free tour is Saturday, September 24th beginning at 2:30 pm and tickets are $55.
(The first gf tour sold out so I'd recommend getting tickets fast if you're interested!)

You can find a more detailed description of the tour here but here's a rundown of the planned stops:
First stop is at Pistacia Vera, the "dessert boutique" located in German Village
Next up is the new Cherbourg Bakery, which is a gluten (and nut!) free facility, in Bexley.
Clintonville is the next stop for Food for Good Thought where they are dedicated to employing those with autism.
And what dessert tour would be complete without the delicious Jeni's Ice Cream and a Cameron Mitchell restaurant?!


Out of this entire list I've only been to Jeni's Ice Cream (which, if you haven't been there, oh. my. gosh. stop reading this, get in your car and drive. seriously it's that good). But I am anxious to try these other bakeries/restaurants!

I admire Columbus Food Adventures efforts to not only provide a gluten free tour but also in finding hidden gluten free gems!

For me, the price is a little high. But, I'm also a poor college student. :P So, unfortunately I will not be attending but I'd absolutely love love love to hear about your experience if you attend!

CFA also aims to provide gluten free options on their other tours as well. I'd love to try the taco truck tour!

Happy Friday!
-J

 
 
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As the cliche goes, it's the little things that make living worthwhile.

I'd say that's especially true for those of us with severe food allergies. 

Discovering a substitute product or recipe for an otherwise off limits food is such a great feeling.
That's why on vacation I was so happy to discover S'moreables from Kinnikinnick.
We'd have bonfires at night in my uncles backyard. We'd roast marshmallows and talk. But I was dying for a smore!
Luckily, I found S'moreables, a gluten free graham cracker, at Meijer!

These were so good that when I got back home, I wasn't ready to give up my nightly smore.
So I made them in my oven!
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Messy & worth it!
Excuse the awful quality of my camera phone. (I use an EnV2, I know, it may as well have a cord. But I make up for it with my macbook pro and ipad!)

While I could not burn my marshmallows how I like, these smores were delicious and definitely satisfied my craving! Just make sure the chocolate and marshmallows you're using are gluten free as well! Also, I realize that this isn't an earth shattering or even original recipe, but I thought a lot of you would enjoy it! 
(Confession: I mostly just followed the directions on the back of the box!)


All I did was:
1. Put some foil down on a cookie sheet and preheat oven to 350.
2. Place cookies down on sheet. Technically you are to break them apart but these cookies are pretty small so I just used two whole cookies to make one smore. 
3. Add as many marshmallows and chocolate pieces as your heart desires. (Leave them open face)
4. Heat in oven for about 3 minutes. Mine were pretty soft so watch them closely, they heat up fast!
5. Remove from oven and use a knife or spatula to put one cookie on top of the other.
6. Prepare to get messy and...
7. Enjoy your wonderful gluten free smore!!


I'm dying to know, what's been your favorite gluten free discovery of an otherwise off-limits food?!

Many more posts to come this week!
Hope you're all enjoying your Thursday.

-J
 
 
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Happy Thursday!

It's a really gorgeous day today in Grove City.
(I looooove when the temps are in the low 70's)

And while I'm currently at work, in a few short hours I will be...
packing!
For one of my favorite places.... 
Traverse City, Michigan!

Yaaaay. :)

We will be staying with my uncle and going to all kinds of fun places like Torch Lake and Petosky.
But the best part...
I will hardly have to worry about what I'm going to eat!

We eat a lot of meals at my uncle's and he is awesome about my gluten free diet!
Last year he had gluten free cookies waiting for me when I got there. What a guy!

I can't wait to play with his pups, either!

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Buddy :)
But... back to food. :)

I know for people with gluten intolerances traveling seems a bit scary and overwhelming. 

Especially when you're in a car for eight hours trying to live off gas station snacks. 

You do not want to get stuck in that situation so here are some easy-to-pack snack suggestions for the road!

Homemade almond butter and bananas/apples
I know, you're thinking, homemade?! That doesn't sound easy at all! But it really is. Grab a bag of almonds, throw 'em into a food processor and watch them turn into creamy almond butter all on their own. It really is that easy and it's so delicious. Pack a few bananas and a jar of this and I'll promise you'll be satisfied!
Trail Mix -
Another favorite of mine, especially when I want something sweet. You can make your own with almonds, dark chocolate, cranberries and coconut or you can simply buy a packaged bag! A really great snack that will keep you full and satisfied (just be sure to read labels very carefully as many of these products may contain trace amounts of gluten).

Dried fruit, Larabars or fresh fruit/veggies - 
It's scary how much I love Larabars. Soooo many choices that are ALL gluten free and absolutely wonderful.  My favorites are chocolate chip cookie dough, peanut butter and jelly and peanut butter cookie. Pack a few of these along with some either dried or fresh fruit and you'll be good to go!
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And if you must stop for food I recommend Wendys. They have some of the best offerings in the way of gluten free so if you must stop for a fast food type meal I highly recommend it. I always get a chili and baked potato or a BLT cobb salad. Check out their gluten free menu here.

In less than 24 hours I will be on the road to Michigan enjoying these very same gluten free snacks. :)

I'll see you all in a few weeks.
-J
 
 
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Hi hi hi. :)

So, in an attempt to stop myself from falling asleep at my desk I'm giving you another blog post. 

After yesterdays post I had people asking me exactly what gluten and Celiac Disease are. I thought I'd let my fellow Celiac friend Kevin Niemann explain that to you!

Kevin is awesome! He started his own website for all things "g-free" and also his own internet show which is now featured on ifood.tv. You definitely need to check out his webpage and follow him on Twitter. :)

The video I'm posting here is awesome because it gives an overview of Celiac Disease and it makes me laugh. I know when I first tell someone about my diet the questions always go: 
"So you can't have bread?" 
No
"Wait! That means you can't have pasta!" 
Correct... 
"You can't have donuts! Pizza! Oh my gosh you can't have cake!"
And you just feel like shouting, "I KNOW, I LIVE WITH IT!"
But instead you say nothing or laugh and say "Right" really knowing that you can enjoy all of those things - just without gluten! 
(Sometimes it's just too much to explain or you don't feel like it.)


Enjoy!
 
 
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You're back.
Yay!
I'd like to tell you about my journey with Celiac Disease and the gluten free diet.

But first, here's an adorable childhood picture that will hopefully get you to read on ;)
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That's me. :)

When I was a baby I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. That was almost 20 years ago and what was once a very rare disease is now gaining all kinds of awareness! Today you'll find many gluten free products strewn throughout the aisles of your grocery store (even if you don't notice them - they're there!) 

But this has not always been the case. 

There were few known gluten free brands and substitutes when I was first forced to eat gluten free. Up until I was in the 5th grade I followed the diet very strictly. I remember Pamela's cookies being my absolute favorite!! But somewhere along the way I started eating gluten again. It (appeared) to no longer make me sick and my family and I assumed that everything was back to normal and I could eat gluten again. We obviously did not have a very good understanding of Celiac Disease. 

So, for many years I ate everything with no remorse or even a thought of how gluten was affecting me!
And 
I
just
kept
eating,
and eating,
and eating
gluten.
But I didn't really know I was sick and tired. 
I felt happy and normal. I enjoyed much of my high school career while consuming gluten. I'd eat pizza with friends, donuts for breakfast in the mornings, way too many of the rolls they give you at restaurants and I did all this simply ignoring the fact that I had a serious allergy to the protein in wheat, barley and rye. 

Well, my senior year of high school my parents decided that I needed to visit my gastroenterologist and see how things were going with my Celiac. Can you guess how things were going? You're right, horrible. 

So there I was. Eighteen years old and ready for all the big changes that come with college. The only thing that lied between Miami University and I was senior prom and graduation. Oh, and I had to completely change my diet. No big deal

It was kind of rough.

And I'm not sure many people understood that. I was so used to going out with my friends and eating "normally", but now I was having to explain to my waiters (and everyone else for that matter) that if they "could please substitute the roll for some fruit because I have a gluten allergy" I would really appreciate it. 

But I got through it and made it to Miami University in the fall. As if going to college weren't enough change already, I had the added responsibility of maintaining my gluten free diet by meeting with dietitians and cooks at the school to accommodate my special needs. The staff at Miami was wonderful. Every Saturday I would have gluten free pancakes or waffles waiting for me in the kitchen. It was awesome! 

For many reasons though, I decided to come home and attend THE Ohio State University (Go Bucks!).
And if we're going to get really honest I was venturing into eating gluten again. It still did not make me feel (immediately) sick and that was reason enough for me to have a bite of pasta off my moms plate or have just one slice of pizza at work. 

It wasn't a lot. But it was more than enough. 

I'm not really sure what flipped the switch but for the last year I've been 100% gluten free! And I will never go back to eating gluten again! G-free is the life for me. Being off of gluten now for so long has shown me just how awful I was feeling before when I thought I felt perfectly fine.

So there it is - my (somewhat shameful) story of my struggle with Celiac Disease. While I regret the food choices I made in the past I hope that I can take those experiences and encourage others to not make the same mistakes I did. If you have any sort of gluten intolerance or allergy, let me assure you that it is not worth it to eat gluten.

What's YOUR story? I know I, and many others, are interested in hearing it so please leave a comment! :)

If you have any questions please send me an email. 
-J
 
 
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Hi.
I'm Janelle.
:)


Welcome to my blog...
(my random thoughts)...
(my outlook on life)...
(my words that very few people will read)....

Here you will (mainly) find my thoughts and opinions on gluten free living and celiac disease. I am not a dietitian (yet!). But, if you have any questions about anything that I talk about on the blog please do not hesitate to send me an email and hopefully I can offer some guidance!

Happy 4th of July weekend!!
-J