What is Grains of Hope Anyway?

Grains of Hope began in 1983. I was newly married and pregnant with my first child — a miracle child (I need another post to tell THAT story). After teaching special education for several years, I wanted to stay at home to care for this extra special gift of life we were blessed with.

As I looked at my possibilities, I realized that there is a deep current of healing talents in my heritage.

On the Road in MassachusettsMy maternal grandfather was a wise old Polish man who had much knowledge of herbal remedies. Whenever one of our family succumbed to an illness, he had suggestions that helped us to overcome. In fact, he saved my life when I was a wee baby (but that is a story for another post).

As I was researching my family history, I found that my paternal great grandmother was a well known (at the time) French Canadian herbalist, living in western Massachusetts.

In college, of course, I went the easy route: eating whatever was readily available in the dorms’ cafeteria. By the time I finished my schooling, I put on a good bit of weight, and found myself getting sick at the drop of a hat.

Talk about being led:

One summer, I worked at a Kosher Jewish summer camp, teaching cooking (of all things). Before I started that job, of course, I did a good bit of research on Kosher diet. Apparently, people who followed Kosher guidelines had fewer chronic diseases and were healthier over all.

Back at school that fall, my roommate’s mother moved in with us. She was on a very strict diet (prescribed by the Mayo Clinic) to control her severe arthritis. I felt better when Laura and I were adventuring in cooking.

After living with Laura for the school year, I went back to eating a Standard American diet (SAD). I was sick, depressed, had no motivation…. So I ‘stopped out’ of school after my junior year.

During my ‘time off’ from school, I worked in an Orthodox Jewish institution. Even though it was still institutional food, they did keep strict Kosher. I lost 40 pounds (partly from walking the mile into town each night to find some ‘entertainment).

Then I realized that special education was something I fully enjoyed and was fairly good at. So I went back to school and got my BS (in Communication Science).

Oue co-op looked like healthy living pharmacy

In graduate school, I joined a food co-op. People there taught me more about eating healthy foods, letting go of junk food, and introduced me to herbs as an aid to healthy living.

I read everything I could get my hands on (which was not much back in the mid ‘seventies) and asked questions whenever I was around anyone with any expertise.

I got on top of my health issues and people began to ask me for advice.

So, as a potential Stay at Home Mom, I figured I could offer classes on healthy living, herbs, and nutrition. It was nothing big or formal, but just a group of moms getting together to share information on keeping their families’ health.

Grains of Hope“But why Grains of Hope?” you may ask.

In my research, I found that throughout history, grains — in fact seeds of all kinds — were basic, staple foods for the majority of peoples.

Hope is a supernatural gift which gives us what we need to carry on through whatever trials we might face.

So, my ideal is to offer the seeds of knowledge and resources people need to give them motivation to make their lives better.

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