Sunday, February 28, 2010

CelKids group, gift baskets, and travel blog

There are three items to talk about this week:
  1. The Raleigh CelKids group meeting at Earthfare.
  2. The University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center gift basket.
  3. Introduction to my new blog, Travel With Allergies.
1. Saturday afternoon was the quarterly meeting of the Raleigh Celkids support group. We met at Earth Fare organic food supermarket at Brier Creek and took a tour of the store which featured gluten-free products. (Look for the brown wooden shelves scattered throughout the store. Everything on them is gluten-free!) Also, a representative from Rosie's Plate in Raleigh was there to give us information and samples of gluten-free goodies. There is preliminary talk of holding a kids cooking class at Rosie's, so if this interests you, let them know.

There was a good mix of boys and girls at the meeting, with an age range from toddlers to seventh graders. The kids and adults got a chance to socialize and share drinks, snacks, and tips about thriving with celiac. This was our first time joining the group and it was a relief to meet so many local families dealing with the same issues. Everyone was friendly and I was surprised to meet some real live readers of Gluten Free Cary! All in all, the Celkids Network is a great resource for Triangle families; we are already looking forward to the next event. Check out the Celkids website here.

2. If you or a family member has been diagnosed with celiac disease in the last three months, call the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center to participate in their free, one-of-a-kind care package program. My daughter's care package arrived this week and included scores of gluten-free product samples, magazines, books, and coupons. See the pic above for some of the goodies we received. The letter accompanying the package says, "We hope this gluten-free care package reduces the overwhelming feeling that often accompanies the diagnosis," and includes a testimonial by a U.S. Armed Forces member serving in Iraq.

3. My final bit of news is that I've started a new blog called Travel with Allergies.

We love to travel and don't believe that having celiac disease, food allergies or sensitivities should stop anyone from traveling with ease and comfort. There are many, many resources on the web for people with celiac and food allergies, but they all seem to lack something. Even the sites that review gluten-free restaurants in major cities in Europe lack useful tips or resources for travel even slightly off the beaten track.

My attempt with Travel with Allergies is not to be comprehensive, but to aggregate links to as much useful information as possible. My introductory post can be found here. I am actively seeking contributions of tips, useful information, and links. If you have information to contribute, submit it via the comment box or contact me and you can become a guest blogger. The site will be a work in progress for some time.

Have a great week!

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