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Grandma Rose celebrated her birthday on March 1, her 81st time to celebrate the occasion. An occasion myself and many, many others are quite thankful for.

A few years back, Wednesday March 1, 2006 to be exact, a column appeared in this very same spot by this very same writer about my very same Grandma Rose titled, “Kitchen Wishes.”

Many things have changed between that column and this in all of our lives. Some changes for the better, and as it has to be in life, some changes are changes that we would prefer to have remained unchanged.

To go through life without that sort of change is just not possible. We can’t always choose the changes that occur in life but we can choose how we let them affect us.

Whether we choose to find inspiration, motivation, or desperation in a hand we’re dealt has a lot to do with the people and environment we were raised in. I got lucky.
Grandma Rose is, and always has been, an inspiration to me.

With her vast array of kitchen appliances…juicers, dehydrators, bread machines…“Grandma Gadget” was the first to inspire me to really think about the bond between our health and the food we eat.

She is a constant experimenter in the kitchen, on an apparent quest to create the healthiest loaf of bread to ever be broken between kith and kin.

Grandma Rose inspired me to take an interest in family history. We would go through suitcases full of old photos and she would give me the facts and figures on each person in each photo.

Grandpa always played the part of “color commentator” filling in the gaps between the facts and figures with humorous stories and perhaps a bit of fiction.

Grandma Rose has always inspired me to be empathetic, kind, and accepting of others for who they are. An inspiration taken not from things she says, but rather from who she is, and how she has lived her life. Selflessly and lovingly giving of herself to her family.

A more beautiful Rose has never bloomed.

She is a unique Rose.

A Rose without thorns.

A Rose overflowing with pedals of “loves me” without a single “loves me not.”

That’s my Grandma Rose. A women of inspiration.

Nine years ago “Kitchen Wishes” was titled such because, whenever you were at the farm and were poking around the kitchen for something to calm a craving, Grandma would say, “What do you wish for?”

“What do you wish for?” A simple question with so many answers.

At the time, as a kid, I wished for one of her cinnamon rolls, I wished for her lefse, I wished for her homemade fruit roll-ups, I wished for her special “microwave sandwich.”

I wished and she granted whatever a kid could wish for.
I’m a few years removed from that kid, and those kitchen wishes, but I think of that question often.

“What do you wish for?”

I wish time would ease up a bit…I wish some things would never change…I wish we all were a bit more like you, Grandma Rose.

I wish you a Happy Birthday.

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