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It was so nice out today, I decided to eat lunch outside. Actually, there were 2 reasons I ate outside. 1) it was nice out 2) I was getting new tires on my car and I can't stand sitting in the waiting room smelling all that rubber. It's so offensive to my senses, it must be bad for you. I used to go to a bluegrass jam session in a bicycle shop back home, and it reeked so bad of rubber I thought my sinuses were going to burst into flames. I try to be aware of what I am exposing myself to. Which brings me back to my "picnic." I had my little beach chair, a book, and my lunch and found a sunny spot out in the parking lot. I'm sure they thought I was rather strange, but who cares? I've been gluten-free for a couple years now and I must confess that at first, I was not very creative with the whole gluten-free thing. I would get rice cakes, rice crackers, rice bread, and slap some hummus on them. I really like hummus, but nearly every day? Besides, that is awfully carb-heavy, all those crackers and breads. Lately, I've been making smoothies with fresh fruit, rice milk and wheatgrass powder. (even though it says "wheat"-grass, it is gluten free. confusing, but true). Packed with nutrients and fiber, and easy to digest. Today, since I was "picnicking" I went back to hummus for the afternoon, because it is so portable. I brought some vegetable chips (beet chips, yam chips, carrot chips), a little hummus, and a couple dolmas (stuffed grape leaves), and some homemade iced green tea with stevia. Quite nice. Now what kind of tasty gluten free dinner shall I have? -Carla Ulbrich, The Singing Patient, is a comical singer-songwriter and author of "How Can You *Not* Laugh at a Time Like This?: Reclaim Your Health with Humor, Creativity and Grit," coming out Feb. 1, 2011.

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