This is a picture of my oldest daughter, Emma. While she looks healthy and vibrant now, this wasn’t always the case.
When Emma was 2 years old, she had been on round after round of antibiotics for recurrent ear infections. She had over 30 known food allergies and had been diagnosed with a digestive disorder. Finally, she had eczema, a skin condition that would keep her scratching, itching, and picking in an isolated corner during playtime.
After endless trips to pediatricians and specialists it was decided that Emma would likely “grow out of” her ailments, but not much could be done to heal her. We were instructed to treat her symptoms with topical creams and strict elimination diets until she came of age to grow out of this “hyper-sensitive” phase. I was not content with this instruction, as I believed there was a root cause or problem that was not being addressed.
One evening I did a Google search for “eczema and diet”, as I had an inkling that diet was somehow related to Emma’s ailments. After scrolling through the results, I found a website that opened up doors for me. The Weston A. Price Foundation was a non-for-profit organization dedicated to traditional foods diet education. The wisdom I gained from reading this website (and later about a dozen books) allowed me to heal my daughter.
After two weeks of a regimen called the GAPS Diet, my once plagued daughter was SYMPTOM FREE. No belly aches, no “itchies”, no sniffles, no allergic shiners, no hives, no infections. I was astounded, and changed forever.
It was this knowledge of the healing power of diet (food is medicine!) that led me to re-think my entire family’s way of eating. It was during this time that I taught myself to make yogurt.
After about 6 months of working recipe by recipe through “Nourishing Traditions” by Sally Fallon, I decided to reach out to my local Weston A. Price Foundation community here in San Antonio. To my surprise, there was no local support group for like-minded eaters! So I started the first San Antonio local chapter for the Weston A. Price Foundation and served as chapter leader for 5 years.
During this time, my fascination for dairy grew. I found myself making cheese, yogurt, buttermilk and kefir in my spare time. My refrigerators were overtaken by cultures, raw milk, and dairy products in both cow and goat. I would learn how to make something, and then teach a class about it. My “students” sang high praises to the cultured dairy products I would make.
One day, I mustered up the courage to bring a sample of my Greek yogurt to a local farmer’s market manager. She fell head over heels in love with my product. She helped me figure out how to become a vendor, and in December of 2013, Mother Culture™ was born.