Gluten-Free Allergen-Free Vacation Tips

Posted on July 28th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Food Ideas, Saving Money/Sales, Tips, Travel | Read 12 Comments - Add Your Own »

airplane1I just got back from a family vacation and though the summer is already half over, I thought someone out there may still benefit from some travel tips for traveling with gluten intolerance or with food allergies…

When planning a vacation, rather than start with what to pack?, start with what’s my destination? Where you are going will determine how you are getting there and finally, what you need to bring.

THE DESTINATION

kitchen?

Where are you staying? Is it a tent, condo, hotel room, someone’s house? Ideally it would be somewhere with a kitchen. There are hotels that offer kitchens, so if you are really worried about the food that you will be able to eat, you might seek out this type of hotel (Marriott Residence Inns are one example, but there are others, and even some upscale hotels offer kitchens). Timeshares and condos have kitchens, but if this is not an option, there are some small adjustments you can make to turn any hotel room into a pseudo-kitchen.

If staying in a hotel room, the first thing to do is call and see if there is a refrigerator in the room. Most hotel rooms are equipped with a mini-frig or mini-bar. If there is not one in the room, request one. Explain your situation and perhaps they will be able to put one in the room for you. Also, ask if they have a microwave and/or toaster that you can use in the room. We did this on the last trip and were told that they do not have them in the rooms, but the woman on the phone suggested we buy a microwave or toaster when we got there. My mother-in-law had a better idea: she bought a small cheap toaster and packed it in her suitcase. (It was so inexpensive, we didn’t even bother to pack it back home.) That toaster and a small frig made it possible for us to have a bit of breakfast every morning (we saved a lot of money too!) — more on that later.

driving

If you are driving to your destination, you can bring more items in your car, like a microwave, or a thermo-electric cooler. This is a cooler that plugs into an outlet to stay cool (car adapters also available). No wasted space on ice! This makes a good frig in a hotel room, or helps keep your safe food away from everyone else’s at a friend’s weekend house (no worries about someone’s knife in your butter!)

shopping

What kind of grocery stores are at or near your destination? Do a search ahead of time to see if your shopping can be done there, rather than bringing everything with you. If there are special items you need, call the store ahead of time to see if they carry them. Perhaps they can even pack you a bag and hold it for you. If you plan to do your shopping there, plan the time you will go and make it a priority. If you don’t, it will be harder to find time during the vacation.

care package

No grocery stores where you are going? Don’t feel like lugging it all? How about mailing some food to yourself? Think of it as a care package! You will be so happy to find all your safe foods waiting for you! With airlines charging for bags these days, it might even be more economical to do it this way. You just need to plan ahead! If traveling abroad, be careful of customs restrictions.

dining out

If you are going to be dining out, try reading blogs (like this one!) that are located in the area to which you are traveling. Often they will discuss restaurants, bakeries or stores where they have found a safe meal. Online support groups or local support groups can also be good resources. Support organizations in other countries can be helpful also. Gluten Free Passport has a list of global celiac organizations.

If traveling to a foreign country, don’t forget your dining cards translated into another language. Check out Triumph Dining Cards or SelectWisely Food and Travel translation cards. Food Allergy Buddy provides free cards you print yourself and CeliacTravel.com also provides free translation cards and an iPhone application. More applications are available and coming out for smartphones — do a search for your particular smartphone.

GETTING THERE

byof

Once you have determined your destination, how are you getting there? The number one rule for travel is BYOF — Bring Your Own Food. You just can’t go wrong with this option. For every plane trip, I get up early and make sandwiches on gluten-free bread. I pack them in a soft little cooler with an ice pack. I also bring lots of dry snacks like chips, crackers, dried fruit, beef jerky, cereal, bars — these will also last if needed during the vacation or to save for the plane trip home. I bring a small box of rice milk for my little one (airlines allow passengers to bring milk for children — just let the security guards know). I also bring a few lollipops (either Yummy Earth or Dum-Dums for any child-bribing that needs to be done!)

airports

Airports can be a challenge, so think ahead! If you want or need to eat a meal there, you can actually look up which restaurants are located in each airport, and even which terminal. Just do a search on “Airport Name dining.” For example, San Francisco Airport Dining. Knowing the restaurants ahead of time can help find a quick safe meal, or at least let you know that you need to bring something of your own. You can always buy chips, nuts and dried fruit at the news stores (if that works for your allergy).

airplanes

As airlines cut costs, it is unlikely that you are even having a “meal” on an airplane, unless you are in first class or are flying international. If you are having a meal, you can try requesting a gluten-free meal ahead of time, but there will be no guarantees that they will get it right! Some airlines are offering boxes of snack pack items as meals. On the way home from our last trip, we were short on food so my husband bought all three snack boxes, took out the gluten-free items in each and made his own assorted gluten-free snack box. Wasteful, yes. But he didn’t go hungry!

automobiles

Going on a road trip? BYOF of course, and pack it in your cooler. If you need to make pit stops, research roadside restaurants ahead of time. Keep my page of fast food restaurant information and links handy. And don’t forget that you can probably find a grocery store along the way.

WHAT TO PACK

Once you have figured out your destination and how you are getting there, you can decide what is necessary to bring with you.

As I mentioned before, on our vacation we were able to have a simple breakfast every morning with just the toaster we brought and the mini-frig in the hotel room. We either had a piece of toast or a bowl of cereal, and complemented it with fresh fruit or yogurt. Here is what I packed:

  • fresh bread, that I made before we left. I use Pamela’s Bread Mix to make a loaf, I put it in a large plastic bag, and pack it in a children’s shoe box in a suitcase. The shoe box is the perfect size and prevents the bread from getting smashed. (Grab one the next time you are at Target — they always have empty ones lying around.)
  • another loaf of frozen or refrigerated bread, like Udi’s or Food for Life. I left it in the freezer until the morning we left and then stuck it in the suitcase. Because it was frozen, it didn’t get smashed.
  • new jars of Sunbutter and Jelly. I packed these in a padded wine bottle carrier — it worked perfectly!
  • 2 unopened boxes of gluten-free cereal
  • paper plates and bowls, and plastic spoons and knives. I should have packed a real knife for cutting the fresh bread.
  • rice milk (if you can drink regular milk, you can easily find it nearby, or ask room service)
  • coconut yogurt and dairy-free butter, packed in a cooler with ice pack
  • Redbridge gluten-free beer — okay, that wasn’t for breakfast, but very refreshing later in the day! Pack carefully. We have never had problems bringing beer in our suitcase, even to Mexico (but they sure thought we were crazy!)

Even if you want to go out for breakfast and get eggs and bacon some mornings, it’s nice to have the option of something simple. We liked that we didn’t have to go out for breakfast. These things work as a snack later in the day too, especially for kids.

Enjoy the rest of the summer and happy travels!


Gluten-Free Diet Guide

Posted on March 19th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Tips | Read 2 Comments - Add Your Own »

I want to let you know about my revised Gluten-Free Diet Guide for 2010!

The gluten-free diet can be overwhelming at first, especially when presented with huge lists, or even books, explaining what you can and can’t eat. My goal in creating this guide has always been to make this diet easy to understand, and to give people immediate knowledge to begin the gluten-free diet with confidence instead of confusion.

I also have a new print feature on the website — just click the Print button above any article to display it in print-ready format. The Gluten-Free Diet Guide is a great one to print!

To find the Gluten-Free Diet Guide in the future, click on the Celiac and Gluten-Free Info link – you will find it listed there!


Food allergies in college

Posted on February 26th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Food Allergies, News & Research, Tips | Read 7 Comments - Add Your Own »

graduationI went to college with no dietary restrictions. I ate in the dining hall, free to choose whatever I wanted. There is enough to think about in college without having to worry about food allergies. I can’t imagine how hard it must be for young adults today who have to manage their diets in addition to everything else.

The number of teenagers with food allergies entering college is on the rise. And according to a study done by the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, students with potentially life-threatening food allergies are at an increased risk for having severe reactions on college campuses. The good news is that colleges and universities are becoming better prepared with food allergy action plans, accommodations and better food choices for students.

An article is USA Today, “Colleges accommodate more students with food allergies”, highlights some of the ways students’ needs are being met.

A wonderful resource for college kids with food allergies is the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN). Their FAAN College Network has a great list of Frequently Asked Questions for young adults entering college, and a database search of colleges and their “Food Allergy Approach.”

FAAN also has a website dedicated to teens with food allergies, www.FAANTeen.org.

Kids with Food Allergies has an article called Allergies and College Life with advice from a student who went through the process herself. One of her main points, which is a great one, is to plan early.

If anyone has tips for attending college with food allergies, please share them!


Single cupcake holders that work!

Posted on October 20th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Babies & Kids, Holidays/Special Events, Products, Tips | Read 7 Comments - Add Your Own »

If you have a gluten-free child or a child with food allergies, you are no stranger to packing his or her “special” cupcake to bring to a birthday party. The challenge is how to send one cupcake and not smush it! I have found the answer my friends… Go Go Cupcake Holders!

cupcake-holders

These cupcake holders are awesome! Not only are they cute, but they really hold the cupcake in place with a perfectly tight fitting bottom and a spike in the top so the frosting doesn’t get smashed. Stick it in a backpack or hand it to your kid to take to the party (just make sure the latch is completely closed).

Here is a picture from the last time I used them:

cupcake-holder

The best part is that they are cheap: $6.99 for 2 on Amazon!


Gluten-Free Love at the food blogger conference

Posted on September 30th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Gluten Intolerance, Tips | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

Last Saturday I went to a food blogger conference, called BlogHer Food, in San Francisco. This is a niche group to say the least – first you have bloggers, then food bloggers. But even more of niche? Gluten-free food bloggers! Yes, we were there in force (all 10 of us!)

I should clarify that I don’t qualify as a “food blogger.” I’m not creating new recipes in my kitchen every day, I’m not writing a cookbook, and I don’t take 500 million photographs of my food with an expensive camera (although I’m working on taking like, one or two photos of my food creations with the camera I already own). I wish I could be more like some food bloggers who dine out all the time and write about it, but it doesn’t really fit with my schedule right now (or my wallet). Instead, I consider myself a guide, a teacher, a gatherer and sharer of information about living gluten-free and allergen-free. At the center of it all, of course, is food. Which brought me to the food blogger conference and gave me a chance to meet some of the “food bloggers” who have helped me and inspired me in my own gluten-free journey.

Why am I telling you this? Because I want to introduce you to the fabulous women that I had a chance to meet in real life. They were all so nice! And so… life-like!

So here they are, the gluten-free gals… please visit their blogs!

glutenfreelove

Back row:

  • Elana Amsterdam, of Elana’s Pantry – yes, she’s tall, and she fed all the starving gluten-free people homemade cookies (I ate four – thank you!) She also has a new gluten-free cookbook out! Look for a giveaway here soon.
  • Me, hopefully you know who I am by now
  • Karen Schuppert, of Cook4Seasons – looking forward to meeting with her locally and sharing gluten-free info!
  • Dr. Jean Layton, of Gluten-Free Organics and More! – not only is she knowledgeable but she is a lot of fun and great dancer (we found out at the after party!)

Front Row:

  • Stephanie O’Dea, of A Year of Slow Cooking – it’s always great to see Steph – love her wit and infectious laugh! And she has a slow cooking book coming out!
  • Seamaiden (her blogger name), of Book of Yum – she is cute as a button and I got to meet her cute-as-a-button baby. Check out her blog full of inventive recipes!
  • Ali Segersten, of The Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen – she is down-to-earth and beautiful. I wanted to hang out with her for a week and learn how to eat better!
  • Shirley Braden, of Gluten Free Easily – you couldn’t meet a nicer person and her blog is jam-packed! I have a feeling she helps a lot of people.
  • Diane Eblin, of The W.H.O.L.E. Gang – Diane defines the word spunky! She is also adventurous and has a great attitude about having multiple food intolerance.

Other noteable people I got to meet or see again:

  • Shauna James Ahern, of The Gluten-Free Girl – the GF inspiration for many, I got to see her baby this time! (missing from pic above because she had to put baby to bed!)
  • Elise Bauer, of Simply Recipes – I thank Elise for being a teacher to other bloggers

This was the first annual conference of its kind. Hopefully there will be another one! In the meantime, I need to get to work on some new recipes. Or not.


When to buy organic? A basic shopper’s guide

Posted on August 19th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Healthy Living, Tips | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

A friend said to me recently, “If I bought everything organic, my husband would kill me.” Well, it’s either him or the toxic pesticides, my dear!

But seriously, I understand her financial dilemma. Buying organic in this country usually means spending more, shopping at higher end grocery stores, and seeking out farmers markets. Add the fact that critics question if eating organic really makes a difference in people’s health, and it’s not a surprise that most people are going to shop at supermarkets and buy what’s cheapest.

So what do you do if you want to buy organic, but can’t afford it? One solution is to buy organic when it matters most: when buying the fruits and vegetables that are the most likely to be contaminated with pesticides.

The Environmental Working Group’s Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides can help you with your organic shopping list. The guide includes the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables and the 15 least contaminated fruits and vegetables.

THE DIRTY DOZEN
Buy organic when possible:

  1. peachesPeach
  2. Apple
  3. Bell Pepper
  4. Celery
  5. Nectarine
  6. Strawberries
  7. Cherries
  8. Kale
  9. Lettuce
  10. Grapes (Imported)
  11. Carrot
  12. Pear

THE CLEAN 15
These conventionally-grown fruits and vegetables are lowest in pesticides:

  1. onionsOnion
  2. Avocado
  3. Sweet Corn
  4. Pineapple
  5. Mango
  6. Asparagus
  7. Sweet Peas
  8. Kiwi
  9. Cabbage
  10. Eggplant
  11. Papaya
  12. Watermelon
  13. Broccoli
  14. Potato
  15. Sweet Potato

You can read the full list here: 47 fruits and vegetables.

Other reasons to buy organic: GMOs

When the DNA of foods has been genetically altered, these foods are said to be Genetically Modified Organisms, or GMOs. There are many arguments in favor of genetically engineering foods, such as improving a food’s resistance to disease, increasing the nutrients of a food, making a food taste better, and decreasing the allergenic component of a food. There are also many arguments against genetically engineered foods, such as potentially introducing new allergens into foods and that “messing” with the natural state of the foods could lead to unknown effects on humans, animals and the environment. A major concern in the U.S. is that there is no labeling requirement for the use of GMOs in foods, meaning that people are consuming genetically engineered food without knowing it.

How do you know if you are eating GMOs? Most genetically modified foods are made from corn, soybeans, canola and cottonseed. Since corn and soy are used in so many of our processed foods, chances are that GMOs are being consumed a lot! Remember that corn can come in many forms: corn starch, corn oil, corn syrup, and dextrose to name just a few! Soy also is used in many forms: soy lecithin, soybean oil, soy protein isolate, and more.

How can you avoid GMOs? Buy organic! Foods that are labeled organic cannot contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs). An organic label is really your only guarantee unless a company voluntarily states on their product that it is made without the use of GMOs. If you are concerned about GMOs, make sure that buy organic when buying products made with corn, soybeans, canola oil and cottonseed oil.

Organic animal products?

Animal products — meat, poultry, eggs and dairy — labeled organic means that they are raised without the use of antibiotics or growth hormones (rBST or rBGH).

If it isn’t labeled organic, does that mean that pesticides and GMOs and hormones are used?

No. Just because a food is not labeled organic doesn’t mean that it does contain pesticides, or GMOs, or growth hormones. Some companies haven’t gone through the certification process to be able to bear the organic label. To find out more information about a food, check the package, ask the farmers directly or call the product manufacturers.

Learn more!


Back to school tips for gluten-free and food allergy kids

Posted on July 28th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Babies & Kids, Food Allergies, Gluten Intolerance, Tips | Read 7 Comments - Add Your Own »

schoolbusWhether your child is gluten-free, nut-allergic or has other food allergies or intolerance, it’s not too early to begin preparing for the start of school or daycare. My own “baby” is starting kindergarten this fall and there are lots of things on my allergy to-do list! Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments.

Here’s what you can do now:

  1. If your child has an Epi-Pen, check the expiration dates. Get prescriptions for new ones if yours have expired.
  2. Get all the medical information you need from your allergist or pediatrician. Don’t wait until the last minute rush when your doctor will be too busy.
  3. Set up a meeting with the school and/or teacher to discuss your child’s allergies. Here are some items you will want to discuss:
    • What training does the staff have for working with a child with food allergies?
    • What policies are in the place at the school regarding food allergies?
    • What policies are in the place in the classroom regarding food allergies?
    • Who provides snacks and lunch?
    • What are the snack and lunchtime procedures?
    • How will your child be protected from coming into contact with or eating other children’s food?
    • What is the food policy about special events in the classroom? How will you handle birthday parties or class prizes? You will probably want to set up a snack box — a  container with special treats that are safe for your child. Also ask if there is a freezer where you could keep a container of frosted cupcakes or other baked goods that could be microwaved at the last minute. Remember to boldly label everything!
    • How will substitute teachers be notified of your child’s allergy or intolerance? You may want to provide the teacher many copies of a pre-written notice so that he/she doesn’t have to do it or forget. Here is an example letter for a child with celiac disease: Letter to Substitute Teacher
    • What is the food rule on the bus? Is the bus driver prepared in case of emergency?
  4. Provide the teacher with a list of safe and unsafe school supplies. You can find this information here: Gluten-free art supplies for school and Potential food allergens in preschool and school activities.
  5. Discuss food allergies with your child… again. There are some great books that really help your child understand it better. Some I recommend:
  6. Read up on the topic of kids and food allergies yourself. Here are some other books that are great for parents or caregivers of allergic or gluten-free children:

One final tip: the easier you make it for the school, teachers and other parents, the more cooperative everyone will be!


3 tips for hosting people with food allergies

Posted on December 16th, 2008 by Alison | Posted in Holidays/Special Events, Tips | Read 1 Comment - Add Your Own »

The holiday parties are in full swing with more on the way. If you are the host of an event this season, you may feel stressed or put out by someone with a food allergy or special dietary request. I mean, you have enough to do already, right? It is normal to feel this way, but keep in mind that anything you do to accommodate that person will be so appreciated. It is a hard time of year for those who can’t eat to their hearts delight, but here are three things you could do to make it easier for the person with special dietary needs. It would truly be a wonderful gift!

1. Call or Email

If you know that someone has a special dietary need, contact them ahead of time. Give him/her a call and discuss the menu. Sometimes what you have planned, or at least part of the meal, may already be okay and you don’t have to worry about it. Or, perhaps a simple substitution or ommission of something may make the food okay for that person. Or, the person may tell you not to worry about it at all, that they will bring their own food. Even if you end up not being able to make the accommodations, the person will be thankful that you thought to ask them about it ahead of time.

2. Know Ingredients and Save Labels

I have often shown up at someone’s house for a party not expecting to be able to eat anything. But if I am able to ask about ingredients or read package labels, I may find that I can. Don’t be offended if someone asks you for the package to read labels, even if you have told them that you think it is okay – it is just something we food-intolerant people have to do to save ourselves from making mistakes! So if you just don’t throw away the labels until after the party, it would be a great help!

3. Serve Things Separately or Not at All

Keeping different foods on separate plates helps a person avoid foods to which they are intolerant. For example, if you know someone can’t have gluten, serve the crackers and cheese on separate plates. This way there is less chance for the crackers crumbs to contaminate the cheese and the gluten-free person can still enjoy the cheese alone. (We gluten-free people have no problem eating hunks of plain cheese!)

You might also consider serving sauces and add-ins on the side. A gluten-intolerant person may be able to have a meat dish without the sauce. A dairy-intolerant person may be able to have your salad if you don’t put the feta cheese in it. If people add these things themselves it will allow everyone to be able to eat the meal.

If you know someone is deathly allergic to something, consider not serving it at all. This may seem obvious, but often there is a bowl of nuts at a party where there are nut-allergic kids. Even if the allergic person doesn’t eat it, the liklihood that those nuts will end up on the floor or somewhere else is high. Plus, it just might make someone so nervous, especially parents of allergic kids, that they won’t even enjoy your party. Skip the nuts — people won’t even miss them.

Well…

I’m off to a party tonight… wonder if there will be anything there I can eat! If you know someone who might need this information, you can email them the link using the little email button below.


Beware the corn tortilla, it could have wheat!

Posted on September 29th, 2008 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Restaurants/Stores, Tips, Wheat Allergy | Read 27 Comments - Add Your Own »

corntortillas.jpg

I’ve got bad news for you wheat-free and gluten-free people out there: some corn tortillas are now being made with WHEAT GLUTEN! It is a disappointing trend that makes dining out even more difficult. And it’s just another example of how wheat is added to almost everything our society eats… no wonder more and more people are suffering from gluten intolerance and don’t even know it.

I first encountered this at Mamacita restaurant in San Francisco when they opened a few years ago. After it replaced the delicious regular restaurant of mine, Marimba (I still miss it), my husband and I ventured in for brunch one time to see what all the hype was about. After informing our waitperson that we could not eat gluten, he returned to tell us that there was nothing on the menu that we could have. NOTHING! The “corn” tortillas and the tortilla chips had wheat in them. I was seriously shocked (and hungry and really mad and I think I almost cried – I was pregnant at the time!) I checked that restaurant off my list but didn’t suspect that this would be a problem in other places.

A few weeks ago, I received a call from my friend Karen who has been gluten-free for 2 years now. She had eaten at Guaymas restaurant in Tiburon, just north of San Francisco. After she ate one and a half corn tortillas, she stopped. She thought they tasted a little different, kind of sweet, and continued the rest of the meal. Her stomach cramped a little throughout dinner, but she brushed it off, not realizing what she had eaten. The next morning she didn’t feel well. But, since the weather was so beautiful, and the restaurant has a great a view of San Francisco, she and her husband returned the following night. After pressing the waitperson to talk to the chef to find out if there was wheat in the corn tortillas, she found out that indeed there was! Since that night, she has found yet another restaurant using corn tortillas with added wheat.

And then yesterday, I was in a grocery store and saw new tortillas being made my La Tortilla Factory, who makes the gluten-free wraps. I love La Tortilla Factory for going out of their way to create something for the gluten-free community, but now they are making new “handmade style corn tortillas” called De la Cocina (From the Kitchen), that contain WHEAT GLUTEN.

All of these restaurants and makers of tortillas claim that they have “authentic” food. First of all, putting wheat gluten in corn tortillas in not authentic. Authentic corn tortillas are made of corn. Second of all, it is misleading to call it a corn tortilla. How is anyone supposed to know now whether a corn tortilla really means a corn tortilla?

Call them Cornwheat tortillas or at least put a big warning that says “Contains wheat”, so there is no confusion for those of us that count on corn tortillas every time we go out for Mexican food, or, more importantly, to warn those who would have a serious reaction to wheat. Just when I thought food companies were starting to get it…


Gluten-free art supplies for school

Posted on August 18th, 2008 by Alison | Posted in Babies & Kids, Celiac Disease, Food Allergies, Gluten Intolerance, Products, Tips, Wheat Allergy | Read 8 Comments - Add Your Own »

glutenfreeplaydough.jpg

It’s back to school time and time to make sure that the products used in the classroom are safe for kids with food allergies! The main concern with classroom supplies is gluten or wheat because wheat flour is a common ingredient in craft supplies.

Some kids cannot make contact with wheat at all. For other kids, it is an issue of eating gluten (as in little kids eating play dough) or gluten getting on the hands and then the hands go in the mouth or the hands touch food.

Here are the things to watch out for:

PLAY DOUGH

Most play doughs contain wheat, including PLAY-DOH brand. PLAY-DOH’s website says it does NOT contain peanuts, peanut oil, or any milk byproducts. Crayola Dough also contains wheat, but does not contain peanuts, shellfish, fish, tree nuts, eggs, milk or latex .

Here are some wheat and gluten-free play dough or modeling clay options:

PAPER MACHE

Paper mache and wallpaper paste and that smelly paste we used to use in school (that some kids liked to eat!) contain wheat flour.

Here are some wheat-free alternatives to traditional paper mache:

  • Make your own paper mache with this recipe from Planet Pals:
    Ingredients: Glue, water, paper
    Directions:
    Mix two parts white glue with one part warm water. Stir well and the Paste is ready to use. Now you need paper-newspaper works well! Dip each piece of paper in the liquid mixture and apply it one piece at a time to form your shapes.

  • Claycrete Instant Papier Mache – made from 100% pure paper pulp, you mix with water and knead it and model it.

PAINT

Most paints are free of food allergens, but Elmer’s Finger Paints contain wheat and oat products.

OTHER ART STUFF

Another thing to watch out for is dry pasta used for art projects (again, because some kids like to eat it). If you know about it ahead of time, you can substitute gluten-free pasta in almost any shape, or use dried beans or beads or whatever else you can think of instead.

Now parents, get that bulletin board or refrigerator ready for all those beautiful works of art!