Gratitude for new beginnings……

I love spring. It is a visible delight as the flowers start to bloom and the grass greens right before our eyes.

It gives us new hope and a fresh start. Spring cleaning is aptly named and I find spring cleaning for the home but for the mind is often required. Each of us has been given a new beginning whether we recognise it in large life changing events, or the daily renewal that each morning brings.  I only have to stop to think of my husband and children to understand just how lucky I am to have a new beginning every day to share with such wonderful people who bring me joy and love. Today I am grateful for new beginnings each and every morning of our lives.

We had a chance on Saturday night to have a new beginning at a popular local restaurant, Rustica. Several months ago, our party had dinner here for a very special 50th birthday celebration. The evening was less than stellar, through no fault of the very talented chef. There were many problems and while one of our party wrote an email, I lucked out when the owner answered the phone. When I explained what had happened, he was genuinely concerned and, during a follow up conversation, asked us to please give the restaurant another chance.

From the moment we arrived this time, we were greeted with a friendly smile and lots of attention. Graham and Cindy, who provided excellent service to our table, made the night an absolute pleasure. Our party had a mezze plate and the MOST amazing chips, called Flash Larry with parmesan and truffle oil, and I was served a beautiful rocket salad with fresh parmesan. A shared plate of lamb, a steak, a fish dish, and gnocchi were enjoyed by our friends.

Dining out with Celiac is tricky. The slightest oversight can create havoc. When Celiac is added to an anaphylaxis reaction to natural latex, present in a myriad of foods, it can be very dangerous. I spoke to the chef at Rustica, who was very accommodating, and ended up with the most delicious meal of soft polenta with mushroom, poached egg and parmesan.

It was silky smooth, very rich and flavourful, and I ate so much I could not even think about dessert! The rest of the table did partake in sweets, however, with orange pavlovas, white chocolate mousse cake, and a chocolate fondant cake.

So as I awoke on Sunday morning to the sunshine and a still full belly from all the beautiful food the night before, I was grateful for the sun, the flowers, my family and friends, and for a restaurant owner who was gracious enough to ask us for a new beginning. The entire experience was truly delightful. :)

You can like Rustica on Facebook here or visit their website here.


  1. floraljen says:

    Sounds amazing! Its heartening to know that you can enjoy a dining experience gluten free. Do you call ahead to let the restaurant know your Celiac? Would you advise this and do you get a supportive response?

    • I either get the menu sent to me via email or find it online and, if nothing jumps out at me right away (complicated sometimes because I have multiple allergies), then, yes, I DEFINITELY call ahead and ask to speak to the chef. 99.9% of the time we agree on a dish for the night so they can be prepared. If they are not willing to work with me, we don’t go. If we have to go for work or other social reasons, it’s always easy to get steamed vegetables and a salad. Just ask for no salad dressing and, yes, I do take my own sometimes. I also take my own gluten free soy sauce to asian and insist on no sauce in the dishes. I have been known to bring my own cornbread muffin or bread roll in my handbag if I know it’s going to be a long meal and I’ll be hungry. My mom takes her own food everywhere :)

      We now have quite a range of restaurants that we frequent, with some knowing exactly what I’ll order as soon as I walk in the door. I find it’s always good to write a thank you or call the restaurant later if you’ve had a good experience.

      Good luck and try some of the recipes here. I’m sure you’ll be dining at home 5 star in no time!

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