Back to School!

Jennie and Mary

Welcome to The Celiac Pack! This is our very first blog entry. 🙂

It is the first day of school for many children across the country. This can be a hard time for many children and many parents, especially those children with dietary restrictions and in our case, Celiac Disease. In addition to purchasing school supplies, clothes and shoes, we are also shopping for kid-friendly, gluten- free lunch box items. We stroll the grocery store and pass the cookie aisle, pass the bread aisle, and pass the snack-sized cracker aisle (Goldfish and Cheez-Its) and there is an immediate sadness that we feel when we know our children cannot eat all those fun things. It is funny the things they miss. Mary would do anything to eat Twizzlers, even though they were never her favorite before she was diagnosed. Katie loved Cheez-It crackers and still drools as we pass the cracker aisle. And oh Judy just loved those chocolate-chip mini muffins!

It is a definitely a challenge, however, thankfully over the last several years more gluten-free (GF) products have come out and the lunch-making process is easier. We have to really plan out our children’s lunches to make sure all the right GF products are available in the pantry. Our children do eat quite healthy with plenty of fruits and veggies, but it is a daily goal to make these lunches fun. We are constantly on a mission for kid-friendly GF food! We always incorporate a small piece of chocolate or candy, because we know they are looking across the lunchroom and see their friends eating their old favorites. It’s amazing what a couple of Hersey kisses in their own lunch boxes will do…

We are so blessed with these beautiful girls. We are lucky they were diagnosed when they were younger and live healthy lives. They are all very active with sports, school, and in their communities. As moms, we constantly think about what could have happened had they had not been diagnosed. Undiagnosed Celiac Disease can have harmful long-term complications. We accept our lunch-box woes as a challenge knowing that gluten-free foods are the “medicine” our children need.

Happy Back to School everyone! Enjoy your year! 🙂

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