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I'm still working over here to try and become as knowledgable as possible so I am ready for our June 1st "startup" date (Still doing last minute tests and cannot go gluten-free till then)

I would love for everybody to give me an example of what their kids eat typically in a day. My son is 6 so "staples" in his diet are mac and cheese, pb&J, chicken nuggets etc so I am a bit concerned here - lol! We are all going gluten-free - I know DH and I will be fine - I'm more worried for my kids (Daughter is 3 and has not even been tested but she is VERY small for age like my son)

I also need ideas for school lunches. Next year he will go full time and has been talking for MONTHS about how he gets to pay for his lunch and eat it from the "restaurant"(cafeteria LOL) like the big kids :*( So not only do I need to find some great things to make(a sandwich everyday isn't going to cut it) but I need to make him feel special.

Also has anybody tried getting their school to provide gluten-free meals occasionally? If Nick could order even once a month from the cafeteria I know it would make a huge difference - plus it would be hot as opposed to the cold lunch he's going to have to get from me :*(

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If you are worried about school lunches I would sit down with the school dietician and head cook at the lunchroom NOW and talk about your childs needs. They will be making their lunchroom budgets now, if they already haven't and will need to know what to purchase. Possibly they could keep a few items on hand that he could purchase to suppliment his lunch from home. Maybe a bag of safe chips, or a cookie or juice box that would make him feel special still and buy from the "restaurant"! ha that is too cute!

People with Celiac Disease are covered under the Americans With Disabilities Act, so the lunchroom, does have to supply your child with an appropriate lunch. If you choose to go the lunchroom route.

Some lunch ideas that I take for my lunches: (I am a teacher)

Gluten free lunchmeat with cheese in a roll-up style (sometimes add lettuce)

Cold Cheeseburger (no bun) just ketchup to dip in

Jell-0 and fruit cups

Applesauce cups

gluten-free Chips

Doritoes (NOT nacho cheese)

Cheetos

Fritos

Corn Chips (mission)

Frito lay chips (read labels)

gluten-free Homemade cookies (make a batch and freeze in packs of 2)

Most of the time I make extra of whatever I cooked for supper and use a school microwave and warm up my lunches. I am sure that if you asked, the cooks might be happy to warm up lunch from home for your little one. This seems to be the best option for me personaly because I get bored with lunchmeat easily :D

Also in reguards to the staples of a 6 year old. DeBoles makes a rice pasta and cheese in a box (like the cheapie Kraft box) however DeBoles is not so cheap! ha It doesn't taste bad at all.

For chicken nuggets, I bread chicken breasts cut into pieces and fry them, makes healthier yummier chicken nuggets. There is also a company that makes gluten-free chicken nuggets....can't remember the name of them right now I am sure someone on here knows the name.

You could always do PB &J on rice cakes, not quite the same, but better than nothing :)

Oridea french fries (most plain ones with no seasoning) are gluten free, just read lables.

There are several good gluten free cereals out there. Peanut Butter Panda Puffs by Enviro Kidz (nature's path) are awesome. Enviro Kidz has a line of gluten-free cereals that are really good. Also mainstream...fruity pebbles are gluten-free (some worry about cross contamination with these, I have had no problems so far).

Kinninnick offers some great gluten free doughnuts. You have to order these online. They are not light and fluffy, but sure do make a darn good replacement when you are craving doughnuts. http://www.kinnikinnick.ca/

I wish you and your family the best, you have found a great support group here with these people. Visit often and ask questions!!

Best Wishes-

Jessica

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In reference to the gluten-free Mac & Cheese, I believe you can get a tax deduction for the difference in price between the normal brand and the gluten-free brand. I don't know how it all works, but it sure would add up over a year.

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when we were gluten free before having to go back on gluten for testing... (good for you for doing it right)

We typically had gluten free cereal for breakfast or eggs, yogurt and fruit. I also got Van's gluten free waffles.

Lunch I lucked out because he doesn't really eat sandwiches. so I would give him the insides of the sandwich.. the meat and cheese. I also gave him P&B on rice cakes.

With a fruit or veggie.

Dinner.. straight meat potatoes veggies home made.

A note.. for making mac anc cheese with gluten free pasta.. the pure rice pasta seems to fall apart and make more of a mac and cheese mush.. the rice with corn or potato flour pasta works alot better!

When we would have spagetti I would make a seperate smaller portion for him because of the cost..

For lunches.. get creative.. make your own 'lunchables' with some of those small glad wrap containers and gluten-free ingredients..

Your best bet is to find a store where you can stock up and have bunches of this stuff available.

And yes.. get with the school now.. get an IEP in the works.

There are more dangers lurking in the school than the lunch room.. many art supplies are not gluten free.. pastes playdough etc.. shaped pasta.. and then there are birthday parties, quite often food is used for rewards... <_< The sooner you start working on this the better!

Did you mention he is autistic too?? So you should already have an IEP right.. you can just add this stuff in.

Denise

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No he's not autistic - but he does have an IEP because of Apraxia of Speech :)

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Here's the lunch I pack daily for my daughter:

Skippy PB on Rice Crackers (the jelly slides off!)

Gogurt

Fruit

string cheese

Smartpuffs or EnviroKids bar

She never has the school lunch (never did before going gluten-free...so why start now... but we have discussed having her choose something gluten-free from the vending machines)

Also, we keep a batch of gluten-free cupcakes in the nurse's office freezer, for those b-day parties or parent readers that bring goodies in unannounced.

Her teacher also has dedicated a drawer in her desk (this teacher is wonderful!) for my daughter to keep her snacks which she can take whenever some goody is passed out that she can't have (or isn't sure of).

My daughter is in second grade and loves the independence of being able to get these snacks on her own. She doesn't have to ask... if something is passed out that she is not sure of, she says "No Thank you!" and helps herself to her 'stash' of snacks!

Good luck!

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Yorkshire makes the gluten-free chicken nuggets.

Last I checked, Kraft mac and cheese -- the cheese sauce packet itself NOT the pasta -- is Gluten Free. so you can cook your own gluten-free pasta in whatever shapes you prefer and then use that cheese sauce packet, milk and butter.

PB & J on gluten-free bread such as Kinnikinnick white sandwich bread packs well and the kids like it.

As far as the Americans with Disabilities Act goes, whether your child is protected at school will depend on a number of factors, no the least of which is whether the school is public/private (whether it receives federal funding), whether the school provides the meals to the other students, etc. It may be that the only accommodatino they have to make is to allow your son to pack his own gluten-free lunch -- it just depends on so much.

Also, there are regular fruit snacks out there that are gluten-free -- Kellogg's Disney are gluten-free, Shrek are, and several other brands also are gluten-free (please be sure to check with manufacturer).

Regarding the tax deduction: there are two things: you can be reimbursed under a health care flexible spending account if you/your spouse's employer offers one. You can allot up to $5000.00 a year, but this is your own money, pre-tax. It is use it or lose it by the end of the year, so you don't want to over allocate. You can get reimbursed for the difference between the gluten-free and the regular. So, if the regular Mac and cheese is $0.35 a box and the gluten-free is $2.00 a box, you can reimbursed (with your own pre-tax money) for $1.65. As far as the tax deductions, I believe (but am not sure) you have to have deductions equalling 10% of your income, so it's pretty hard to meet that threshhold. I think most people just do the flexible spending account for that reason.

Good luck.

Kim.

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Hi,

First, because it's been mentioned a lot, Macaroni & Cheese:

In reference to the gluten-free Mac & Cheese, I believe you can get a tax deduction for the difference in price between the normal brand and the gluten-free brand. I don't know how it all works, but it sure would add up over a year.

I've read about this tax deduction stuff and it seems rather complicated. I think you have to keep a spreadsheet of the stuff that you buy and compare prices. It doesn't seem worth it, especially when, at least for macaroni and cheese, there is an easy option. As someone already mentioned, the Kraft Macaroni and Cheese cheese packet is gluten-free...my mother has called the company. I love Tinkyada noodles, and they are all gluten-free...really good. I think they're just as good as the regular noodles. Just follow the instructions on the packet and substitute gluten-free noodles for the real ones.

Bread: EnerG Bread (white rice) is really good, tastes completely normal, and doesn't crumble. It works well for toast, sandwiches, and grilled cheese...etc. While on sandwiches, gluten-free pb's that are in regular grocery stores, and therefore, regularly priced, include: Skippy and Jiff.

Getting back to your question: lunch:

As far as the Americans with Disabilities Act goes, whether your child is protected at school will depend on a number of factors, no the least of which is whether the school is public/private (whether it receives federal funding), whether the school provides the meals to the other students, etc. It may be that the only accommodatino they have to make is to allow your son to pack his own gluten-free lunch -- it just depends on so much.

I go to a private school. There, I don't buy things in the cafeteria...instead, the cost is a set amount that is included in the tuition and then you eat whatever you want in the cafeteria. My mother made an appointment to talk to the chef at the school after I was diagnosed. In the meantime, I just brought a Genisoy bar to school (the Southern Style PB is gluten-free...and good. Then there's a Yogurt PB type that I don't like as much...other brands aren't gluten-free, so be careful). Now, the school provides a "Plain and Simple" lunch (gluten-free) to me and the other two Celiacs at my school. Of course, I can also eat fruits that are available. The "Plain and Simple" is fish nearly every day; I'm now tired of fish...but at least it's a meal.

I have to go, so I can't make this longer as I had intended to...I hope the little that I said helps, but I don't have time right now to lengthen my reply

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