Okay – so this is it….me writing a blog – ha- eventually we all become blahhhh gers!
I figure why not…a forward facing journal – a space and a place for gratitude. A way to reach out and connect with kindred spirits who love healthy food, healthy bodies, healthy minds and healthy spirits. My Teaching Gardens Program that was adopted and put forth into the world by The American Heart Association has taught me so much. Through my experience creating fruit and veggie gardens for kids I have met so many spectacular, warm, big hearted people making real differences one heart at a time. I am humbled. This blog is about those moments those people. I am starting with the one I met recently who inspired me to start this site and to spread the word of health and wellness far and wide.
I met Gail Becker at an American Heart Association lunch that she was chairing for Go Red for Women. At the lunch the AHA was highlighting the work of The Teaching Gardens and the impact teaching kids how to grow food was having in vulnerable communities. It had become a great platform to talk about prevention and improve food access in the areas that need it most. I think this resonated with Gail and a year later she asked me to lunch. She told me she was leaving her high powered job at a large company and she was going to start a pizza company! “Wow, great….a pizza company?” I said. She continued on to tell me that her boys had both had been diagnosed with celiac disease from a young age. Over the years, she had spent a lot of money buying products that were gluten free but not necessarily healthy. She had spent a lot of time learning how to make and bake alternative wheat free dishes – especially ones that kids love. Hence the CAULIPOWER pizza was born. Being a working woman she not only saw the benefits of saving time but as a mom she saw the benefits of healthier ingredients in foods that kids want to eat.
My gardens resonated with her and her product resonated with me. I have seen too many kids in too many schools eating too much junk food because there was no healthy alternative. And I understand why a carrot looses out to a chemically laced “chip” every time because junk food is engineered to dominate our children’s taste buds. It is our job to retrain their palates and create and promote products that are healthier choices.
Is CAULIPOWER pizza a vegetable that is eaten minutes after being plucked fresh from the garden? No…but it is a convenient and healthy alternative that kids will eat without being wrestled to the ground. My mission in life is to connect kids to whole food and provide access to whole food. My mission is to have us all grow our own food and eat only fresh from the garden but we can not let “perfect” be the enemy of good or better. We have to start somewhere and meet kids and consumer demand where they are and move them towards the whole food experience. We all love pizza – it’s great to be able to make a healthier choice when the pizza cravings hit.
Thank you CAULIPOWER for supporting and believing in Teaching Gardens and the profound impact that growing fruits and veggies from the ground up has on our children. Thank you for making a product from cauliflower that lives in the frozen food section!!!!