Bloggin' my Heart Out

Some people wear their heart on their sleeve; instead, I tattoo mine all over the Internet in Times New Roman. Since I started my blog, people have watched me struggle and succeed, cry and celebrate.

One of the most recent reasons for me to celebrate snuck into my life in the form of a tweet from @GFLife247. In it, she tagged me in the "Blog Your Heart Out" Chain Letter. Just like Kaila shared at her blog, I've been meaning to give you all a peek at the girl behind the scenes of Casey the College Celiac. And by a "peek," a mean a look at the more mundane aspects of my life, rather than my latest celiac challenge/success!

Much like the Liebster Award (which I blogged about earlier), Blog Your Heart Out involves answering five questions and then tagging five of your favorite bloggers to share their replies! So, let Operation-get-to-know-Casey begin!

1. Who/what encouraged you to start blogging?

As I mentioned during my Liebster Award post, celiac disease triggered the birth of my blog. Before my celiac diagnosis, I was a writer in every way but online.

When the doctor phoned me that I had this crazy disease called "celiac," though, after months of weight loss, nausea, and acid reflux, I knew that I had to change more than my diet. I had to find a way to emotionally cope with losing a big part of my teenage identity: social eating.

My new version of a pizza party...
Having celiac disease in college hasn't been easy (hospitalization? check! self-esteem issues? check!), but I wouldn't change it. Celiac disease encouraged me to start blogging, but my hopes of spreading celiac awareness (like #positiveceliac) and the support from the bloggers I've befriended keep my fingers typing!

2. How did you choose what to blog about?

As I described above, my blog's focus - coping with celiac disease in college - chose me because I was diagnosed my senior year of high school. On a more specific level, though, my gut (excuse the celiac pun) determines the individual topics of my posts.

I pepper my blog with restaurant and product reviews because, when I was just learning how to pronounce "gluten," that's what I looked for. Increasing a celiac's awareness of their eating options is one key way to make a life without gluten less limiting.

No limits here!
As for my more personal posts, I click "publish" with my heart in my throat. When I was writing my post on self-love, I even sent a draft to my Mom, asking her if I should really plaster my beauty issues all of the Internet. She said yes and I couldn't be more thankful. In my blogging experience, the more personal I've gotten, the more supportive the gluten free community. That's a great blog topic right there!

3. What is something most people don't know about you?

For this question, I'll interpret "most people" as the blogging community. As I hinted at, they actually know a lot about me because of the personal nature of many of my posts. In fact, I bet that some random reader in Japan knows more about the questions jumping around in this crazy head than most of my classmates. Ironically enough, what my blog readers probably don't know is a fact that I usually share during introductions. I'm a Marine brat and have lived in multiple states (and countries).

Mom, Hannah and I in Cuba!
To put it in a time line, I was born in Virgina, then moved to Cuba, Hawaii, Texas, North Carolina, California, Virginia and back to California. I consider myself a hybrid between a girl and a grasshopper. With very good typing skills.

4. What are three words that describe your style/blog?

Honest. I always try to keep my posts 100% genuine, no matter the topic. There's only one Casey in the world, and I'm trying to make my blog just as (weirdly) original!

Eclectic. Although I limit my blog topics to the realm of college and celiac disease, my posts jump from food to social commentary to personal issues. My life is a little crazy, and I think my blog shows it!

Positive. I've certainly written posts ranting about celiac's effect on my body or life, but I always try to end them with a positive note. Celiac disease can be a blessing or a curse - it's all about perspective!

5. What do you love to do when you are not blogging?

What don't I love to do? (Easy: shopping.) No, really I love to read and write, explore new blogs and connect with people online. Outside the world of technology, I love breaking a sweat (that sounds better than "I love sweating"), whether by going on a hike with my sister or running around the neighborhood. Recently, experimenting in the kitchen has also entered my life. I blame my foodie friends! Life is pretty sweet, I would say.

I also love hanging with the fam!
Now, my favorite part: passing on the digital baton! Even after nominating five other blogs during the Liebster Awards, I still have tons of favorites who can't fit in the list. Some of my recent loves, though, are:

Casey's Wholesome Kitchen: I mean, how couldn't I tag a girl with such an awesome name? She fills my blog feed with the most delicious, wholesome recipes and is stocking up my meal card this summer!

Adventures of a Gluten Free Bennie: I consider Allie one of my blogging buds and we love to bond over our shared experiences as celiacs in college. This girl always know how to make me smile.

Running with Spoons: Amanda's blog always captures my attention, either through her delicious (and often gluten free) recipes or her posts about health (her link love is my favorite morning read).

Purely Twins: More than a blog, twins Lori and Michelle run an empire for healthy eating and fitness. Their recipes are always drool-worthy and I love their fitness videos! Two for two (twin pun, intended).

GFree and Happy: Kathy was one of the first figures of the gluten free community to welcome me to the scene in an interview, and I love watching her pod casts each week.

I hope you five have as much fun as I did participating in the chain mail, either by your own post or a comment below!

The fact is, wearing my heart on my blog isn't always easy, but as I and many other bloggers have discovered, it's the best and happiest way to live.

What are your favorite blogs? How would you describe my blog in three words? Comment below!


  1. Casey,

    I love your post! I also did the hospitalizations throughout college dance. (I was diagnosed my senior year of college). I bet we could put together a checklist of all the things college celiacs experience (despite our varying symptoms)!

    I also checked out the blogs you recommended. They are fantastic. I think I found a few new favorites too. Thank you for sharing!

    P.S: Funny, Relatable, Uplifting

    1. Thanks again for the invite! I'm glad you liked my rec blogs - I loved yours too! Discovering new fav blogs is another one of my favorite hobbies! :) I bet we could get a pretty good checklist going! :D Stay awesome!

  2. Hi Casey, Great post! I found you through reading Kaila's (@GFLife247) blog post - it's great to find another Coeliac (UK!) blogger. I need to spend more time reading your blog but I would on first impressions describe it is HONEST - also very POSITIVE and REFRESHING! Jill (@jill_evepryor) x

    1. So glad that you found me in the big world of the Internet - I LOVE meeting fellow celiacs (or coeliacs) :D Thank you for the awesome review and I hope you keep reading. :)


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