Gluten-Free Summer Camp Campership Fundraising Extravaganza

I have some exciting news to share about an awesome event that is going on!  The Celiac Disease Foundation, Team Gluten-Free and have come together to raise awareness and money so that children with Celiac Disease can attend camp, just like their non-gluten-free friends.  There are several camps around the country that offer the same activities as a mainstream camp, but know how to safely feed a gluten-free camper.  Team Gluten-Free is proud to provide scholarships “camperships” to Celiac children. 


The Celiac Disease Foundation is a non-profit, public benefit corporation dedicated to providing services and support regarding Celiac Disease and Dermatitis Herpetiformis, through programs of awareness, education, advocacy and research.

Team Gluten-Free is a fundraising program that provides a simple way for runners, walkers, cyclists and triathletes to raise awareness and funds for celiac disease. The money raised by Team Gluten-Free™ participants goes directly towards summer camp scholarships for children on the gluten-free diet as well as celiac disease research, support and awareness programs. Team Gluten-Free™ is a fundraising arm of the Celiac Disease Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, public benefit corporation dedicated to the education of patients, families and health care professionals. connects the gluten-free community with the best gluten-free products, services and organizations through the Annual Gluten-Free Awards and their Podcast The G-Freek Show.


To raise awareness and money; Josh Schieffer from will be participating in three races for Team Gluten-Free this fall. October 20th is the Beach to Battleship Ironman distance Triathlon; A 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and a full 26.2 mile marathon. On November 4th, four other runners and Josh will run the New York City Marathon. And finally the following weekend, November 11th Josh will run the Charlotte Marathon. To help raise funds, some of the best gluten free companies are providing rewards for financial donors. Rewards will start at $10.00 donations and climb all the way to $1,000.00. The rewards will vary from time to time as companies adjust and add products. Stay up to date with the current rewards.


A child on the gluten-free diet may have difficulty at a mainstream camp, but shouldn’t miss out on the experience. There are several camps across the country that offer celiac children everything from boating, canoeing, swimming, arts and crafts, low and high ropes challenge courses, adventure programming, field events and team work. Most importantly, all meals are gluten-free, including campfire treats and barbecues. Team Gluten-Free™ is proud to provide camp scholarships or “camperships” to celiac children each summer.

The fundraising begins today, so what are you waiting for?  “Donate and get rewarded” today!

Children all over the country will have an opportunity to create lifelong memories because you took the time to make a difference in their lives.

Memorial Day Weekly Menu Plan

Last Tuesday I went to the allergist.  I hadn’t planned on going so soon, but they had a cancellation the day I called to see if I could get in towards the end of June.  I have been a itching regardless of the allergy medicine I have been taking, so I had to do something.  Long story short, I am a mess.  I am going to start allergy shots again, but need to get skin tested again.  In order to get skin tested, I had to be off antihistamines for 5 days, so the allergist gave me a steroid shot to get through those 5 days without Allegra.  I am still an itchy mess, but I have less than 15 hours now until I get my test done and can take something to stop the itching!  I can’t wait!


Hannah and I went to the pool for the first time this year yesterday.  It was hot – 94 to be exact.  I can’t believe that it is May in Ohio.  I hear that the high is 63 this coming Saturday – seems about right.  We got a little sunburned, so today has been spent inside in the cool A/C reading.  I just finished Jodi Picoult’s “Lone Wolf”.  Not my favorite book by JP, but it was good and I had a hard time putting it down.  Now I am reading John Grisham’s “The Broker”. 

Monday – Burgers on the grill, baked potatoes and salad

Tuesday – Burritos, refried black beans, corn and salad

Wednesday – Lasagna and salad

Thursday – Leftovers

Friday – Make your own pizza and salad

Saturday – Take-out

Don’t forget to enter to win a Rice Krispies Gluten-Free Breakfast Kit!

Have you heard about Dow Chemical Company making a new product called Wellence Gluten-Free

Review: Enjoy Life Plentils

Memorial Day Gluten-Free

My current obsession: coconut peanut spread

NFCA suspends Amber designation

What did you do to celebrate the holiday weekend?

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Gluten-Free Snacking–Luna Protein Bars

Do you like snacks?  Eating smaller meals more frequently is recommended to help keep hunger at bay.  I was raised eating three meals a day and while I may have had an afterschool snack or a bedtime snack, a ritual started when we were young by my late grandmother, the majority of our nutrition and calories came from those three meals.  There is nothing wrong with eating that way, however, in today’s increasingly busy society, many people find that eating smaller, more frequent meals is the best way to get through the day. 

I am not going to lie, I don’t like change, so adapting a new way of eating rattles me to the core.  With the crazy schedule that I have had lately, I have found it is much easier to eat five smaller meals as opposed to sitting down to a larger lunch.  I have been running/working out mid-morning which requires a substantial snack to refuel.  This also means that I am not hungry at my “traditional” lunch time.  I have been eating a later, smaller lunch and then grabbing a snack later in the afternoon to hold me over until dinner. 

When choosing snacks, it is important to check out the nutritional make-up of what you are eating, just like any other meal.  If you don’t have a healthy balance of protein, carbs and fat, you will probably find yourself unsatisfied and scrounging for something to eat long before your next meal.  One of my favorite, well-balanced snacks is the Luna protein bar.  The Luna protein bar is easy to stash in your purse or gym bag, though it will melt in the heat, for a quick post workout or late afternoon snack.


More about the Luna protein bar:

Each 1.6 oz (45g) LUNA Protein bar has around 170-190 calories with 12g protein and 3g fiber, along with essential nutrients women need. It is high in calcium and folic acid, and is a good source of vitamin D, iron, fiber and antioxidants (vitamins A, C and E). Each bar has 6-9g fat and 13-15g sugar depending on the flavor.  It is free of trans fats, hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup; artificial sweeteners, flavors or preservatives; and ingredients sourced from GMOs

At the beginning of 2011 we started to transition the entire LUNA Protein line to be gluten free. To do this, Clif Bar & Company has looked at all aspects of making our bars. Our ingredient suppliers have confirmed that all ingredients are gluten free, so they contain no gluten from wheat, rye or barely. Where we make our food is capable of making a gluten free food and we test our finished products to confirm that they are gluten free.

LUNA Protein is not a meal replacement bar or a diet bar. LUNA Protein is a delicious, nutritious and convenient snack that satisfies and curbs hunger between meals, and helps women more easily fit protein into their day.

The Luna protein bars come in five different flavors:

  • Chocolate peanut butter
  • Chocolate
  • Cookie dough
  • Chocolate cherry almond
  • Mint chocolate chip

I like all of the Luna protein bars, but I think that the chocolate cherry almond is my favorite.  They can be found in many mainstream grocery and health food stores across the US and online

Are you a traditional eater – eating three square meals a day?  Do you prefer to eat five smaller meals a day? 

***Luna Protein Bars sent me the products mentioned in this post free of charge for review purposes.  The thought and opinions that I have shared here are mine and have not been influenced by anyone or anything. 

Don’t forget to enter to win a Rice Krispies Gluten-Free Breakfast Kit!

Kellogg’s Gluten-Free Breakfast Kit Giveaway

Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten-Free has joined forces with Tricia Thompson, M.S., R.D., for Celiac Awareness month to debunk some of the gluten-free myths you may have heard.  The gluten-free diet has been in the news a lot recently, so it is important to make sure that the information we are hearing is correct.  Read on:

BATTLE CREEK, Mich., May 14, 2012 –Today, while “gluten-free” has become a household term, there are still countless myths that make it tricky for moms and their families to navigate a gluten-free lifestyle. This May, National Celiac Awareness month, Kellogg’s® Rice Krispies® Gluten Free cereal asked dietitian Tricia Thompson, M.S., R.D., to bust these myths to help moms make gluten-free meal choices easier.

Three Popular Gluten-Free Myths

With much uncertainty surrounding the gluten topic, Thompson’s myth-busting tips help moms feel assured that they’re making good choices for their kids:

· Myth One: You always have to pay more for gluten-free products.

Gluten-free doesn’t have to mean more expensive or a trip to a specialty store. For example, a box of Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free cereal costs the same amount as Kellogg’s Rice Krispies and is sold alongside the original blue box.

· Myth Two: All gluten-free snacks for kids require extra attention from mom and dad.

Not all snacks require a lot of time and preparation. With many favorite products now available in gluten-free varieties, it’s easy to whip up a quick gluten-free snack that the whole family will love, like Rice Krispies Gluten-Free Treats™.

· Myth Three: Food that’s labeled “gluten-free” is healthy.

Not all gluten-free products qualify as healthy. When grocery shopping, look for gluten-free cereals, breads, and pastas that are made with gluten-free whole grains or have been fortified or enriched as they are good sources of iron and B vitamins, which may be lacking in gluten-free diets.

“There are ways to eat a gluten-free diet without sacrificing several nutrients, including fiber, iron, folate and niacin,” said Thompson. “For example, a breakfast that includes a whole grain- or vitamin and mineral-fortified cereal, like Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free, served with sliced bananas and milk is a quick, healthy and delicious way for kids to start the day.”

Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free Cereal

Moms on the hunt for tasty choices for their kid’s gluten-free diet don’t have to look further than the cereal aisle, where they can find Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free cereal. The gluten-free ingredients give family members with celiac disease the chance to enjoy one of their favorite cereals and snacks. It’s also:

  • Made with whole-grain brown rice, eliminating barley malt (the source of gluten in the original cereal)
  • Made with three simple ingredients

· Fortified with 10 essential vitamins and minerals

Learn more about Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free cereal and find family-friendly gluten-free recipes at Stay in touch on Facebook at

Have you had a chance to try the new Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten-Free cereal?  If not, you can enter to win a “Gluten-Free Breakfast Kit” from Kellogg’s valued at $70.00!  We love the Rice Krispies, especially in Rice Krispies Treats! 

Gluten-Free Breakfast Kit

The breakfast kit includes:

BREAKFAST KIT: one (1) nine-ounce box of Gluten-Free Rice Krispies ®, one (1) Kellogg’s Rice
Krispies® Assorted Mugs, four (4) Linden Street Boston Checks Placemats from JC Penny, four (4)
Gerber Daisy White Napkin Rings from Crate& Barrel, one (1) Set of Monogrammed Napkins from West
Elm, and two (2) Rice Krispies Snap!™ Crackle!™ Pop!™ Bowls . Total ARV: $70.

To enter, you all have to do is simply leave a comment telling me your favorite way to eat Rice Krispies!  Giveaway will run until Thursday May 31, 2012 at 11:59 PM EST.  US residents only. Please read the giveaway rules for more specifics.

Good luck!!! 

Kellogg Company® has provided me with a Kellogg’s Gluten-Free Breakfast Kit to conduct a reader giveaway. However, my opinions on the product are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards Kellogg Company® or their products.

Melt Away Challenge

Recently I was asked if I would be interested in participating in the “Melt Away Challenge”.  The challenge was to replace my butter or other fats with Melt Organic for one week.  Melt Organic Buttery Spread was recently featured on the Dr. Oz Show as a healthier alternative to butter. 


What is so special about Melt?

I began my week with my Sunday morning breakfast of a gluten-free cinnamon raisin bagel with Melt Organic and a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar.  I love the buttery taste of Melt – the perfect way to start my day!


I continued on through the day and week using Melt Organic in place of extra virgin olive oil or butter.  Sauteeing vegetables, butter on banana bread, baking – Melt Organic was fantastic with them all!  Check out this bowl of pasta that I made from leftover pasta, grilled chicken and steamed veggies.  I tossed the veggies in a frying pan with some Melt Organic to heat them up, then I tossed in the chicken and pasta and finished it off with some parmesan cheese.


The Melt Organic website has an extensive recipes page complete with tips on how to cook with it. 

The true test of a new product in our household is to see if Jon likes it.  My “little” boy has turned into the pickiest eater.  If Jon eats a new product, we know it is good!  He has been using the Melt Organic on his banana bread and garlic cheese bread.


I simply cut a Schar baguette in half, spread with Melt Organic and sprinkled with garlic powder and mozzarella cheese before placing into the oven.  He loved it!

To find Melt Organic in a store near you, click here.  If you can’t find it, you can request it by completing this form and taking it to your favorite grocery retailer. 

Have you had a chance to try Melt Organic?  What did you think?

**The products mentioned in this post were sent to me free of charge for the challenge purposes.  The thoughts and opinions expressed here are mine and have not been influenced by anyone or anything.


I wanted to title this post “WTF” but figured that wouldn’t be appropriate, so we will stick with “Ramblings”. Some of this will be gluten-free, some of it is just me being me. 

I eat Van’s gluten-free waffles once or twice a week. On occasion I will notice a variation in size of the waffles, but nothing like I spotted yesterday. The waffle on the left is from the box I was finishing off, the one on the right is from the box I just opened. I thought maybe the size was a fluke, but I pulled out the other five waffles in the box and they are all the same size. What gives? Why are they so much smaller? Does that mean there are less calories in the smaller waffles? LOL!


Anyone else notice this with Van’s? 

Bonefish Grill can’t make my food right.  We went out to dinner for Aaron’s mother’s birthday and I asked for my scallops & shrimp to be prepared with the sauce on the side.  The dish came with the sauce all over the scallops & shrimp.  While I realize this is a small detail there are a couple concerns here.  First, if they are messing up this part of my meal, how can I be so sure that they have gotten the “gluten-free” part right?  Second, this is the third or fourth visit in a row that this has happened.  Is it really that complicated?  When the food is made the way I order it, it is very good, however, I am beginning to wonder if it is worth the hassle.  It is no fun to watch the rest of your party eat while you sit there waiting for your food to be remade.

P.F. Chang’s has an app available for your iPhone or Droid!  This new app allows the user to find a location, view the menu, make a reservation or place a take-out order.  How cool is that?  Just download the app to your phone, sign up for “Warrior Rewards” and you will receive a free order of lettuce wraps (which can be made gluten-free)!

Now I have to chat about TV show finales for a minute.  I usually DVR my shows and watch them when I stretch or do my PT exercises at night.  I feel like I am multi-tasking and can also FF through the commercials.  It is a win-win in my book!  Anyway, my thoughts on a couple of the finales I have seen so far:

Missing – Bummed it didn’t get renewed – it was like a new type of 24, but with a female lead character.  Glad they found Michael, but did they really have to end it with her “Missing”?  Way to leave us hanging forever!  I can think of a couple of other shows that I am still bitter about that were not renewed and left us hanging like this – ahem, Flash Forward comes to mind. 

Scandal – WOW!  I didn’t plan on watching this show, but didn’t have anything to watch one night when I was stretching, so I turned it on.  I am glad I did!  Really glad that they picked it up for next season.  Wonder what Quinn’s story is? 

Make it or Break it – I can’t believe that I am admitting that I watched this.  LOL!  The inner teenage gymnast in me loved watching the show for the gymnastics and then, of course, I got caught up in the drama.  Not pleased that the show is over now, but at least they wrapped everything up into a neat package at the end and didn’t leave us hanging. 

Grey’s Anatomy – Shonda, Shonda, Shonda…what are you doing to us?  Plane crash?  How did I not see that coming?  I do have to say that I went from not liking “McSteamy” to loving him on the show.  I am going to miss Lexie.

Awake – I thought this show had such a unique concept!  I got hooked on the show early on, but once I learned it was cancelled, I cut my losses.  I deleted the last two DVR recordings I had. 

Revenge – My absolute favorite!  I haven’t watched it yet, so no spilling the beans!!!

Bob’s Red Mill is offering free assistance and education in the form of a booklet to foodservice outlets wishing to offer a gluten-free menu.  The booklet is titled “The Foodservice Companion for Gluten Freedom.”  Kudos to Bob’s Red Mill for all that they do for the gluten-free community. 

Care to add anything to my ramblings? 

PS – I have another fun giveaway going live tomorrow morning, so make sure to check back to enter!!!

Review: The Gluten Free Bar

Usually I reserve protein bars for refueling after a hard workout or run, but I always keep one in my purse for emergency hunger attacks.  Sunday I took Hannah and her friend to see The Avengers, good movie, but a little too long (2 hours 22 minutes to be exact).  We all know that typical movie theater fare is unhealthy, expensive and probably not gluten-free.  Since I usually smuggle in snacks in my bottom-less purse, I try to make them a little healthier.  This particular time we went just around noon, so I brought The Gluten Free Bar as my snack of choice. 


There are three varieties of The Gluten Free Bar:

Cranberry toasted almond – California grown almonds, dried cranberries, organic brown rice, organic brown rice syrup, dates, organic agave nectar, rice protein, soy protein, whole golden flax seeds, pure vanilla extract, pure almond extract, sea salt.

Peanut butter – organic dry roasted peanuts, organic brown rice syrup, rice protein, dates, organic agave nectar, soy protein, organic brown rice, whole flax seeds, vanilla, sea salt.

Peanut butter chocolate – organic dry roasted peanuts, organic brown rice syrup, rice protein, dates, organic agave nectar, soy protein, semi-sweet chocolate chips, organic brown rice, whole flax seeds, vanilla, sea salt.

Can you figure out which one was my favorite?  While they were all good, my heart belongs to the peanut butter chocolate bar.  That is the one that I took with me to the movies and while it is no Reese’s Cup, it tastes a lot like it and is much better for me!  Each bar has between 11 – 13 grams of protein, 235-240 calories and 9.5 – 10 grams of fat.  This bar kept me full for a few hours until I was able to get home and eat a real lunch, and much longer than a candy bar or jelly beans would have kept me full. 


The best thing about these bars is no artificial sweeteners are added; My stomach has not been tolerating any type of artificial sweeteners lately, from xylitol to stevia to sucralose.  These bars do have added organic brown rice syrup and organic agave nectar, both of which are low-glycemic ingredients.  For more information or questions about ingredients, make sure to visit the FAQ page.  I do want to share what I found on the gluten-free status, though:

How do you ensure that GFB’s are gluten-free?
GFB’s are made of only gluten-free ingredients and are manufactured in a dedicated gluten-free facility; no gluten containing ingredients are allowed on-site.

The Gluten Free Bar is now a proud sponsor of golfer, Christian Blanchet, who is gluten intolerant.  If you haven’t tried The Gluten Free Bar yet, you can order a sample pack for only $8.00.  They will include a coupon for $5.00 off of a future order.  The bars can be purchased online or in stores across the US.  I found them recently at our Meijer grocery store.  They retail for $2.30/bar when you purchase per box (of 12) online.  Order 2 boxes and your shipping is free. 

Have you tried any of The Gluten Free Bars yet?  What did you think?

***These bars were sent to me free of charge for review purposes.  The thoughts  shared here are mine and have not been influenced by anyone or anything. 

Don’t forget to enter to win Kinnikinnick’s summer grilling giveaway – today is the last day to do so! (This time I really mean it!) Winking smile

Review: Cascade Fresh Yogurt

A couple of weeks back a friend mentioned she had found a fruit juice sweetened yogurt at Earth Fare (my new favorite store).  She picked a few up because they were on sale and she is trying to cut back on sugar.  I happened to see they were still on sale the next time I was in Earth Fare, so I picked up a couple.  The yogurt is made by Cascade Fresh, a company started 25 years ago.  More about Cascade Fresh:

Our Goodness
It starts with our philosophy and ends up in the cup

Did you know all yogurts are not created equal?
That’s 100% true. Just like our yogurt. Being family owned, we follow our hearts, instead of a corporate
formula. Each wholesome batch contains only the freshest natural ingredients. No preservatives. No
artificial sweeteners. No refined sugars. Our cows are as special as our yogurts, enjoying lush pastures
and humane handling at every level to produce luscious, wholesome milk that’s totally free of rBGH
(Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone).

The yogurt was on sale for $.50/cup, so I picked up the lemon chiffon and blueberry (both fat-free).



The stats:

Sun ripened fruits. Natural fruit juice flavoring only. Our 6-ounce yogurts contain about ¾ oz. of fruit juice concentrate by weight (about 70% natural sugar)

Each of our yogurts is cultured slowly, right in the cup, resulting in the highest number of beneficial Acidophilus cultures of any yogurt available.

Lactobacillus acidophilus
Lactobacillus rhamnosus
Lactobacillus casei
Lactobacillus bulgaricus
Bifidobacterium bifidum
Bifidobacterium Longum
Bifidobacterium infantis
Streptococcus thermophilus

FAT FREE: 2 points per serving

I have to say that this was some of the best yogurt I have ever tasted!  I have been a Greek yogurt convert for a couple of years, but this stuff may have changed that.  There was just enough sweetness in the yogurt without that overly sweet taste that is in some other sweetened yogurts.  I loved eating the blueberry straight from the cup, while I added in 1/4 cup of Enjoy Life Beach Bash seed & fruit mix in with the lemon chiffon for a substantial snack packed with 11 grams of protein!  The fat-free variety comes in 14 different flavors.  They also have a low-fat and whole milk varieties.  All of the Cascade Fresh yogurts are gluten-free and kosher.

Have you tried any of the Cascade Fresh yogurts?  I need to get some more as soon as possible!

Don’t forget to enter to win Kinnikinnick’s summer grilling giveaway – today is the last day to do so!

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