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My Story

Welcome to Fork and Beans! I’m Cara and I truly could not be more excited that you are taking the time to check this place out. My hope in starting this blog was to create a site where people with dietary restrictions will not only feel normal, but find that eating without certain ingredients can still be good.

All of my life, I have struggled with digestive problems.  I was always bloated as a kid and complained of stomach pains–I just thought it was normal to feel the way I did. Some days, the discomfort was so unbearable that all I could do was lie in the fetal position without moving for hours. The symptoms progressed as i got older:

  • acid reflux
  • throwing up acid
  • bloating/gas
  • constipation for days/diarrhea (attractive, right?)
  • swollen joints
  • brittle nails
  • acne (not just any kind, but cystic acne)
  • debilitating stomach pains
  • headaches
  • weakened immune system
  • fatigue

Needless to say, I was miserable.  It took me a while to finally say enough is enough, but I am so grateful that I finally decided to go to the doctor in July 2011 and get tested. I was floored when I found out my allergy diagnosis:

  • Gluten (intolerance)
  • Milk
  • and a list of 12 others too boring to list…

When the doctor told me this, I was shocked. At that very moment, I watched everything that I had loved and learned up to this point in my life about food, cooking and baking fly out the window…

I grew up eating within the Standard American Diet food groups. I was the poster child for eating processed foods.

(This photo always gets to me. Even at 7 years old, I was already ashamed of showing my body).

McDonald’s knew me by name. So did Coke, Snickers, Doritos and donut shops.  I spent most of my childhood and upwards locked inside of my room, eating and watching tv as my life passed me by. My self-esteem deteriorated. My body and energy levels went with it.  I hid behind baggy clothing and was afraid of my femininity.

I shopped for clothes in the boys’ section and black or anything dark that resembled black was my favorite color.

I wanted nothing more than to lose weight but felt enslaved to food.  I was so unhappy with the way I looked yet felt utterly and completely helpless.

Over the course of a few years I began slowly transitioning out of my poor eating habits, small step by small step, and started to see some of the weight shed along with those bad habits.

At times I did it with an obsessive, crazy diet mentality (which as we all know, never actually lasts or truly changes the way we see food–it only produces a more perverted version of what we once knew).

But then it happened.

In October 2010, I became a vegetarian (though since then, I have incorporated some meat back into my diet), paired along with years of taking an internal excavation of my self,  I found a heaping spoonful of healing with my food issues. I learned to love ME.  Eating more fruits and veggies and less processed foods not only made me feel better about myself and my outlook on food, but it also helped me to lose weight:

I am not a vegan or 100% gluten-free in my personal eating style to-date–I am able to monitor my gluten intake now and know when to limit myself, nor do I hold myself to a confined way of eating, however I have truly fallen in love with baking gluten-free and vegan.

I have strived to bring to you some of the tastiest gluten, egg, and dairy-free recipes you can find. Eating allergy-free does not have to be boring, taste bland, nor does it mean you should have to feel left out.

I hope you like what you find here!

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221 Comments Post a comment
  1. Lauren #

    I am a health fanatic and I LOVE your site! So many creative ideas, not to mention DELICIOUS!

    November 15, 2012
  2. Sandra #

    Hi Cara!

    So glad to find your blog. February of 2012, I finally had an allergy test after being years of migraines and IBS issues. I found out I was allergic to wheat, baker’s yeast, dairy, etc. I was determined to feel better and I did. I lost weight and stopped getting migraines. I found a new way of eating. I love to bake and cook. Well then in mid September, I moved to Florida. It’s been almost 2 months and went back to my old way of eating since everything here was new and trying to find where to buy things was tough and I conned myself into thinking I was cured, I was fine. Not true!! Yes, I try to do things 100 percent perfect but that is impossible. I sit here with a migraine and severe stomach pain, old and familiar feeling and I know, I need to step it up and get back on my game! Your story inspirational as I have lost 90 lbs since 2003. Nobody is perfect and therefore, this is my 2nd day off the gluten though I had some dairy yesterday. I know how to do this!! I just need help. Thank you for your blog and recipes!

    Sandra

    November 11, 2012
  3. You are amazing! Wow! I am so impressed by your story… it’s inspirational!

    November 7, 2012
    • It’s been YEARS in the making. I think the biggest lesson I am still learning is to not aim for perfection (man, that is the hardness thing for me to grasp but I try every day). This blog is the perfect example of not aiming for perfection too–my eating is never 100% and I still eat what I know makes me feel badly (though not as bad as it used to) but whatever. I’d be boring if I had it all done perfectly right? Regardless, I am so happy to share this journey of imperfection with you. Much love! xo, Cara

      November 7, 2012
  4. …..this is my exact story. Minus the fact I am having a hard time letting go of fish and take lactaid pills. But I’m very happy to know I’m not alone. Thank you so much for creating this site and I will definately be making these! P.S. you’re hilarious lol

    October 20, 2012
  5. Charlotte #

    Awesome…. So inspiring! You have come a long way! I love your cauliflower soup recipe – Thank you for posting it. After reading Matt Monarch and Angela Stokes Monarchs blogs and asuzanne Somers books (amazing) and Gerson therapy and people like you it makes me realze there are o many of us that want to get well and we are no longer alone!! When doctors told me there was no cure for astthma stomach problems And i had to take steroids my wholelife i went looking for answers and thank goodness I found them ! In addition to changing dietvpeople dont realize how importantvit is tonGET THE TOXINS OUT OF YOUR GUT HY DOING COLONICS AND COFFEE ENEMAS. Getting the toxic matter OUT of your body is the most important thing you can do other in addition to plant based diet. I got rid of severe asthma allergies stomach problems severe psorriases. And everyone else can do it too. Irs inspiring to read your story and thank you!

    October 13, 2012
  6. maegan #

    You are awesome! I have to eat gluten free for Celiac disease, but I just decided to go vegetarian (and like you, no crazy strict about it) Anyway, very excited to have found your blog! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    October 9, 2012
    • I think keeping an open mind about diet is so essential for your sanity, right? Good for you for taking steps to improving your health but also being realistic. Love it! Thank you for this comment, Maegan! xo

      October 18, 2012
  7. wow! what a transition! cheers to you! 🙂

    October 9, 2012
    • Thank you for this! xo

      October 18, 2012
  8. Scheherazade’s got nothing on you, girl–talk about storytelling! I scooted on over here from Leanne’s blog and am thrilled to find such enthused writing. Finding such personal storytellers can be a real diamond in the rough deal (to continue the not-so-necessary-Arabian-Nights theme), and your blog is definitely a gem. I’m looking forward to more fun times and tales!

    October 9, 2012
    • What a gem of a comment, Wallflourgirl! Wow. This was a real smile-putter-on-my-face…like this 🙂 (but bigger!) xo, Cara

      October 18, 2012
  9. Evelyn Laage #

    Hi I just found you… and am so Glad i did.. my son is 5 yrs gluten sensitive ( my personal decision to get him on a gluten free diet as doctors said he was not sick enough to think the has some sensitivity .. his symptoms were endless and sick every single, on medication and antibiotics etc every month.. but i knew better and he has been for over 1 years on GF diet.. and his health improve incredible am still find it difficult some times.. but just seen how healthy he is .. make me work harder on his diet.. (the whole family) is getting the benefits of GF and NO processed food and almost vegetarian diet.. … thank for all the wonderful recipes my son will love them… Evelyn From Australia

    October 7, 2012
    • Hi Evelyn! I am giving you THE biggest internet hug right now!! It’s so hard to change your diet but I am so proud of you and your care for your family. Hooray for improving health–there is no better satisfaction than that! So happy that you found your way over here. xo, Cara

      October 8, 2012
  10. What a story! I’m so happy you’re feeling better. I found your blog through someone’s pinterest page who had posted a recipe of mine. Gotta love pinterest! Ha! Happy to be following your blog and can’t wait to take some more time to read through your recipes. 🙂

    ~ April

    October 1, 2012
    • Pinterest brings people together 🙂 So happy that it brought *us* together! xo

      October 18, 2012
  11. AnAppleADay #

    I am so happy that I found your blog. I am also intolerant to a lot of the same food… I have never felt better after I became vegan.. of course when I did become vegan, i didn’t even know what that meant.. i just gave up the food that hurt my stomach… and few years later in learning and self-educating, I discovered gluten-eating and raw foodism, which I love so much!

    I’m still trying to balance between vegan “junk food” “processed food” and real whole foods. Sometimes it’s hard to give up every processed food such as gluten-free breads, etc. but I think it’s all about balance and not letting myself so tight up about it.

    nice to meet you! I am already learning so many recipes from you!

    September 27, 2012
    • That is a balance that I am continually trying to figure out too, AnAppleADay! But you are so right–it’s all about balance, not to mention just keeping an open mind and being gentle on yourself.
      It’s so wonderful to meet you too and I hope you like some of the recipes you find here! xo

      October 18, 2012
  12. You are so lovley 🙂

    September 12, 2012
    • Goodness, that is super kind! Thank you.

      October 18, 2012
  13. Sydnor #

    Hi Cara,

    I am so glad I found your blog! I can really relate to your symptoms, and from the way you tell your story, to your inner journey in making such a big life change. I have gone through similar things in the last 3 months, but have been waffling lately, and consequently not feeling as good.

    Your story was just the inspiration I needed!! I know I need to get more serious about it, including getting diagnosed – I know for sure I am allergic to dairy but I am not *exactly* sure about everything else. I have already felt enormously better not having gluten and for me sugar is also a big one. The key is to leverage that feeling of awesome to keep me motivated!

    I also need to find more recipes that excite me so I LOVE your opening sentence in your byline. I’m hooked. I look forward to reading more from you!

    September 5, 2012
    • Hooray! Isn’t it great when you find like-minded souls?! Keep doing what you are doing–it’s amazing how creative and motivated you become the more you open yourself up to new foods that are good for you AND tasty. Hope you enjoy what you find over here! xo

      October 18, 2012
  14. Wonderful story Cara! = ) Me and my boyfriend are vegan, GF and dairy free too…it’s a delight to find someone who’s on the same page sharing awesome recipes! I will definitely be using recipes on here to make~ and share! We are the founders of CrunchyHippie.com a new social network based around natural living! Come check us out~ we’d be delighted to have you be a part of our community sharing healthy cooking tips! = ) Keep on cooking girl!

    September 1, 2012
    • Hi Amber! I’m looking forward to checking out CrunchHippie, thanks for that! Glad you are finding some good stuff over here. Much much love, xo

      October 18, 2012
  15. hilary #

    looooove this blog!

    August 29, 2012
    • And I love you! 😉

      October 18, 2012
  16. Danielle #

    I just discovered your blog and I love it!!

    August 26, 2012
    • Hi Danielle! Yay–so happy you found your way over here! Welcome 🙂 xo, Cara

      August 29, 2012
  17. Hi Cara! Just nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award. Here’s the link: http://karistaskitchen.com/2012/08/10/strawberries-romanoff-and-two-very-belated-thank-yous/

    August 10, 2012
    • Such beautiful words said, thank you!!

      October 18, 2012
  18. Ciara Iniguez #

    CARA Michelle REEd!! I just read “your story”. Amazing! I miss you! Had no idea how much I missed you until I began reading through your blog, which by the way I love!! I recognize some of those pictures ;). I am an instant fan, and will continue to follow your work! Xoxo

    August 2, 2012
    • Um, you are fabulous. I left you a personal message so you know in further detail how fabulous you are! Love you.

      October 18, 2012
  19. I came across your blog today thru pinterest. I love it! Great job. I can’t wait to try some of your recipes 🙂

    July 19, 2012
    • Thank you Kelli (and Pinterest). So happy you are here.

      October 18, 2012
  20. I have nominated you for two awards because I love your blog. Check them out here: http://madisonsmission2.wordpress.com/2012/07/08/my-blog-awards/. 🙂

    July 8, 2012
    • What beautiful awards, thank you so much!! xo

      July 10, 2012
  21. Felicia #

    I mean wow … I didn’t even know such food exist in the vegan world!

    July 5, 2012
    • Thank you, Felicia! What a great compliment, really–so appreciated. Hope you like what you see in these parts 🙂

      October 18, 2012
  22. dassana #

    hi cara

    came over to your blog from courtney’s blog. many things to learn from you…. it is so challenging for me to cook some indian dishes without diary or bake without eggs. most of the times there are disasters in the kitchen especially when making vegan or eggless bakes.

    June 22, 2012
    • You are speaking the story of my past year 🙂 My garbage can is constantly full of failures! Glad you are in this with me–let’s journey together as we try to figure out the little secrets of eggless baking 🙂 xo, Cara

      October 18, 2012
      • dassana #

        oh yes… i still have failures but now they are beginning to be less and less… guess i am getting the knack of baking good vegan cakes and breads 🙂

        October 23, 2012
  23. Moza #

    Hi..thanks God..finally I found deliceas food in you blog..
    I am sensitive to GL , Milk ,egg….other thing but when I read about people like you
    I feel sported ..and strong thank you
    Moza

    June 20, 2012
    • Oh Moza, you are so welcome! I am so glad that you found your way over here–I hope you find lots of good stuff that makes your belly happy. Much love to you, xo Cara

      June 20, 2012
  24. Mel #

    An, sweet mystery of life at last I found you…I adore your blog!!! Wobble clogs is my new favorite word and I intend to find a way to interject it into my conversations from here on out. What fun you are!

    June 18, 2012
    • Hi Mel! You are fun for liking Wobble Clogs 🙂 Glad you made your way over here and hope to see your face around! xo

      October 18, 2012
  25. Cara,
    As someone who eats pretty much anything, I appreciate your blog for the excellent looking recipes for gluten free cooking. One of my daughters is celiac and I’m always looking for interesting things to cook for her. Because I like your blog so much, I have nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger’s Award. Details of the award can be found at timetobeinspired.wordpress.com Terri

    June 8, 2012
    • Hi Terri! Thank you for the nomination!! Sooo sweet of you. And thank you for stopping by and leaving this comment–it put such a smile on my face! xo

      June 11, 2012
  26. Woah. Now THIS is what I have been looking for. I have almost identical symptoms to you (celiac, lactose-intolerant, vegetarian) and all the usual unpleasantness that goes along with it when you eat the wrong foods. *So* looking forward to poking around more for some inspiration. Thanks for blogging!

    June 4, 2012
    • Thank YOU for this incredibly kind comment! I am so happy you found your way over here–isn’t it so comforting to know that there are others who are similar to our own situations?! Gives us hope really and I am always in the business of finding more hope. Much love, xo!

      June 5, 2012
  27. Cara, I love your blog. I am so glad I stumbled upon it. I loved seeing you transform. So inspiring. My daughter has had a severe wheat/gluten allergy since she was 6 mnths. She is now about to turn 9. I have been making her gluten free food for years and I’m always on the look out for new ways to make the food better. I have recently gone gluten free ( well for the most part) myself and in fact just today, I made some vegan brownies for my daughter’s birthday on Sunday. I agree with you 100%, there is always an alternative. I don’t go to Starbucks anymore, I don’t do soy either. I do get a cheaper alternative at Whole Foods with Oat or hemp milk. Your story is just amazing. Congratulations.

    June 1, 2012
    • It’s such a game changer when you realize that you don’t have to suffer with bad tasting food just because you are might be limited, huh? Love hearing that you have found great alternatives and I am so happy that you are here! Thank you so much for the love, xo.

      October 18, 2012
    • This is so great–thank you!! xo

      October 18, 2012
  28. Rocki #

    Cara, you are amazing and I love your blog!

    I’m allergic to dairy, Celiac, just about a full fledge vegan and had to fight to get my health back. You are an inspiration and I can hardly wait to try your delicious looking recipes! Glad I found you 🙂 (via Facebook)

    Peace, Rocki

    May 17, 2012
    • Rocki, I couldn’t be more happy to have you! Thank you for the love–how kind of you. I hope you like what you find over here and I look forward to getting to know you better. Much love. xo

      May 17, 2012
  29. You’ve been nominated for the One Lovely Blog award!

    Here are the steps for the award:

    Name the blogger who awarded you this fantastic award
    List 7 random facts about yourself
    Award 15 other bloggers this award
    Enjoy!

    May 15, 2012
  30. Kaitlyn #

    I just found your blog via findingvegan.com–those tempeh meatballs caught my eye!–and I’m really struck by your story. That’s an amazing accomplishment. Have you ever checked out the vegan/mostly raw blog choosingraw.com? She has a series called Green Recovery that relates so much to what you’ve been through yourself. It’s a great community that has helped me out an incredible amount–I highly recommend you check it out!

    May 12, 2012
    • Hi Kaitlyn! Thank you for this community link–I am super pumped to check it out! I appreciate it greatly and am so happy that findingvegan brought you over here. Much love, xo Cara

      May 13, 2012
  31. Somer #

    Where has your blog been all my life? Seriously moving! Here is my own plant based conversion story http://goodcleanfood.wordpress.com/2012/02/19/sick-of-being-sick/ I’m don’t have gluten allergies, but many of my recipes are coincidentally gluten free. You can check them out here if interested http://goodcleanfood.wordpress.com/under-construction-recipe-page/

    Thanks for sharing your powerful story!

    April 27, 2012
    • I cannot wait to check these out, Somer–thank you for linking them 🙂 Do I smell blogging buddies in the air???

      April 27, 2012
      • Somer #

        Totally, It’s gonna be fun! Thanks Cara! I need blogs like yours in my life!

        April 27, 2012
        • Slumber party at my house 🙂

          April 27, 2012
          • Somer #

            I often wish I lived closer to bloggie friends. That would be fun for reals!

            April 28, 2012
            • Where do you live, Somer?

              April 29, 2012
              • Somer #

                Utah. If you ever want to come visit and go snowboarding in the winter, we have a sweet pad with a guest room and plenty of spare snowboarding tickets! 😉

                April 29, 2012
  32. Yesterday I stumbled upon oh, ladycakes blog and read it all within the day and I was overcome with joy when she linked the waffles to your blog. I love everything you have done. I am a vegan and toying around with non-gluten eating and I am so excited to try some of your beautiful recipes. Keep up the good work and please get together more with ladycakes and take beautiful photos and cook scrumptious food. x

    April 17, 2012
    • Hi Natt! So happy you stalked Ash and found me through her. I love that girl sooooo much {who wouldn’t??!} I cannot wait to be with you in your newest adventures into the gluten-free world 🙂 xo!!

      April 17, 2012
  33. Patti Getty #

    Good Afternoon Cara, Patti Getty here. After finding you through the blog, link, blog, link, facebook, blog, link chain. I finally decided to go to your blog and read up on who you are. Me, I am a healthy mom of 4 that never like the look, smell or taste of red meat. For quite sometime I have been weaning my way to Vegetarian and then one day about 18 months ago while working a wedding reception the brides family came in with vegan cookies and such. I was like HUH, Vegan. It expected people dressed like characters from Star Trak to walk in. I then asked the Uncle of the family “Ok I’m sorry but what is this Vegan thing?” He proceded to tell me. (Throwing my hands in the air) Yes, I finally found the missing link of my chain I was carrying around. After many searches online of what and how this works January 1 2012 I decided to like my life as a Vegan along with my husband. As I am not one to grab a book and read all about it. I wish I could but I just can’t. II love your blog and contune to look forward to all the exciting things I can learn. Now if you can help me with my 14 year old daughter that would be great. Patti

    April 13, 2012
    • PATTY! It’s about time you made your way over here and read up! hehehe. So you have made the vegan switch, eh? Congrats–sounds like you found something that perfectly fits you. I have the solution for your 14 year old: feed her the vegan Samoa cupcakes and she will be hooked. That’s all I got. Live long and prosper, my friend 🙂 xo, Cara

      April 13, 2012
  34. So happy to have found you 😉
    I have also ‘healed’ with foods. I was diagnosed with a neuromuscular autoimmune illness and since I changed my diet, I’ve been getting better day by day.
    I am not thrilled I am on this dietary lifestyle ~ what’s so great about bleached wheat flour anyway? ;D
    It was great to read your story – you are very inspiring!
    xo

    April 13, 2012
    • Hi Ella! I am so happy happy Heather introduced us 🙂 It is such a difficult thing to have to change your diet overnight but hopefully you are feeling better and at least that is a consolation prize right? 🙂 I can’t wait to check your blog our further too–from what I see, it is super cute! xo, Cara

      April 13, 2012
  35. Great blog. Thank you for sharing your story. Congrats to your beautiful/healthy self!

    April 10, 2012
    • Thank you for this comment, Julie, and for taking the time to read a little bit about me 🙂 xo

      April 11, 2012
  36. Sammy N. #

    I want to say thank you! I just found out my allergies to gluten and being a vegetarian I thought it was going to be impossible. It has been about a month now and I’ve been feeling hopeless towards it, but reading this has helped a lot and the recipes look amazing. Thanks!

    March 31, 2012
    • Hi Sammy! I am so happy to hear that you are finding a little glimmer of hope in the midst of a rough month. I completely empathetize with you and remember that feeling very well–learning a whole new set of skills can be such a daunting task. May you find joy in the creativity this new lifestyle will bring you. If you need anything, please ask! I am here to help… 🙂 xo, Cara

      March 31, 2012
  37. Found your blog through one of your posts on Rachel Jane’s “Two Loves”… glad that I did. My wife has recently discovered an allergy to gluten, so I’m sure that your blog and recipes will become a big help at our house! AND your weight loss story is inspiring. Thanks for opening up and sharing!

    March 21, 2012
    • Hi Barry and wife! I am so glad to hear that you found your way over here–it was a fateful occasion, seeing that your wife has a gluten intolerance as well! Hope you guys find some good stuff around here. If you need anything, please ask!

      March 21, 2012
  38. I love your story. That is very inspiring. You are absolutely adorable! I would have never guessed the journey you have traveled by just looking at your current pictures. I love your picture of you eating the red pepper stuffed with yummy-ness??

    March 21, 2012
    • Thank you so much for this comment, Lilly! That was so kind of you to say, truly! It kinda makes you wonder what everyone’s story is when you first meet them, doesn’t it? You just never know. xo!

      March 21, 2012
      • It is so true. I knew someone (not super closely but she was a friend of my family) for the longest time before I found out she had been quite overweight in her past…she showed me an old photo ID and I could hardly believe it was her…she looks great now and is a massage therapist but she obviously went through a lot of changes from her teens through her twenties.

        I guess that is also the beauty of people…we are all unique and come from such various backgrounds…if we only ask we may find the hidden secrets 🙂

        March 21, 2012
  39. So glad I found you and your blog! Mum’s just found out she has to cut out gluten and is a bread and cake lover like me. I can’t wait to try your recipes to show her she can still enjoy eating:)

    March 21, 2012
    • Sorry to hear about your mom’s recent diagnosis but like you said, she can still enjoy eating without a doubt! Hope you find some good stuff over here…I couldn’t be any more excited to have you! xo

      March 21, 2012
  40. Annie #

    You’re so amazing and inspirational thanks for sharing your story!!

    March 14, 2012
    • Wow, thank you for that Annie–such an incredibly kind thing to say. So appreciated! xo, Cara

      March 14, 2012
  41. Leah #

    HI Cara,
    My mom sent me your site, and I am happy to have found it. Over the past year I have gained 40 pounds even though I was having massive stomach problems and barely eating, After exploring many different avenues I have found out that I am gluten intolerant. I am hopeful this diagnosis will help me get healthy now.

    March 12, 2012
    • Hi Leah!! Tell your mom THANK YOU for sending you over this way–so happy that you stopped by 🙂 Thank goodness you figured out what is going on in your body–how frustrating that must have been for you! Here’s to a new year, a new diet, and a new you. Much love. xo, Cara

      March 12, 2012
  42. Karin #

    Hello Cara,

    I just found your blog via FB! So far I’ve read your “About me” and I’m excited for you and to see your recipes. I’ve had many of the same issues. I look forward to seeing you in April at Lina’s wedding! : )

    Karin

    March 5, 2012
    • Oh how excited I was to see your name over here, Karin! Thanks for stopping by–that means the world to me. Hope you enjoy what you find over here and yes, I am excited to see you soon!!! xo

      March 5, 2012
  43. Hi Cara,
    Great blog and amazing story! I just found you through Jessi’s blog slotheatz – your journey is an inspiration, and what a great blog! Well done and thank you! 🙂

    February 23, 2012
    • Hi Shira 🙂 So happy you found your way over here–and thank you so much for that comment! That was so incredibly kind of you to say…

      February 23, 2012
  44. jessi@slotheatz #

    Okay, I just have to say you are seriously BEAUTIFUL! Your story is amazing, your energy is contagious, and I’m so glad that I’ve found bloggers like you that are so inspirational, smart, and just straight up passionate. Just had to put that out there. So thanks, and keep it up girl =)

    February 20, 2012
    • Goodness, can I keep you on my shelf?? You will be like my little bundle of self-esteem so whenever I am feeling down, you can tell me all of those sweet things? Seriously though, Jessi–that just really touched my heart; I cannot even express to what extent, really. All I can say is thank you!! {you have me speechless!} xo, Cara

      February 20, 2012
  45. Cara! It’s Deb Price, and I’m loving your blog so far. It was a blessing to read your story, especially in light of knowing you during our college years. I have a million thoughts about how God is using you and fulfilling your dreams and aspirations even now, and how much more He has for you in the future. But for now, I’ll just talk about the food. =)

    I don’t have food allergies, but I’m making some dietary and lifestyle changes. My son and I are almost completely vegetarian, just because I prefer it and find it easier to cook that way. I’m not ready to go fully vegan, for a variety of reasons, but being a vegetarian is not difficult. However, I’ve recently started to accept some realities about my own body (probable lupus diagnosis) and I am committed to managing my condition through my lifestyle, including a diet with all natural foods, whole grains, etc. I’m exploring the idea of experimenting with some gluten-free recipes, even though I don’t have gluten sensitivity. I’ve had to learn to love myself, even the parts (such as my body) that don’t work the way I wish.

    Love you, and keep up the good work!

    February 20, 2012
    • DEB!!! Wow, that means SO much to me that you would check out my blog–thank you, really!! And thank you for those incredibly thoughtful and kind words. I greatly appreciate each and every one of them. Funny how things change over time huh? I am definitely not the same person I was back at Biola {for the good, though}. I am so excited to hear about your new dietary changes–it has made a world of difference for me and I am positive it will do the same for you. Please let me know if you need anything as you transition into what seems like a more restrictive way of eating, but in reality is the doorway to so many possibilities!

      Oh, and feel free to share what you think my future holds too 🙂 I’m always up for hearing that. ha. Much love, friend! xo, Cara

      February 20, 2012
  46. You’re a doll! So glad I found your blog 🙂

    February 17, 2012
    • Um, I think YOU are the doll! Loving your blog Chandra–and so happy you found your way over here!! xo

      February 17, 2012
  47. So glad I found your post, can’t wait to try some candy bar recipes.

    February 15, 2012
    • Hi Lori! Let me know how the candy turns out for you. So happy you found your way over here as well 🙂 xo, Cara

      February 15, 2012
  48. Diana #

    Wow Cara:
    Quite an inspirational story, your so funny and I have learned so much about you from your little love story to your actual story than I learned when you came and stayed with Cynthia in our home. So happy to see your smiling face, and you look amazing keep up the good work, I’m gonna forward your page to my girlfriend she too is vegan not sure if she’s gluten free, but people need more info on gluten free foods.
    Thanks for sharing your awesum story
    Diana

    February 9, 2012
    • Get out! Hi Diana!!! Ohmygosh, what a total delightful surprise to see your name over here 🙂 Thank you so much for the comment–it totally made my day! xo

      February 9, 2012

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