Rallying the Gluten Free Community — Support gfJules (formerly Jules Gluten Free)

I recently attended the Gluten Free Living Conference in Orlando — and as much as I want to share all of the fun photos from that weekend, there’s something else we have to talk about first.

If there is one thing I know about the gluten-free community is that when we need each other for support, people come together like I have never seen before. We rally behind those in need, give them a voice, or just allow their voice to be heard loud and clear.

So that’s why we’re here today. To clear the air. To let you know what’s been going with my friend Jules from Jules Gluten Free, now gfJules.

I know some of you are already big fans of her flour mix — it was one of the first flour mixes I experimented with when going gluten free in 2008. She is also one of the founders of the 1 in 133 campaign. Because of her hard work, the gluten-free labeling standard has passed and will go into effect in August! (She has helped everyone who is GF!)   I have had the chance to get to know Jules through her annual GF Cookie Contest and finally got to meet face to face in Orlando just weeks ago.

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Here’s a brief history of how Jules started and how we got to where we are today:

  • She started her company in 2006 after publishing her first book, set out to learn all things related to running a GF business and started selling her products in 2007.
  • Her business was booming and as we all know, “it takes a village” to get things done, so she took on business partners (investors) in 2008 to help run the daily operations — unfortunately in recent years it became quite clear that her vision (as a member of the GF community that she advocates for, educates, and holds near and dear to her heart)  and the vision her business partners had for the company were not the same.
  • Things went downhill from there with her partners behaving in a way that makes my blood boil and would take an entire blog post to discuss, (not paying her for her work, preventing her from communicating with OUR community through her business, and canceling the order for flours for her own wedding cake in just a few weeks) but instead of focusing on all of the negative (Jules wouldn’t want that!) I am here to rally our community to focus on the positive…

 

Jules is starting over…

  • She has resigned from her old company and is starting a new company, gfJules
  • Plans are in the works to bring her products back (and much more!) as quickly as possible, but as you know, this will take time and money. (I cannot even imagine the funds she has already put into this legal battle.
  • She’s a FIGHTER and is NOT giving up! See that smile on her face in the photo? That’s the one she wears every single day, even when times get tough, even when people she trusted turned into something they should be embarrassed of themselves for, even when it would have been easier to just call it a day and give up — not Jules, she’s more dedicated than ever to the gluten-free community!
  • The community was confused as to what exactly happened, which is why we need to rally together and get the word out about her new company, gfJules – and we need to come together to support our friend when she needs it most!

 

How we can help:

  • While you’re there, read the amazing comments of support and love from our community!
  • If you can, give a gift to Jules to help her rebuild her business and continue to do what she does best — GIVE to our community. There are gifts for giving  or maybe something more creative. I’m giving and hope you can too, any amount helps!
  • If you are interested in giving as a group, I for one would LOVE to see a recipe for our GF Get Together Group, something Milwaukee-style — I’ve raised over $4,000 in the last four years for the Celiac Disease Foundation, so I KNOW we could get together the $300 for this gift… if you’d like to join in the fun for this gift, let me know!
  • SHARE this post. Even if you are unable to give at this time, please considering passing this post along to others who may be able to help.
  • Send Jules some gluten-free-style love — your kinds words of support are what is keeping her going!

Not only will I be giving to her fundraising efforts, but I’ll be shouting about it from the rooftops — I can honestly tell you that she is a kind person with the most generous heart. After being on the expert panel at the conference, she made time for each and every person who waited in line to talk with her. I snuck in for a quick hug goodbye before I hopped on my plane, and there she stood, holding the delicate hands of an elderly woman, listening to her tell her stories of learning to bake gluten-free. It was the most touching moment. She’s the real deal, my friends. She loves this community and would do the same for each and every one of us.

Let’s rally!

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Honored to be part of this gluten-free world! From left to right: Andrea from Rockin’ Gluten Free, Anna from Gluten Free Jet Set, Chrissy from Glam Without Gluten, (me!) Amie from The Healthy Apple ,(in front) Johnna from In Johnna’s Kitchen, THE lovely Jules from gfJules, Linda from The Gluten-Free Homemaker , and Shirley from gluten free easily.

 

Gluten Free & Allergen Free Expo Chicago — FREE TICKETS!

Being an official blogger for the GFAF Expo in Chicago next weekend has its perks — not only do I get to mingle among some of my favorite blogger friends and vendors, but they’re also giving me FIVE regular admission one day passes to give away!

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Actually all of the blogging team (and other vendors/authors) are giving away tickets too, so I rounded up a little list, but there are others out there as well — go check them out, show some GF from Milwaukee love, and enter to win:

Imagine stepping into a gigantic open room full of tables overflowing with samples and being able to EAT.IT.ALL! (of course you still have to check on ingredients if you have multiple intolerances/allergies, but this is the place to be for ingredient checking!)

If that hasn’t excited you enough — take a look HERE at the vendors. Impressive, right? Did you see Molly’s Gluten Free Bakery listed? They are our hometown hero — be sure to stop by their booth at the expo… they did our gluten-free wedding cake, cupcakes and desserts!
Enough already. Where are those tickets?

 

FREE TICKETS to the GFAF EXPO CHICAGO

To ENTER for the FREE TICKETS leave a comment below telling me a little something about you: which day you’d be coming, a product you just HAVE to try at the expo, how long you’ve been gluten-free, the name of your dog or any other fun fact. It’s that simple! (I’d also love if you SHARE this post on our timeline, Facebook would like me to PAY for you to see FREE information and get FREE tickets, so sadly, many of our GF-friends are missing out on posts — the more the merrier!)

WANT EXTRA ENTRIES? Complete each task below, leave a separate comment for each, that’s an additional 6+ entries!

  • Of course you should already LIKE GFAF Expo on Facebook — they post often about apps, the GF candy lists, blogs you should be reading, and all the info on the expo, but if for some crazy reason you haven’t already, click on that LIKE button on their page and come back and let me know you’re follow along.
  • Same for Twitter, FOLLOW @gfafexpo then leave a separate comment for doing so.
  • Please tell me you LIKE my Celiac in the City page on Facebook? Leave another comment for that.
  • You know the drill, FOLLOW @celiacinthecity on Twitter and get another entry by leaving another comment.
  • On Instagram? FOLLOW: celiacinthecity and leave a comment for that!
  • SHARE this post on your timeline, Instagram feed, or Twitter account and leave a comment EACH time you do so!

Winners will be drawn  TUESDAY, APRIL 8th at 10pm CST, be sure to leave your NAME & EMAIL so I can contact you and let you know that you’ve won. The lucky winners will be able to pick up their tickets at the GFAF Expo Registration Desk on the day they choose to attend.

{Coffee Cake Muffins — March Muffin Madness}

I’ve been talking about March Muffin Madness over on my FB page this month — my dear friend Shirley is hosting one heck of an event! (click on the image below for all the event info and a list of muffin recipes to bookmark!)

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There’s a new muffin recipe every.single.day.

My contribution?

These.

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Coffee Cake Muffins!

 

What are you waiting for?

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Get over to gluten free easily and get the recipe!

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Your Saturday morning coffee just got better. (mine too — we’re off to FLORIDA for a week of fun, sun, and gluten-free goodness!) :)

EnJOY!

 

 

 

 

 

 

GFAF Expo Chicago

Guess what I’m doing next month?
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I’m an official blogger for the Gluten & Allergen Free Expo on April 12-13. 
Care to join me? (I’ll be there all weekend!)
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We go each year with our GF Get Together group and this year is no different — we’re organizing a meet-up at the expo! So grab your tickets now (using the code above) and get ready for a weekend filled with more gluten-free goodness than you’ll know what to do with.
Click HERE to see the Facebook invite and join the group.
And while you’re over on FB, check out the GFAF Expo and show them some GF love.
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Each year, I find new gluten-free goodies to try. And although I now go for more of the networking opportunities, (which are going to ROCK this year!!!) if you’re new to gluten-free eating, or a seasoned vet, I guarantee you will find something new-to-you. I went to the expo shortly after being diagnosed and I was in gluten-free heaven! I cannot tell you how relieved I was to be able to walk into a room and be able to eat EVERYTHING!
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When do we get to do that?
Are you going to be there? I’d love to see your smiling face. Leave me a comment if you are going to be there, then keep an eye out for this girl and her camera. :)DSC_7142

oatmeal raisin breakfast bars

If you follow along on Instagram — and I hope you do, I’m actively posting food photos daily — you know I’ve been participating in the #alittletoofluffy challenge with 74 other Instagram ladies.

At the end of December, I hit bottom. On a few different levels, including kicking and screaming my way into a new year that placed me not quite where I thought I would be entering 2014.

And the husband gave me a new coat for Christmas (a size larger than the one I have of the same brand) that didn’t quite zip. Eeeeeeek. :(

But instead of exchanging it, I decided to keep it and get moving — that same week, I saw Danielle and Carina posting about the #alittletoofluffy challenge, it was perfect timing. It’s basically doing what you can do for YOU to be active, make healthy food choices, and rally with a group of supportive women, all at different stages in their weight loss/health journeys for a total of six weeks. Perfect, right!?

We’re half way through the challenge and I’m happy to report I’ve been wearing my new down coat all weekend! I won’t lie, it’s a little more snug than I’d like it to be in a couple spots, but I’m well on my way… and I’m currently in 7th place out of 75 women as of yesterday, so please keep your fingers and toes crossed!

Eggs have been my breakfast of choice.

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Eggs and smoothies.

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But I needed some other on-the-go options, so I adapted my Banana Nut Breakfast Bites into these little breakfast bars.

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Oatmeal Raisin Breakfast Bars

(gluten-free, no sugar added, dairy-free)

2 cups certified gluten-free oats (GF Harvest is my go-to brand)

2 small overripe bananas (keep them in the freezer!) 

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

½ cup raisins

1 egg, beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon baking soda

3 tablespoons coconut flour

 

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease pan.

In a large bowl, add all ingredients and stir to combine. Let it sit for a few minutes, then stir again — the coconut flour soaks up liquid quickly. Using a cookie scoop or spoon, scoop batter into pan squares and pat down to evenly distribute.

Bake at 350 for 14-16 minutes, until they start to brown on the top and edges. Allow to rest for a few minutes in the pan, then remove and cool completely. (or eat one warm like I did)

EnJOY!

Makes 12 servings, 100 calories each serving. 

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Sarah’s Baking Notes: 

  • That fun pan is the Pampered Chef Brownie Pan, my sister-in-law gave it to me as a gift and she’s a consultant if you need anything, just shoot her a message via her PC page. 
  • Like the other breakfast cookies, these aren’t super sweet (just they way I like them) so if you prefer more of a treat, you could add honey, coconut sugar, or sugar of your choice.
  • Non-GF friends can use regular oats, and I bet regular AP flour would work too.
  • If you don’t have the pan, you can make them in an 8×8 baking dish and slice them up, they will take longer to bake though.
  • I kept the raisin amount pretty low for calories sake, but feel free to add more raisins, nuts, other dried fruits, go wild! ;)
  • Wisconsin dark winters win for lighting every single time — and I’ve decided that from now on, I’m just going to post the photos from my iPhone and not put off posting something to wait for the perfect lighting in the morning and freeze my fanny off out on the balcony to get a shot. It is what it is and I’d rather share more real life recipes!

National Peanut Butter Day

It kind of feels like my birthday — it’s National Peanut Butter Day!

So I rounded up some of my recipes for you today (or any day) to celebrate. I bet you have most of the ingredients right in the kitchen.  And if you can’t do peanut butter, you could substitute almond butter or sunflower seed butter.

In case you missed my last post — Banana Breakfast Sushi 

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3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies (see photo for recipe)

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Real food approved. 3 ingredients. No sugar. Chocolate Banana Peanut Butter Mock Ice Cream

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My all time favorite cookies. Crowd pleasers. Flourless. Grandma G’s Monster Cookies!

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And some days? Just grab a spoon!

 

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