Archive for January, 2013

Gluten-Free Friday 2/1/13

Thursday, January 31st, 2013
 

My family is not gluten-free but we have many wonderful friends who are. For their benefit and at the request of our friends over at House-54 I endeavour each Friday to discuss Gluten-Free lunch ideas. I hope these ideas will benefit all of you as well! If looking for more Gluten-Free lunch inspiration please visit my friend Keeley at Keeley McGuire Blog!

My beautiful 22 month old son has Down syndrome. Studies show that up to 10% of people with Down syndrome have Celiac Disease. This is mostly attributed to the fact that people with Down syndrome are more likely to develop autoimmune diseases. Thus far we do not believe that my son has Celiac Disease but I have often thought that if he did I am equipped to handle it. I recognized that it isn’t entirely easy because I have learned that you must give thought to everything you eat and drink. I do believe that writing these gluten-free posts has given me tremendous insight into things to consider and sources of hidden gluten! I have been so pleased to learn however that a gluten-free life can be achieved without too much sacrifice!

This week I want to discuss gluten-free lunch snacks. Most children bring cold lunches to school and snacks are a big part of that. Not to mention that young school age children often have designated snack times in additional to lunch time. Below I have compiled a list of over 30 gluten-free lunch box snack suggestions that are easy to find, easy to prepare, easy to pack and easy to eat! Although, these snacks are certainly not all exclusive to kids so adults please enjoy too!

 

Fruits, Veggies, Nuts and Seeds

  • All fresh fruits and veggies. Consider grapes, carrot sticks, celery sticks, apple slices, cucumber slices, bananas, kiwi, tomatos, snap peas, orange slices, green beans, broccoli, pineapple, mango, papaya, pepper slices and any other fresh fruit or veggie your family loves!
  • Applesauce cups or pouches such as GoGo Squeez.
  • Fruit Cups
  • Pistachios (shells can be choking hazards for small children) or any nut in it’s pure form without seasonings
  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Dried Fruits (raisins, apricots, mangos etc)

Crackers, Chips and other Crunchy Snacks

Sweet Treats

I wonder what is your favorite gluten-free snack? I think you’ll agree after reading this list that gluten-free doesn’t have to mean a sacrifice in yummy snack options!

Please note that this list does not factor other types of food allergies. Please be aware that some of these items may contain nuts, dairy or other possible allergens. Always check product labeling for your allergy concerns before consuming and call the product manufacturer if not clear!

For a review of Way Better Snacks refer to this post!

Lunch pictured at the top of the post includes:

  • Grapes, apple slices, cheddar puffs, pistachios and a sandwich cut in the shape of a football helmet(use your favorite gluten-free bread like Rudis or Udi’s). It sometimes helps to microwave gluten-free breads for a few moments before attempting to cut with a cookie cutter.

Sincerely,

Products used in this post:

Superbowl Showdown…

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013
 

Superbowl Showdown! Will you be watching?

Although our favorite team failed to make it to the Superbowl this year, I assure you my family would not miss watching this game! We are huge sports fans (well, most of us) and this year promises to be yet another sensational showdown! There are so many intense storylines, East versus West and brother pitted against brother, that make this game a must see unfolding drama to behold! All this meeting in neutral territory to play out in the heart of Louisiana… New Orleans!

Even if you are not a sports fanatic, as my family is, perhaps you tune in just for the commercials? These ads will be widely discussed for days following the big game. The best or the worst, no matter, will surely gain their businesses much publicity so well worth the millions invested for these brief moments! Let’s face it, you can’t miss watching that E-Trade baby! What will that wacky baby be up to this year? Haha! Or the infamous Go-Daddy commercials? Maybe the craziness of the Doritos commercials? Which are you waiting to see?

Maybe your oblivious to the commercials? Well what about the half time show? Does that draw your interest? I know the world will be tuning in to see Beyonce perform in the wake of her controversial inauguration lip synching. Rumor has it there will be a Destiny’s Child reunion. I wonder what else?

Superbowl squares? Yes, no, maybe? ;) Well alright then!

Even if none of that appeals to you I am sure you are aware that the big game is this weekend? February 3rd in New Orleans and my family is ready! We will be watching, snacking and cheering so hopefully this year’s showdown will not disappoint! In celebration I surely had to put together a Superbowl lunch for my 10 year old Brendan! This is a lunch that will most definitely appeal to my XBox playing, Madden 2013 loving son!

This Superbowl themed lunch is served in a Lunchbots Trio and includes:

  • A football shaped sandwich with the letters XLVII cut from cheese on top representing the 47th Superbowl. The crown pick represents New Orleans where the showdown will be played out!
  • The red strawberries subtlely represent the team color for the San Francisco 49ers while the purple grapes do the same for the Baltimore Ravens. 2 football picks are poked into the fresh produce, one for each team!
  • Finally the green snap pea crisps and the white salt pepper popped rice cakes give a nod to the field.

Now I am left to wonder who this year’s victor will be! Do you have a favorite?

Sincerely,

Lunchbots products used in this post available here:

Shop LunchBots

Also used in this post:

Off with their Heads…

Sunday, January 27th, 2013
 

One of my favorite childhood movies is Alice in Wonderland based upon the book written by Lewis Carroll. The idea of this little girl following a rabbit down a hole in the ground into a strange and fascinating world has such a magical quality. Oh the characters she meets! The rabbit, the caterpillar, the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire cat and the Queen of Hearts are all strange and fascinating indeed! January 27th is the birthday of Lewis Carroll and although he passed away many years ago today I celebrate his birthday and his everlasting tale of Alice with a special lunchbox!

In Chapter 8 of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland our heroine comes across the Queen’s Croquet Ground. She encounters a very unusual sight; card gardeners painting white roses red! Their explanation hints at the tempestuous nature of their sovereign, the Queen of Hearts! The Queen arrives with the King and her fleet of card soldiers who do her bidding.

“Five and Seven said nothing, but looked at Two. Two began in a low voice, ‘Why the fact is, you see, Miss, this here ought to have been a red rose-tree, and we put a white one in by mistake; and if the Queen was to find it out, we should all have our heads cut off, you know. So you see, Miss, we’re doing our best, afore she comes, to — ‘ At this moment Five, who had been anxiously looking across the garden, called out ‘The Queen! The Queen!’ and the three gardeners instantly threw themselves flat upon their faces. There was a sound of many footsteps, and Alice looked round, eager to see the Queen.”

The frightened but brave Alice confronts the Queen and winds up playing a bizarre game of Croquet until the whole wild scene is interrupted by the Cheshire cat.

My lunchbox today is a depiction of one of the Queen’s card soldiers. A strawberry cream cheese sandwich serves as the body of the soldier with a strawberry head and a strawberry staff. The letter “A” has been cut from cheese and mini chocolate chips are used for face details. I also included orange slices and broccoli as snacks. Nestled in this fresh produce are a rabbit and mushroom food picks giving a nod to other scenes within the book. Finally Pirate’s Booty holds additional food picks, a club and a spade.

Sincerely,

Easylunchboxes available here:

Some other items used:

My lunchbox today is part of a link party in celebration of Lewis Carroll’s birthday. Check it out!

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