I miss my grandma! She knew so much about healthy food and how to cook all of the delicious vegetables straight from the garden. She baked her goods 100 percent from scratch — whole grain bread too! Now that I am responsible for raising my own children, I have many questions for my grandma.
On my way to picking up my son, Tommy, from the new Appleton Montessori School in Plamann Park, I passed a little brown cottage with white shutters and a white picket fence surrounded by flowers just like my grandma used to grow. It was so quaint and cute! There was a big sign by the driveway that read: Natural Expressions 100% Whole Grain Bakery & Organic Gardens. I was so happy to see the lighted “Open” sign in the window and knew I’d be back.
I decided to look into the bakery when I returned home and discovered that a woman who goes by the name Grandma Rose owns and operates it. How perfect! I was missing my grandma and all of her knowledge and now I had the chance to meet someone who seemed so much like her.
After dropping Tommy off at school the next day, I stopped by the little shop to see if I could find Grandma Rose. The shop was just as cute on the inside as on the outside and reminded me of my own grandma’s house. There were bells on the door knob that announced my arrival. A pleasant voice called out, “Hi! Come on in!” I felt like I had just walked into my grandma’s kitchen. It smelled like fresh homemade bread. “How can I help you today?” the woman said. With tears in my eyes, I told her how much she reminded me of my own grandma. I then explained all the questions I had about how to provide my children with a healthy diet.
“I can help you with that,” said Grandma Rose. She put on a pot of coffee and pulled up two chairs. I was comfortable right away. Grandma Rose told me she was born in 1938 (75 years old ago), when processed foods were unknown. Food was cooked from scratch and was often canned at home. “I was 54 years old and 55 pounds overweight when I was diagnosed with diabetes. I decided something was wrong with how I was eating. I made up my stubborn mind that I was going to figure it out and I did! Now my reason for staying healthy and at a normal weight is so I can be an example for others and pass on what I have learned to the next generation who seem to only know processed foods.”
Grandma Rose teaches classes at her shop to help others learn about healthy food. She takes her homemade bread and other healthy diabetic-friendly food mixes to the Appleton Farmers Market on College Avenue in the summer and the winter market inside the City Center Plaza from November to the end of March.
Grandma Rose and Natural Expressions 100% Whole Grain Bakery
825 E. Broadway Drive, Appleton