Last week Monday we returned home from the Gluten and Allergy-free Expo after a nice lunch (gluten-free for me of course) at Buzz Cafe in Oak Park. We stopped for dinner when we got back into town and Chaz asked me what my favorite part of the weekend was. Hand down it was the VIP party Saturday night. I got to spend time with my blogger friends I met earlier and got to meet new blogger friends. It was a truly amazing (and hella fun) time. Three hours went by a little too fast.
I would not be in the same place I am today without these amazing women. Sure, I pretty much knew what I was doing when I first went gluten-free. Lucky for me. Most people have no clue when they first go gluten-free. I was already in a position that the majority of my diet was already naturally gluten-free and I wanted to keep it that way. Through the amazing bloggers I started to follow, I found a larger sense of adventure in my diet and with what I was willing to experiment. I know I sing the praises of my “Big Four” (Amy Green, Shirley Braden, Iris Higgins, and Carrie Forbes) a lot, but it’s with good reason. Everyone else who follows them does the same thing. If I’m ever stuck on something I think to myself, I wonder if Amy, Shirley, Iris, or Carrie have done that? Then I check their blogs. If they’ve done it, no need for me to re-invent the wheel and kill myself in the process.
If you are reading this and are new to eating gluten-free I highly recommend checking out gluten-free bloggers. You will get a wealth of information that you won’t get elsewhere. We all have our own stories to share and you’ll discover that you are not alone. There are others out there just like you who struggled to get the right diagnosis and regain their health. Most of us are on Facebook and Twitter so you have many ways to connect with us.
Most areas have support groups and I would encourage that as well. A good support system is what we all need when making this transition in our lives. It will be especially helpful for you if you have family members or friends who are not being supportive of your dietary needs. It’s just plain helpful to connect with others like yourself face-to-face rather than just through the Internet.
Don’t be afraid to leave comments on the blogs. It’s a great way to connect and make friends with us! You’ll see comments from other bloggers on posts, as well. It’s just one of the ways we support and encourage each other. And if you have a blog yourself, we’re always looking for other bloggers to share and bring into the blogosphere.
It was amazing to be able to connect with my fellow bloggers face-to-face. I did get to meet Hallie Klecker (Daily Bites) but somehow managed to not get a picture of her at all. Next time, Hallie! Celiac In The City was also at the Expo, a fact I discovered after the fact. I would have loved to have met her there!
Some blog links to get you started. Not all of them are gluten-free blogs, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to adapt the recipes that do contain gluten or even other allergens if you have food allergies.