Archive for Dining Out
Eating gluten free can be a big adjustment to your diet, but really not that difficult to do at home once you’ve made the commitment. You can even eat gluten free at restaurants — look up menus on the Internet and/or call the restaurant before you leave for dinner. However, driving cross-country and finding restaurants along the Interstate highways that provide gluten-free meals is another challenge. Having Internet access and a good GPS while on the road is helpful, but isn’t much help finding restaurants with gluten-free meals at a specific exit, say 90 miles down the road when you need to fill up the car with gas. Fortunately, I found two books extremely helpful in making it a whole lot easier.
This is a great book to have for road trips. As you are traveling on the Interstate highways, you can look ahead and see what restaurants and services are listed for each exit. McDonald’s aren’t hard to find at any random intersection, but Chik-fil-a, Outback, and P.F. Chang’s may be a little more difficult to find without this book. The book also lists gas, lodging, grocery and retail stores, rest areas, etc. and which side of the highway you will find them.
This book lists, by state, restaurants, bakeries and cafes that offer something gluten free to eat. It also has a list of gluten-free menu items from national chain restaurants. I found it very helpful when trying out eateries that I hadn’t been to before. I have the second edition, but have realized that I really need to get the current, fourth edition that I’m sure has a lot of updates in it.
So, start with the Next EXIT to see which restaurants will be at the intersection where you want to stop. Then, look in the Triumph Dining Restaurant Guide to see if it has menu information on the restaurants. Then you’ll know exactly where and when to stop to find gluten-free meals for everyone in the family. No need to worry about battery life or Internet connection. Just look through the books to find what you need.
- Check out the page Eating Out for links to restaurants which provide information on their websites about eating gluten free in their establishments.
- Triumph Dining also has dining cards in various foreign languages (perfect for authentic ethnic restaurants) and a grocery guide for helping you find gluten-free food at the grocery stores.
If your kids aren’t out of school yet, no doubt they will be soon. It’s a great time to stock up on supplies to keep your kids busy and engaged this summer. We spend a lot of time outdoors, but I like to have some quiet indoor activities for them on really hot days. Find supplies and ideas for Free Activities at Discount School Supply (DSS) where they are currently having their End of the Year sale. (Sale good through May 31, 2009.)
I first discovered DSS more than three years ago while I was looking for a gluten-free play dough. My son was 2 at the time and was always putting things in his mouth. I didn’t want any play dough with gluten getting into his mouth, so I made my own at home. But I still wanted to see if I could find some pre-made. DSS was carrying the only commercially available gluten-free play dough I could find: Colorations Wheat & Gluten-Free Dough. It comes in a large plastic bucket that contains eight different colors of gluten-free play dough inside.
It was perfect for when my son started preschool. I gave the whole bucket to the teacher to keep in the classroom so they could use it whenever needed. The texture of the dough is a little different from other gluten-containing doughs. It’s smoother and not as squishy or grainy. My son’s teacher actually preferred it because it smells better. The bucket of Colorations play dough lasted about a year before it started to dry out and get too tough to work with. I make my own play dough at home at least once a year, but it’s nice to have the option to buy it. I also bought some of the play dough tools, including these
Dough Presses at DSS for my kids to take to preschool. That way I don’t have to worry about cross-contamination by sharing tools with others at school. My daughter has some for her class, my son has some for his class, and we keep some at home, too.
In addition to play dough, DSS has a lot of arts and crafts supplies that are labeled for gluten/wheat allergies as well as other allergies. The content of Gluten/Wheat, Dairy/Casein, Latex, Egg, Peanut/Tree Nut, and Soy is indicated on paint, ink, glue, and other craft products. Over 200 items are in the Common-Allergen-Free Products category at Discount School Supply. And, now they have a new line of items for helping kids with other Special Needs, too.
I’ve really found DSS to be a great source for arts & crafts and school supplies at very reasonable prices. I usually make one or two large orders every year to take advantage of their free shipping offer. And, this week they are offering Free Delivery on in-stock orders over $49! It’s a great time to check them out, and get ready for summer.